Yours of the 25th March I recd. at Gordon’s Mill

Joseph Culver Letter, May 4, 1864, Page 1

Head Qurs., 129th Regt. Ills. Vol. Infty.
Pleasant Grove near Ringold, Tenn. [sic], May 4th 1864
My Dear Wife

Yours of the 25th March [sic] I recd. at Gordon’s Mill.1 We left that place at 9 o clock A.M. and arrived here at 4 P.M., 15 miles.2 We are now at the foot of Taylor’s Ridge, 2 1/2 miles from Ringold, about 10 miles from Tunnel Hill, and from 15 to 20 miles from Dalton. One column is moving by Ringold, Tunnel Hill, and Buzzard Roost; another from Cleveland, and ours, making in all three columns.3 We are close on the enemy’s lines. The weather is warm but pleasant during the day and quite cool at night.

Plattenburg has not yet returned, & I am still acting Adgt. & get to ride. [Captain] Hoskins was last night detailed to act as Major until further orders and is also mounted. [Lieutenant] Smith is in command of the Company. Chris [Yetter] was sick last night but is quite well to-night. Bart Allen is better.

I would like very much to give you a full history of our movements, but it is unsafe. The capture of a mail would furnish too much information.

I am happy to hear that you are making such good progress in music. Learn “Fairy Bell” and “Laurina” for me; I shall be happy to hear it when I return. Do not allow yourself to feel the least uneasy about us. We never felt in better spirits. All will be well.

I hope your effort at gardening may prove more successful than my last one. Have any of the Grape lived? And the roses should be in bloom.

We are so far in the field that I fear that there will be no pay forthcoming until the close of the Campaign. No pay since Dec. 31st. We can easily get along here. If you get short, call on Remick or Henry [Greenebaum], either of them will advance all you need.

Give my love to all. Tell Henry and Russell and all the rest I will write as soon as paper becomes more plentiful; our transportation is too limited. We have plenty of meat and hard bread & get along finely.

May God bless and keep you in health and happiness. Live in hope “God doeth all things well.” Kiss Mother [Murphy] for me and Maggie. Remember me kindly to all. May Holy Angels guard thee. With much love, I remain,

Your Affectionate Husband
J. F. Culver

  1. The subject letter is missing from the Culver Collection. []
  2. The division had struck its tents and moved out at an early hour. Butterfield’s orders were to take position near Pleasant Grove Church, with his left in contact with Brig. Gen. Jefferson C. Davis’ division. O. R., Ser. I, Vol. XXXVIII, pt. IV, p. 29. []
  3. Maj. Gen. John Palmer’s XIV Corps, Army of the Cumberland, had marched from Graysville on the road paralleling the Western & Atlantic Railroad, and by the 4th had occupied Ringgold, Ga. General Howard’s IV Corps, advancing on Palmer’s left, had left Cleveland, Tenn., on the 3d, and reached Catoosa Springs on May 4. Hooker’s XX Corps constituted the Army of the Cumberland’s right. General Schofield’s Army of the Ohio had followed Howard’s corps south from Cleveland and was camped in and around Red Clay. General McPherson’s Army of the Tennessee was being concentrated at Chattanooga, preparatory to following the route pioneered by Hooker’s columns. Ibid., pp. 25-33. []

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Outreach and Instruction Librarian. Lover of coffee, as well as 19th century photography, painting, tourism and print.
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