written by JAMES TAYLOR BOOTH, CSA
F, John Bell Hood’s 5th Texas
To his mother, MRS. ELIZABETH COTTON
July 22, 1863
As I have an opportunity of sending a letter to you
that I am pretty certain you will receive as it comes by hand, I take pleasure
in sitting down to the table to write it. I am now staying at the Texas
where I expect to remain a month yet before I will be able to join my Regiment.
I receive a wound through the fleshy part of my thigh on the second of this
month at the Battle of Getteys
burg in Pennsylvania
but it is nothing serious. I am able
with the use of one crutch to walk about very well but it keeps me out of
service a month or six weeks or longer yet. The Texas
Hospital is got up purposely for the
Texans in Virginia.
It is kept very nice and clean and we have excellent Doctors and nurses and it
almost seems like home to us Texans when we get sick or wounded. We lost more than two—thirds of our regiment
in the battle and what was worse still very near all of our
wounded fell into the hands of the Yankees. There was one killed and
twelve wounded in my company and there was only myself and another, a little
Frenchman, but what fell into the hands of the enemy. Our army had a splendid
time over in Yankeedom. We just took what we needed
from the people in the way of staples. But we did not treat them half as bad as
they deserve to be treated or we would have burnt their houses over their
heads. That is the way they treat the people here in Virginia and I think we ought to treat them
equally as bad. Gettysburg
was one of the hardest fought battles of the war. We gained decisively the
advantage there although it was a drawn fight. General Lee has recrossed the Potomac and is in Virginia again. I am very sorry that
Vicksburg has fallen but
we must expect reverses sometime.
Well, Mother, I have to close this letter abruptly as
the man who is going to take it is ready to start. Give my love to Josephine, Lou, Mary Cora and
Ade and my respect to Mr. Cotton and Alph.
Write often, dear Mother, to your affectionate son.