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115th New York Infantry - Captured at Harper's Ferry

Item LTR-7764
February 18, 1865 John Hill
Price: $265.00


Original Civil War soldier's letter. 3 pages, written in period ink.

U.S. Christian Commission
Camp of the 115th Regiment
In the Woods
5 miles from Fort Fisher, North Carolina

February the 18th 1865

My Dear Brother,

I now sit down on the ground to write you a few lines to let you know that I am well and I hope that these few lines will find you enjoying the same blessing. Well dear brother, I received a letter from you over a week ago. But we had orders to pack up to go to Fort Fisher. So I have not had time to write before we arrived at the fort. The 13th, when I got here, I formed my regiment to the front about 15 miles from the fort. So I had a nice little walk to find them. The 14th at six o’clock, we got orders to fall in line. So we did and away we go towards Wilmington on the sea beach. Well we marched 4 or 5 miles and the pontoons came along for us to cross Masonboro Inlet. But when we got there, we found the rebels waiting to receive us with a battery. So we could not lay the bridge. Well, we had to limber to the rear and then it began to rain and it did rain as hard as I ever saw it in my life. We got back to camp in the morning where we are now. We had a night of that right as hard as any I have seen since I have been in the service. The rebels are well prepared to receive us at all at points we can’t get to them. Only on a road that is as straight as a bea line for 4 miles. Then there is swamps all around. So it is impossible to get to them. The gunboats don’t run up the river for fear of torpedoes but they will manage to get around them some way before long. For Wilmington must be ours. Well my dear brother, I have not time to write of the fort or the time the boys had taking it. We have taken one hundred and sixty long guns since we landed here. One was an Armstrong gun weighting 18,000 pounds. The wheels of the carriage is German silver and the wheels is mahogany. It is given to be sent to West Point, New York. Our loss in my regiment in killed and sounded was 70 in the charge of the fort. And in the blowing up of the magazine, we had two killed in my company.

Well, Seth, I had a letter from Mother the 14th. She was well and I wrote to her the 15th. It is the first that I have had from her since August. But it is hard for her to get anyone to write for her. The last letter that I had from my wife she was well. Dear brother, you must excuse this poor writing for I have written it in about a minute. Write soon as you get this. Goodbye. Give my respects to all of the boys.

From you dear brother,

John Hill

Direct to Company G, 115th Regiment New York State Volunteers, Fort Fisher, North Carolina

I will send you a valentine. I would like to write more but I haven’t time.