Pvt. Richard B. Pittman
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|Transcribed By: George Purvis, 3rd great-grandson of Richard B. Pittman.|
NOTE FROM TRANSCRIBER: I typed these letters as close to the original letters as possible. I have noted where I made changes therefore the misspelling and run together words are not typos.
Pvt. Richard B. Pittman|
Co. F, 7th Miss.
The State of Mississippi, Harrison Co.
Dear companion I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am well at this tyme. Hopen these few lines may find you injoy the same good blessing. I am as well sattifide as could be expect and a grate deel beter than I thought I would be. I whount you to write to me as soon as you can git the chance and let me know how you all are a gitten a longe. I will come back one time in the too month if I git the chance. I got hear to day at eleven oc clock. I am now in my tent. We have plenty to eat and that is good thair is 16 hundred solgars hear now. We air a bought too miles a bove the pass hit is vary helty hear except some the meals but thair a mending. I have not got time to write much now. I will write a gain in a bought too weeks. I direct your letter to Pass Cristann in the care of W.J. Rankin. I must come to a close.
R. B. Pittman to Maryann E. Pittman.
Camp Dalhgreen Mis.
Dear wife, I take the present opertunity of writing you a few lines which will let you know that I am well and hoping these few lines may find you enjoying the same good blessing and children also. And Dear I want you not to write to me no more until write again for we have to move from here and I do not know where we will go, though I think we will go about the mouth of the Pearl River. We have had orders to be ready in five minutes for the last twenty four hours and I think we mite go today. It has been expected by the officers that we would be attacked by the enemy for two days, but I donít think there is any danger at present. I have not much time to write. James Lott says tell his father not to write no more untill he writes again and he is well. Dear I will state to you that Ship Island was bumbed night before last by the southerners. I will bid you farewell.
Richard B. Pittman to Maryann E. Pittman.
Camp Dallgreen State of Mississippi Handcock County, September 22, 1861
My dear I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am well at the present. Hoping these few lines find you and the children injoying the same good blessing and as well satisfied as could be expected. My dear your letter came to hand the 18. It gave me grate satisfaction to hear from you and to hear that you war all well and doing well. You need not send me only 2 pare of pants and 1 wescote and I expect to bee at home by the last of next month if not before. My Dear you need not bee un easy about mee be sorry for yourself and the children. I am doing vary well only I am under varry strict laws and regalation. We have left the pas and have gon to Shieldsburrough. Wright to mee as soon as you git this letter. Direct your letter to Shieldsburrough Handcock County. Nothing more at present only remaining your loving husband until death.
Camp Dalgrene Miss
Dear wife a word or too more to you. You wanted me to write to you. I resevede your letter the 18 day. I was glad to hear from you and my little children. You rote me the nabors had ben good to you. I hope that they will remane good. You rote to me a bought cloth. I want you to have me too par of pantaloon and a wescote by the last of next month. I think I will be there then. Oh Mary you donít know glad I would be to see you and my little children but I hope I will return safe home a gane if the Lord is willing. I rote to you but I donít it you will git this letter but I hope you will reseve this letter. I whant you to write me as soon as you git this letter. I whant you to make yourself contented a bought as much as you can. I donít think that we will have any fiten to do hear. Mary Ann I whant you to write to me have all my things ( come to me at home) And write to me when Enoch comes back and send me a lock of your har that will remine me of you dear wife. The time is roling on when I shall be a free man a gain if I should live. Donít git out of hart for I truly think I go back a gain to stay my days out. Old uncle Hugh Bulock told me that he would pay for 15 head of sheep and I think you had better take the money for them. I must come to a close good Mariann and my dear little children. Nothing more.
Richard B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
Dear wife I seat myself this evening for the purpose of writing you a few lines to let you no how I am getting a long. I am well Brother Charles & James Lott they have the measles thoe it is a very light atact. I do fell in hopes that these few lines will reach you and find you enjoying all the blessin this life can afford you. Dear wife I have nothing very interestin to write you. We have a good deal of sickness in camp and some deathes in this regmen. One dyed yesterday and two dyed today. Thoe they were strangers to me none of our company is very bad off. I think the measle will not heart them very bad if they will take care of their selves. Dear wife I can inform you that we have a greate deel of confusion in camp. It is all about being mustered in the confederacy. The head officers want to muster us in for twelve months from the day we are mustered in and nearly all of our company is opose to that. They was all willing to serve their twelve months.
October the 6, 1861
Maryann I can inform you that we are transferred in the Southern Confederacy. It is thought we will be stationed on the raleroad at Boguachito Station. I want to go home in two or three weeks if I can get off. I close my letter by assigning my name. I remain your affectionate husband.
R.B. Pittman to Maryann E. Pittman
Mississippi, Hancock County
My Dear I take my pen in hand to inform you that I have landed back to the camp safe. I am well at present hoping that these few lines may find you and my little children all well and injoying the same good blessing. James and Charlese mending. James and James Lott mended sloley. James has not had time to mend much yet. Enoch ses he will have to tight Charles to keep him from running afoot. Maryan I donít have no idea that we will leave this place unless we go to Napolion and if we do we will be 19 miles near home. Three of our companies left this redigment last Sunday and Capt. Rankin company was call but their were so many of his men sick he could knot leave them. They are gone to the osion Springs. Write to me when Forbes comes back to camp. I must come to a close so nothing more at the present only I still remain your loving husband until death. Good morning Maryan.
Camp Goode November the 2, 1861
My dear I take my pen in hand to inform you that I have been very sick with a colde and fever and my head ris but I have got agrate deal better and can git up and sit by the fire. I am in hopes that these few lines find you and the children all well and blest with all the conforts that this life can afforde. Maryann I received your kind letter which gave me grate satisfaction to hear from you and to hear that you all are as well as you are. Maryann if Daniel still has the fever you must git Mr. Coward to give him adose of medicen. Maryann I was glad to git the potatoes and pinders and the mittins. I am not able to say whether we will stay here all this winter or not. Sum ses that theres prospect of pease but I am not sure of hit. We have had agrate deal of sickness in camps. We have lost one of our men we sent Bryant home a corpes yesterday and we have two or three more that I donít think can ever git up again. Mary E. Pitt I told E. W. not finish my letter until this morning and one of our men died this morning about fifteen minits before sunrise and we have two more men that I donít think will ever git well again. Maryann the next time you write to me date your letters. Maryann you need not be uneasy about Richard. I will take as good care of his as possible. He has not got a disease only a colde and I will nurse him & me. Maryann you must write to me as often as possible and send my close when ever you can git them reddy . So nothing more at the present only remaining your loving husband until death. Good morning Maryann and my dearlittle children all.
R.B. Pittman to Maryann Pittman
Camp Leorel [Lovell]
Dear wife I seat myself to inform you that I am well as can be and am agrate deal better of then I was when I left home and hoping these few lines may find you and the children all enjoying the the same good blessing. The rest of your brothers are all well with the eception of brother James. He has been very sick but he is amending. Maryann the officers don nothing with me. They did not cort marshel me. Maryann you had beter go or send and git your sheep back home and you had better take all of them and bring them home. Maryann I want you to git William or Mr.Lott to hire you a Negro woman or a boy that can plough if they can be got at afare price. Only if they cant plough I donít want them. And you kneed knot feel uneasy about us going North fore we will not be there before spring if we go then.
