Undated – Dear Father and Mother

Dear Father and Mother

I don’t know wether I can think of any thing to rite or not as I have rote about all I can think of but it makes no difference wo I rite to. You all get to se what I rite. I am always very glad to hear from any of you.
I can’t think of anything els to rite so I will give you a short discription of the country. Hear it may be interesting to you. Murpheesboro has ben a prety smart town but like all the rest of the Southern towns they are going to ruin. In the place of improving farm 4 to 5 miles and in some places father around merfreesboro the land is level and torable good. Where ever the land is level it is inclined to be rather smampy and for that reason the roads are all graded but in agreat many places the roads are ruined. There has been so much wagoning done. I believe about one half of the timber in this state is sedar. Nearly all the rails are made of sedar. I have saw hundreds of acres of sedar so thick a man could not ride threw it and again I have saw acres in a body that could se nothing but rack. The farmers turn thier attention generaly to the groth of cotten but thier will be but very little of any thing raised this season for the men are nearly all gon both white and black. I shall have to close for the time hoping to remain your loving sun and brother.

Wm Forder to G & C Hubbard and all the rest.

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Be sure to rite whenever you can and tell me all the news

Murfreesboro, TN

Murfreesboro TN

Dear Father and Mother.

I take the opportunity and rite a few lines to you as I haven’t told Sarah whare we are now. We have mooved back within half a mild of town in side the breast works. Their is a fite expected hear and if there is one it will be a big one and I think if we whip them hear it will about test the tale for them. We are well pirs (?) for them. We are on the east side of town and there is a line of breast that is 7 milds long on this side and it extends clear around the town and then their is some of the toulest breast work on the North West side of town I ever saw and they have got a lot of seage guns planted in there but a nuf of that. The peach trees are in full blossem but it turned cold last nite and the wind fairly blows today but it is to late in the season hear to freeze. I will have to close for this time hoping to remain your loving sun in law and brother while if that lasts.

Wm Forder to G & C Hubbard and Children and all the friends rite soon

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Rite soon and tell all me all the news you can

Transcription Note: The word “pirs” was an enigma and remains so even after several attempts by myself and Alysia to determine the actual word. In context, a word such as “prepared” or “ready” should have been implied. But even going over assumed misspellings, abbreviations or slang options, we couldn’t really determine what exactly William had written. His “h” sometimes tended to drop below the line or it could have been an “f” or “p” which also appear similar in William’s handwriting. In short, we are unsure exactly what word he had indicated, hence the question mark following it.

March 8, 1863

March the 8th, 1863

Dear Sarah

I again seat myself to rite a few lines to you in answer to your cinde letter that came to hand yesterday. I was very glad to get such a large letter or letters I might say for it was from you and your pap. It and the shirt was mailed the 5 and I got them the 7. The shirt came rite a long with the letter. I got the minitures and the socks all rite but I told you about that in my other letters. I sent 5 dollars in my last letter and and I want you to let me know as soon as you can wether you get it or not. I rote it the 4th of the month.
We are still laying in our old camp yet but I can’t tell how long we will stay hear for. Sunday as it is thier is heavy firing going on West of town and it can’t be over 7 or 8 milds from the way it sounds. There is scouting partys out all the time and they they are running in to prowling bnds of rebs every once in a while. They say they was a party of our men atacked yesterday by 4 regiments of negros but the negros got baddly whiped thank fortune.
This is in the afternoon and every thing is quiet. The firing that was heard this morning has ceased. I have just come from a buring. There is a fare fellow has to take his leap of death every few days by sicness but that is nothing in compareason to the deaths carried by powder and lead. It is aweful to ce how this country is being strewed with graves. You can’t go any place hardly but what you can se graves fore fellows. They are sleeping their long sleep and I am a fraid their is but very few of them prepared to met thier god for this is the awefulest place for wickedness I ever saw. It seams like they think they can’t be a soldier unless they can sware, play cards, drink whiskey allthoe Their are some are captains. Thank god the trepassing part of our croud from our Neighborhood are all dooing as well as can be expected under existing circumstances. I will now tell you that I am well and all the rest of the boys except G Sands and Jim has ben to ce him to today and he is getting some better but he is not able to set up yet. I hope this will finde you all well. Ciss our little girl for me. I will have to quit for this time. Rite home soon and often.

