Ed.-these letters, sad by their very nature (war), show the courage, strength, and faith of the men. What a strong people........................
"God be our shield, at home or afield,
Stretch Thine arm over us, strengthen and save.
What tho' they're three to one, forward each sire and son,
Strike till the war is won, strike to the grave!
Strike till the war is won, strike to the grave!"
.......From the National Hymn of the South, "GOD Save the South". See the lyrics and hear the song HERE!
By Lt. Nathaniel Macon Dudley...........
From a letter to his brother setting out a typical day, when not in battle....
Roll call at 4 1/2 o'clock a.m.
Breakfast 6 o'clock
Company drill 7 to 8
Regimental drill 9 to 10
Officer drill 2 to 3 o'clock p.m.
Dress parade at 6 o'clock p.m.
From a letter to his mother, writing of the rigors of military life...
We left Winchester....about 3 o'clock p.m. without dinner and marched until 4 o'clock the next morning over as rough a road as there is in Virginia. About 12 o'clock at night we came to the Shenandoah River....and waded through. The...rocks at the bottom cut my feet....as soon as we had...[climbed] the Shenandoah Mountains...the troops laid down on each side of the road and slept until 6 o'clock a.m. When we were aroused...we marched...to Piedmont...[where we] remained...without much to eat and...slept on the ground every night and one night it rained all night. We left Piedmont...on top of the boxes [railroad box cars], as there were only 7 cars for our Regiment. It commenced raining shortly after we left and we had to take it all day long [until] we arrived at [Manasses] Junction...The line of battle...is about 1 1/2 miles from our camps....
From Richmond, Va......
Our Brigade marched about ten miles the first evening [out of Williamsburg] and camped for the night. I had command of the company. Capt. King and Lt. Sparks are both marching in advance of the army sick. On the 2nd day I was quite sick myself from diarrhea and as it rained all day I got very wet and had a chill...The roads were bad and the wagons and artillery kept bogging up...
I am boarding at the Monument Hotel and taking some medicine...The hardship, fatique and loss of sleep had well nigh used me up before I was taken sick...
I saw Mr. and Mrs. Furlow and Miss Susan Malone and Miss Kate Furlow at the Exchange Hotel in Richmond a few days ago...
.......Lt. Dudley was wounded in the head at 2nd Manasses, and died from those wounds on 28 Sept.,1862
My special thanks to Harold K. Daniel, Jr. of Centerville, Ga. for sending copies of the lettters below. Harold is looking forward to hearing from descendants of Col. Mounger, and the 11th and 14th Georgia Regiments.
Letter from Col. John C. Mounger to his wife, Lucie on the death of their son, Terrell, Captain of "G" Company, 14th Georgia Infantry Regiment, mortally wounded while charging a Union position during the battle of Chancellorsville.
Hdqtrs. 9th Ga. Regt. in camp
near Rapidan Station
May 23rd 1863
My Dear Lucie,
I know not how to write you in this hour of affliction. Ask that God, upon Whom you are wont to lean, to give you grace that you may be able to bear the sad intelligence of the untimely death of our dear dear son, Terrell, who fell mortally wounded in the late terrible conflict near Chancellorsville while leading his company in a charge against the enemy. He lingered for nine days and expired. He had Capt. R.P. Lester of his Regt. to write me (of) his situation and expressed a desire to see me immediately. That letter did not reach me until the 19th instant, when he had been dead 7 days. I first received verbal intelligence that he had escaped unhurt, and on or about the 10 inst. received information that he was dead and buried (all this was verbal). I wrote to the comding. officer of his Regt. for information. I received his this evening, which together with the letter of Captn. R.P. Lester, I also sent you. On receiving the letter of Captn. Lester, 19th at night, I left immediately and went through on horseback. By 10 o'clock next morning, the army having fallen back to Hamilton Crossing, I could not find anyone to inform me, and for two days visited every grave I could find to acertain, if possible, the final resting place of our dear son. When having failed, I rode through to near Guinea Station, and at Gen. A.P. Hill's Headquarters, was informed he died at the Lacy house, which was used as a Division hospital. He was not there, but owing to the great kindness of Dr. McQueen of the Sixth Alabama Regiment, I found his grave with his name inscribed on the headboard, and with the words, "Peace be to thy ashes, thy work is done." I put a small fence around his grave, and wrote his name plainly on the board, drew the dirt up on the grave, solemlny invoked the blessing of God on his departed spirit and the distressed ones he has left behind, and in much distress wended my way back to my Tent (?) home. I have heard he died contented and satisfied with his fate. I trust his soul rests with God, who gave it. Poor, dear Molly. She has doubtless learned his sad fate before this. I am convinced it is impossible for me to get a furlough at this time. I feel that duty to my family, to Terrell's family, and my feeble health, justifies me in tendering my resignation, which I will do shortly. Bear your affliction with Christian patience and fortitude. It is the fate of thousands-even the immortal Jackson fell in this great struggle. I am prepared to meet the will of Heaven concerning me and mine (Ed.-hole in letter) becoming fortitude and resignation. I have no ambition to serve, no malice to gratify; I go forth, I trust, with the approval of God, to stay and destroy the cruel enemies of my beloved country. When and where this war will end is known only to God. A firm reliance on Him will nerve us for every conflict, and give us victory on every field, for time only increases the determination of our soldiery. Let me exhort you to be of good cheer. Mourn not over the loss of our dear boy, but humbly bow to the will of a wise and inscrutable God. My dear Fannie, do not grieve, for I trust the soul of thy noble brother rests with the just in Heaven. He has only gone ahead of us to make plainer the path of duty. My dear Molly and Sarah, remember the looks and nobleness of soul, which ever actuated thy departed brother in his every action. I must close for the present and will write again soon. John is not well. Tom well, but much grieved. Give my love to all and accept for yourself, the devoted love of your much grieved, but resigned husband.
