Friday, December 19, 2014

Grading War Letters to Home, Winter 2014 (Day Three)

These are the letters from the second day of the 2014 Grading War.  If you landed here by accident and don't know what you're reading, click here for the backstory.

Day Three, 9:33am
My Dear Friend Charles, 

Your letter from yesterday was rec’d in due time, and would have been answered ere now, but for the extra duties that have occupied me. It appears our Quartermaster broke ranks and departed to home—a long & lonesome expedition, I suspect, not to mention a slow one. Imagine the extra weight of Cowardice he must be carrying! Alas, as consequence, the principal duties of that Turncoat’s department have now fallen to me, and to one not regularly brought up a Quartermaster, I’ve found the acquisition & distribution of Supplies & Provisions no trifling set of responsibilities. Our troops’ tastes are simple—they subsist for days at a time on salted Pork, skillygallee, hardtack, beans and Bully Soup—but their appetites are ferocious. 

Soldiers in this camp are rather on the melancholy order, but I cannot say I dislike their downhearted songs ‘round the fire each evening. The ordering out of nearby Companys in which we have several brothers, the miserable Failings of the Opposition that we occasionally inflict and regrettably bear witness, the condition of our Country that makes such extreme measures necessary, and the weariness I see day by day etched on the Visages of our men & women… all of these conspire to make us sad. Nonetheless, a little retrospection and Serious thought does us good once and a while, provided we do not linger upon those thoughts too freely and thereby become ourselves melancholy. Remembering loved ones, better times and the joyful end of our last campaign are my salve, and your letters of course, even those you send in a serious mood. 
My sincerest regrets for my lapse in report yesterday. Fatigue, hunger and despair wrested pen from hand and drove me to bunk early, to a nightlong fit of nightmares in Sixteen Point Font. 

I am compelled to acknowledge that there are a great many false Souls among us, entirely too many who are unworthy of the confidence of a confiding heart. But there are some exceptions. It is for you to decide whether your correspondent is among this latter class or not. Enclosed you will find my photo which I procured a few days ago, which I hope you will keep closeby as you decide. I am sorry it is no better looking, but this is no fault of the artist. 

And also as you decide, be reminded that I pray for you daily and endeavor to remain Steadfastly, even if sometimes imperfectly 
Yours In Friendship, 
Leigh M. Johnson

Click here to proceed to DAY FOUR of the Grading Way Letters to Home.

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