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I hope to remain true and loving husband while life shal last. Wm Forder to SA Forder

February 26, 1863

February the 26th 1863

Dear Father and Mother and Brothers and Sister

I take the preasant opportunity to rite a few lines to you hoping they will find you all well as I am thankful to say that I am well. I am always very glad to hear from you and it would do me a heap more good to se you all but I am willing to wate with patance for the sake of our beloved country. I know that I could not be satesfide at home while the simpesithers are are cutting up so I don’t want to come home until I can stay for I don’t think I could stand it to part with my dear family and friends again. I hope it will not be long untill this thing will be settled. I wish all the northern simpesithers ware in a fite with a nuff powder under them to blow them to heaven and I had a orders to touch it off. I hope that will have more sense than to make it necessary for an army to pass threw our beloved state for it is awful to se the destruction of property where an army goes. The farming is all destroyed for 2 or 3 milds around Murfreesboro and from hear to Nashville within site of the road there is a great many large farms that thier ain’t hardly a rail left or any timber left to make rails. We are still laying in camp near Murfreesboro and I haven’t any I dear how long we will lay hear but I hope we will stay untill the wether settles. We have had a heep of rain and lately it has rained for 36 ours and it is still raining rite along.

I told Sarah that I would send hir a little money but I haven’t had any chance to sende it yet. If I don’t get a chance to send it before long I will sende it in a letter but I will let you know when I send it and how I sent it. I will have to close for this time.

Hoping to remain your loving Sun and Brother

Wm Forder to GS Hubbard and children
Rote as often as you can. Rite rite rite

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I forgot to say that Jim McMullen is well fat and sasey

February 20, 1863

February the 20th 1963

Dear Sarah,

I take the preasnt opportunity to rite a few lines to you in answer to your cinde letter that came hand yesterday and the miniturs came all rite. I was assuredly glad to get them. I think yours look just like you but Leissy’s I can’t tell anything about it. I think it would have taken better in dark close but it will doo very well. Every body wonders how I came to get such a good looking woman. That’s our business, not theirs and they say that is a cute little girl too. The socks haven’t come yet but you neadnt to bother about that part. I have socks a plenty . We got a little money yesterday and but a little. We only got 3 months pay and after paying our clothing bill we hadn’t much left. We are aloud 3 1/2 dollars a month for clothing and you know we had to draw a full suit in the start. So after getting the clothing bill I got 21.85 and thier is a month and a half behind to go uppon. I can’t send very mutch home. I had borwed a little and I want to ceep a little to wich you will have no objection. I know the express man will be hear today. I guess if not he will be hear in a day or to and then I will express 12.00 to Salim in your paps name. This is a very small sum but it is the best I can do to ceep 10 or 5 dollars to buy a little something fit to eat once in awhile. This will be enough to buy you and our little girl a dress or to. You said you wished I could se the little girls playing together. I wish I could. It would be joy beyond measure.

You wanted to know if my teeth bothered any more. I haven’t had the tooth ache 5 minits for 4 months or more. I expect you would like to know wether I am well or not. I can tell you that I feald better now than I have for a long time. The rest of the boys are all well except T Sands. He is frechly sick. He has a severe cold settled on his lungs.
I hope when this comes to hand it will finde you all well. I will have to close for this time. Rite soon.

From your loving husband
Wm Forder to Sarah Forder

February 20, 1863

February the 20th

I guess near Merfreesboro TN
They say it is Thursday. I don’t know.

Dear Father and Mother

I take this opportunity to rite a few lines to you. I am well and hope when thoes few lines I come to hand they may finde you all well. You have me some of the price of things and said you expected I didn’t know much about the prices hear. I don’t know anything about the price of iron or sow belly or hard tacks or any thing that Uncle Abe gives us. The drifters sell cheap ham 30 ct to 50 ct a pound and butter from 50 to 60 ct. a pound. They have fruit in quart cans and they sell them from 1 to 2 dollars according to the scareyty of them and everything in accordance with those figures and they sell thier whiskey for $1.00 a pound but thank fortune that don’t cost me any thing but some will have the critter but a nuf of that. They say hey are arming the negros. I wish they would let the niger question alone for it will truly cause trubble in the union army if they do arm them. I do hope this war will be settled before long for it seams the longer the worse. But I hope they will have more sense to than to gote fiting in the North for it looks distressing to se the destruction of property where the army goes. I will have to close. Rite soon I hope to remain your loving son in law life shall last.

