28 June 1864: “You see, my love, that death is no respecter of persons, and that old and young die, at home as well as on the battlefield.”

Item Description: Letter, dated 28 June 1864, from George Hovey Cadman. Cadman (fl. 1862-1864) was a soldier, 39th Ohio Infantry Regiment, during the Civil War.

[Item transcription available below images.]

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Item Citation:  From the George Hovey Cadman Papers, #122, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item Transcription:

Tuesday, June 28
 
Yesterday was one of the most trying days we have had since we commenced investing this mountain, and I believe more lives were lost than on any other day. We, that is, our brigade, were awaiting orders the greater part of yesterday to storm the face of the mountain opposite.
 
Two regiments were sent up as skirmishers:  the 64th Illinois and the 66th Illinois. They were all day trying to advance, but I do not think they gained more than a hundred yards. The 64th lost some 60 men in killed and wounded. I think our generals have given up the idea of storming from this side. This is the seventeenth day since we formed in line of battle in front of this place. The weather is very hot, and it is almost impossible to endure the middle of the day.
 
Tuesday evening, 6 o’clock.
 
My dear wife:
 
I have just received your letter of the 20th, with an account of the death of Mary Giffin. You see, my love, that death is no respecter of persons, and that old and young die, at home as well as on the battlefield.
 
Our company is dwindling fast through sickness. Quite a number of our men are sick but I am glad to say that I am getting stout again. Tonight I am on the Color Line guard, and shall be from one til daylight. It is now getting closer to sundown and I must leave off for the night. I shall think of you a good many times as I stand and listen to the firing of the skirmishers. When you see Will Giffin give my respects to him and tell him that I deeply sympathize with him in the loss of his sister. I wish he was healthy enough to be out here, If he was fond of fighting he would find enough of it here. I have seen more of war this campaign than in all the rest of my soldiering.

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