23 April 1862: “The Negroes are getting off from here in crowds”

Item description: Letter from William C. Wood to his brother, Edward Wood, reporting on the ambiguous accounts of the Battle of South Mills in Camden County, N.C., and warning him to “watch his boats” since others in the area had been used to assist slaves to escape.


Item citation: in folder 39 of the Hayes Collection #324 of the Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item transcription:

Edenton April 23rd 1862

Dear Ned

We have had so many reports from the fight near South Mills that I cannot give you the correct one. We shall have a mail to_day & probably get a correct account _ from Hertford I think the most reliable is that Wright lost 5 or 6 killed 13 wounded and supposed He killed 60 to 70_ The Yankees were driven to their Gun_boats_ they were about 2000 Strong. I have not seen Mr Norfleet. I had a good laugh over the letter & would like to see Him read it. The Negroes are getting off from here in crowds_ The Dollar, Capt A Wilder left Sunday night with Seven of Thompsons _ Two of Heaths one of Henry Bonds (Arnold) Six belonging to John Bond & Foxwells Miles. Another Boat is missing this morning and Two of John Bond ? Negro Man. It is not yet known what others are gone _ The Boats ought all to be destroyed _ the owners will not take corn on them _ look out for yours_I will try to come down in a few days _ tell Mollie She must get ready to come up with me _ Mother is still with us _ My love to all

aff your Bro

W C Wood

E Wood Esq



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