December the 20, 1861
Dear wife a word or two more. I wish to tell you I want you to git cloth enough to make me a cot and a par of pans and a wesqiut of black geans if you can git hit. Anyhow take enough of that money to git hit if you need hit only. That golde dollar I want you to give hit to the baby and save hit till I come back. Do what you pleas with the rest of. Mak them as soon as you can. As soon as you make them send them to me by the first carriage.You need not put no cotton in my coat. I want you to mak ilet hols in hit so I can so I can put them on with a string. I want you to make nine button hols in hit. I beleve that is all I want you to do. James Lott ses tell his foks that he started to write to them but he sed that the letter did not suit him and he would not send hit. Maryan I donít know when to tell you that I can come but I do not expect to leave hear. So I must come to a close my helth is in proven fast. You will write soon so I must bide you goode by so nothing more.
R. B. Pittman to Mrs. Mary E. Pittman
December the 22 the AD 1861
My dear asI know I have a few leasure moments, I will write you a few lines to let you know I am well. Hoping these few lines will find you well. The boys are all well except Brother James. He is better than he has been. I think he will git well know if no backsit. I think we will leave this place before long. I dont think we will go far. I think we will go to the mouth of Purl River that is just my guess. I suppose old ingland has come over to the south. If so we stand a chance to come home before long. I think we will git home time enuff to make a crop. We have some cold weather hear at last. I think that it will be better for the sick they are apt to get harty. We have cold time standing gard . There has bin three men caught a sleep at their post which will have to eat bread and drink water for thirty days. But they did not belong to our company. Two of them belong to the Sharp Shooters the other belong to the Frankling rifles. They have guards after them whareever they go. I donít think there any danger of my going to sleep. I want you to write whether you have got any person to live with you or not. If you have you must let me know it is and on what terms. You must let me know if there is any thing that you want. If there is I will try to get it for you Nothing more this time I remain your husband until death.
R. B. Pittman.
Camp Lovel December the 28 1861
Dear wife I seat my self this evening to in form you that I am well at this tyme. Hopen these few lines will find you and the children all well. I have nothing of importance to write to you at this tyme. More than I would like to see you all. We in joied our selves vary well down here at Chrismas but I had rather been home. We had the week to rest and to drink eggnoge but still we had to obey orders. Tell William them men that went off that morning that he left they have returned. They just went out on a scouting party to see if they could see any thing wronge but they found nothing a miss. Then the Captain and John Mgee and several outhers went once . They was gone too days and and one night. They had a vary bade time the tide was hi and they hade a bade time of hit but came back safe. James is mending very fast Daniel donít sem to mend much but the most of our company has got harty and well satisfied. I must tell you what the boys don to Hood on Chrismas day. He got drunk and went to sleep and the boys put him in the chickin cube and toted him all over the camp and had all kinds of music after him. I think there must have been too or three hundred men after him. I think that don him a grate deel of good.
So I must tell you what hapen while I was writen these few lines The came news for every man to fall in ranks with their guns catredgs boxes and go to the parade grounds .They gave us all five rounds a piece and march us out to the parade grounds. The Kirnill march us around thar some time and had us act out the action of firen just like we had to go rite to the fitin. After drillin.us round a while in the dark he formed us in a square and marched us back to the ridgement and told us that hit was a fals alarm. He prase us all for turnout and told the captains to march thar men back to camp for dismiss. So I must bide you good by for my candle is dem so when this you see can remember me. Your beloved husband until deth.
R. B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
Camp Lovel January the 1 1862
Der companion I seat myself to let yo her from me. I am well at present and I hope that these lines may find yo and mi der little children in joying the same good blessing mi der. Mi der to must rit to me evry chance yo can git. I havenít received but one letter from yo sence I left yo. Yo must bearrow sum salt to save your meat. I donít want yo to * waste* youre corne a way tel yo wonít have a nuf for youre bred. I will send yo sum salt as quick as I can git the chance to send hit. Yo must tri to git sum persone to live with yo.if yo can and if yo canít if you canítt if you want to stay ther yo must tri to git sum person to live with yo. Yo must sute your sel a bot that. I have nothing of importence to rit to yo only we have moved to day a bot one mile from the old camp. So I must come to a close mi candle is out of good nit. I have nothing more at present only milove to yo until deth I remain your efectionnut husben.
R.B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
NOTE:** not sure what word he was intending to use--GLP
Hancock County Miss.
Dear wife, I take the opportunity of writeing you a few lines to inform you that I am well at this time except bad cold. I hope this few lines may find you well. I have nothing of importance to write to write to you at this time. We fair tolerable well here now we get plenty to eat. We drill about six hours a day. It has been supposed we would have an attact here but I donít know whether we will or not for I do not see more danger now than I saw when I first came down here. We had a verry dull Christmas not with standing we had plenty of company. I want you to try and take care of yourself and the children and not be troubled about me for I will try and take care of myself. I am as well satisfied as I expected to be. I have nothing new to write now but I write to let you know how I am and that I have not for got you. I want you to write to me every chance you get. I want to hear from you often. John Calvin, and Daniel James I want you to be good boys and mind your mother do all you can to help her. I must come to a close. May the grate ruler of the universe gide and protect you all is my prayer for Christ sake amen. Your loving husban.R. B. Pittman
Mary Ann E. Pittman
Dear wife I seat myself this morning to inform you that I am as well as common. Hopen these few lines may find you and the children in joying good health. I reseved your letter the other day. I was glad to hear from you but I was sory to hear Daniel had the fever. I have nothing of importains to write to you more than I whoulde like to see you all. I whant you to write to me how Daniel is wether he is dangers or not. If he is I whant you to write to me them things you rote to me you wanted. I will send them to Jessey Warren next week. I want you to write to me how all the rest of the people are a gittinge a longe. You must send my uniform as soon as you can git hit made by the first chance you git. We are gitten a longe very well her in camp. There are some men sick yet but the most of the camp is harty. I must bringe my leter to a close. You must excuse the bade riten and spelling and you must write soon. When this you see rember your dear and affection husband un till death. Nothing more at present so I will bide you fare well.
R. B. Pittman to Mrs. Mariann E. Pittman
Dear wife I seat myself to inform you that I am well at the present time. Hoping these few lines may find you all injoying the same good blessings. I nothing of importance to rite. Mariann you salt have not come yet. Maby it will come before the wagon leaves. I will send you one half barel of moleses 20 pounds of sugar 4 hats and 17 yards of demestic 1 pound of black peper *Poly* one.of the half barles of moleses is hern and 10 yards of bleatch and two yards of muslem one half of the salt if it comes. I beleave that is all we are going to send this time. I will close for I have nothing to rite. I want you to rite the first opportunity. Nothing more good by Mary E. Pittman
R. B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
NOTE: **Stephen Pittmanís wife-GLP
Dear wife I have taken my seat this morning to write a few lines to you which will inform you that I am well at this time. Hoping that these few lines will find you all well and doing well. Marian I have nothing much of importance to write to you. We have a good deal of sickness in camp tho all of our people is well. We are faring well very well hear we get plenty to eat hear. We have moved back to our old camp. We moved yesterday. We expect to go to the Pass in a few days and I expect that we will go thir. Thir is a great rumor hear of our coming home shortly to stay sixty days. We donít no the certainty of it. Thir is a* rumor started to day that after the 20th of this month that five men will be permited to go home at a time and stay five days at home. I have no other news to write at this time more than we drill a good deal.
