These letters were transcribed
in the book The Story of Camp Chase by William H. Knauss in
1906. The original letters are now held by the Virginia Historical
Society in Richmond, Virginia. Because of the internet, some descendants
may be able to read them for the first time on this site. These are just a
few of the letters.
"Camp Chase, April 24,1862.
It snowed here this morning,
and it is pretty cold to-day. I have been tolerably sick. I was in the
hospital six weeks; but, by the goodness of God, I was spared. Pleas
Dodson waited on me like a brother. I am going to Sandusky to-morrow or
the next day. We will have better quarters and a healthier situation. Pa,
I want to write a long letter, but I am limited. I will write that I am
well now and doing well under the present circumstances. Jimmy Cotheral is
dead; died in Chicago about the middle of March. Love to all.
P.S.-I send you $1.50 by Mr.
Ross, from F.D."
Subject: Letter # 2
"Camp Chase, April 21, 1862.
I desire to inform you that I
am a prisoner of war at Camp Chase,Ohio. We are in tolerably good health.
I would like to see you all very much, but I can't get home just now. I
wrote several letters to you all, but have received no answers, and I want
to hear very much. Tell John I would like to hear from him. Tell Aunt
Sarah howdy, also, and say that I am all right.
Show this letter to all who desire to see it, and tell Ad I want to see
him too. Tell old Mrs. Davis that I heard from Frank a short time ago.
Tell Capt. D.P. Curry to have us four exchanged. I have been here since
last September, and am getting tired of staying in this place. He can have
us exchanged if he will. Henry Whitman is here, and John McCutchen and
When you write don't put in anything contraband, for our letters are all
opened before we get them. Tell old Mr. Ebberd that I wrote to Ben
Ventrick, but have not heard from him. I must close by saying: God be with
you all. It is the sincere prayer of your nephew, John W. Thompson, Rock
Creek Guards, Twenty-Fifth Va. Regt. ""When this you see, remember me,
Though many miles apart we be.
Tell all the girls howdy for me,
To Mr. David Bradley, Goshen Bridge, Rockbridge, Co.,Va."
Subject: Letter # 3
"Camp Chase, April 21,1862.
Dear Mother: My health is tolerably good at this time, but I have been
very sick since I came here first, which was after Fort Donelson was
taken. I guess I have got to stay here, for I see no chance of getting
anywhere else. I hope the time will soon come when I may go home, but you
need not look for me until you see me coming. We are treated much better
than I expected. We have plenty to eat and good cabins to stay in. I send
this by Mrs. Clark, who will take it to Richmond.
Yours until death, Uriah
To Mrs. Mary Gardner, Jackson,
Subject: Letter # 4
"Camp Chase,Ohio,April 25, 1862.
Dear Wife and Daughter: I write to tell you that I am getting along
tolerably well since I was captured at Fort Donelson. Sally, I do want to
see you and little Mary very much. The time seems long since I last saw
you. I do hope and trust this difficulty will soon be settled, for I am
weary of it. The officers and the privates are separated, and I have not
seen any of the company since the 25th of February. I got a letter from
Gus sometime ago, and they were all tolerably well. Some of the boys are
dead. A.D. Roberts has been sick, but is getting better. I do hope I will
get to see you before long.
Your affectionate husband until death.
Dear Father, Mother, and
Sisters: I inclose my letter to you, father, and I want you to take care
of what I have, and take good care of Sally and little Mary until I come
home. Father, try to get me exchanged, for no man wants to stay in prison.
We are well cared for here; the confinement is what I object to most. We
have not room enough to exercise, but we are very well treated. I am
lighter in weight than ever you saw me since I grew up.
Your son, James Deeler.
From James Deeler to Sarah A.C.
Deeler, Kosciusko, Miss."
Subject: Letter # 5
"Camp Chase, April 20, 1862.
My Dear Merritt: You have doubtless heard of the surrender of our forces
at Island No. 10, which included the First Alabama. We all regretted this
much, but we were surrendered without knowledge or consent. Our boys stood
up to the enemy like men and brave soldiers. We were drawn up in line of
battle in sight of the enemy serveral times, and not one of them, I am
glad to say, flinched in the least, but, on the contrary, were perfectly
cool and determined. I was very proud of them, indeed, and love each one
of them as a dear friend.