Wm Forder to G & C Hubbard and children

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Rite soon and give all the news you can think up. Give my respect to all the friends.

 

February 15, 1863

February the 15th 63

Camp near Murfreesboro

Dear Sarah

I seat my self this good sabath morning to rite a few lines to you hoping they will find you all well as thank God it leaves me and all the rest of the boys. Well, I received your letter that was rote the 1 of this month with this paper in it and I was sory to hear our little girll and mother was sick but I hope they are well by this time. I am very anxious to hear from you again and I think I will in a day or to.

The is as warm as spring hear the most of the time. The grass is beginning to gro and the birds to whistle as thou everything was peaceable and quiet. Our Captain has ben gone home several days. He will be back befor long. Now the people at LaFayette have made a lot of things to send to the batry and he is going to bring a lot of new horses. We have got new harness for all our horses this last weeak and we are getting the guns repared some oo that we will soon be redy for a nother fite but I hope they will leave the fighting part out. It seams that you didn’t under stand what I meant by being changed. What I mean is that we are now the 2 Devision 1 Brigade but this is best way for you to direct your letter.

William Forder
10th ind Bat
Cap Cox
Woods Devision
Louisville, KY

We are still laying in our old camp yet but I don’t think we will stay heare much longer. Forage is getting rather hard to get so that we will have to go some place and I don’t care for I am tire of staying heare. The pay master is hear. We will get some money in a shorte time maybe today. I don’t know how much we will get yet. I rote some time ago that I would express it to Salem in your Pap’s name. I expect it will be thare by the time you get this letter. You neadent send me any more paper now for I can get all I want. Now I will have to come to a close for this time hoping to remain your loving husband while life shal last don’t for get me in your prayers. I hope it will not be long untill we can come home. Give my respects to all the friends

Wm Forder to Sarah A Forder

Rite soon and often and tell all the friends to rite

February 1st, 1863

February 1th 1863

Dear Sarah
I take the present opportunity to rite a few lines to you hoping they will finde you and our little girll and all the rest of the friends well as I am thankful to say that I am torable well. I have a bad cold at this time but that doesn’t amount to any thing. We are at time leying in our old camp yet. The wether is warm the most of the time but it was rather rany fide. We haven’t had scarcly any snow this winter. I haven’t saw any ice over 1 inch thick this winter.
I never was at such a loss for something to rite as I am at this time. We have ben leying here so long that every thing has becom old. O Sarah, I do wish that this war would play out so that I could come home so that I could tell to you with my mout what I now have to rite. It seams to me it can’t last mutch longer. Their is bound to be lots of desertions after we get paid but I don’t think I shal ever come to that. I think to much of you and my friends to bring this disgrace. This niger question is a going to make bad work in our army I am afraid.
You wanted to know wether I eat any horse meet or not. I did but I did not know it untill after I had eat it for I had a plenty of crackers to eat so that their was no danger of my starving but their was lots of the boys that was glad to eat horse meat or anything else that they could get. Turn over if you plez
Well Sarah, you have ben wanting to send me something. I will tell you what you may send me. That is a checked shirt and if it comes all rite you may send me a nother so that I will have 2. But don’t try to send but 1 at a time. Now I must close. Try and be a good girl and don’t forget to pray for me that I may prove faith to you and our god out that it ma not be long untill I should be able to return to you. Yours truly

Wm Forder to his loving wife Sarah Forder.

Note:  The use of the word “niger” is quite offensive in modern vernacular, however back in 1863 this was the polite term to describe an individual of African decent.   To remain true to the transcriptions, I am required to leave the text exactly as written. 

