Harris, George W. – October 1861

Michigan Civil War Collection Letters

Click here for this soldier’s biography:

Regiment: 3rd Michigan Infantry

Battles Mentioned:

Historical Figures: Jefferson Davis

October [ ? ] 61
Camp Arlington

My own Dear One,
Once again do I seat myself for the purpose of talking with my loved one far far away and to pour out the very inmost beatings of my heart. I have been sick for about four or five days…quite sick and not for duty and am so weak yet that I can hardly write now but I should have to be very sick indeed not to be able to write to you. I [      ?       ] you wanted me to state to you how I like soldier’s life. I like it to a tea. With but one exception and that is I cannot see my friends quite as often as I should like to. But Mary I consider that I am enlisted in a great and glorious Cause that of protecting and perpetuating one of the most noble governments that God ever smiled upon. And should God see fit to favor me with the inmost desire of my mind I shall be a satisfied to die but I would like to live to accomplish that one object and that object is that my eye may look through the sights of my trusty rifle but just once at the Hon. Jefferson Davis. I say if I can have that wish granted I shall be satisfied for by the by at a trial of skill with the rifle some ten days ago I made the best specimen of marksmanship in our whole Brigade in consequence of which I was presented with a splendid Minnie Rifle so that I have now
the best rifle in the reg’t and I want to shoot just once at Jeff Davis. And I promise Dear One to fetch you a piece of his left ear. We have moved some ten miles below Washington. In fact we have moved 3 times during the last ten days and we are now on one of the most Splendid locations your eyes ever beheld. We can see Washington some ten miles away and can have a splendid view of Alexandria but two miles away and can see for miles up and down the river and see all of our large Manufacturers and Gun boats as they pass up and down the Potomac. We are the very advance camp toward the rebel lines whose batteries are but 7 miles away. We have plenty of fresh fish which we catch in a little bay which puts out from the river and bows almost around our camp. We momentarily look for an attack somewhere along our lines, but where it will take place we cannot tell. I shall have to bid you good-bye for the present but remain your true and aff. lover
to his own       M.A.N.

Then fight on dear comrade, your valor is at test
Sustain the Dear emblem that ever was blest
Yes we will ever defend it or else we will die
With the flag of our country still waving on high