Smith Family Letters


Letter from
Martha Jane "Mattie" Smith
to Benjamin W. Smith

November 22, 1862

Page 1 of 4

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                       Saturday night  Nov 22nd 1862
My dear brother
                          We have just received
your Memphis letter which gives
us great uneasiness about you but
nothing more than I expected  
Oh Ben you was so silly for going
into this awful war   Just to
think you are nearly starved to
death and so plenty in the country
to eat. It is outrageous
scandalous and ridiculous how
this war is carried on and it
never will be any better until
you have new officers and we have
a new president elected   oh that
the Abolitions would give right up and
Democracy get the reign  our paper
say would not be more than six
months until this war would
be settled


Page 2 of 4

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  Ben now do go to the Hospital im-
mediately for if you stay out in the
camp exposing yourself so the Rheumatism
may settle in your back and ruin
you for life if you should ever get
home again.  Go to the hospital at
once and father will come down
in a few weeks and try and get
you out come to see you at least  
Mother saw Hunt yesterday the
other day she was telling him about
you having the Rheumatism so badly
he said he thought the Dr would
discharge you we all want you
to try them at least if they dont
discharge you you can lay in the hospital
and opossum and stay there four
months and that entitle you to a
discharge    I told you all about Hunt
Colum Franklin and John Hadly
coming home in my other letters  
which I hope you have gotten before

Page 3 of 4

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  time. this makes the sixth letter
I have written to you and I dont
see why you dont get them  we
directed them to Columbus but I suppose
they will follow the regiment  
I think half of the officers ought to
be shot and the other half too   this way
our government is carried affairs is
carried on is a scandal to an en-
lightened nation as ours such
ragishouss and all kinds of vice
is pracised by the heads of our nation  
The papers tell us that as certain
as the south goes off to themselves
that the western states will be
certain to go with them which
will make another rebellion    If they
dont the Yankies will make
slaves of the Western people. 
They are allready doing it, selling
their goods at the price they please  
calico is 25cts per yard factory from

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20 to 30 cts per yard and still raising  
we sent you an inquirer last week if you
get that one we will send you some
more  Henry Barnette is out home today
he was over here, he says he got one letter
from you while you was in Louisville 
he wrote immediately to you and was
going to write again as soon as he
went home.  I guess maby he had
some notion of going to school out here
this winter but got entirely out of the
notion when he found there was a
woman teaching. I dont see why you
dont get our letters but it is the
general complaint sometimes
Wils and Jim dont get any letters
from home for two or three months
Lugran Worrell writes back that he
dont get any letters hardly
The one you got was mailed in
Danville the rest in Plainfield
so I donít know whether it is Mats
fault or whos it is, but it is some
bodys not ours  if you are not well I
beg you not to go in a battle for you will
be much apter to get hurt than if well. 
I will have to come to a close. write soon for we
are always anxious to hear from you  we will
write once a week. (signed)  Mattie J. Smith



  *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.