Letters from John B. Wiley to his brother Sanford Wiley
July 2, 1863 & July 8th,1864
35 star flag flown during the Civil War
These letters, sent to me by LaVonne Platt, July 5, 2002. I do not know who originally transcribed this letter(*see below), but I have tried to reproduce it as I received it. John B.Wiley was a nephew of Rev. Amos Wiley, who married Sarah Moore Leland. The following is from LaVonne Platt and relates how the letters came back to the Ohio Wiley family. Richard M. Leland
"Accompanying the letters when I received my copy of them, was a covering letter, written March 14, 1960 from William H. Lytle, Mayor of Wooster, Ohio, to the Office of the Mayor, Richwood, Ohio. Text of the letter is as follows:""J. Callahan is Juanita Callahan, who is the present owner of the letters, and the person who sent copies of the letters to me that I recopied and sent on to you. She is the daughter-in-law of Mrs. Curtis Callahan, who is no longer living. I believe that Juanita Callahan should be given credit for
Richard M. Leland III
Camp 3rd Brigade 3rd DivisionWednesday eve.
17th Army Corps
July 2, 1863
Dear brother Sant:
Next addition to this same letter was marked "June 3rd" which is obviously a mistake and was intended to be July 3rd. It is merely a continuation of the same letter-The mail goes out today and I will finish this. While I write there is a flag of truce out & the usual fighting has ceased - The rebels tried to drive in our skirmishers on the extreme left last night in which they failed & lost a good many men killed and wounded - the flag of truce is to give them an opportunity to bury their dead.
Our right is out in the rifle-pits to-day. The Capt. left me in to finish up Pay Rolls & make out quarterly returns of Ordanance & clothing. Preperations are going on to celebrate to-morrow and could you be here you would hear a big loud noise I tell you.
We get papers in six days from Cincinnati - at only 25 cents a piece. Suppose you are in excitement again over Lees raid in Penn & Md. Well we are surely waiting for the rebels to line up. Our rear is stronger than the rebels front of us & Johnson & all rebellion cannot make us change our base - untill the Stars & Stripes wave in triumph over the accursed City of Vicksburg.
Two deserters came to our Regt this morning. They say they had mule meat issued to them last night for the first time. They say great dissatisfaction exists amongst the men & thousands would desert if it were possible.
The weather is very hot - we begin to think of throwing off our present uniforms and adopting the _______ - a pair of spurs and a hat Please write to me - I am well. Be a good boy. Read good books. Be careful and don't learn any bad words. Hope to see you after a while. Love and good-by
Jack lived through the seige of Vicksburg as is evidenced by the next letter date.
Camp in the woodsSant-
July 8th 1864
I have just got your letters & have only time to write a very few words. Was glad you were well. We have not had any fighting of any account since June 27 ____ they felt so heavily for me.
The boys are all right and well. Poor John Smith was killed. We expect to have some fighting before getting into Atlanta.
We are really worn out by hard marching and fatigue.
The rebels shelled our camp yesterday morning - seriously wounding one of the boys named Elins Hathaway from Milford. His jaw was broken in two places but he is all right & doing well.
Don't fail to write - I only have time once in a long while - paper ink everything is so scarce as they can be. I hope to get back to Ohio this fall & ( next nine words were scratched out with the same pen and ink used to write the letter) The P.M. is calling for the mail. Will close & write as soon as possible. Tell Marie I am well
Note - I have attempted to keep all spelling, punctuation etc. exactly as it was in the original - the transcriber