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January 1, 2003
Charles -
I have in my possession a letter from a member of the 80th Ohio, Pvt. Alfred Johnston, written to his mother from camp at Pine Ridge, Mississippi on June 25th, 1862. I am enclosing the text of the letter for you to use as you see fit (not any real battle detail, but talks about the evacuation of Corinth and more about camp life). If you have any service or biographical info about Pvt. Johnston, I would appreciate hearing from you. Here is the letter text (original spelling intact):

Michael Anthony,; Pittsburg, Pa.

June the 25th, 1862
Pine Ridg Mississippi
Headqtr 80th Regt. Co. D O.V.U.S.A.

Two my dear mother I take this oportunity two answer
your kind leter. I was glad two here from you and two here that
you was well at this time. Hoping that you are still injoying the
same blessing for helth is the main thing in this world. The
wether is very hot here but wee have nothing two do but cook for
our selves. Wee have plenty two eat and plenty two drink. Wee
have lotts of good water. It is handy. Wee air in camp on a very
nise pine ridg. Wee air in the woods. It is nise and cool here. If
wee was out in the sun wee could not stand it for the wether is so
hot. It seems that the sun is right above us all the time. Wee have
had some prety hard times since I last rote two you but I think
that wee never will have as much two do again for wee have the
simple opinion that the war will soon bee over and then wee will
return home. I have stood it very well so far and I hope that I will
still keep my helth. If a man has good helth he can get along here
very well, but if is not so he had beter bee some plase else for wee
have some prety ruff times to indure. There is some that could not
stand soldering and some of them is jeneraly the bigest men that wee
have. There is boys 15 and 16 years old that stands it beter than
lotts of the big men. There was some thought that I could not stand
it. I think I stand it about as well as eney of them. I would like two
see you very well but I think that I will not bee at home til the war is
over. Then we will all come home two gether. Wee get lotts of news
here but there is lotts that is not so that wee here. We can here eney
thing we pleas in camp. There is lotts of soldiers here. There has not
ben eney thing two do since the vacuation of Corinth. We folowed
them 3 days and then turned back. We air in camp within 4 miles of
Corinth. They have this country well rid of every thing. They have
the orchards trimed. The apels is big enuff to cook. The wild buryes
is ripe. We get some pigs here in camp but they can not cook them
very well. Well I guess that I will have two stop for this time. I want
you two wright as often as you can for I am anxious two here from you.
I hate two send this leter with out paying for it but wee can not get the
stamps. Nuthing more at this time but remain your sun til deth. Give my
love two all the family and two all that may inchoir.
Direct your leters two
Hamburgh , Tenasee
80 Regt. Co. D O.V.U.S.A.
Two my dear mother Rebecah Johnston
from Alfred Johnston

Hi 'Bourque',
Alfred Johnston enlisted at age 18 on Nov. 22, 1861 in Co. D. for three years. The Remarks read: Died Dec. 13, 1862 at Corinth, Miss., of wounds received Oct. 4, 1862, in battle of Corinth, Miss.
Charlie Keller

Thank you so much for the information. I find it hard to explain the empty feeling it left in my gut, having heard of Alfred's fate just 6 months after the letter was written, considering I share no blood relationship with the soldier. Regardless, it certainly brings more life to what was at first just a purchase from an antique shop by a very low level CW collector. FYI, my name is Michael Anthony and I am from Pittsburgh, PA. Thanks again, and I hope that the letter will prove to be of special meaning to someone once it appears on your site.

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Created January 02, 2003