Letter from Adams, Charles Milton

Soldier: Adams, Charles Milton
Allegiance: Union
Unit/Service Branch: 13th Artillery
Home State: Ohio
Date Written: Monday, May 5th, 1862
Location: Camp Shiloh, near Pittsburgh Landing
Correspondence Type: Letter
Subjects: Battlefield, Commanders, Comrades, Enemy, Family, Rumors, Warfare, Western Theater, Wife/Girlfriend

Dear Wife and Children,

I take my pen in hand this evening on a rail in the fence corner, with my last sheet of paper and without a cent of money in my pockets to write to those I hold most dear. I received letters from you today, dated March 24th inclosing a postage stamp which is all the one I have. You had better not send any more stamps as the letters might never reach me, and the Captain can frank my letters and you can pay postage there, that is if you can get the money to pay with. There is now some prospect of our getting our pay soon. We are encamped in the southern part of Tennessee, 10 miles from Corinth where the rebels are said to have a heavy force, and are strongly fortified. It was the calculation to attack them today, the rains have rendered the roads impassable for our heavy guns.
May 6th. I had to stop writing last night in consequence of its getting dark, and having got my washing out this morning, and as there appears to be no more work for me at present, I resume my pen to write a little more. This is a beautiful day. The sun shines bright and clear, a balmy breeze floats through the air. The wild birds are warbling cheerfully among the leafy trees and all nature seems at peace, but the shrill notes of martial music, and the grand parade of military show, indicates that man alone is at war. Here are two powerful armies, in close proximity to each other, both of the same nation, speak the same language and closely allied by the ties of blood, often father against son and brother against brother, the one contending for the perpetuation of the vilest crime that ever cursed the earth, the other for the preservation of the best government the sun ever shone upon. May the God of battles give victory to the right, and may Union and peace again soon ! be restored.........

We have not heard anything reliable form the enemy for several days, but it is rumored and extensively believed in camp that they are evacuating Corinth. If this is the case we will have to follow them up but if they stand battle here and get whipped, as I think they will, it seems to me they will have to give up, at least in the west........
I don't know as I have informed you of exactly of our condition. The 13th Ohio battery is disbanded through the rascality of General Hurlburt, to whose division we were attached, the officers are sent home, and the men divided among the 7th, 10th, and 14th Ohio batteries. I am in the 10th under Captain White. The Captain, one Lieutenant, the Orderly Sergeant and a few others appear to be very respectable men. The majority of the men however are pretty hard, nearly all use profane language, and nearly all are gamblers, the consequence is there is a great deal of quarreling among them and they are not so well drilled as they should be. For my part I hope it will never be my lot to go into an engagement with them, and I hope that matters will soon be arranged so that I can get out of their company.

You say in your last letter that you have never got any money from the county, yet I would like to know the reason, for if I am rightfully informed it is there for you and I should think that those into whose hands the business is intrusted would see that you get it. As soon as I get my pay I will send you some, though it is risky business, sending money by mail. Hoping this will find you all in good health and spirits, I subscribe myself as ever, truly and affectionately your
Husband and father.
C. M. Adams
Direct your letters to C. M. Adams, Camp Shiloh c/o Capt. White.
10th Ohio Battery.