Granville Simpson Holt Civil War Letter

Camp Jones Near Malpas Junction V.A.
August 18th 1861

Mr Jacob Holt

Dear Uncle

Being as I have a good opportunity of sending you a letter by Rev A. G. Hughes, I have attempted to write you a short letter to let you know that I am still in the land amond the living, and truly hope when this comes to hand that it may not only find you living but well. I have nothing of much importance to write to you More than we have a great many men sick in this regiment with the measles and other disease. Some of our boys have been very poorly with measles, but I think they are all improving at this time, we have any quantity of rain here this week and that has been very bad on our sick men.

We have move from our old camp ground we are near in camp about 5 miles west of Manassas, I like this place very well for we have very good water to drink and get something better to eat by paying high prices we go out in the country and buy sheep & chickens & eggs & 60 sheep is worth 5 dollars a piece, chickens 30 cnts eggs 30 cnts a dozen from what I can learn I suppose that you have heard some facts reports in regard to our Company. Some one has told it in alamanec that Leas boys run like cowards but I dont hisitate a moment in saying that is a lie no matter who told it.

I now will give you a true Statement of the fight we arrived at Manassas about Sun rise Sunday morning, then we marched on over to the battle field a distance of 3-miles Then the regiment was form into a line of battle, and went on towards the Yankees. we marched up behing a pine thicket within 40 yds of the Yankees, but could not see them but they was up on a hill and saw us and began to fire upon us. I never saw balls fly so thick in my life I though that we all would be killed every moment, but I fuly believe that the hand of providence protected us. How could we shoot when we did not see any thing to shoot at. There never was a regiment in a more dangerous position than our company was. those that dont think that Leas company will fight just let them give them a chance. I tell it makes my bloot hot to think how we are misrepresented about the fight in old alamance. dont you listen to no snichlies but contradict all such reports,

for my sake preacher Hughes came to see us Thursday evening and brought back one of our boys John Walker I was very much surprise to see Mr Hughes he appeard very glad to see us indeed, I have never heard a word from the rest of our boys since they left, I am very sorry that they run away and disgraced themselves forever, I will assure you that I never will desert and be branded as a deserter, I had rather die in the battle field than to come home in that way. I hope that the time may speedily come when we all will be permitted to come home with our heads crown with henes to see our friends and relations, and never have to war any more, is my prayers. for I am tired of camp life and the way in which we have to live. When I come home I will give you a full history of our trip from begining to end. There is some talk of peace but I dont know whether it is correct or not, but I hope so, but I heard this morning that they was fighting at Leasburg VA but I dont know wheather it is true or not, we here so many storys, I now will close by saying that I hope to here from you soon, please excuse bad writing for I have written this in a great hurry. love to all the family & yourself from your most affectunate nephew

Granville S Holt

Cousen James & Rebeca

I have been looking for a letter from you for several day but have not received any yet, if you only knew how proud I am to get a letter from old north Carolina I know you would write every week, you have a better chance to write than we have here, we are still induring the hardships of a soldier life our boys are still well & harty, I expect Mr Hughes will preach for us to morrow, I want to here him very bad indeed I have not herd but one sermon since I left old North Carolina I want you all to pray for peace for the prayers of the righteous waileth much tell Bedford Patton to write to me. I would have written to him before now but have not had a chance tell ant that I should like to have some of her good butter and fried chicken for she knows I love them or anything that is good to eat how anxious I am to see you all one time more

Give my love to all my friends and relations and tell them to write to me tell all the gals hody. I must go out and get supper so must stop for the present. all of my tent mates sends there respect to you all. Burton say that he is coming to see you all when he gets home to get something good to eat and tell you all about a soldiers life he says that he knows that uncle Jacob must be a great place from the way I talk, write soon and give the news

Your true cousin
Granville S Holt

[ Rev. Anderson G. Hughes was minister of Cross Roads Presbyterian Church during 1843-1873. Mentions cousin 1x removed James Bedford Patton (1846-1919), son of Sarah Jane Holt (1825-1886) and James Patton (1815-1859). Cousin Rebeca is probably Rachel Rebecca Holt (1841-1909). ]