Letter from John and Tom Mounger to their mother, Mrs. John C. Mounger, Quitman, Ga., writing of the death of their Father, Col. John Mounger when the 9th Ga. attacked the Wheatfield at Gettysburg, 2 July, 1863.
Camp near Martinsburg, Va.
July 18th 1863
I wrote you a few days ago concerning the death of our dear Father, he was killed on the 2nd of July about an hour by the sun, he is buried in a family grave yard 1/2 miles below Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on the Chambers and Baltimore Turnpike. Captain Sutlive had a good coffin made for him and we put him away as well as could be expected. I have the dimensions of his coffin, so when we get a chance to move him, we can get a (coffin crossed out) box for him without any trouble. Pa died very easy, Tom says. I was not with him when he died. I was detailed and sent off after cattle some three or four days before the fight. Tom took good care of dear dear Pa until he died, but he lived only a few minutes after he was shot. He was shot with a minie ball through the right breast and a grape shot from cannon through the bowels. Dear Mother, we tried to carry him to Virginia before we buried him, but it was impossible, as the Yankees were all around us and we could not get across the river without being captured. Dear Mother, let us all try to meet him in Heaven. Tom and myself will try and be better boys. Tom kept the stars on his coat and a lock of his hair. I wrote you a few days ago, but I was in so much trouble that I do not recollect what I wrote. Dear Mother, Pa has his horse here. I would like to know what to do with him, as I cannot draw feed for him. I can sell him, but he will not bring more than 3 or 4 hundred dollars in the condition he is in, and as for getting him home, it would be impossible. I will be able in a few days to send you One Thousand dollars ($1000) which will help you buy a place to live on. I received a letter from sister Mary the other day, and she says she wants to sell out and live near us. See her and get a place near each other if you can. I will try to get Tom off home as soon as we fall back from here. I received a letter from Sister the other day, directed to Pa. She wanted to send his account for writing Mr. Peacock's will. It will be impossible for us to get it. I heard him say that He could not charge him less than one hundred dollars ($100) and interest. Dear Mother, in my next letter, I will send you Pa's resignation which he wrote out before he went into Pennsylvania. He intended handing it in as soon as he returned to Virginia and go home.
Tom and myself send our best love to you, Dear Mother, Sister, Mollie and Scrimpie. Tell Sister to write immediately. Is nothing in the world relieve us more than to hear from home.
Your affectionate sons,
John and Tom
John W. Sutlive was Assistant Quartermaster, 9th Regiment. (Roster 1:994). "Sister mary" is Terrell Mounger's widow. "Sister" is Frances Mounger, "Mollie" is Mary Mounger, and "Scrimpie" is Sarah Gartwell Mounger.
Resolution on the death of Lt. Col. John C. Mounger
Whereas God in his wisdom has taken from us our friend, comrade in arms, and late commander, Lt. Col. John C. Mounger, who fell while leading the Regiment with his accustomed bravery against the heights of Gettysburg on the 2nd of July. And, whereas the sympathy which beats warm in our hearts for his mourning family and friends and our own deep grief demands some public expression. Therefore, resolved-That in the death of Lt. Col. John C. Mounger, the sacred cause in which we fight, has lost one of her best and most useful citizens, and our Reg't a beloved officer. The memory of whose virtues must ever live green in our hearts. At his country's call, he left his comfortable home and the extensive and lucrative practice which he had for more than a score of years enjoyed in his profession (the law), and volunteered for the war, and though admonished by advancing years, exposure in camp and the effects os a severe wound received on the bloody field at Sharpsburg, exposing himself with a total contempt of danger whereever duty called. He yet remained faithful unto the end, and at last sealed his devotion with his life. May the grass grow green on his grave. May God temper the grief of his family in this, their second great trial. Be it our endeavor to emulate his virtues and to avenge his fall.
Resolved, that we feel deeply for the aflicted widow whose eldest son, the brave Capt. Terrell Mounger, fell at Chancellorsville in this, her second bereavement, and we tender to her and to his family our deepest sympathy.
Resolved, that we send a copy of this resolution to the family, and that they be published in the Richmond Examiner and the Savannah Morning News.
