Manley Stacey Civil War Letters

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

April 10, 1863

Camp Hayes Centerville
Co D 111th Regt NYSV
April 10th 1863
9,45 AM

Dear Father

I am now having [a] little easier times in the Co, all the Drilling I have to do, is Battallion in the Afternoon, for an hour & a half. Tomorrow we have got to Muster, it is reported, that it is to find out many men, we have fit for Duty, & that we are to have Drafted men to fill up the regt, I hope this is so, as it will make it easier for all. The Detail for Color guard has not been read yet. Barney, Francisco, was yesterday Detailed as Ajutnats Clerk, a tip top Position for him. there he will have no Picketing to do.

7,30 PM I received your letter of the 6th this PM. As yet we have seen nothing of Capt, or his men, though we thought certainly thought he would. Mother is right, about Dreyer, you have to make an allowance for what he says. As to his being Hospital Stewart, that is all [G....on]. He is right, however, about Greens, marrying Catlins Sister. I thought I told you of that long ago.

I have heard no more about the Furlough, prehaps [sic] when the Capt, returns, he will help me. I am almost afraid afraid [sic], it will not work. I hope it will for the Lord knows I want to come Home, if but for a few days. we have not seen the Paymaster yet, nor is there any signs. of it at Present. I took the Chap, the Democrat this afternoon, with his letter in. [Utassi] did not send me to the guard House, he knew, he had no right to compel me, to black his Boots

[Flaglers], was where, my Picket Post, was with Granger, He does not live there now. He got so Poor that the Govt had to move him to Washington. He has a Splendid Farm but it does him no good it was in his house, that Ely was confined, & he was taken to Richmond with him. You thought I did not have a very good visit, with the old Slave holder, far from it, He was very cordial, but his Sentiments & mine did not agree. His Daughters was down, on us, poor Soldiers.

I shall be glad to get the things, by Dreyer they are just what I wanted, especialy [sic], the Blacking & Powder, to clean Buttons. We are having Splendid weather here now, & if it was not for the Drilling, we would get along. I am getting sick & tired of hearing the Drum Beat for Drill. I would not know what to make, if laying in bed, & not have to get up, to Revilee. There is a Report here of a Row in Richmond, about Provisions. I hope it is so. We have got to Draw, new Suits of clothes, next month. Well I must close for I have a great deal to do

Yours

Manley

——————–

Miss Rosa

I sincerely hope you will succeed in your Examination, so that you can get up as soon as possible. I do not want you to study to hard however, you must take the Advice, of your Aged Brother Manley. A man who has seen as much of the world as I have

April 11th, 5,15 AM. Just had a pretty good nights rest. Today, we go on Inspection & Muster. I do not like these Regt Inspections. I will write again tomorrow.

Your Son

with Love to all

Manley

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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."

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