Benjamin F. Boring Collection

Letter from Benjamin F. Boring
to William C. Jones

January 28, 1863

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                               Memphis Tennessee
                                                28th January 1863"
W "C" Jones"
               Dear Sir"
                    Yours of the 31st was received
last evening And find me as ussual
well and enjoying myself as well as
the majority of my fellow soldiers.  Since
last I wrote you we have done some
verry hard and toilsome marching but
we have returned from the land of cotton
and are now at home in Tennessee.
Our Division (3rd) came to Memphis on the 19th
and have been here since~We are camped
in the suberbs of the City and have a very
nice encampment.  We are on our way to
Vicksburgh Miss" And stoped here to get
some pay and clothing-have drew our
clothes and 3 months Pay- I think we
will leave in a few days-Memphis
is quite a little city crowded with
soldiers-Negroes-and people of all
Nations- The town is swarming with Police
guards and it is difficult for some soldiers
to go to Town and return without being
arrested.  Old Guss" Hall-of our company
is in the Irvin Block (military prison) now.
for being caught in town without a Pass.
I have never been molested by them yet
and believe I could stay in Memphis
all my life and not get in the guard
house  But there is all kinds of men in
the Army Will--The 130th Ills" Regt is here
on Police duty-Jake Wilkin our old school
Teacher is Capt of Company ["K"?] in that Regt



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I saw him yesterday he was up to our
Regiment and is the same old Jake. A bloody
battle is pending at Vicksburgh it is a strong
place and many a brave soldier will fall
before its Batteries--The Mississippi is verry high
and still rising--There is a great many boats
here some [Rams]and a few Gunboats- I saw
the old Conestoga the wooden gunboat that
shelled the Rebels back at Belmont the first
time I had saw her since the Bombardment
of Fort Henry--I was glad to see her it appeared
like I had met an old friend--the Conestaga
will all ways feel near to me for I believe
if it had been for her that day our whole
Army would of been killed or captured.
becaus the Rebels charged on us with twice
our number of new and fresh men from
Columbus.  Our boys wer all tired and worn
out been fighting hard all day & instead
of fighting all crowded for the boats which
wer cabled along shore. it was then the
Conestoga opened on them with her big guns
and poured into the Rebel [sunks?] double
charges of Grape and Canister--The roar of
the Big Cannon--the whizzing of the bullets--
the clamor and confusion of soldiers-some
wounded--some dieing--and the balance
fatigued and excited made it an awful
hour.  I was shot in the head early in
the morning but had my head tied up
with my hand kerchief and had been
in [sunks?] all day I was all most [passed?]
out --And every report of old Conestoga
guns made me feel like Gabrials trumput
was sounding


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I expect we will more than hear the cannons
roar when we get to work on Vicksburgh
And I expect a good many of us fellows
will lay our [l-nd?] warrents thereabouts.
I dread going down the River we have
such disagreeable ways of riding we are
piled away in some dirty old Boat
like a lot of Hogs or Horses and
have not priveligis or accomodations
atall.  The weather is verry disagreeable
has been raining near to weeks steady
and it is so muddy a person can hardly
get about.  I would send you some money
to pay for the Stamps you have sent me
but I have [none?] only a $10.00 Bill and
can get no change  we had to pay
for our clothes this Payment and some
of the Boys did not drqw much money
I only drew $20.00 instead of $34.00.  The
Government owes us near 7 months pay
and we will get it all as soon as we
take Vicksburgh--I received the Monitor
of the 15th last night and am much obliged--
You must be careful and dont play on
your fiddle too much--I have not saw
mine for so long I fear it will get out
of whack.  Helen sent me a pair of nice
mittens and a nice Pair of Socks--you see
she has given me the Mitten  But it will
be all right you know when the war is
over--You will Pleas excuse my foolishness
and write me again--address me at Memphis
                                        Your true Friend
                                                      Ben "F" Boring
Memphis Ten. Company "D" 30th Ills"Regiment



  *Note to researcher:  This letter has been transcribed by Archives staff verbatim
as the words appear on the original written page.  The spacing, punctuation, and
capitalization are identical.  Words that are unclear have been enclosed in brackets.