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116th Pennsylvania Infantry - Irish Brigade

Item LTR-6532
October 18, 1863 William A. Smith
Price: $450.00


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

Headquarters Bull Run
Oct 18, 1863

Dear Father and Mother and Sisters,

I take my pen in hand to write you a few lines to let you know that I received your letter last night and was glad to hear from you all. I am pretty well at present and I hope these few lines will find you the same.

Well, I can’t give you the description of the battle now. I will give you the whole of it as soon as I can get a chance to. For we are laying here under orders with the horse and saddle, ready to go in a moment’s notice.

We had a very hot time of it at Bristle Station. They were on both sides of us there. They attacked us on a flank movement. They opened fire on us at day light and threw shell right in where we had headquarters. We were all off on our horses when the shelling commenced coming there. There was a detachment with us there. I had to horse. There was some awful jumping done there but when we came up to Brook’s Run, there we had a big fight and there the Rebs like to got me. I was ordered to go back to the rear and I went back and went over where we had a hospital. I was coming back to the division again and I was coming along and looked over the field and seen the Johnny’s coming right in our rear and I stopped then looked and I turned my horse around. They fired at me then and I put the spurs to the horse and got off. They shot at me 3 times. That is the first time I had the Rebs tell me to halt. But I did not halt for them and went back to the hospital and told the cavalry of it and they made a charge on them and took a lot of them prisoners.

I expect you will see it in the papers about the 2nd Corps taken 6 pieces of artillery and two standings of colors and 600 prisoners. We had to fight two battles that day and General Mead give us a great blow in the papers about it.

Well, I stop writing for I don’t know when I can write again for I have not got anything to write on the ground and I can’t write that way. So, goodbye to you all and give my love to Chrs. Apple and all the rest of my friends and I will give you the account of it as soon as we stop marching. I have got it down in my book as I go along and I will give you the account first of the month and every day‘s doing all along when we get in to camp again. So good bye.

From your Love, Wm. A. Smith

Please send me some more stamps for I owed them all but one to my partner.

We are fighting again off in front of us. The cannons are at work now.