Marian I should like to see you all very much and the children all, so I send my best respects to all the connections and all inquire friends, so I will close my letter. Nothing more at present only remain your husband until death. M.B. I want you to write to me as often as you can, as I am glad to hear from home as often as I can. Yours Respectfully,
Richard B. Pittman
To his wife at home Marian Pittman
NOTE: *not sure of words used GLP
January the 21,1862
Dear wife, I seat myself this evening for the purpose of writing you a few lines, by which you may learn that I am well at this time. I do fell in hopes these few lines will reach you and find you in joying all the blessings this life can afford. I have nothing very interesting to write to you. We have a good deel of sickness in camp. The doctor called it camp fever. We had one man to die to day. We had one shot last Tuesday in the foot, it was an acident. Their was a boy came to their camps and got to frolicking with a pistol and it went off and shot J.W. Cox in the foot. MaryAnn I have got salt on old James Clarkes wagon, it will be left at his hows. If you nead it you will know where to find it. I am very sory that I have nothing interesting to write to you. Our smart men says we will all get to go home by the first of May. I should be very glad to know that, that was a fact. I hope it will be the case Mariann. I would be very glad to see you and the children. I do not know when I expect to come home some time in March if nothing happens to me and I should live. I want you to write to me. I must come to a close. I remain your affectionate husband until death.
R.B. Pittman to MariAnn Elizabeth Pittman
My dear, I take my seat to let you know that I am well and I hope these few lines will find you well. Enoch got in camp yesterday. He brought my uniform which the coat fit very well. He lost the pants but I think I will get them. You wanted to know whether to put up any more hogs or not. I want you to do as you think best about that, as it is so that I canít be at home. I give the business intirely up to you. You must manage the best you can. If there is anything you need you must let me know and I will try and get it for you. You must write as soon as you get this. The corn you wanted to know about is twelve bushels that Steven is to let you have. Nothing more at thie time as we have to fix for a drill. I will write to you before long.
February the 21, 1862
Dear wife I seat myself this evening for the purpose of writing you a few lines by whitch you may learn that I am well. I do fell in hopes that these few lines will reach you and find you and the children in the enjoyment of good health. I have nothing very interesting to write you. A few days ago I expected to be ordered off . I do not have any idea that we will be sent off from hear at all. I think we will stay our time out hear. Dear wife I can in form you that their was fore yankeys taken yesterday, one kill. They was taken by a scouting party. I supose that their a good many yankes out a bout Shipe Island. It is the opinion of our officers that we will be atacted by the enemy in a short time. Thoe I think it doughtful whether we are attacted hear or not. Dear wife I must come to a close. I remain your affectionate husband until death.
R.B. Pittman to MaryAnne Elizabeth Pittman
*Maryann Elizabeth I have nothing very interesting to write to you. I heard that we had another big battle at Fort Danielson. The southerners loss was one thousand the enemy loss was four thousand and that is a great many men to be killed.
MaryAnn Elizabeth I sent you a bible to old man Clarkes by William Thompson. I would be very glad to see you all.I do not know when I will, they have quit giving furlowes. I may not get to come home any more until my time is out. I have not heard from home sence I left you. I want you to write as often as you can conveniently do so. I am glad to hear from you at any time. I want you to write what those felowdoing out their that stayed back. I think they will have to do something at last*.
NOTE: *I have no idea why this letter is not dated or Richard did not say good by. It is stapled to the above letter. GLP
Dear wife I have taken my pen to write you a few lines to you wich leaves me well. Hoping these few lines may find you and the children all well. This will inform you that I am going to leave you all from the best information I can get. We are going to Memphis Tenisee this I can tell for certain where we are going. Dear wife it grieves me to have to say to you that I am going to have to leave you so far. But I go off lively and I donít want you to grieve after me, far I go freely tho I should like to have come back to see you all agane. But so it is I am willing to serve my country. I want you to do the best you can and keep everything together till I get back agane. I donít expect to come any more till my time is out. I will rite to you agane when we get settled agane. I want you to write to me as quick as I write to you. I only have a few minuts to write in so fare you well and tell all my friends fare well for me and except the same for yourself. Nothing more at present. I still remain your husband until death.
R.B. Pittman To his wife Mariann Pittman at home
Marian dear wife I have taken my pen in hand to write a few lines to you wich leaves me well at present. Hoping these few lines may find you and the children all well and doing well . Marian the reason that I wanted to peticular wanted to write this morning to you was on account of our misfortune yesterday. I knew you would hear of it noing the truth could not go that far. I new you would be uneasy about all of your connections and friends so I will state the truth as near as I can. We got on the cars at New Orleans at four oclock and within two miles Pontiatulia when we met the lumber train and the two ran together and broke several of the cars all to peaces nearly killing all and wounding a greate many men. Thir was 24 killed dead. I cant tell how many was was mortally wounded so many that they are talking of sending 2 companys home. 28 mortaly wounded and a great many that was not mortally wounded and we are staying hear for another train to take us on. Thir was none of our company hurt much. Jesee Vince got both legs broke and his collar bone broke. Another man that you no was not hurt that much. We are going to Jackson Tenisee. I will write to you when we get stationed and I want you to write as quick as write to you agane. Dear wife we are going to go back to New Orleans, I donít know where we will go so I will close my letter and write yours truly, R.B. Pittman.
My dear wife I take my pen in hand to inform you that iam well at present hoping that these few lines may finde you enjoying the same good blessing. I have seen the afulist sight sence I saw you that iever saw in my life. I have bin in the biggest battle that has ever bin fought in this country so sed by people that has bin in them and was in this. The fight commenst Sunday morning about daylight and Sunday evening about sundown the enemy retreated to there gunbotes and fort fication and we went down there and hit was so late then we hadint time and they bumbed us so that we came back to these camps and stade all knight and then the fight comenst Monday morning very early and we fought them till late in the evening an then we retreated back to Corinth ajaison of the tracks and some stade ther in the battle feald all night Monday night. The reason I did not ancer your letter I was ordered out on Tenesee River an I did not have time to write if you hant let Lis magee have the cotton donít let him have hit for there is no trust to be hat in him what he tells you. I havenít time to write I will close my short letter so nothing more.
Mr. R. B. Pittman to Mary E Pittman.
Dear wife I seat myself to write you a few lines to inform you that I am well hopen these few lines may find you enjoying same good blessing. I have nothing of importance to write to you more than I would like to see you and the children but I cant tell you when I shall. You needent send me no more cloths for I have got more hear than they will alow me to have. Sence I have come hear we donít stay at one long at a time. We march 7 mile last Sunday to guard some bridges to keep the Yankees from tearing them down. We stade thar tell Monday aboght 2 oclock and then we was ordered to Corinth and this morning we had orders to cook too days rishinges. We donít know wher we will go this time. Thar are a good many solgars hear at Corinth. They say ther are seventy thousand and could bee to a hundred thousand here in a days time. I hear the enemy is near us wether it is so or not I cant tell. I havenít seen them myself. Trains are coming in every day they think they will be a battle hear soon. We have left some of our company in Tenesee they was sick when we left thar we ar abought forty mild from them. You must write to me as soon as you git this letter and rite ever chance you git and let me know how you ar all getting a longe. Direc your letter to Corinth Mississippi in car of Capt Rankin. I havenít time to write. I will come to a close you must ecuse bad riten and spelling all so nothing more at present.
