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Soldier Worn Out But So Is His Slave

September 28, 1862

Sister you have no idea of the sufferings that I have endured in the last two weeks —

After marching all day with nothing but a small piece of inferior bacon and dry sea crackers — and not enough of that for supper, I could not help but think of the comforts of home. When night came I was too jaded and broken down for anything, not even energy to build a fire to sleep by — in short I was worn out in body and spirit — in all candor I wouldn’t go through the same thing for $10,000. I believe ‘twill kill me — besides I was suffering terribly with a bowel complaint. Caesar had a chill last Friday, Sunday, and Monday, yesterday I never saw anyone look so badly, marching all day with a chill on him, his eyes sunken and bloodshot — truly he was to be an object of pity — he is a faithful and good boy, of invaluable assistance to me on the march to Iuka. I sent a list of several things that I need — I want nothing fine until this abominable war is over or until I am out of it — ‘Tis hard, very hard — I try to make a good soldier — No other troops from Columbus have ever had as hard time as we have in the last twelve days . . . .

I am nearly well again, only need a weeks rest to be all right again — Caesar can explain everything on the memorandum that I need. If you’ll read it over to him. Caesar missed his chill yesterday, send him back to me as soon as father thinks it is safe for his health — You need fear nothing as to his being pressed for a driver — Captain Joe Billups and myself will manage that — Captain Joe is my best friend and adviser — in the army he is to me as pa is at home.

I like him very much and know he thinks a heap of me — Affectionately — your Bud

Bob

“Civil War Letters of Robert W. Banks”; Journal of Mississippi History 5 (July, 1943):, 4.

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