Letter, Sarah Jane ( Jennie / Jane) Corry to Robert Corry.
["Politeness of Lt. Keenan" is written on the address side of the letter. Lt. Keenan, who was staying at Lucinda Cone's house, was a member of Co. A of the 11th Alabama Cavalry- Roddy's Escort.]
October 14, 1863
My dear Brother,
After a long, long time, we have at last heard indirectly from you. Lt. K. of Roddy's Command is boarding with us during his stay of several days in Atlanta. Not being personally acquainted with you, he could tell us but very little about your dear self, and nothing at all about your family. Do, dear brother, if you possibly can, send us a long letter giving us a minute description of yourself- your personal appearance, your health, your wants and your thoughts and feelings in general, and especially anything relating to your dear ones at home will be more than interesting to us. We have been very uneasy about them not knowing for sometime the condition of North Alabama. But this young man tells us the country is comparatively quiet and the inhabitants are not much molested by the enemy. I hope Sister Eliza is comfortably situated as much as when we last heard from her.
I will now tell you something in regard to ourselves and that something is but little as no change except the want of change, has occurred since you last heard from us to disturb our regular way of living.
We are still with Aunt Lucinda but how long we may remain is doubtful. I think Aunt is tired of us and Ma is hesitating whether to break up housekeeping or to move home. It seems now almost impossible to live in Atlanta through the coming winter with any degree of comfort. Provisions are very dear and scare. Wood will not doubt sell for $50 per load. It is now from $15 to $20. I fear it will be impossible to maintain ourselves by means of boarders. I am not teaching at present and may not this winter on account of my throat which is much diseased. Mary has a small school which she should give up by all means as her health is not at all good. I think both she and myself are predisposed to consumption and ought to engage in something that would require regular active exercise.
Brother James is reduced in circumstances almost equal to yourself. He entered service a short time before the Battle of Chickamauga occurred, and the last letter we had from him was written the day of his departure from Calhoun where his regiment the 4th Georgia Cavalry was formed. Since then neither his family nor ourselves have had a line from him. We had a letter a few days since from Sister Carrie. She said she heard through a gentleman who had seen Brother that he was well, bore the service finely, and was, I think, with Wheeler. He was also in the battle and lost his Captain and 1st Lieutenant.
About the time of his leaving home he rented his house to a refugee from East Tennessee. Sister Carrie was to go to her mother's, but was prevented by the enemy making their appearance there sooner that she expected. When Bragg fell back from Chattanooga, the man who had the house became frightened and ran farther south leaving Sister all alone. The enemy, you know, came this side of Ringgold. And Forest had a skirmish with them on Brother's place. A cannon ball fell in the yard and several passed over the house. Sister had no one with her at the time but a lady friend who had called to see her an hour before this occurred and couldn't get back home. The Yanks were in possession of that neighborhood several days. They took all brother's hogs and cows, except two which Sister had sent off. They destroyed the fences and turned up C "Jack" generally, but they didn't disturb Sister nor anything in the house excepting her cooking utensils, all of which I believe they took.
Our own people used his corn, 300 bushels or more and gave Sister a receipt for 30. Bob Tim is with us going to school and learning fast. He says he "wants to see Uncle Bob" and send a kiss to him and Emmett.
I'm sorry, dear Brother, that we have no better testimony of our love than this ill-written letter to send you, but Ma says tell her what you need and maybe she can give a better proof of her affection next time. We feel it would be useless to send anything but good substantial clothing and that is scarcely to be had. Ma thinks perhaps you are provided for the winter. If not, please let us know it and we will use every effort to supply you.
All our relatives are well and "pegging away" at their usual occupations. No doubt would send their love if they knew of this opportunity.
Can't you devise some plan to come and see us. Come in a "raid" if you can't get here any other way. You can't imagine what happiness it would be to see your dear face again. Lt. K. says you can send a letter by mail. Why have you not written? Please do so soon. Ma and Sister join me in much love and many kisses; also to Sister E. and the children. Goodbye, my own dear Brother,
Thursday Night- Lt. K. leaves in the morning at 4 o'clock. Ma sends
you a couple of shirts of Bro. Jas. Mary is making a tobacco pouch for
her dear Bro. Bob. Goodnight.