The letters and diaries of Lieutenant Philip R. Woodcock
121st Regiment, New York State Infantry
"Upton's Regulars"
September 4, 1862-November 9, 1865

Monday, June 8, 2015

Unknown Future

"O Roby you cannot imagine a mans feelings while in front of the Enemy & while in a post of danger especially when the chances of his escaping alive are against him..."

Philip wrote that on March 21st, 1863 during a snowstorm in the winter camp. He sounded very concerned and homesick in this letter:

"Camp near White Oak Church
March 21st 1863

My Dearest Wife

I received yours of the 15th last night & was glad enough to hear from you & that you was all well. The first thing I do in receiving a letter from you is to see if you and dear little Georgie are well then I can draw a long breath & feel contented."

He goes on to describe the weather:

"We are having Winter here again in good earnest, it snows and blows hard. I guess we have 3 or 4 in of snow this morning and it is pretty cold, it snowed all day yesterday from the north ~ but if we did not have to get wood we would not care we can manage to keep comfortable if the wind and snow does blow in but to turn out in a storm and get wood is pretty rough especially where we cant get nothing but limbs to burn."

And then something happy and nice happens:

"One thing I must tell you we had a wedding down here the other day ~ One of our brigade teamsters married a girl only about 1/2 a mile from here and as good looking girl as you ever wish to see, she has 2 Brothers in the Confederate Army & now a husband in the Union Army ~ but I suppose she will forsake father Mother Brother & Sister & cleave unto her new husband ~ at least she ought to ~"  (He was a strong Christian man with strong opinions but with a sense of humor too...) "There are 3 or 4 more very handsome girls left whom once and a while we can get a glimpse of but they dont like the Cowardly Yankees  as they term us ~ I tell you Roby we get hard names here the inhabitants dont like a Soldier & where ever the Army goes they dread the sight of it for they have to lock and double lock every stable & animal thing they wish to save but in spite of that the boys will get chickens & milk cows & I have noticed they are very fond of little pigs ~ but every thing is stripped here so while we are in present quarters we cant get any such provisions ~ but we live good yet though our Commissary does not give us as much bread as he used to though I have enough for my own use at present."

(I must stop there today due to time constraints.  More tomorrow!)

Also from his diary on this date in history...

"The troops threw up entrenchment in front of us a heavy Rifle Pit we planted Batteries &c to guard against an attack got a mail. The rest of the Army in camp only our Corps at work..."

That was Philip's day on June 8th, 1863 also falling on a Monday.  How is your day today?

Hope to see you then!

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