After our surrender we were separated, the officers being sent here and
the men to Chicago or Springfield. It was hard for me to part with them,
and they seemed to feel it much; but such is war. We are very well treated
here, but are closely confined. We are anxious to get South. Some of the
boys, I believe, made their escape. Lieutenants Hall and Tuttle are here,
and are well.
Your friend, J.F. Whitefield
To Lieut. M.C. Pratt,
"Camp Chase, April 22, 1862.
Mr. William Jackson.
My Dear Father: There is a kind lady by the name of Mrs. Clark going to
Richmond from here, and I hope you may get my letter. I am sorry to say to
you, father, that I am a prisoner of war, but proud that I am well and
hearty and weigh more than you ever saw me. The disadvantage that I labor
under is my clothes are all too small for me. We have good quarters and
good rations and very kind treatment.
I would like if you would go to Alabama and look after my family; and if
they will go, I want you to move them to Georgia, as I can't tell when I
will get home, but when I do get there I will have money to pay for all
they consume. I think it best for my family to move to Georgia.
After three days' hard fighting at Donelson, we were compelled to
surrender. I had only one man killed in my company. Our loss was great,
and I never want to see anothere battlefield. It was fearful to me to look
over the field and see the blood run from my fellow-man. I felt the wind
of many a bullet, but fortunately escaped unhurt. We were in the heat of
the battle, and my company bore the colors. I would write more, but I do
not want to trouble Governor Todd to read so much, as he is kind enough to
let us write. He is very much of a gentleman and very kind to us. May God
bless you and family!
J.P. Jackson, Captain
Dear Wife: This is the first
chance I have had to write you, and I don't know whether this will go
through. I am well and heartly, so well that my clothes are getting too
small for me. I think I shall weigh two hundred by the time I get home.
The health of my company is good. We have plenty of good rations here, and
are well treated. I want you to attend to my business the best you can
until I get home. I can't tell anything about when that may be. Rear our
children for God and our country; and if I never see you any more, tell
them to think well of their father.
I think it would be the best thing to sell all my effects except the land
and go to Georgia and live there until I get home. Do just as you think
best. Kiss the children for me.
Prisoner of War. J.P. Jackson,
Subject: Letter #7
"Camp Chase, April 25, 1862.
Mrs. Lydia Parmelee, Winona, Miss.
Dear Wife: I have no news to
write you, only that I am a prisoner of war at Camp Chase, as you will see
from the caption, and that I am in fine health and well cared for. Have
plenty to eat; all the prisoners can ask for but liberty. All the Fourth
Mississippi Regiment officers and privates are well and in good health.
W.O. Thompson, M. Stafford, and R.E. Curtis have died.
Wife, be of good cheer; kiss all the babies and tell them pa is well and
thinks of them every day. Tell all my relations and friends "howdy." Tell
James to stay at home and take care of the family.
I am your affectionate husband,W.J.Parmelee.
Write me if you can,and direct, as above, to Prison No.2, Mess No.13.
I omitted to say that W.F. Webb and Tommy Ratliff were killed on the
battlefield; and I and our regiment are being sent to Sandusky, Johnson
Island, in Lake Erie; so direct all your letters there.
Tell James to write.
Sandusky,Johnson's Island, Ohio."
Subject: Letter # 8
"Camp Chase,Near Columbus,Ohio April 18, 1862.
Dear Captain: Our second campaign has been a very unfortunate one, and the
First Alabama is now in durance-prisoners of war. Our accommodations and
fare are far better than any of us expected. The privates have been sent
to Springfield or Chicago. We officers, including Major Know, are
rusticating at this place. I have written to my parents, but have received
When we abandoned Island No. 10 we lost all our clothing and comforts. We
are now realizing the truths of the expression: In a strange land, without
money, "duds," and almost minus friends. We neither fear pickpockets,
shoplifters, nor are we in dread of "false alarms." My space is limited
and ideas cramped; so I will conclude.
