Soldier writes home about poor health


Date Written

Feb. 24, 1863

Member of Series

Amzi Alexander Hawn was 29 years old when this was written.
The recipient, Mary M Yoder Hawn, was 29 when it was received.

Amzi Alexander Hawn died 1 year, 3 months, 24 days after writing this.
It was written 160 years, 1 month, 3 days ago.
It was a Tuesday.

Camp Holmes
February 24th 1863

Dear & Affectionate Companion,

I seat myself this morning to write you a few lines to inform you that I am not well. I have had a dull heavy pain in my head for 4 or 5 days & I felt cold & chilly & yesterday afternoon. I went with Harvey to help to carry his trunk to the depot & when I came back I was taken with cold chills & headache & sick stomach & it seemed to me that I could not stay away from the fire. I lay down about 10 o’clock and rested pretty well. I had a good warm bed. Mull and some of our other men have a heap of good blankets.

I had to throw up this morning before day, but it was nothing but green stuff & looked like a gaul. I feel some better this morning, but I was too weak and felt too bad to drill and I had to go to the doctor’s & report and Dr. Baker said I was not sick, but told the other one to give me some blue mass (blue pill) and calomel, but said that calomel was too scarce & it was too good for me, I told him that I didn’t want anything but a mild purge and told him to give me a dose of salts or something else and he said that salts would cool my blood and said blue mass would operate and said that I would have to take it, go to duty. I told him that I did not want to take such stuff but they made me take it and said if I took that I would have no more cold or chills.

We have a good deal of sickness in our battalion at this time, and it is a sin the way that the doctors abuse the sick men, they make all the fun of them and aggravate them all they can. They sent M. Hunsucher to the hospital. A. L. Bowman is still sick & L. Yoder is sick yet.

I can inform you that the news has been here in camp that our battalion would be scattered out. The news was that 2 companies would stay at this camp, and 2 companies would be sent to Fayetteville & 2 to Statesville or near there, but I don’t know if there is anything of it or not, but if they do I hope they will send the companies that came from there.

Yesterday, they took the height of the men in Cos. A & B & the color of the hair & eyes & their complexion and occupation & what county they were born in & what Militia Regiment they belong to. They do this in the Regular Army & with the conscripts they send off from here. This morning a detail of about 50 men was made out of our battalion about 8 men out of every Company & one Corporal or Sargent from each company; it is not known for certain where they will go, but it is said that they are going up about Yadkin County to bring in men & I don’t think they will send us away shortly, if they send us at all. I want to come home before I leave here & I will come as soon as I can. Johnson can’t let but two men go out of each company at a time, and I think I will get to come before long. I have the promise of going & the other day the Lieut. said to me. “I told you I would let you go & as soon as 2 more go you can go” and yesterday he called Suttlmire into his office and give him a furlough & then he called him back to sign the payroll.

Dear & loving wife, you requested to me to write you if I would get sick & I will do so, for I promised you to do so & I will write to you every day or two if I can, I don’t want you to fret yourself so you will get sick too. I am able to walk about and stir, & I hope I will get better before long. I feel better than I did last night & I hope this will find you well. I have not read any letter from you since the one dated the 15th & 16th & I fear You have had more snow again, or high waters we drawed flour today for six days & bacon for one day. I cannot eat anything. I must close. I remain your affectionate & loving husband.

A. A. Hawn to M. M. Hawn

Scans of Letter