Albert directed this letter to his sister Myra at Shortsville, Ontario county, New York.
Plymouth, North Carolina
June 11, 1863
Dear Sister Myra,
Yours of the 31st arrived yesterday and found me well and with one or two exceptions, the whole company are well and in good spirits.
Your letter called to mind stirring times with us. The 31st of May a year ago we were fighting the Battle of Fair Oaks where Casey’s Division broke so unaccountably. We only lost one half and killed & wounded twice our number. The second of June, I was burying our dead, looking into each disfigured face for a friend. But that is past and gone. Casey has had justice done him and his division has no cause to blush when they say I belonged to Casey’s Division. But that scene is now of almost daily occurrence now. How many fields have been disputed. The best blood in the land has been shed as free was water and yet the hydra headed monster still rears his head. It may be in his death struggles — if it be, they are desperate. But the news now is favorable. We are gaining on them inch by inch. The war is being pushed forward with more vigor than ever before and we can now hope with God’s blessing to soon see an end of this war. And I cannot be too thankful for being spared when so many have fallen around me.
You spoke about coming down here. It is a poor place for women and I should hate to have a sister of mine down here. I hope the Farmington folks will have a good time with the army. Susan must not think that she is forgotten if I do not answer her letters personally. You must all read my letters. I have so many to write to that I have to economize. Be a good girl and if I ever get home, I will spin her a long yarn — and the next troops discharged will be the 3 years men.
I am glad that Willie is suited but it would be a bad time now to go to buying much. The taxes are too heavy and now it is blessed be nothing.
I should [think] that someone had turned the first corner but hope for the best. But the mail goes at 10 and this must go so excuse a short letter & mistakes. Write soon and give my respects to all. Two of our boys are discharged and are going home today, one is Chester A. Gooding. Nate M’s wife knows him.
This is from your loving brother, — A. H. B.
No. 4. Then pens fly in camp this morning.