Oct 20, 1863 Captain Judson

4 miles beyone Bul Run

Oct 20

Dear Mother.

Captain R. F. Judson

Captain R. F. Judson

I received a letter day before yesterday from you of the 10th & as I could not answer it until now I will make a feble effort to tell what has passed with us the last few days-in my other letter I told you of our retreat from Colpeper we have cince drove the Rebs almost back to the Rapahonach but yesterday they got around a mountain in our rear & we had the hardest fighting I ever saw to get out.  We fought all day in the right rear or until 2 oclock in the afternoon then Capt Judson (of Kalamazoo) who is the chief of Staff for Gen Custy came to us  (tiard & worn out our horses hardly able to cary us & asked us to cover the main retreat.  the Col said he would do it if evry one of us was killed.  we healed the rebs back until our whole division could get into the road & on the full retreat then when we had no more amminission we fell back slowly receiving the shots of the enemy without any chance of returning them. finely when they came to near we charged on them with our sabers & drove them a quarter of a mile then we fell back but a good many instead of going toards Washington went toards Richmond.  we lost part of our train & Gen Davis lost his head Quarter train.  we finaly got back last night to Gainsville & here is the Inf & we are safe.  only 8 men left in our Co.  I rode a white horse yesterday & received the peticular attention some of the Rebs Sharpshooters.  I got ahole shot through my canteen and my horse had a bulet put throught his right hind foot.  one of the boys that I enlisted in the Rappids with Jim Vantuil (if you remember when we went with a horse & buggy after) got his foot taken off with a shell.  last week we were on picket on the battle field of bull Run where I saw hundreds of skelitons of dead men lying up on top of the ground & some partly buried.  men with their hands & heads out of their graves holding on to a musket.  three days ago we drove the Rebs over this ground & three days before that they drove us over it.  (I wrote a letter then which I will put in the mail now as I have had no chance to do before.  I will send an other dollar to sis to get her picture taken for me.  I got those papers & wish you would send me some more.  I let Byron Beech have them after I had read them.  he is Dr of the 5th Mich.  he has been promoted.  he ranks I think now as Major.  Give Jane that money by all means & father ten Dollars & I will send more for those things as I can not have them sent until we go into camp & I wish you would use the rest for your self for you must need it—

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