Mr. R.B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
My dear wife I seat myself to inform you that I am well and hoping that these few lines may find you and the children all injoying the same good blessing. I have nothing of importance to wright to you only we have agrate deal of sickness her in campes. You rote to me that Magee wanted your cotton or apart of hit and you had better keep the cotton to git something to live on. I aloude to let Magee have the cotton but I cant stay in the army and make cotton too and Magee will have to wate until I am home and then if I can do enny thing for him I will do hit. I can git sum paper her now and you nee not send me none right. Right to me as often as possible and direct your letter to Corinth Missi. Thishamingo County in care of Capt rankin. You need not send me ennymore close until I wright to you for sum. I must come to a close so nothing more at present only I still remain your loving husband untell death.
R. B. Pittman to Maryan Pittman
My dear wife I seat myself to drop you a few lines to let you her from me. I am not in good health at this time. I have had yaler jonders since the fight but I am getting better and hoping that these few lines my fin you and the children all well. You rote to me that you had not herd from sence the battle and I rote to you and sent the letter by Bullock and he has got hit now if he has not sent hit to you. I received your kinde letter yesterday and was glad to her from you all. You rote to me that I must right all about the fight hit wood take me aweake to right all that I no about the fight. We lost 25 men out of our redgement that was killed and about fifty wounded. 3 men killed and only3 wounded and brother Daniel was only slightly wounded that was only our one company. The lose on the confederate armey was seven thousan and the yankees agreeable to there one state ments was twentytoo thousand. I herd that you had been to see about the sheep and you must wright to me what you don about them and all so wright to me what you ever done with cotton and send me one pare of pants one pare of socks when I went out on tennesee river I lost a pare of pants. I must come to a close so nothing more at present only remaining youre loving husband till death. Good evening my loving wife.
To Maryan E. Pittman
May 8th 1862
My dear wife I will you on how we are getting along Enoch died monday morning at five oclock & Charles died today at 12 oclock. He got better & took the inecypolis in his face & died with. Me and Stephen are both well & will go back to camps at Corinth in a few days. We are at the hospital at Oxford where we came with them. There is a good many of our company here sick and some of them very bad off. M Bines I donít think will stand it many more days longer. I donít know much about what is going on at Corinth as I have been away from there over a week there is no chance of getting to go home from here any more. I tried to get to carry Enoch home but there was no chance of getting off . Write to me soon & let no. Charles Bullock & Daniel are getting along as they were both sick when I heard from them last. No more at presen from your affectionate husband till death.
State of Miss.
Dear wife I have returned to camps in tolerable health. I came to camps on the eighteenth the fifth day after I left home. I wish to write to you in as much as I cannot stay with you and your children. We have good water hear an tolerable health among the soldiers they seem in good sprits. I hear that Vixburg fight is over. We sunk two boats an blown one up an the yankeeys left. I heard of a nother victory this morning for us besides the grate fight at Richmond. We seem to be gaining ground with the help of God. We have left Tupelo about twelve miles and I have not seen William and Lemon Lott nor heard anything of them since I came back. Ceborn Pigott is well Daniel Pittman has got a discharge an left for home. Steven Pittman is well and I hope these few lines may findyou injoying the good blessings of this life an also your children. I also hope that mother is well an the connections is well neighbors an friends is well in general. I did not get the cloes that you sent to Corinth for me when I was in the hospital. There is nothing of being a standing army made up. I donít think for it would be of no use until peace was made. I must close with saying a few word to you being being your beloved husband. Do not forget to prais God in you troubles a dificultys in this life prais him in sickness pray in health an he will hear thy supplications may God bless you is my humble prais, farewell for the present. I still remain your husband until death, truly yours.
Mary Ann E. Pittman
Richard B. Pittman
Camp Near Saltillo
Dear wife, I take the present opportunity of writing you a few lines to let you no that I am well at this time hoping this may reach you all and find you well. I have nothing much to rite to you at this time. Well we are going to move from and go to I no not where. I sent you a letter by Dolph Forbes you tell Bob Tonage that Zeb Pigott is sick. You need not rite to until you git another letter from me so you will no wherer I am . So I will close this short letter nothing more at present but remain your affectionate husband until death.
R B..Pittman to Mariann E. Pittman
Send me my winter cloths by the first opportunity
Aug the 23 1862
Dear wife I wish to drop you a few lines in the way of rememberence as I cannot talk with you face to face though it be a pleasure to me to be with you an your children. I am well at present and all of the boys is well and I hope you an you children are injojing the same like blessing. I am in Tennesee at Harison the North side of the River in rediness to march, The boys that got hirt with the cars are nearly all returned to camps. Tom Futch canít walk yet the others is on the mend. I hear. Dear loving wife do the best you can though the times is hard I know an chance for you to get along hard. I know though with the help of God you will get through this life well and for as your Christain duties I hope you will live to inherit life eternal where I hope we will when death parts us from each other. Pray for me and your children and yourself.
I donít know when I will get off not til my time is out. I donít recon if then for their may be something turn up to compel me to stay with the army still. I must close my letter so fare you well for the present my dear wife.
Mary Ann E. Pittman
By the request of your husband Richard Pittman I write you a few lines in order to let you hear of his present health. He is enjoying very good health at this time the Regt has gone on a march they are about eight miles distant from here and prepareing to go father. I am left here with the remainder of the sick and cripple. The boys are generally well with some few exceptions and in high spirits thinking they will soon be relieved of the bitter camping out and being separated from their wives children and those dear to them by the tender ties of nature. Our troops are marching on towards old Buel in three different ways so he will have give fight or give back. I think our force is sufficient to give him a warm reception. Stephen Pittman is quit harty at this time Richard is enjoying himself as well as could be expected his health has been improving very much his return. He would have written to you himself but marching came he was expecting and then there was no time for writing though they were four or five days ready to start but could not till what minute they would have to go, therefore he would not attempt to write. I will close, My best respect to you and family.
My Dear wife I this morning attempt to write a few lines to you in hopes that it may reach you soon. I wrote a day or two * ago* but I am afraid it will never reach .I will send this by Mr. Williams who will go somewhere in our settlement. I have nothing very new to write this morning any more than we are expecting every hour to move from this place. The enemy being close to us I expect we will have a fight soon. My health is good at this time an Stephen is in tolerable health at this time. We have had a good number of cases of chills & fever this month in the Regiment but no serious sickness. It is needful for me to tell you how bad I want to see you ann the children but it seems like I shall not enjoy that privilege soon but who knows how things will turn round. We may be liberated and allowed to come home soon but not too soon to please me I am sure.
I hope you will try to be as contented as circumstances will allow for I am well aware that you have many trials to contend with as you are but I hope God will give you strength to bear all your troubles for with out his help we can do nothing. I trust his mercy will be extended to us so far as to bring us back home again. It seems hard to be separted so but I know it is wrong to *wonder* at his will and I will try to be as *resigned* as I can hoping God in many mercy will bring all things right. I donít think the war can last a great while longer. It seems almost an age already since we have been out. I want you to write to me as often as you have an oppoptunity of a letter througjh. Chance is bad for one to reach here without some one * helping* I believe I have told you all that would interest you this time I shall try writing every chance.
