Camp 12 Aug 64
My dear brother Carter
I was very much gratified yesterday at recg your letter of the 5th- & pleased to learn the good health of your household & the safe return of Sis_ Lucy and Mildred. What did you let them go away from you for? The raiders might have captured them & taken them to Yankee land. I fear Sis_ Lucy did not shew much skill in preparing that breakfast, or she certainly would have been carried off & Mildred made to bring in the hot cakes. Do not be uneasy about the location of my camp. You will be delighted I am sure at the name of the place- Violet Bank. Is it not attractive? The shells do sometimes burst over us, but not often, & they have as yet done no harm. Besides where can we go to get rid of them? They pervade all space for miles, & I cannot be too far away. But Genl Grant has ceased his fire now & taken to digging. He is entrenching strongly in our front & has moved a large force over on Dutch gap on James river, & is cutting a canal across much of the land. What use he proposes to make of it when finished I now do not see. He may think he may draw off the water above & thus leave our ironclads high & dry; or having stopped up the natural channel, he may wish to open a better artificial one. We must be patient (page 2) Mr Carter. I suppose he is preparing something to startle us out of our property.