Your sincere friend, S.B. Moore.
My address is: Lieut. S.B.Moore,
Camp Chase, Prison No. 3, Columbus, Ohio."
Subject: Letter # 9
Camp Chase, April 20, 1862.
My Dear Mother: An opportunity having offered itself by which I can get a
letter through the line, I will embrace it to drop you a few lines. As
doubtless you are aware, I am a prisoner of war at Camp Chase. We arrived
here from Fort Donelson on the 4th of March. On arrival we were put in a
prison of about three acres, surrounded by a fence fifteen feet high.
Within the inclosure are enough houses to entertain twelve or fifteen
persons, who constitute a mess.
The houses are comfortably built, and the streets are regularly laid off.
Rations are given to us just the same as to their own soldiers, perhaps a
little better. With rations and what delicacies we buy, we live in fine
My mess are all Virginians, mostly from the lower part of the State. Most
of them, having friends in the North, get money enough to do very well. I
wrote to Uncle Albert Brown, but have not heard from him. Why, I cannot
say. Perhaps I was mistaken in his address. If you can get a letter
through the line, let me know his office.
The authorities are very kind, and try to make us comfortable. I am
limited as to how much I can write. I am in fine health now, but was quite
unwell after I was captured.
"Camp Chase, Prison No. 3,
My Dear Wife: I expect you are
in a good deal of trouble about me. I want you to give yourself as little
bother about me as possible, for we are treated as kindly as prisoners
deserve. We have good shanties, furnished with good cook stoves, and have
plenty of good, wholesome food to eat. The only thing that is bad is
liberty. we can't go home or anywhere else farther than our prison bounds.
I want you to do the best you
can until I come home; I can't tell when that well be. E.H. Stewart is
with me; let his wife know that he is well. J.G. Hall was left at Madrid
Bend, and we have heard nothing from him since the privates were sent to
Chicago. All the officers of the Eleventh Arkansas Regiment are here and a
great many from Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, and Kentucky. I do not
know the number. Write to me.
Yours ever until death, J.M.
Letter addressed to Mrs. J.M. Sanders, Rockfort, Ark."
"Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio,
April 21, 1862
Dear Sister: I was taken
prisoner at Island No. 10 the 8th instant. We remained there one night and
left on boat for Cairo; better quarters and better treatment than a great
many in your section of the country would suppose. We live in plank
houses, and have the same amount of provisions and clothing that Federal
soldiers do. We have free access to about six acres of land.
Yours, J.M. Wall
To Mrs. Evalina Jones, Tickfaw Station, Livingston Parish, La."
"Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio,
March 20, 1862
Dear Mollie: You will doubtless
be surprised to learn that I am in this region and in the confines of a
prison. We were surrendered on the 8th instant at Island No. 10 by General
Mackall, and not even a colonel had any intimation of it until it was
announced that we were surrendered, as prisoners of war.
I am happy to say, however,
that we are well treated, and I hope we will be exchanged soon. I now have
the painful necessity of informing you of the death of William D. Johnson,
who died on the 16th instant of pneumonia and measles. I hope that you are
all well at home, and that I may soon be permitted to visit you. I would
write often, but it is very uncertain as to you receiving my letters.
My respects to the friends and
my love to you and the baby,
Your husband, R.H. Riley."
"Camp Chase Prison, Columbus,
Ohio, April 20, 1862
My Dear Bettie: Nine weeks have
elapsed to-day since I, with my regiment, was surrendered at Fort Donelson.
I have as yet received no news from home, but I hope you have at least
received some of my letters written since my capture. A kind lady of this
State, Mrs. Clark, has obtained permission to visit Richmond, and very
kindly offers to carry our letters beyond the lines and mail them. There
is at least a possibility of this reaching you. I hope, however, ere this
that some one of the fugitives from our regiment who escaped has informed
you of my safety. My health thus far has been unusually good, and bids
fair, through the regularity of all my habits, to continue so. How much
longer I am to remain a prisoner depends upon so many contingencies that
it is impossible to conjecture. Major Brown was paroled several days since
to Richmond, to effect, if possible, his exchange for me. Whether he has
been successful, I have not learned. Immediately after our surrender we
were taken to Chicago, and there the officers were separated from from the
men, the men remaining there and the officers were brought to this place.
