Description Battle of Bull Run


Date Written

July 29, 1861

Charles Albert Fiske was 21 years old when this was written.
It was written 162 years, 2 months, 4 days ago.
It was a Monday.

Shooter’s Hill Alexandria, Va.
July 29th, 1861

Dear Friends,

I am very well and hope this will find you in the same. This camp is 9 miles southeast of Washington and about 1 mile west of the Marshall House where Colonel Ellsworth was murdered. The house is about all torn to pieces by curiosity [?] in pursuit of relics. I suppose you have heard of that great battle that was fought near Bull Run. I tell you that it was a hard job and at any rate I will give the rebels the credit of fighting braver than we have generally before this. The cannon balls and Minnie balls from the concealed batteries flew like hail. It sounded like the humming of bumble bees. I suppose you heard that the battle resulted in the defeat of the federal forces. In part, I think the forces were put through in too much of a hurry. The glorious eleventh was among the last to retreat. There wasn’t over 50 killed, wounded, and missing in our regiment. Col. Clark wasn’t wounded, but he was sun struck on the battle field but he is now about recovered. There is a rumor here that he is giving to resign. I hope it is not true because he is such a good, fair man with he soldiers. The weather here is not much hotter than it is in Boston.

I was never more disappointed in my life than I was when we arrived at Washington. The public buildings is the only thing that makes Washington more interesting than the 3 cities. The streets are perfect pig sties, in fact pigs run around fast where they please in the street, the private houses are old tumble down concerns about a century old.

Joseph is very well.

I can think of no more to write at present. I will close, give my respects to your mother, please write soon.

Yours truly,
C. A. Fiske to C. A. Locke, Charlestown

Scans of Letter