Gallitin, [Copiah County], Mississippi
July 8th, 1864
My Dear Daughter [Mary Francis (née Grierson) Cudaback].
I have thought it nothing but right for me to write to you, as you are old enough to
receive and write letters now. I hope that by this time you are able to write yourself. I want you to write to me all the news that is going about home. I have nothing very new
to write about. The Yankee's have been out to Jackson again, but I heard yesterday that they had been driven back again. There has been some fighting done there, but to what extent I
can not say. The People threw (sic) here were much alarmed lest the Yankee's should pay them another visit. There was a fight some 30 miles below this place last Monday, there was
some 15 of our men killed and some 70 of the enemy, besides a number of Negroes. The Yankee's were driven back to the river. This is all the war news that I have at this time. I
am very anxious to hear from home, it is now nearly two months since I left home, and I have not heard a word from there. I have been looking for David Nicholas to come by this way, but I
fear he has gone the other way. I have heard nothing from your Uncle since he left here, which will be two weeks Sunday. He promised to write to me from Jackson, Mississippi.
For the last day or two I have not been very well, but I am on my feet, keep moving about. I do not want to get sick here. We have
been short of something to eat. Some person stole a ham of meat from us last Monday night, it was all we had. I had just withdrew it on Monday, it was our rations for 10 days.
There was 07 pounds of it. Meal we have plenty. We will not get any more meat until next Wednesday, that is a long time to do without meat, but we can not help ourselves. We
have nothing to buy with, there is no one but those who have tried it know what a Soldier has to suffer, altho (sic) I am much better off here than I would be if I was in the Army a marching
every day and standing guard at night. You all must treat the soldiers very kindly, remembering that your father is one. I hope it will not be long before I shall see you all
again. I send you a piece of Poetry, take good care of it, it is very beautiful. You must be kind to your Brothers and Sisters My Dear Mary, as well as to your Mother. I want to
have a good report of you when I come home. I shall write often to you and your Mother. You must give my love to all my friends. I shall be very glad to hear from them. I
want to know how you all are getting on in regard to something to eat, have you a plenty? The prospect is very flattering for a fine crop this summer in this section of country. Do
not fail to write soon. From your Father.
John W. Grierson (sic).
Mary Francis (Grierson) Cudaback was the daughter of John William Grierson, b. June 12, 1819, Georgetown, Maryland (D.C.).
Fri Nov 14, 1997