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14 June 1862

Camp near Winchester, Va.
June 14, 1862

My dear mother,

I will now answer your letter of the 6th inst. which I was very glad to receive. Mother, I am so glad to hear that you was a going to stay there that I don’t know hardly what to do. We are all well here except about 60 out of each company which has got the disease known as the shits of which Ben [Edy] and I have a large share.

I though that Sene had gone west with Hat till you said in your letter that she was there. Mother, I want you to write to me oftener. We are where we expect a bloody battle every day and so I want you to write to me while you have a chance. We have hard work to get post stamps, paper, & envelopes—not for the scarcity of money but because they can’t be got for love or money. I bought some stamps at Baltimore when I left but this is the last one I have got so don’t wait for me to write again before you write to me. I may have to wait till the pay comes again before I can write to you.

I hain’t any news to write so I may as well close this letter for the present. Mike Gerred is in the hospital and has been for the last 2 weeks or more (more, I guess). It’s hard to tell what ails him but there is something the matter.

Mother, I have got over being homesick as soon as there is a chance to fight secesh. Ben is not very well. Neither am I. We have both got the bowel complaint pretty bad. I nor Ben can’t raise cash enough to buy ink with so we have to write with a pencil but I guess you can read it. If you can’t, just wait till we get home and we will read it for you.

Well, I believe I have wrote all there is to write.

“Hello there,” goes one of our picket cannons. I don’t know but what Jackson is coming now. Oh, that firing was our artillery trying some new shell they took from the rebels Friday last.

Well, mother, I shall have to bring this to a close for this time. Write as often as you can and write long letters too. Give my respects to father and all the rest. Tell Dick Pratt to answer my letter I wrote to him. — E. M. Whipple

Camp in the field near Winchester, Va.
June 15, 1862

My dear mother,

I will now try to pen a few lines to let you know that I am still alive and well—only I have got the dysentery pretty bad and so has Ben.

We are in a camp 2 miles from Winchester, Va. We are on the old battlefield where Banks and Jackson had it. We can pick up shot and shell in every direction. There is about 15,000 here as near as I can guess for I don’t know for certain how many we have got at present.

Things are very dear here. Bread 15 cents a loaf. Butter 30 cents per pound. Tobacco $2 or 12 shillings. Post stamps are to be had at all for love or money. I saw an officer offer 30 cents for a stamp and didn’t get it at that. I shall have to get this franked and sent it without paying the postage. We will get our pay this week and then I shall send a dollar or two on purpose to you for to buy me some with.

I want you to write to me as often as you can for it is a good deal of comfort to get a letter from home. Well, I won’t spoil the other side for nothing. — E. M. Whipple

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