On last Thursday the other
officers of my regiment, with one exception, were taken to a prison on an
island in Lake Erie, where they report they are more comfortably quartered
than here. Lieutenants Siddile, Jeff, Monroe, and Stoddard are there. Some
two days since, Captain George was removed from here.
Your brother, F.B. Keyes.
Letter addressed to Anna Keyes."
"Camp Chase, April 20, 1862
Dear Brother and Sister: I am
well at the present time and just getting over the effects of my wound. I
was sent from Clarksville March 20, thence to Cincinnati; stayed in the
hospital there until the 18th of April and then brought to this place.
There are about five arces inside the walls of this prison, and we are
pretty comfortably fixed here, and yet I do not like it at all. I shall
have to put up with it anyhow.
I have received a letter from
Sandford's folks They are all well but Irene, and she is poorly. I send my
love to you all and all who may inquire.
From your affectionate brother,
Hope for better days. Kiss the children for me.
Letter addressed to D.A. Yates, Esq., New Orleans, La."
"Camp Chase, April 18, 1862
Miss E.H. Fussell,
Dear Cousin: I write to let you know that I am still in the land of the
living. I am enjoying fine health here. If I could just hear from home!
Since the 15th of December I have not heard one word. I have written
several letters, but it must be that they never got them. The mail
facilities are very bad in this country now.
Cousin, if you get any chance,
please write to me. Tell ma I am in better health than ever I was in my
life. Give my best respects to all inquiring friends, and accept for
yourself the assurance that I am, as ever, your devoted cousin, W.W.
To Miss E. Fussell, Columbia,
"Camp Chase, April 22, 1862
My Precious Wife: To relieve
your anxiety, if possible, I shall try to give you as accurate an account
of my past as the space will permit and tell you how I am situated at
present. While at Madrid and Island No. 10 we suffered severely day and
night for eight weeks, or nearly so. Rain, snow, sleet, ditching,
marching, watching-in a single word, soldiering-used us up. For ten days
we all thought our doom was sealed either to surrender or be slaughtered
at any hour. We were surrendered on the 8th. My health had become good,
and I was present at the surrender, commanding my men to stack arms with a
sad heart. The men were separated from us the same day, and I have not
seen them since. They were sent either to Chicago or Springfield. The
officers of the line and the staff were all sent here and the field
officers to Fort Warren.
Now, my dear, I want you to be
cheerful, for my health is good, except a cold, which I hope soon to be
rid of, and the treatment we all receive is very courteous and kind.
Indeed, so clever are they that I am much astonished. To be a prisoner of
war is not such a very bad thing, were it not for the absence from loved
ones and duty. we are in good houses, cook on stoves, and have plenty of
wood, water, and wholesome food.
When you hear of barbarity,
cruelty, and the like, just say it is all false. I have not seen the least
bit of it, and don't believe it is practiced anywhere.
My roommates are Lieutenants
Menefee and Listrunk, with ten others, officers of the First Alabama
Regiment. Captain Lacke, Captain Sullins, of Tuskegee, Lieutenants Andrews
and Riley, of Pike County, Lieutenant Gilland and Captain Ramsey, of
Wilcox, are among them. I found my old schoolmate, Dick Hall, of Autaugo,
who is here, and Lieutenant Knowles, of Macon County. I met here a cousin
whom I had never seen before-Captain Mooney, of Arkansas. you see how
strange are the fortunes of war.
We are like brothers and enjoy
ourselves as well as we can, but are restive, of course, when we think of
home. Everything I had was lost except the clothes upon my body at the
time, and I have not a cent of current money. If Ben can make arrangements
to send me some, I will be very much obliged. Indeed, I will.
We are all as poor as church
mice. If the friends of all our men should send money, some good men could
be selected who would be allowed to bring it to us.
From James Peeler to Sarah A.C.
