1864: David L. Lott to Father

This letter was written by 19 year-old David L. Lott (1845-1921) of Holmesville, Holmes county, Ohio, who enlisted (possibly drafted) as a recruit on 1 November 1863 to serve with Co. A, 67th Ohio Volunteer Infantry (OVI). He was later transferred, apparently, into Co. C. He mustered out with the regiment on 7 December 1865 at City Point, Virginia. His Civil War Pension Index Card gives his death as 11 August 1921 at Spring Garden, Florida.

At Harrison’s landing, the 67th OVI campaigned with the Army of the Potomac till the evacuation of the Peninsula, when it went to Suffolk, Va., with only 300 men for duty out of the 850 which composed the regiment at the organization. Being then transferred to the Carolinas, for seven months it heroically endured all the hardships, privations, and dangers of the siege of Charleston, taking part in the attack on Fort Wagner and sustaining a heavy loss. The regiment reenlisted and returned to Ohio on furlough, then took the field again in Virginia. In April the regiment was reunited again at Camp Grant, in Virginia, not far from Washington D. C.  By early may they had relocated to Gloucester Point where this letter was written.

May 10, 1864—one week after this letter was penned—was a sad but glorious day for the 67th OVI, when it lost 76 officers and men killed and wounded in the Battle of Chester Station. Ten days later at Bermuda Hundred it participated in a charge and lost 69 officers and men killed and wounded. On Aug. 16, four companies charged the rifle-pits of the enemy at Deep Bottom and at the first volley lost a third of their men ; but before the Confederates could reload the rifle-pits were in possession of the Buckeye boys. During the spring, summer and fall of 1864 the regiment confronted the enemy at all times within range of their guns ; and it is said, by officers competent to judge, that in that time it was under fire 200 times. Out of over 600 muskets taken to the front in the spring three-fifths were laid aside during the year on account of casualties. It was in the siege of Petersburg, witnessed the close at Appomattox, and was mustered out Dec. 7, 1865.

TRANSCRIPTION

Camp Foster [Gloucester] Point, Va.
May the 3rd, 1864

Dear Father,

I take my pen in hand to let you know that I am well at this present time hoping these few lines may find you all the same, Pap, I got a letter from George last night and received yours too. I got a letter from Cate the 20th of April [and] one from Mary Ann the first of this month. I got a dollar from Cate in her letter. It came good to me for I was out of money and [paper creased and illegible] postage stamps and I don’t buy them here for the money for they hant to be got.

Pap, you wanted to know how the boys that left Holmesville [are]. They are all well and hearty now. Somebody wrote home that some of them had the small pox. That hant so. There’s two boys out of our company has the measles but they are from Mechanic township. That is all [that] is sick in our company.

We have been mustered for our pay. We think we will get our pay the 10th of this month and I will send you it all for I don’t want anything and want you to send me some stamps.

Pap, we are in camp about a mile from the Chesapeake Bay. We have drawn our guns. The draw them the day before we left Camp Grant [Virginia]. Pap, it rained here last night and I had a damp bed to lay on but it is warm here today. It is cold here at night and warm in the daytime.

Pap, I sent Walker a letter from Camp Grant. Tell him to hurry and learn to write. Then I will write to him. Pap, Mary Ann said that Cate got a letter from Clinton but she didn’t say that he was well or not well.

Pap, I must quit for this time. I have wrote one to George and one to Johnny Craker. I have one to write to Mary Ann and I have only time just when we are off of drill.

Direct your letter to Camp Foster [Gloucester] Point, Va. to Co. C, 67th OVI in care of Captain [John B.] Chapman.

Write soon. — David Lott to his father.

Goodbye.

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