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1st Louisiana Cavalry & 2nd and 3rd Rhode Island Cavalry

Item LTR-5656
November 21, 1863 George Law
Price: $345.00


Original Civil War soldier's letter. 4 pages written in period ink.

Newtown, La. Nov 21st /63
Dear Father:

Thinking that you would think that I had forgotten you if I did not write you a few lines and let you know where I was and how I was a getting along, and having a few leisure moments to spare, I thought that I would not improve any better than in writing to you. It is Sunday today but if somebody had not have told of it this afternoon for I have had to saddle up four times today and each time under false alarms. But I can stand it better now for we have had a change of officers in our company and have got a pretty good commander now. His name is Hall. We get all of our rations now and if we do not tread just up to the mark, it is not a curse and a threat to cut your head off with a sabre. But just the contrary of that. “Come boys, let’s see if we cannot do it up in shape and show the other companies how to do it.” And the boys do as well again and there is not half as much grumbling. But we have all the riding that we want to do. But I have got me a good horse and can keep up with the best of them. I have not had him but a few days. He has got a bullet in his rump but it does not hurt him a bit. The Colonel has offered me his best horse for him but he can’t get him. I got him from a rebel major that I captured the other day. I will tell you how we done it. Last Wednesday afternoon we were ordered to take 100 rounds of cartridges and be in the saddle at 12 o’clock. That night we went out around about fifteen miles to get around a body of rebs that were camped about 4 miles from our camp. When we got there it was just daybreak and we could see how. And then the flash of a gun. At first we could not tell what it was but we formed a line of battle and as it got a little lighter, we could see the rebs running to and fro. We knew then what it was – the infantry that had come up had met them and engaged them and drawed their attention that way so that they did not discover us in their rear until it was too late. A large lake was on one side of them and a solid column of infantry in their front and the cavalry in the rear and on their right. We kept closing in on them when all at once they (the rebs) broke and ran the left to the edge of the lake. Our regt was then ordered to charge. We got all mixed up with the rebs so that we could not tell which was our own men but we were ordered not to fire so we did not hurt one another. I rode up to one fellow (I had rather poor horse and I saw that he had a good one) and he had the saddle off from his horse and was just about to escape on foot when I noticed a star on his collar. Instantly I whipped out my revolver and fired one shot over his head. Then I came round and put my person [to] his face and told him, ”I take your prisoner in the name of the United States.” He did not say a word but looked at me blankly. I summoned help and appropriated his horse and we marched back to camp. So he is now a guest of Uncle Sam and I have his fine horse to ride on. That’s all for now. Love to all.
George Law