Peeler, Kosciusko, Miss. "
"Camp Chase Prison, Mess 3, April 21,1862
Hon. Landon C. Haynes, U.S.
Dear Sir: I am a prisoner of
war in Camp Chase. I am a first lieutenant in the Fiftieth Tennessee
Regiment, surrendered at Fort Donelson. I am feeble in health, and am very
anxious to be exchanged.
By the bearer of this I have
written to Colonel Wigfall, United States Senator from Texas, asking his
influence in carrying out a plan for my exchange. I imagine the most
expeditious way to effect an exchange is to select an officer of my rank,
who is a prisoner in the South, and release him on parole to visit
Washington and have me released, or, in case he failed in that, to return
to his status in prison. Knowing that the Confederate government has such
a prisoner, by the name of Lieutenant Riley, fo the Forty-Seventh New
York, I have selected him as a suitable man to have exchanged for me.
I feel the more confidence in
asking your influence from the fact that you are well acquainted with my
brother-in-law, Frank E. Williams, of Rush, Texas, formerly of East
Tennessee; and also from a fact which perhaps, you are not aware of that I
was the first man to suggest through the public prints your name as a
suitable man for Confederate Senator. Can I hope that you will cooperate
with General Wigfall in procuring my release?
Hoping through your influence
to soon be beneath the skies of Dixie, I remain, my dear sir, very
respectfully yours, John Ward."
"Camp Chase, April 21, 1862
R.W. Price, Esq., Eastport,
Tishomingo County, Miss.
My Dear Friend: I, for my first
time, have an opportunity to writing you since becoming a citizen of Ohio.
Last February I removed from Bowling Green, Ky., to Fort Donelson, Tenn.,
arriving there on the 10th, and on the 15th something like a fight occured,
accounts of which you have seen. The number of the enemy is unknown; that
of ours, 13,890; our killed, 209, wounded 965.
Sunday morning, February 16th,
the whole Confederate force were sold to General Grant by a man named
Gideon Pillow. He sold us, skulked off to Nashville before daylight, and
left his men to suffer the consequences. As the result I am here with a
portion of our regiment, as a prisoner of war; but I am proud to inform
you that my health is good, and we live just as well as we wish, each mess
having a nice little house, with a good cooking stove in it. Part of our
regiment is at Indianapolis and a portion at Fort Warren and some of us
here. The health of the prisoners is generally good. Captain Reed and
Lieutenant Rast are dead. Captains Sharp and Demo are both here, as lively
as ever. I would like very much to be at home and know who of our friends
suffered at the battle of Shiloh. We are all hoping to get home soon, but
God only knows when that time will come. If you can get any money for my
wife, do so. I am allowed to write only one page, so I must close. Send
this to my wife at Burnsville. Believe me forever your friend, George W.
Letter # 19
"Limestone County, Ala., June 10, 1862
My Dear Husband: I take the
present opportunity of writing you a few line to let you know that we
are all well and doing very well, and I hope that when this reaches you
youwill be enjoying the same blessing.
Dear Jim, I am anxious to hear from you. I heard that yuou were wounded
and taken prisoner at Corinth, Miss. Please write to me and let me kow
whether I can come and see you, for I do want to do so. When you write
let me know whether you know anything about my brother Andrew and Hart
Manley or not.
Direct your letter to Athens, Limestone County, Ala. Pa's family are all
well. I bring my letter to a close by sending my love to you and saying,
Write soon to your wife. The little children grow very fast and want to
Martha L. Chapman to James H. Chapman, Breckinridge's Brigade, Colonel
Hale's Regiment, Captain Gard's Company. If any person who reads this
letter knows of Mr. Chapman, I will be thankful for information."
"Camp Chase, April 20, 1862
As you are aware, I am a prisoner of war. We endured much and suffered
much, and I have been sick, quite sick; given up to die with cramp
colic; but am still living, thank God! I hope to be entirely well in a
few days. Captain Rush and Lieutenant Listrunk are here with me.
The company was sent to Chicago. we were not allowed to tell them
good-by. This was attributable to hurry, and not inhumanity, on the part
of our enemies. The separation occured at New Madrid. We accomplished
everything General Beauregard expected, and that was to hold in check a
large column of the enemy. This we did for eight weeks. We are here
without money to buy what we need.
