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41stVa
06-15-2007, 01:52 PM
Pards,

I decided to put this letter up for everyone's enjoyment and who knows....maybe it will help some folks out with their first person impressions at events. This letter was written by Fredrick Kracht who served in the 17th North Carolina Infantry regiment. Fredrick Kracht is my fiance's g-g-g grandfather.The letter is dated July 31, 1862 at Procter's Creek in Chesterfield County, Virginia.

"Dear Wife,

I received your letter yesterday and was glad to hear from you and to hear that you and family were well. This leaves me in common health, and hope these few lines will reach and find you all well.

Dear wife, I want to see you the worst of anything in the world. I hope to see you all again but can't tell how long it will be. We have had no fight yet and some think we never shall, and some think we shall in a short time. I can't tell nothing about it. there is a great number of men here, a great many are sick, and a great many are dying.

Our fare is very bad. I have not seen a grain of salt nor a bit of soap, and not even a dust of corn meal since I have been in Virginia. I should be glad to have some of all-flour bread, but without grease and salt it is not very good. But it is better than nothing. We get but a small portion of that. We get some meat but not enough to get fat on. When I left Williamston my weight was 162 and now it is 144.

I want to go to old Martin County more all the time, but can't tell when it will be. I am afraid this war will last a long-time. Dear wife I want you to do the best you can and don't grieve after me. If it is the will of God I shall return again. I hope that I shall get home again for nothingwould please me so well as to get home, for I want to see you all the worst I ever did in all my life.

Emeline, write to me again as soon as you can for I want to hear from you all as often as possible. So write me soon and for God's sake, fail not.

I must come to a close by saying I hope the Lord will bless you. Give my love to all of my inquiring friends, if any. I ever remain your dear loving husband until death.

Dear wife, be certain to write to me as soon as you get this and let me know if you get this letter. Let me know how your father comes on, and tell him I should be very glad to see him. Tell Sam to be a good and smart boy and if I live to see him I will give him something pretty. Be a smary boy Sam and help your Mother all you can.

I want you to write me if you got the money I am going to send you in this letter. One dollar is the amount.

Fredrick Kracht"

After I read this letter it made my passion for the Civil War stronger. It is amazing how these men gave up so much for a cause they believed in. I hope you all enjoy.

Ryan Protz (Little Mac)
Granville Mess
Old Northwest Volunteers