The Ed Italo Collection
6th Vermont Infantry
Mather Family Correspondence6th Vt. on picket
Near Cold Harbor Va. June 126 1864
My Dearist Wife,
It is Sunday again. At least it is with you up in Vermont. But there is no Sunday for us here. We don't have to fight on Sunday. Unless the rebs pitch ito us, our folks don't open on them till they begin first Sundays. But we have to entrench and picket and skrimish the same as any day. One half of our regt. was on picket night before last and yesterday and the other half went on and relieved them last night. I suppose we shall be relieved tonight as soon as dark. We are in a deep ditch just wide enough to walk in, with dirt thrown up in front. Porter and I have got a little place dug out in one side of the ditch beg enough to lay down in and sleep when we ain't on post in the night. We have an out post for one man to stand in, what they call a vidett post. So we stand an hour at a time and in the day the sharp shooters have that post. It is a little place dug into the ground large enough to turn around in dandy, wiht logs and dirt thrown up in front and little holes to put your gun through to shoot.
There ain't much firing today, the sharp shooters pluck away a little now and then. I have not heard of but 2 getting killed yet today. Tehy belonged to the 11th Vt. They was in the rear lines, they stood up too much. The stray bullets kill a good many. They go so high when they shoot over if anyone is standing up it most always hits them in the head or breast. Our works are on a little higher ground than the rebs so they are more apt to shoot over us than we are to shoot over them. The rebs have got some morters planted just over a hill back of their works and have thrown some over into our lines today. They are aufull big shells. Times I wish we could be where you would not be hurt na dhave about 3 bateries open with 4 guns to each batry all at once. The rebs done it to our regment the 18th of May, the last battle in the Wilderness and the first I was ever in. That is what will make a man think of his grand mother Nell.
Charlie Cleveland was kiled that day. The 6th have been very luckey, for 2 or 3 days we have not had anyone hit. I think something is going to hapen for certain. I don't see why you don't get my letters. I ahve sent from one to 3 letters a week to you every week. I sent one the 10th and got one from you the same day. I have got all your letters, 4 in all. The last was mailed the 5th of june. I wish you could send me a paper once in a while. Write me all about the draft, who was drafted and all aobut it. If any of our folks are drafted, tell them to pay if they can. All that come now have got to fight. This fancy fighting is all played out and so are those fancy Generals. It is old Grant now. The Battle of the Wilderness was the hardest battle ever known in the wourld. I suppoe you don't see over about 20 thousand in the papers do you? The loss was about the same on both sides, just about. Shit ass and kiss my ass, the rebs don't claim their loss there over about 8 thousand.
Giv emy love to Uncle Lute's folks and Aunt Mary Albert and Lewis and all the rest. Remember me to Mr Washburn's folks. From you own Dear Sarren, goody bye, dearest good bye. If I was in camp I could write to all of them but I can't write a great eal now. I wrote to father and Hoidt yesterday. Good by for this time, be happy won't you Darling do.
I am well, enjoy myself the best I can. Asa is well, has been out on our line to see me today. Ayers and Dickey ae both well and all right yet. So be I. Austin is getting along very well. The Doctor thinks he is playing off, but I don'k now how it is.
Be a good girl, be happy, take all the comforts you can want sis. Give my love to all, have mother and Ann write to me, my love to Andrew and Ruth, tell them to write to me.A kiss for my little Pet Wife.