January 31, 1863

January the 31th 1863

Well boys,

I received yours and Sarahs letter yesterday eavning. I was very glad to hear from you and to hear that you was well and I hope when this comes to hand it will finde you well as I am happy to say that I am well. Well Talor Jon said Lisey was on Sarahs lap scuking hir title. I wish I was thare to crook my finger at hir but I am a fraid it will be a good while before I shall be able to enjoy that pleasure. Well Scotte you wanted to know how I felt in the fite. Well I wasn’t in the wermest place but I was with the battry at one time when their was several rebble canon firing at us and 6 guns of a nother one of our baterys that lay to the rite of us firing nearly rite over us. The air was full of led and the ground appeared to sway back and forth. I will draw a little scech of our position at that time. If I ever live to get hom I will tell you all about it but you wanted to know how I fellt. Well I fellt like I would as leave and be at home playing with the baby. turn over

Scotty you said you would like to be hear and you said you would be if you was old anuf. I am glad that you ain’t old anuf for I don’t want any body els that is any kin to me to come to war for therr is but very few but what would be very glad to get out of this scrape if they could and you hear men sware every day that they will not stay much longer and I can’t blame them much. All that ceeps the army together is the love of friends not of country at this time. This is Sunday but if you wasn’t to ceep account of the days you would not know when Sunday came. Hear there is no regard hade to the sabbath hear. I am not surprised at the faliers {followers?} of the army when I see the wickedness there is in it. But I will have to close for this time hoping to remain your loving brother until deth.

Wm Forder to G & S Hubbard and all the rest of the friends

Rite soon and often and tell all the rest of the friends to rite. Hug my little girl for me.

Note:  Here William is writing to his brother-in-law Scott Hubbard. 

January 30, 1963

January the 30th 1863

Dear Wife and Friends

I take the preasant opportunity to rite a few lines to you in answer to your cinde letters that came to hande yesterday. I was glad to hear from you and to hear that you and our little girl is all and all the rest of the friends ware well. It came threw in a hurry. It was mailed on the 24th and I got it on the 29th. I had thought I would not rite for a day or to but as you sent the material for a letter, I thought I would fill it out while I had a chance for the chat is that we are going to leave hear before long but I don’t know whare we will go to.

The wether had ben a little cold for a few days but it is clear and pleasant to day. I received 2 letters this morning. 1 from Uncle Billey and Albert and one from Ira Hiatt. Uncle Billey said they was all well and that times was prety good. He said money was plenty and Ira said his paw had made a greate trade. He has trade old lock for a 6 shooter and a shot gun. That looks war like don’t it but I ken he ain’t dangerous. I rote to him the other day and told him I wanted him to pay my sate with the money he got for that hay and told him the reason I had not rote to him before was that I did not feald very well toward him since I know of that mistreatment of riting he got up for you to sign. I also told him I intended for him to pay himself out of the corn for his trubble but I thought I had try rather deep. I expect he will rare up behind but I don’t care of he does.

I will now say that I am well and all the rest of the boys. Jim Mc got a letter from home this morning and he got a pare of socks but he don’t know who sent them tho postage on them was 9 cents. I also got a letter from Melaine this morning. She said she had got a letter from you. You had aught to se what she said about me to hear hir tell it I am one of the best men in the world wich is a grand mistake. I only wish I was as good as I should be for I know that I am a pore unworthy crecher of the dust.
I will now close by saying I want you to rite as often as you can. I know it is a hard trile for you for you have nothing to draw your attention like I have but I hope the war will soon be over so that we can all come home. So fare well for this time. From your loving husband
William Forder to his loving wife Sarah Forder

___________________________________________

Dear Father and Mother and Brothers and Sisters,

I will name your names if I can’t doo any meare just to let you know that I haven’t forgotten you. I often think of you and hope it will not belong untill I can come home and have a good time with you. Give my respects to all the friends and except the same from your loving sun and brother

Wm Forder to G & C Hubbard

Don’t forget to rite so fare well. Rite rite rite

 

NoteIra Hiatt was the son of Silas Hiatt, born 1850, died 1915. 

Albert undoubtedly refers to his brother, Albert Forder.  He was born in 1842 and enlisted in Company D, Indiana 38th Infantry on September 18th, 1861 at the age of 18.  He died of Typhoid Fever on April 1, 1862.

At this time we are unsure as to who Uncle Billy or Melaine are.