NOTE:* George, It sure looks like Barksvue, but I believe it's Barksdale after the General. I also believe this camp was near Tyners Station 10 miles SE of Chattanooga.
* * *not sure of words
Mrs. Mary Ann Pittman
Dear wife I send you this letter by mail as I have no other chance of sending it. We have left the Tennessee River where I last wrote you at. I am in tolerable good health with the exception to the dead coal. We have crossed the Chestnut Ridge and have to cross another chain of the Cumberland Mountains to morrow. We are camped now where the Yankees camped at last week. General Buel is retreating to ward Nashville Tennessee. Stephen is well.
NOTE: ( After discussing this undated letter with Ron Skellie, it was decided that this is the most likely timeframe this letter could have been written)
Camp near tallahoma
My dear wife take my pen in hand to write you a few lines to let you know that I am in fine health at this time hoping these few lines may find my dear family well. I received the letter that you sent to me by Mr. Youngblood, I was glad to here that you had got through and that the boy was so fine. I was glad to here that you was doing so well I have bin verry uneasy about you but thank God that dred is over. You wrote to me that Lish Magee would not let you have the any longer. I think you had better stay on Stephen place til I get home to make some arrangements about a place. I will send you some money and Stephen will send polly ten dollars in with it. We are now in Tenneesee we had orders last night to cook two days rashions and to be reddy to leave at a moments warning but I cant tell you whare we will go I hope that we will go down in Mississippi. I cant tell you at this time when I will be home but I hope that they will give me a furlow sometime between now and Christmas. I am very anxious to be at with you and the children. But you must do the best you can til I get home. I must come to a close will send you a name for the boy. Maryan wait til I write you again and I remaine as ever your most affectionat husband until death
Dear wife I received your kind and affectionate letter dated. Nov. 18, AD 1862 yesterday I was glad to hear from you but was very sorry to hear of Daniel being sick. I am well the boys are all in good health. You spoke in you letter of wanting me to go home but there is no chance for me git off nor I donít know when their will be one. There are no furloughs granted. I sent by John Magee for a coat & 2pair of pants. I received all the clothin that you sent by John Magee & Mr. Youngblood and have as much as I can carry. You need not send me any more clothing unless it is golases or something of the kind. I want you to me how you gitting on and how satisfied and if you are going to stay there and also what the times are you can. Do what you think is best about staying there as you are there and I am here. I cannot tell you what to do. You & the boys can tend what you can of that land and have the balance for pasture. I think it best not to rent it out. I want you to write to me as often as you can. I remain your husband
Dear Mary I am now in Chattanooga wounded slightly in the side and leg but not serious. I hope to be able to go back to my regiment in one week from now. My brother is slightly wounded in the hand. My company is badly is cut up . I do not know of any killed but my 1st Lieut. My captain is wounded in the head. We ran them back all the time taking a great many prisoners and some 60 or 70 pieces of artillery. Our cavalry is burnt all the RailRoad bridges in the rear and our Infantry in front pushing them very hard was the last dispatch today. We have got them whipped! Genl. Chambliss was wounded I do not know how bad. I will rite to you again when I get the full paticulars of the fight
Your Lovin Husband
Dear wife I received your kind and affectionate letter dated Jan. 9th A.D. 1863 and was glad to hear from you and my relatives who are so dear to me. I am in good health. You stated in your letter that you had not received any letters from me since we crossed the mountains. I have written you very much I came out of the fight safe at Murfreesboro with the exception to a few wounds. I went with Stephen to Jackson an got back last week. I found time dull here the boys are in tolerable good health Wm. Howard was wounded in the fight at Murfreesboro and has since died. Calvin Baughman is dead. Capt Atkinson got back yesterday. General Johnsonton is here and is supposed by some that we will not stay here long. You stated in your letter that the boys to the army let me no in your next letter where they have gone to and what Regiment they are in so that I may write to them. Write me all the news let me know if any body has desereted from that part of the country and who they are. I want to see you and the children very bad but not bad enough to make me desert. There is no such thing getting furlough and therefore do not expect to git back home until the war ends. You must not study about me think of yourself the children and I will try to take care of my self I am not the only one that has a family at home to think of. You must write soon and often. You can direct your letters to Shelbyville, Tullahoma or Chattanooga and they will come to my Regiment from either of those places. Nothing more at present but remain your husband.
Dear wife I am in good health . Your letter dated February 8th came safely to Corinth yesterday. I was glad to hear from you and the children. Times are dull here all the boys wanting to go home and are tired of the war as well as me my self. We have had tolerably cold winter here and it is raining today. We get plenty to eat and such as bacon beef *meal* rice sugar peas and sometimes we get pork flour and are camped where there is plenty of good wood and water. We have very light guard duty to perform except when we go out on picket. We are camped about twenty miles from the Yankees. I was sorry hear of the boys having to leave home but was truly glad to hear from Stephen. I want you take care of yourself and the children until I get back if I ever should then I may be able to care of you. Give respects to all the neighbors relatives to inquiring friends & respect for yourself the same. I remain your husband .
My affectionate wife I again take my pen in hand to drop you a few lines this morning which will leave me in good health at the present time hoping these few lines may meat you enjoying the same. I have nothing of importance to write, only I have lost all my clothing. I lost them last weak, I was out on pickett gard at the time. The enemy came near us one day and we left our knapsacks all in camps and went out to meat them and when we got back to camps our things was scattered so until I could not find my things. So all of my clothing is gone but what I have on. You need not to send me any thing for I will lose them perhaps before I can get them. You may send me a pare of socks and pare of suspenders if you have the chance. I want you to write to me what you have done with the sheep if you have not sold them. I want you to get them home and not sell them at no price. I want you to write to me as often as you can I would be glad to see you all but it is impossible for me to come home now. Write to me immediately and tell me the news in general so nothing more.
R. B. Pittman
Dear wife I seat myself this evening for the purpose of writing you a few lines which leaves me in good health. I do feel in hopes these few lines may reach you and find you and the children in the enjoyment of good health. I received your letter which was dated *February the 8*. Mary I am very glad to hear from you at any time. I have nothing very interesting to write to you. All appear very still hear. I do not hear any news of importance times are hard up hear every thing in pervisions line is high such as porke bacon chicken eggs everything that is to eat and scares at that. I hope that we will all live to see better times and and all be at home again in peace again. I would be very glad to see you all one time more Mary. Nearly all the army is in tolerable good health. .Burt McColskey John A Whiddon they are both gone to the hospital. They were both very sick when they left hear. Mary Brother Stephen has not got back yet. I want you to write to me by him and lett me know where the other boys are and what regment and company they belong to and I will write to them. I want you to write to me as often as you can I will come to a close. I remain your affectionate husband until death.