They feed us well, but sick men want something else besides what we
draw. If there is any chance to get us gold, I wish you B. Rush, and B.
Campbell, who is Listrunk's friend, would arrange with Hon. D. Clopton
to do so. I send you herewith authority to draw sufficient to buy, say,
fifty dollars in gold for me.
Kiss my little boy and see that he is well trained. God bless the poor
little motherless and now almost fatherless, fellow!
Your son, J.T. Menefee."
"Camp Chase, April 21
My Dear Wife: If you received my letter from Island No. 10, you are not
surprised to learn that I am a prisoner of war. We have comfortable
quarters, plenty of everything to eat, and are kindly treated. My health
is very good. I bear my lot with fortitude, and my only trouble is on
your account. Be of good cheer, my dear wife. Write short letters and
nothing contraband, or they will not be permitted to come. May God bless
and protect you and my dear children!
Your faithful husband, A.J. Evans.
To Mrs. Augusta Evans, Okolona, Chickasaw Co., Miss."
"Camp Chase, April 28, 1862
My Dear Parents: I wrote you the other day; but as Mrs. Moon has kindly
offered to take letters from prisoners to Virginia, I have taken the
opportunity, hoping you may hear from me again. I have written you so
often, and not hearing from you, that it is almost enough to discourage
one from writing; but, according to the adage, "no news is good news." I
will hope for the best. Mrs. Moon is a native of Virginia, and has a
permit to visit there; on what business, I cannot say. There are some
ladies here that are very kind to us. Mrs. Moon, wife of a preacher, and
Mrs. Thurman have visited the hospital that contains our sick and given
comfort to our prisoners.
There were sixteen who came when I did, and there are only four now. One
of them, poor fellow, I am afraid, will never be well again; he has
consumption. He was captured with a man named John Bruly, of Arkansas.
The little boy that was with us we left at Bearly. Perhaps they will
make a pet of him. Of the sixteen, four died and the rest have been sent
home. They were all citizens except five, and one of them died. I
haven't much to say except for you to remember me in your prayers, and ,
next to ourselves, to remember our country; and may God bless you!
Yours forever, J. Henney.
"Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio April 20, 1862
Dear Jane: I have written you fully all the particulars in regard to our
surrender at Island 10 on the 8th instant. Fifty-three of my company
were included in the surrender, a list of which I herewith inclose. Have
it published in the Herald, that all our friends may see it. All the
officers were seperated from their companies at New Madrid. My boy was
well when I left him. He will be sent to Chicago or Springfield, Ill.
You must not take this misfortune of mine too much to heart; many others
are in the same condition. Besides, I am happy to say that we have
nothing to complain of in regard to the treatment.
We are quartered in houses, with everything furnished us that we could
ask for. Were it not for the fact that we are prisoners of war and
confined to the camp, we would feel quite easy. I make myself satisfied,
and bear my imprisonment with as much patience as possible under the
circumstances. All I fear at all is sickness. I hope and pray that we
may be exchanged before the sickly season of the year. My health at
present is very good, and all the mess, composed of Captains Moss and
Mather, are well. The greatest inconvenience I find is having no money
that I can use. Confederate bonds are not used at all. I think I shall
be home soon. Should any one come from Arkansas to bring us money, be
sure to send me some gold. My sword is still at the Washer House,
Memphis. My trunk was left on a boat in the hands of Mr. McDonald. I
presume he will send Conden to get my sword and trunk. Keep them until I
am released. I suggest that you remain at father's until I get back; but
do as you think best. Kiss the children for me and tell them where I am.
I will have plenty of money to meet any arrangement you make. Remember
me to all our friends and relations. When you write me, direct your
letter to Capt. L. Logan, Prisoner of War, Camp Chase, via Fortress
Monroe. I send a stamp to pay postage this side of the line.
Yours forever, J.L. Logan"
List of Captain Logan's
Company surrendered at Island No. 10. April 8, 1862: "J.L. Logan,
Captain; F.T. Scott, E.C. Lockhart, L.K. Whitfield, G.W. Elleatt, I.T.
