Letter from Austin, Matthew S.

Soldier: Austin, Matthew S.
Allegiance: Union
Unit/Service Branch: 5th Infantry
Home State: New Jersey
Date Written: Tuesday, November 18th, 1862
Location: Manassas Junction, VA
Correspondence Type: Letter
Subjects: Camp Life, Commanders, Eastern Theater, Family, Strategy
Camp of the Fifth New Jersey Vols.

My Dear Father ~

Since my last, some times of interest have accumulated. For two days past there has been a rumor that we were to leave this place, on tomorrow or next day etc. This impression arose probably from am “Order” for this (Sickles) division and that of Gen. Stoneman to report (by staff officer or by telegraph) to Gen. Hooker. On yesterday we were ordered to and turned over to Post I.M. all tents except shelter do so that last night the men virtually bivouacked. But the order to move has not yet been received. All stores except for present use have been returned to Alexandria from the depot. All day yesterday IM. & Com. Stones were peering thus disposed of. I doubt not that so soon as everything shall be removed. This line of R.R. will cease to be very heavily guarded. It is not proposed to abandon the road altogether, I believe, but it is suggested we are to make Fredericksburg our headquarters and that the army will attempt an advance southward from a new base. All is well summise we suggest to ourselves what seems possible, without knowing whether it be practical or no. Something is soon to take place but we not the directions. We are ready to move and may do so within an hour or we may remain here a day or two.

I am in very good health and send love to mother and all the family.

I have the pleasure of subscribing myself.

M.S. Austin
Second Lt Co G
Fifth NJ Vols

Serg’t Sandt is 1st Lt. & IM. 5th NJV
Serg’t Major Ruling is Second Lt Co F (nephew of Capt IF Rusling)