R.B. Pittman to Mary E. Pittman
NOTE: *I believe this letter may be the 18th or the 28th, see R. B. Pittman letter dated Feb. 21st*
Camp Near Shelbyville Tenn
Dear Wife, Your letter of 28 march has just came to hand and I assure you I was much pleased to learn that you and family was well and in reply I am happy to inform you that my letter leaves me in moderate health with the exception of my left hand. I have had a pain in it a week or two and it swelled so that I canít use it but very little. The doctor tells me that is a kind of rumatic pain caused from cold and exposure. We are still camped at Shelbyville. I dare say we will go into Kentucky again this spring but I think it uncertain. I donít see any prospect of a fight here very soon perhaps there will be one somewhere here this spring but I hope not. I have not much news to write you that would likely interest you. Our army is in fine health and spirits and getting tolerable plenty of meat and bread to eat. You wanted to know about the small pox in the army. I donít think there is much of it in this army at present. We had one case of in our Regiment about five months and a half ago but I hear no talk of it now. I head from Stephen a few days ago he is still at [Rome]Nome, Georgia. He is mending slowly. Perhaps he will be in camp a week or so. I hear they have been fighting at Charlestown for the last three or four days but we have not heard the particulars any further than I Understand it our forces sunk one federal vessels. But you will hear all about it before this reaches you. I wish to God they would quit this foolishness and let us all come home once more. But I must stop for the present by subserving myself.
Your husband until death
PS You wanted know if I wanted any more cloths. You need not send me any till I write for them. RBP
Camp near Shelbyville Tennessee,
My Dearest Mary Ann, I was beginning to make up my mind that I would not get anymore letters from home on account of the Yankees cutting up the RailRoad, but just as I was a washing out my shirt what should I hear, but I had a letter, then how anxious to see who it was from and when I found it was really from you, my dear wife, you hardly can imagine how glad I was and what consolation to me to see something from your own heart. You cannot wish to see me anymore than I want to be with you, and my hearts desire and prayer to Almighty God is that he will in his mercy spare me to get home and enjoy the sweet of peace at my old home. I am well and hearty as you ever saw me and is doing as well as could be expected. I do hope you are well and doing well, as for the sheep, Mr. Bullock may think ten head makes it all right but I think he was very hard on you, but I hope you will be able to live on yet without being beholden to any man. I get letters from the boys at Vicksburg regular, but they are fighting them now so that I do not know what is become of them by now, but as to cloths, dear Maryann, you need not trouble about any unless it was a pair of socks if you see a chance to send, but I got a plenty of cloths a great deal cheaper than you can afford to make them. There is no danger of suffering for cloths at all here. As for news, I have none over interesting. The army here is in excellent health and spirits in fact the army is much better condition than it was a year ago and the moral is much better. The Holy Sabath is observed now from General Bragg down to all the men so on Sunday preaching. We have some good and faithful ministers left yet to cry aloud and spare not. I enjoy myself under the sound of the gospel better than any other thing of a Sunday and when I am there it makes me or caries me back to olden times when I could turn my eyes across the house and then meete the eyes of you, my first love. So by an eye of faith I look forward to a blissful abode when we will one day meete to imbrace each other beyond time, troubles and cares and trials and disappointments, hardships, dangers and war will not be heard of but all is peace and love and joy. You wanted to know when I thought I could go to home, but I canít tell you only I hope and do so believe that it will not be long before peace will be made or something will turn round for me to go home. I will close up by saying as you said, remember me when this you see, though many miles apart we be. You must write to me , I will do the same, give my respects to all my old friends and relations and believe me to be your affectionate and true husband until death us do part.
Richard B. Pittman to M.E.P.
In Camps near Shelbyville Tenn.
My dearest Today being first ten months since I saw you, I must write you a few words altho I did write to you four days ago yet I am never too busy to think of you and to write when ever I see a chance. So my dear I am tolerable well though I have a pain in my hip. I do hope this may find you well and doing well. I have not got anything that would interest you now for I guess you have heard the news of the great fight in Virginia and Stonewall Jackson being dead and so I decline writing it for the news papers always go ahead of letters. I suppose the Yankees done us a heap of mischief in taring up the Rail Road and burning houses between Jackson and New Orleans. We are doing tolerable well here and nothing new. Old General Bragg came round to see us yesterday and the boys raised a pretty loud cheer for he is getting to be a great deal more popular among his men than he wants to be. I tell you we begin to think there none like general Bragg. In this letter I send a letter sister Amyjane, which you will please send to her by the first chance you get. Give my respects to all our friends and you must write to me how you are getting on. I would like to be at home this fine looking weather when all looks so lovely and gay but I will not say any more of home or the sweets of home for it hurts me, yet it is all the pleasure I see is in the blesset hope of living to get back to you safe, I could be happy I think. I hope the great and good God that rules all things according to his own will may take you under his care and bless and protect and findly save you and me is my prayer
Richard B. Pittman to Mary Ann Pittman
In camps near Shelbyville Tennessee
My dear wife I again write to you altho I have wrote every week but have got no answer from you so long that I now fear you did not get my letters but I yet hope you got my letters for I know you want to hear from me as bad as I do you but I am sure you will get this for I have the chance of sending it by hand to Covington County by Capt. Fairley. I am well at this time with the exception of my hip which causes me to limp but not sufficient to excuse me from duty. I hope you and the children are well and doing well. I do not know what or how to write now unless I know whether you had got my other letters, but be that it may, I want to hear from you much more than I ever did in my life. The last letter I got from you was a great satisfaction to me and in it you asked me to let you know when I thought I could go home and how bad you wanted to see me. I can not give the lest idea when I can get off to see you but hope and believe that there will be a way yet for me to get home this summer even if the war doesnít end, so be of good heart and hope for the best and put your trust in God, of course you are aware of that you are on my mind all the time. Still I try not to grieve about it for that does no good, if I try to think all is right at home and you doing well.
As for how we are getting along, I can only say we are doing as well as we ever have been doing in every respect and the men are in good health and health and high spirits, only we are uneasy about Vicksburg and our state for if own state goes up I am done as well as all other Mississippians so if that army at Vicksburg drives out the Yankees I think we will gain the day for this army is confident of whipping Rosencrans out of Tennessee. I have not had any letter from Daniel and the boys there since them fights there, so I donít know how they came out. I hear every day by the news papers that they are fighting there and that our men is running away and going home, which is to bad now at the pinch of the game when every man that is able to shoulder a gun ought to go for it is now or never. I have not heard from brother William or John in a long time, tell them to write to me for I want to hear how they are getting on and how mother and Amyjane. I did send Amyjane a letter not long ago in one of your letters. I hope she got it but if she or you did not get them it was owing to the Yankees taring up the Rail Road, but now some letters come from down there so I hope the mail is started for if we canít hear from home we are done with pleasure while the war lasts. I close by saying as you said in your letter, I am yours as long as life lasts though many miles apart us be.
Your husband Richard B. Pittman
Dear wife, After waiting with some impatience for a letter from you, I have, I am obliged to start another hoping that it may reach you in due time. Thereís but little news to write to you from here that would be likely to interest you. M y letters leaves myself and Stephen in moderate health and sincerely hope it may reach you and the family in the enjoyment of all the blessing of Providence. We are still camped near the above place but I hardly think weíll stay here a great while longer but where we will move to from here is a matter entirely unknown to me. It is thought by some we will go into Kentucky again this summer but I canít tell anything about it yet. We frequently hear they are advancing upon us from Murfreesboro but as of yet everything continues quite in that quarter. Our Brigade has just got in from a scout out in the direction. We got close to some of them out past but then fell back to their entrenchments at Murfreesboro and we came back to our camps but from every appearance neither our army nor that of the federals will be still much longer being. But it is only a matter of conjecture what movements will be made by either. We have had glorious news from Vicksburg but no doubt there a good many exaggerated reports from there but if half we have from there is true we have achieved a great victory. I wish you when you go to write again write if you have heard anything from Daniel and the other boys since the battle at Jackson and Vicksburg. We have not heard a word from them in sometime and feel uneasy about them. We heard news that they were suffering for provisions in the Mississippi army. I do not think this is owing to the scarcity of provisions in the Confederacy, but for lack of proper management. We are still getting tolerable plenty here and I think the government has plenty to supply the army this year. But must stop at this time as it is getting along in the afternoon and we have to go on inspection at 4 oclock this evening so good bye for the time.
