<%@LANGUAGE="JAVASCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> Letter - Civil War Days

Return to the Main Page

Letters from Private William Brooks, Co E, 161st NYVI,

1864

April"In camp near the Red River-

April 5th.,-1864.

William R. Brooks to Jane Brookshis wife and children.

""His last letter in the collection.He again approves of her moving toWoodhull."

[This was written after William's regiment had marched from southern Louisiana into the Red River country. In early April they camped near Natchitoches and Grand Ecore in some of the finest country they saw in the south. The letter dated April 26 is actually the last one from him.]in camp neer red river April ?, 64

Dear wife I will write a little to you thismorning to let you know how I get A long
my health is not as good as it has binI am some lame but I hope I will be well in
A few days I hope this will find you well Icent you 35 dollars by Mr. Hathaway and
my watch we got 4 months pay and wehave got 3 months doe us now I hope we will
get some more pay soon and then I will cendyou some more if your moving I cannot
tell what is best you must use your ownjudgment and do the best you can if you
think best to go to woodhull I am willingwe have had A hard time for A while back
it has bin very dustey most all the timebut the most we whent in A day was 20
miles and some times not more than 6 or 7so we could stand it but we have to goon

tomorrow I do not know when I can get A chance to mail A letter again- - - - -for we are
going up the river and sometimes we cannot cend A letter 2 or 3 weeks
so you must not worry if you do nothear from me in A long time but I will write
every chance and you mustI cannot write for my sholder is lame
so I will close write soon good bye
from Wm. R. Brooks toJane Brooks

[This letter was written from Alexandria, LA, after the Battles of Sabine Cross Roads, Pleasant Hill, and Cane River Crossing. The figures William gives for casualties and prisoners are not supported by the Official Records or other sources. Soldiers wrote what they heard "on the grapevine," which was seldom accurate. His info about burning homes and farms is supported by other sources, but his letter is the only one I have seen implying that anyone from his regiment took part in it. This is the last letter from William in the collection.]