Webb, W.F. Mack, E.H. McLaughtin, J.W. Grauger, E.C. Alford, J.E. Basten,
J.W. Bussell, H.L. Brazil, Peter Connelly, C.A. Conine, G.W. Cathey, J.A.
Cogan, H.C. Davis, W.H. Water, J.A. Emerson, D.L. Davis, E.S. Greeney,
E.A. Wane, E.B. Whitfield, E.C. Haddox, J.B. Halison, I. Wardin, W.
Jackson, J.H. Lang, J.E. Side, L.O. Meyers, W.M. Mitchell, J.M. Malone,
A.J. Mims, J.A. Price, A.H. Patton, R.R. Shelton, John Jones, Joe
Schaeffer, T.I. Sullivant, J. Sloan, R.J. Tumer, J.F. Todd, J.I. Todd,
G.W. Taylor, A.M. Webb."
I believe this company to be
from Company G, of the 11th Arkansas Infantry.
"Mr. Robert Beers St.Catharines, June 30, 1862
My Dear Friend: I write a few lines and will wait to see whether you get
them before I write much to you. I have had some intimation that you
were at Camp Chase, and so I direct there.
Myself and family are here in Canada. I wish we could see you, for your
mother's sake, as well as your own. She was well, as usual. So were your
father and other friends. They know that you were wounded and that you
were in the hospital when it fell into the hands of the Union troops, so
that they judge you are a prisoner. Still, they are very anxious lest
your wound might prove fatal. your poor mother, however, bears all with
fortitude. I have heard from Eddie Treat, and have notified Mr. St.
John, who is in New York, of his whereabouts, and he has sent Eddie
We were at Mr. Meikle's house and stayed all night. I told them all I
knew of you at the time, and Mr. Meikle immediately set about searching
by correspondence for you. As soon as I heard you were at Camp Chase I
sent him word. you must let him and me both know how you are and what
you need to make you comforable.
I have written to a minister of my acquaintance in Columbus, and
requested him as a special favor to give you some attention. Tell Mr.
Plum that his mother has been quite sick, but is again well, and that
his sister is also well. They were both very anxious about him, as they
had heard he was wounded.
I was compelled to stop preaching for a while on account of illness, so
I started for Europe via Havana. Our vessel was captured and we were
brought to New York, where we were at liberty to go where we wished. We
came here, and I may not go to Europe. We have to return to Mobile in a
few months, so that I may resume my labors.
There were fifty-eight additions to our Church last year. Be of good
cheer. God bless you and your companions!
Your affectionate friend and pastor, J.W. Burgett."
"Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio
March 16, 1862
Dear Brother: I take pleasure in writing you a few lines to inform you
that I am well at the present, and I hope that you and my dear family
are well also. The health of the men here is not very good at this time.
Captain Read and Lieutenant East died yesterday. Dave, I want you to see
J.F. Gresham and get him to draw my money and pay it to you, and you can
dispose of it as you see proper.
We are very well treated here by the enemy. I would like to see you all
very much. I want you to write to G.A. Inders and have my trunk sent
home. I will be released soon and sent home. you will read this to my
family and tell them to weep not for me, for I am game. The same Hand
that led me through dark scenes will lead me home.
I remain your brother, W.P. Pardier."
"Camp Chase, Columbus, Ohio March 20, 1862
Dear Mollie: You will doubtless be surprised to learn that I am in this
region and in the confines of a prison. We were surrendered on the 8th
instant at Island No. 10 by General Mackall, and not even a colonel had
any intimation of it until it was announced that we were surrendered as
prisoners of war.
I am happy to say, however, that we are well treated, and I hope we will
be exchanged soon. I now have the painful necessity of informing you of
the death of William D. Johnson, who died on the 16th instant of
pneumonia and measles. I hope that you are all well at home, and that I
may soon be permitted to visit you. I would write often, but it is very
uncertain as to your receiving my letters.
My respects to the friends and my love to you and the baby.
Your husband, R.H. Riley."