Yours For Ever,
NOTE: * my words *
In camp June 15th 1863
My dear wife I again write you a few lines altho I have not got any answer from you since the 16 of April, yet I have wrote to you regular every week and I do hope you get this. I am now in tolerable health, I hope you and the children are well and doing well. I am very anxious to hear from you and from all our folks though we hear that you all have made fine crops down there and I hope it is so for I see accounts from all parts And the crops are the that has yet been made in the south, as for crops of wheat here they are fine, but in Tennessee is the place for making all that is to eat. I like Tennessee on that account and it is a great help to us soldiers for we can buy milk butter when there is nothing else. When I would suffer and do no better here than they are at Vicksburg or other armys for something to eat but as it is, when our rations or out we can buy when we have money, but they make us pay high, of course, for all you get. So we are faring tolerable well, all the army is in better health than ever was and in high spirits so we are in no fear of our ability to whip the yankes, especially if they attact us in our intrenchments, so you can see we are at work. I donít much like to use the spade we have not yet learned the result of the Vicksburg fight nor have I heard from my brothers there for a long time. I am uneasy about them, I know those poor fellows has a hard time of it there. I would be glad to give you the news if I had anything interesting, but I have none of any importance all I have is all is quite in front on******************** skirmishes.
My dear we have great religious revivals in the army and a great many are coming in to the church. Preachers is being sent to us as missionarys to preach to us. We have meetings every day at ten oclock and at night too so the????? And the generals and any other officer partakes and when the right hand of fellowship is extended to candidates we see officers and men meeting in this token of love, and who could look on and not be moved to exclaim see how these brothern love truly. Can we say we know you have from death unto life because wer love, for God is love. I was at a baptizing yesterday where 9or 10 was baptized. The good old preacher for our brigade is from Mississippi and a free will Baptist, but all denominations unite and every one has a choice to join the church of his choice. So no strife exists at all among the different sects. I hope good results will follow. I wish you to tell brother William for him to write to me and Mr. Lott too, for I have wrote to them and have got no answer. You must write often and* give me all of the news* My dear sons John and Daniel you must be good boys and do your best until father gets home, be good to your dear mother mind and obey her in all she wishes you to do, so I may find or hear from you that you are good boys and be respectful by all for all people loves good boys to their mother.
Your fatherR. B. Pittman
I close by saying as you said when this you see remember me tho many miles apart we be. I am your loving husband until death us do part.
R. B. Pittman to Mary Ann Elizabeth Pittman
NOTE: *************** words are missing, not copied
Camp near Shelbyville
Dear wife, I embrace the present moment of writing a word or two having the opportunity of sending it part of the way by hand knowing the chance is low to get a letter through now. I hope this may reach you in good time. I have no news to tell you since I wrote just we are at the same place and likely to remain for some time though a month not easy to tell for we may get our orders in a day or so to leave, but I hope not soon. We are all enjoying good health and have tolerable plenty to eat. I have a good deal of guard duty to do but that is not so bad as marching. We have been looking several days for letters from home but not any news at all come cause has preventing us from getting any letters. I have wrote opportunity home but I am afraid not half of my letters ever reach you. It is needful for me to tell you how bad I want to see you all but as it is I cannot, but I hope we may meet again sometime though the times seems very long to be away. I would say to you about clothing, I shall not want any before summer, if I do then. Stephen is well at this time and in fact there is very little sickness in camp at present. We are all very anxious to hear from Vicksburg but we can only hear a rumor once in a while. I hope you will try to be as contented as you can and hope for the *best*. I believe I have told you all the news.
Your affectionate R.B. Pittman
NOTE: *my word*
My dear wife, I write you a few lines only for I have nothing of much interest to tell you only I am well and doing as well as a poor soldier can expect. But my dear I do hope you are as well an getting on well and I feel for the wel fare of our children and I wish to remind you now of your duties and responsibilities you are under in the sight of eyes in the management of them. So be certain not to spoil or pet them too much, but make them do as children ought to for of all things I want my children to be respective and smart so as to be an advantage to them selves both in this world and that which is to come, to be sure to controle and rule them prudently and carefully. I am afraid you will spoil them. I have wrote regular to you every week but I have gotten no answer from you in a long time but I donít stop writing on that account for I am in hope they will reach you even if it is a long time getting to you and so I want you to do for I may git them if you write for if we was not to write we would be certain not to get them. Some here will say I donít get any letters and I wonít write until I do get an answer but I donít do that way for my mind is so much on you and the children and your well fare. I have no news to write and so I attempt none, only I feel great intrest in the regilious revival going on here in our army. A good number has already joined the church doc Rankin amongst them. I am yours until death do us part.
In Camp at Chattanooga Tennessee
My dear wife I write in answer to your letters I got one a week ago to day wrote on the 11 of June. The reason I did not answer the first one was because we was on a march or retreat from Shelbyville to this place which is about one hundred miles south of where we was. The cause of our having to leave without a general battle is because Rosecrans had flanked or took one of the gaps though the Cumberland Mountains and would of cut our supplys, so we followed him and got to this place first. I tell you we suffered greatly in this retreat over mountains through mud and water both day and night and it raining all the time and we got but one meal a day and not enough then. We was five days on the rout to get here. but for me to say why or for what this all was done would be too much for me to say or know so we are here at Chattanooga but how long we will stay or where we will go from here we do not pretend to know but there are a good many rumors about it. Some think we will go to Vicksburg, some say to Knoxville and others say to Virginia, but I had as soon guess that we will stay here on the south side of the Tennessee river as anywhere else, or go to Alabama or Georgia so it is all is unknown to any one for of Course Bragg will be governed by Rrosencrans I expected we would have a big battle but it all turns out to only skirmishing. I am not sorry I tell you for I do not want to get in another battle such as I have been in but if it is my lot to have it to do, I will do my best on the yanks
My dear you wanted me to say about going home and when but I now tell you that God only knows for I do not and so go about your affairs I can only say as I am here and canít do anything at all nor I do not know what to advise you so you must manage first the best you can and do what you think is the best. I do wish I could see a chance to send you some ???? and will if I see a chance. I am sorry we lost the mare but we canít help it. I got them things you sent me by Mr. Coward. Tell mother if you see her that I got her letter and give her my love and Stephen sends his. We are now faring tolerable well, we have been here three days so I have slept some and had some good bait to eat so I begin to feel a little better. We lost nearly all our things on the rout. I have not heard from the boys at Vicksburg yet only it is said here by some that Vicksburg is gone. I donít believe it yet, I got all my paper wet and spoilt so I canít send you any but will get some nice paper and send to you for I want you to write often for it is a source of great reasurence to see letters from you and I am certain to write to you as long as there is any mail so direct to.
Richard B. Pittman
By directing this way it will follow me where ever I go. I am well I hope you are the same. So God bless you and the children I wish and pray.
