Wonderful four page letter in ink from Sgt James Herndon 101st OVI in Alabama March of 1865. Great details on George Thomas as head of the Army of the Cumberland, Sherman making South Carolina howl and how she deserves it and Schofield etc.
Camp of the 101st Regt.
Ohio Vol. Infantry
Near Huntsville Alabama
March 2nd, 1865
Mr. James Casey
Having a few moment of leisure time. I take pleasure in devoting the same to the purpose of addressing you. Though void as my mission may be, I hope you will not decree it. CONTRA BOZZOS MORES
The fourth Army Corps to which we belong is at present quietly situated near the above named place and has been since the transfer of General Schofields 2nd Corps. The only remaining Corps in this Department. We have been there nearly two months, having went into camp Jan 6th. The troops are now becoming quite rested from the recent campaign in which they was engaged and are again enthusiastic and cheerful and we may say eager for another forward move. But how soon or in what direction that will be, we are yet unable to tell. We leave that to the decision of General Thomas, our heroic commander who has heretofore so nobly led to victory the Army of the Cumberland. General Thomas is a good and able General and in him we feel that we have one that is worthy of our trust. He has been dutiful with this Army from its first organization. He has led us often in battle and to his known prudence dauntless courage and true patriotism, we may look with confidence that under God, he will lead us henceforth to Victory.
Our papers are old before we get them down here. Consequently, we are a little behind the times as far as news from other quarters as concerned but what news we have had for the last few weeks is cheering. The invincible Sherman, its success in invading South Carolina, with but little opposition he has captured Branchville and thereby caused the evacuation of Charleston. Schofield has effected a landing in North Carolina and we hope we long to hear of his having formed a junction with Sherman. “There ye Rebel Hasb” look out, yes look out for snakes. South Carolina is now receiving a just recompense for her former conduct. Having sown the winds, she is now reaping the whirlwind and may she continue to reap until she has repented. “Even in sack cloth and ashes” is my earnest desire. Little did they suppose where they passed the Ordinance of Secession that they were sowing the seed of destruction so soon to spring up in their own door yards. If reports be true, the evacuation of Richmond or the destruction of Lee’s Army must shortly ensure. God knows we hop it may and may the streets of said place be sown with salt.
We are happy to leave in that recruiting is going on briskly in Ohio. Papers say she is sending in men faster than they can be mastered. That speaks well for the Old Prickley state though there has been many within her domains that have heretofore been tarnished somewhat with disloyalty. We hope that they may now come out and show them selves to be men. Redeem themselves from that curse which would follow them and their posterior to their graves. Nothing is more encouraging to the soldiers in the field than to know that we are heartily supported by those remaining at home. We then feel like fighting, feel as though we had something to sustain us, back us up. We hope the time has come when every man north of Mason and Dixon’s line will wake up to a true sense of their duty. May they feel as though they have something at stake. Let them each and every one exert every effort to crush out the Rebellion. This done we may ____ long look for glorious results. As the Rebellion is now evidently on her last legs, it needs but a firm move, well aimed blows to accomplish what we have long been struggling for.
I will now close or I fear I shall worry your patience. Please tell father that I would be happy to have him write as I have heard from him but once in two months. This leave me in good health hoping it may find you and family the same.
I am very respectfully
Your Obedient Servant Address. Reg “F” 101st OVI
Sergio. Jas. W. Herndon 1st Brig. ____ Div 4th A.le.
Dept. of the Cumberland
Hon. J__ Casey
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