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Havens Letter: June 9 1863

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Creator: Edwin R. Havens
Subjects: Civil War, 1861-1865
Date: June 9, 1863
Format: Image/jpg
Original Format: Document
Collection Number: LC00016 – Havens Family Papers, Box 1, Folder 11
Language: English
Rights Management: Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by Michigan State University and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.
Contributing Institution: Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections
Relation: LC00016 – Havens Family Papers, Box 1, Folder 11
Contributor: MSU Archives and Historical Collections
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 1

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

On Picket Near Warrenton
Junction June 9th 1863.
Dear Nell
You will
ere this reaches you receive my letter
of the 7th & 8th stating that we were
heading southward. So we were and
brought up at our old camp again.
Burns says that “The nice laid
plans of mice and men. Gang aft
aglee” and so it proved in my case
yesterday. While riding from from
Kettle Run yesterday. I specula
ted upon our probable destination and
could almost see your surprised and
happy looke as you saw my next let
ter dated. “Richmond Virginia”
But no Richmond “on my
plate” yet and now I feel as though
I did nt give a “continental” whether
I ever saw it or not.. We arrived here
just in time to see Buford’s
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 2

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

men in line. column. and every
other conceivable shape and by waiting
see their thin long lines move towards the
Rappahannock.. When we saw their
numbers and their artillery and all
their various paraphranalia of warfare
we anticipated fun and everyone was
in the best of spirits: but where we were
halted and ordered into our old quarters
our faces and many expletives were
heard among the men that were
much more expressive than elegant..
It was decidedly provoking to say
the least of its but we had to bear
that and then Co’s “A.” “B.” “E” & “F”
were ordered on picket.. “Who would’nt
be a soldier?” I would not like to
make a guess as to the numbers that
left here yesterday as to one unused to
judging of horses in column of twos or
fours there would seem to be many more
than there really were.. It is enough
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 3

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

say that it was an unbroken column
marching past for more than two hours
and we find their camps scattered
about us here over a space more than
two miles in diameter.. It was like
going to a mass meeting or picnic to
see them, but I felt much as a school
boy condemned to the confinement of
the schoolroom while he saw his mates
enjoying themselves on the “Fourth”
or some other grand holiday.
We don’t know their destination
but hope them the best of success..
Hooker is believed to be in possession
of the hights of Fredericksburg
and Lee changing his base..
The weather is cool, windy and
most agreeable.. with the exception of
vast quantities of dust.. We have heard
cannonading today but from the direction
of the wind it is impossible to tell
whether it comes from Hooker or the
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 4

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

defences of Washington as they are
allowed to practice on Tuesdays and
Saturdays.. For the past week
we have known no cessation from duty
whatever.. Last Tuesday and Wednesday
on picket Thursday we surrounded and
scoured a piece of woods hunting for
rebs. but none were there.. Friday on
a scout, Saturday morning we broke
camp and started for Fairfax C.H.
but were ordered back when a mile
from camp. We returned policed our camp
pitched our tents and then went on picket
Before we were releived we again received
orders to start yesterday morning for the
same place. went to work sent in all our
provisions extra baggage and the sick on
the cars which had just started when
the order was countermanded. At 6 A.M.
yesterday came the order to strike tents
and pack them and all baggage not ac
tually necessary and send it to the charge
of the infantry at Bristow Station
there provide each man with four
days rations and 20 lbs of oats for
the horses. and here we are.
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 5

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

I am so sleepy that I can
hardly write anything. This too, is
the last bit of paper I have got
and it will of necessity be somewhat
shorter than is my usual wont..
But there is nothing of interest
to write. Moseby had a fight with
a part of the Mich. 5th & 6th cavalry
west of Fairfax C.H. and although
getting routed but little credit is
given to Col Grey. for the manner of in
which it was conducted. Moseby dashed
between two columns of Grey’s men and
took seven men off one flank without
their firing a shot at him “because
they hadn’t orders to.” Mosebys Sur
geon was captured. (Dr Alexander) but
I have forgotten whether any were
killed or wounded on either side.
I’d like to see Moseby or
“any other man” take seven men
out of the 7th Mich without getting
Havens Letter: June 9 1863 , Page: 6

Havens Letter: June 9 1863
Havens Letter: June 9 1863

a shot.. orders or no orders.
You speak of Sunday Schools and
other Sunday pleasures of which I have a
vivid remembrance. Sunday is known in
the army only by name. it brings none of its
surroundings its pleasures and privileges
which civil live affords. But last Sunday
I enjoyed myself first rate. I was ordered
out with four men as a patrol to visit
the farmhouses in the vicinity of camp to arrest
all stragglers out without passes. We found
no stragglers but a few good looking girls
and got a splendid dinner of custard pud
ding, cherry pie and good sweet milk.
We found also some splendid butter
and bought four pounds which adds
a good deal to our bill of fare.
Cherries are beginning to ripen and
it will not be long we have plenty of fruit
which will continue until winter and I prom
ise myself much fun and comfort visiting
the ladies and eating peaches.
There is a settlement of Jersey people
a few miles from here all of whom are
Union and always glad to see the Blue
Coats and can never do anything enough
for them. They have plenty of eatables
and grain. many things stacks of wheat
that have been stacked since the war
commenced.
My best wishes to all and write often.
Edwin R Havens
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