Manley Stacey Civil War Letters

From the collection of the Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest, Illinois

November 12, 1862

Camp Douglas
Chicago Illinois
Nov 12th /62

Dear Father

We were very much surprised yesterday to see Mr Hunt & to hear direct from home.  I do not think he will be successful in getting Albert home.  Though I do not think he is getting any better.  Albert is in almost as good a place, as he would be if at home.

You need not be alarmed about me, I am perfectly well, never better.  You may be sure I shall take as good care of myself as possible.  I would have no trouble in going to Mrs Stones, in case I was taken Sick, as they have repeatedly asked me to come and stay a week.  I received a letter from you last Sunday, with a $2,00 bill in which was just what I wanted.

I received another letter from home today.  I think you were mistaken in my telling you not to write to me, I think I said do not send me any things until I knew, whether we were to stay here or not.  Do not send me a [Cap] until I know whether I shall stay here all winter or not.  If we stay here I want one.  I could wear it all times whether on Duty or not, that would make no difference.

I thought Holmes had written to you before this, about the Trunk, I should have thought he would have done it before this.

Lieut Moor Resignation was read at Dress Parade tonight, It took us all by surprise.  I think there will be some more Promotion, in our Company before long & then I shall get [up] another step.

Tomorrow, our Regt has got to go on Guard again, This time I shall get [sleepy], as I was on before.  I think I shall go to Mrs Stones tomorrow, if I do not go on.

I think Mr Hunt will give you a good description of Camp life, as he came in a good Time.

It had been raining all day & was awful muddy.  Things are moving along in Camp Just the Same, no Excitement.  One hour we think we are going home & then the next, we give it all up.

The rumor that Mc [Clennan] (McClellan) has been superseded by Burnside, has caused some excitement here, but few are sorry for it.

You say you hear so much worse reports about the Camp [than] what I write.  I do not know, how that is though.  I will own I have made it [ smooth] [as] possible.  The best you can make of it, it is tough, & is no place for Men to Camp much less to stay here during the Winter.

I very much doubt now whether we get our pay, now until we are exchanged, though I know the Officers want their pay.  I do not have any more news to write, but this[:]  One of our Men that, wrote home about Billy Waters being drunk, was on the list for Promotions, but was thrown out,  Wrote home that he asked the Capt to take his name off, that he should consider it an insult.  This is not so as he expected to be Corporal, until it was read.  This is one of the ways you get the Reports from here.

Hoping to hear from you soon

Manley Stacey

Love to all

Tags :

No Comments

(will not be published) (required)

Manley Stacey

born October 29, 1842

died December 26, 1863

Written during the battle of Gettysburg, July 1-3, 1863

"When we camped last, we could see the wounded coming in, those that were able to walk, and the cavalry horses coming in riderless. This showed us that something was going on...I think this will be an awful battle very soon and of course we are in for it...It is a sad sight to see the wounded brought in on stretchers, the poor boys all covered with blood & as pale as death.

"Last night at 4 PM we were ordered to march and form in Line of battle on our left. After a great deal of confusion, we got formed and then we were ordered to advance, right in the face of the rebel guns who were firing their grape and canisters into us by wholesale...After a great deal of marching and counter marching, we were ordered to charge on a rebel battery. We were now right in front of our canons, advancing on their guns, the rebel sharpshooters in our rear picking off our officers. This was an awful time the shells taking the men down by ranks. While we were marching, a man was shot, and the Blood was spilling all over my face, it perfectly Blinded me.

"At 1 PM we were shelled by 100 guns, all concentrated on the force supporting the battery. There we laid behind a stone wall, the shells passing over us and killing the men all around me. Three men were killed and thrown across me, covering me with blood. While we were laying here, a shell struck a stone in the wall and killed a man throwing the man across my legs and the stone striking me in the back & doubling me up.

"We have got about 18 men now in the Company fit for duty and 150 in the Regiment. We went in the fight with over 400, and have yet now 150."

The Letters

Recent Comments

Friends and supporters