Capt. John G. Webb, Chairman
Lt. Thomas J. Hardee, Sec'y
Camps near Fredericksburg, Va., Aug. 20, 1863.
................notes: Lt. Hardee was later wounded at Campbell's Station, Tenn., Nov. 16, 1863 losing his right leg.
Capt. Webb, later Lt. Col., was wounded at Ream's Station, Va., Aug. 25, 1864,resulting in his left arm being amputated.
The original transcriber, Robert Wilson of New York, also found a clipping from an unidentified newspaper, concerning losses at the Wilderness, Va. It read as follows-"Of the 9th Georgia, Captains Duncan and Cleghorn were killed, Captain Sharpe missing, and Lieut. Mounger and brother killed. The two latter are sons of Col. Mounger of the 9th who died at Gettysburg. Another son was killed at Chancellorsviille, thus destroying the whole of this family, and leaving an aged lady to mourn over the death of all her hopes".
From the"Atlanta Historical Journal", Winter 1982-83:....on the history of the 59th Ga. Regiment, p.23
..These actions were at The Wilderness, May 1864....
"As Lt. John Mounger of the 9th Georgia, Company H, knelt down to instruct his men on firing, he was shot in the head by a minie ball and died instantly. His brother, Thomas, continued the charge and reached the breastworks (of Mott's Federals), only to be shot in the neck. He died a few minutes later."
A letter by Capt. (later Col.) John Webb, to the folks back home, thanking them............
The undersigned, Captain of the Fort Gaines Guards, Company D, 9th Ga.Regiment, begs leave in behalf of the company, to return his sincere thanks to his fellow citizens of Fort Gaines and Clay County, for their generous donations in aiding the outfit of his Company for the campaign in which they are engaged. We thank you kindly, and appreciate your munificence.You may rest assured that we will do all in our power to remunerate you, by way of defending you, your homes, your firesides, and bequeathing to you a home of liberty, that may be enjoyed in after ages.We feel more than thankful to you for your generosity in keeping the families of our brave fellows who have gone to the war, supplied with food and raiment. We cannot feel too grateful,- tis a grand spectacle to see
the outpourings of the benevolent portion of our citizens, and how gratifying it is to the hearts of our brave volunteers, to know that while they are far from home, their dear wives and children are protected and cared for. It gives them redoubled energy, and whether in camp, or amid the din of battle, their souls will stir up within them full of the holy patriotism for which they have gone forth to battle.I feel it an indispensable duty for me to express the gratefulness felt by the company towards those ladies who have taken so much interest in the welfare of the Guards since we left you for the war, but how can we repay you, in words of kindness and commendation? We cannot. However we sincerely hope that in the future Heaven and Fortune may smile upon you, and reward you for your noble generous hearts.
Jno. S. Webb, Capt.,
Co. D, 9 Ga. Regt.
(Later, in 1864 Col. Webb lost an arm, but stayed on as commander of the Ninth Georgia)
Letter from Capt. George Hillyer to Sampson Still, responding to Still's request for a letter of recomendation for the Southern Cross of Honor......
graciously given to me by Robert Kelly of Lilburn, Ga. whose ancestor, James Kelley fought with "C" Company of the Ninth Georgia.
In 1895, Mr. S.M. Still, Co. C, 9th Ga. Reg. wrote to his former Captain of Co. C, 9th Ga. Regiment to recommend him to the Daughters of the Confederacy for a Cross of Honor. He received the following letter in reply which is now preserved by his family as the most valued and true reminescense of the service of this soldier of the (18)60's.
Atlanta, Feb. 2, 1895
Mr. S.M. Still,
This is a labor of love and I would not have a cent for it. I would rather get up at mid-night or walk 25 miles to do you a kindness than to charge you anything for this service.
A few years ago I was on the Gettysburg Battlefield and passed by the very spot where you fell and where I laid you down by the rock wall. The trees and fences and main features of the landscape have been preserved and the locality is easily recognized.
I picked up an old piece of leather, evidently part of a cartridge box, within a few yards and possibly at the spot where you were struck.
I do not remember that any other of our men were hit exactly there: as we immediately went forward in the charge-that is, except Jack Giles, and he, you know, was a courier for Gen. Anderson and had no cartridge box.
I have surmised that as you were too badly hurt to take care of yours, and as the little (litter?) corps that carried you away would naturally leave such a thing for the ordinance department to pick up, it may have been overlooked. Possibly this piece of leather is the very one you had around you at the time. It had lain there on the ground for twenty-five years when I picked it up. Sometimes when you are here, or when I get an opportunity, I will give it to you, if you wish, for you to preserve as a momento of the occasion. If it was not yours, it was that of some comrade with blood as red as yours and mine. Coming from the spot it did, I think you will prize it. The many wounds which you bear on your body are an honor(able) of which you and yours may well be proud.
There are those of later days who are inclined to scoff at, or speak lightly of the Confederate soldiers, but they are few and, I trust, growing less. The honorable record you made, you may safely hand down as a rich heritage to your children, and your children's children.
Geo. W. Hillyer
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