Harpers Ferry, Va. Oct. 20, 1862
I have just seated myself to answer your kind letter which I received a few evenings ago. I am enjoying good health and fine spirits and I hope this will find you all enjoying the same blessings. Aron [sic?] Templeton has just arrived and I am aggreeably surprised and very much pleased that you sent my shirts and other things with him. I think they are very nice and will be of great service to me. The shirts are splendid ones and are just the kind for soldiers and the portfolia is just the thing I wanted. I had one before and lost it at Bull Run and was out of paper and could not write till I got some but now I will write oftener. I received Aunt Mary’s letter yesterday and one from Joe Atchison last week and I will answer them before long. We came here shortly after the Antietam fight and have been here ever since till Saturday week when we heard of the rebbles making the raid into Chambersburgh when they were going back our Brigade was sent down the river about 15 miles to cut them off but they being on horses and us on foot they beat us there and got back into Virginia safe. So we came back here again. It is getting very cold here just now. I was on guard last night and nearly froze. We drawed some new clothes the other day but not all we are going to. We drawed shoes, stockings, pants, blouses, blankets, and caps. We are going to get new overcoats as soon as they come on and then we will be fixed for the winter. Aron said you wanted to send me a pair of boots but he could not carry them. Anyhow I do not need them just now as the weather is good yet and I have good shoes. We have had very good times since we came here, the duty has not been very hard. We have small shelter tents. Each one is big enough for three. We used to have four in ours but Simon Russel was killed and Montervile Dewire was taken prisoner and there is only two of us left, James McElvane and myself. I do not know how long we are going to stay here. We may stay here all winter or we may leave tonight, no one knows, such is the life of a soldier, he knows not one day where he will be the next. You speak of me coming home this winter. I would like to very much. I would give anything in the world to see you all once more but I am afraid if the war does not end this winter I cannot come home for they have passed an order to give no more furloughs, but I think the war will soon be over and then I can come home to stay awhile. I would like very much to be at home to help you pick apples and keep you company while pap is in the country. We have never been paid since we came from Newport News. We have nearly 4 months pay coming to us but I expect we will be paid before long but I must bring my scribbling to a close. My love to you all. God bless you.
From your affectionate son
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