Richard B. Pittman to Mrs. M. E. Pittman
Dear wife your letter that you sent by Mr. Ball has come safely to hand. I was glad of course to hear from you and the children. I also heard from you on the 17th by a letter that John Ryals received from William. I am glad to hear of the boys being so smart and to hear of your getting along so well with your crop. I got back off of picket guard last night asnd found Mr. Ball & Mrs. Yarborugh here. I will send you this letter by Mr. Ball. I will send you half on ??? of paper, paper of pins and paper of needles you need not send me any more clothing as I have a plenty on hand. You wanted to know what right Tom Webb had to shoot people he had the right to take up all men that ever belong to the army or that were subject to the army. Mary you must make sure of yourself and not get out of heart. You must not swap or sell the colt if you can help it. I have no money to send you now but I will try and send you $50.00 this fall . Nothing more but remain your husband Richard B. Pittman (NOTE: I think Mr. Ball is a Baptist Preacher. See GS Lea Letters-RJS) Give my respects to all inquiring friends and relatives. Tell mother that I would have sent her a letter and Stephen send her
(the remainder of the sentence is missing GLP)
(no date or place)
Dear Brother It seems that you have forgotten me though that is no reason that I should forget you. A few lines in regard to the report I have herd in camps. William I herd that old man Newit Cowart sed that it would be better for the women and children to starve than for the Confederacy to fall though if the women and child was to starve I think the war would end for there would be nothing to fight for therefore the men would not fight any longer. I think peace will be made before always but I think there will be war at home. I think it is any week minded man that will talk that way. Give my respects to all inquiring friends. Your brother until death.
R. B. Pittman
August 6th 1863
My Affectionate wife As Mr. Ball is agoing to remain with us a day longer I will drop you a few more lines to let you know that I am still enjoying good health up to this day. Times are peacefable yet with us and the Yankees amd I wanted to tell you to write to me wether you had ever got them sheep or not. You had never wrote me a bout them I want to know what has become of them so be sure to write to me about them nothing more.
Your Affectionate husband
My Affectionate wife I again take the present opportunity in regard to your kind letter which came to hand some time sence. I was very glad to here from you for it is very seldom that I ever here from home. This will leave me enjoying good health at this time hoping these few line meet you and the children enjoying the same blessings. I have nothing of any importance write only we have fell back from Bridge Port we are now at Chattanooga we have ben here some three or four days. The Yankees are sheling this town to day but no damage was don. They kill some few the first they shelled but none sence as I know of. We expect to have a fight at this place before long that is the opinion of our head men. I canít say my self what we will do. I think they will have to fight very soon if they donít they will have no men to fight. Our men is deserting very bad. We have five out of our company that deserted John Ryals William Yarbourgh, *S m Mclemen John Camman and a little boy that joined our company at Bridge Port they all have left in the last week. I donít think we have any more that will desert in our company. I donít know when I shall come home the furlows is stoped. I will stay till the war ends before I will leave in any such manner so you may look for me when you see me that is as near as I can tell you when I will come home. Write to me soon.
Your Husband Richard Pitman
NOTE: *(Samuel McLelland)
in Camp at Bridgeport
My Dear wife I write you a few lines as I now am pretty sure that this letter will reach for Mr. Ball will carry it. I have not got a letter from you in a long time but I am in hope that you all are doing well and doing well as I am in as good health as can and doing as well as I can expect but I do hope and believe that this war will end before long. We have been in very low spirits ever since we heard of how affairs was in old Mississippi but we got some better rations now than we did a while so we are in better spirits but as for news of any importance I have none only war war and war news and foreign intervention until I am sick of it and donít believe anything I see in the newspapers but any one can see that will look at all at things as they are but will see things is fast winding up. So I think I will get home this fall yet but the yankees is now closer in on us and nothing keeps us apart only the Tennessee River but it is very wide so they donít hurt us but they are firing at us at our pickett guard. Still they tell us that if we wonít shoot at them they wonít shoot at us. I wrote to you all about how our retreat from Shelbyville and several things but I donít know whether you got it or not. I have wrote to you regular every I am almost certain you did not get them. I am very sory to think that the mails has stopped so we canít get letters only as we see chances of sending them by hand but if you can send your letters to Mobile then they will come to me for several has been carried there and mailed and they come to our boys so write as often as you can see a chance of sending them. I hear that there is wagons that runs from Columbia to mobile so you must find out when any goes and write all the news of how things are going on there for I hear that there is getting to be bad times among our men at home and is shooting one another but I also hear of wedings and I suppose that Hanse Rowly and Miss Rosy Lott is married all I have to say is hope them good luck. I wrote in my last letter in answer to your wanting my advise about how you must do and so on and I wrote for for you to do just you can which is all that I can say unless I knew when I could. I close for I have to go out on pickett guard to stay three days so I have not time to write a long letter so excuse me while I remain your loving husband until death.
Richard B. Pittman
NOTE: (* I inserted this date by referencing back to the letter of Aug. 6th ďMr. Ball is staying one more dayĒ there is another letter dated the 7th and Richard was giving this one also to Mr. Ball.GLP) STOPPED HERE 8-12-2004 to Chronology
in camp at Bridgeport Ala.
My Dear wife As I have the chance of sending a letter I do so although I did write to you last week by Mr. Ball, but I know you are like me for I would be glad if could hear from you every day so I can not alow a chance to pass by and not let you hear or see something from my hand but I have nothing of importance or anything new since Mr. Ball left. I am well and doing about as I was when he left and all things remain about as it was then only the enemy is still reinforcing on the other side of the river but they have not attempted to cross as yet and we are yet on pickett on each bank of the river as we was they nor we not firing at each other which I think is right. I am very anxious to hear from you and how things is getting on in our settlement and if they are conscripting and arresting them that run off home for I am anxious to see what will be done about them so write about all you think of. As for war news though I canít say much for it I know war so much it would not be prudent for me to say and we can only hope for the best but all looks dark indeed and unless all them that is at home through out 6he Confederacy comes back or in to the army why all is bound to go up and so we all that has been in the service from the start is bound to be disheartened and loose confidence for there is no justice in our bearing all the war while some that is at home doing nothing and these men here is not going to stand it much longer especially unless we can be better paid are better fed and get assistance from somewhere for now is the pinch of the game but still I am of the very same opinion that I was sometime ago and that is the war is bound to end before long so you may look for me between this and Christmas for things will turn or if not why all is lost. Certain as fate how else can it be they are now granting some furloughs so I hope to get one but I sooner look for peace than furloughs to any extent for we all know the men can not be spared from the army to go home only just to put the men in hope or better heart that is all. Still some will get to go and I mean to try for one weather I get it or not. I am glad to learn that you got my letter or some that I thought was lost. The one I wrote to you about how I wanted you to manage our children. I am glad to learn that they are doing right and is smart and obidient to you so tell them I say they must be good boys until I get home for I have strong faith that I will go as I said. So my dear go on the very best you can and try to incourage them to be smart. I would say something about our eating and so on but it is of no use and I want to hear from my brothers at lest. I am now got to go on pickett so I have to close up for the present and I am as ever your husband
R. B. Pittman
NOTE: This is the last letter of Richard B. Pittman he was killed at the Battle of Chickamauga Creek, September 20, 1863.
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