Friday, August 5, 2016

Lieutenant Colonel Charles Fessenden Morse: September 25, 1864

Atlanta, Ga., September 25, 1864.

It would surprise you, or any one else outside of the army, to see what an important military post Atlanta has already become; the storehouses in the vicinity of the depots are piled full of commissary, quartermaster and ordnance stores, and, even now, we are thirty days ahead on rations; the tracks are crowded with cars and engines, and to all appearances, there is as much going on in the centre of the city as in the busiest parts of New York or Boston. Most of the families have moved out, though a number still remain, probably with the intention of staying until they are actually forced from the city. The family from our house left on Tuesday, for Nashville; I felt quite sorry to have them go; they made very pleasant society for us, and it seemed very much like home, living with them. We are now in entire possession of their house, and are living in state and style. The house is a new and very fine one, built of brick with stone trimmings, every part of it finished in good shape.

Isn't a soldier's life a queer one? One month ago, we were lying on the ground in a shelter tent, with nothing but pork and hard bread to eat; now we are in an elegant house, take our dinner at half-past five, and feel disposed to growl if we don't have a good soup and roast meat with dessert; after that, we smoke good cigars on the piazza and have a band play for us.

What a splendid victory was that of Sheridan's! I have never spoken of Dr. Heath's death; he is a great loss to us every way, — the best surgeon we ever had, and a pleasant, genial companion.

SOURCE: Charles Fessenden Morse, Letters Written During the Civil War, 1861-1865, p. 193

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