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Grant Writes Home
October 1973 | Volume 24, Issue 6
I have been writing here in my tent ever since breakfast, it is now long after dinner, and have a pile yet before me that will take until bed time.
Kisses for yourself dear Julia.
U LYS .
Camp in the Field Near Pittsburg Ten. April 30th 1862
D EAR J ULIA ,
I move from here to-morrow. Before this reaches you probably another battle, and I think the last big one, will have taken place or be near at hand. I mean the last in the Mississippi Valley and this of course implies if we are successful which no doubt we will be. You need give yourself no trouble about newspaper reports. They will all be understood and me come out all right without a single contradiction. Most or all that you have seen has been written by persons who were not here and thos few items collected from persons nominally present, eye witnesses, was from those who disgraced themselvs and now want to draw off public attention. I am very sorry to say a greatdeel originates in jealousy. This is very far from applying however, I think, to our Chief, Halleck, who I look upon as one of the greatest men of the age. [At this time Grant considered Halleck a firm friend and stout defender—a verdict he reversed after the war when he saw the War Department records of what Halleck’s attitude had really been.] You enquire how I was hurt? For several days before the battle of Pittsburg our out Pickets were skirmishing with the enemies advance. I would remain up here all day and go back to Savanna in the evening where I was anxiously looking for the advance of Gen. Buell’s column. My object was, if possible, to keep off an attack until Buell arrived otherwise I would have gone out and met the enemy on Friday before they could have got in position to use all their forces advantageously. Friday evening I went back to Savanna as usual and soon after dark a messenger arrived informing that we were attacked. I immediately returned here and started out onto the field on horseback, my staff with me. The night was intensely dark. I soon found that the firing had seased and started to go back to the river. Being very dark and in the woods we had to ride in a slow walk and at that got off the road. In geling back to it my horse’s foot either cought or struck something and he fell flat on his side with my leg under him. Being wet and muddy I was not hurt much at the time but being in the saddle all of Sunday and Monday, and in the rain the intervening night without taking off boots or spurs my ancle swelled terribly and kept me on crutches for several days, unable to get on a boot. Col. Riggin is not with me. The rest of the gentlemen are. In addition I have Col. McPherson of the regular Army and one of the nicest gentleman you ever saw, Capt. Reynolds, regular, Lieuts Bowers & Rowley. We are all well and me as sober as a deacon no matter what is said to the contrary. Mrs. Turner & Miss Hadley run on the steamer Memphis carrying sick soldiers to hospital. As 1 am out from the river and they are only here about one day in eight or ten I rarely see them. There are no inhabitants here atall
Kiss all the children for me. Tell Jess I have a five shooter pistol for him. When you hear of me being on the Mississippi river join me leaving all the children except Jess. Draw the hundred dollars you have as a matter of course. If I had an opportunity I would send you $200.00 now. Give my love to all at home. Kisses for yourself.
U LYS .
Monterey Ten. May 4th 1862
D EAR J ULIA ,