#L3-26-65NY

Shot in the Eye at Petersburg… the Bullet Came Out of his Mouth! – VanRenselaer J. Hull, Company B, 24th New York Cavalry Writes from Tilton U.S. General Hospital in Wilmington, Delaware



Here is a neat 4-page letter in ink from Hull, who enlisted at Utica, New York when he was just 18 years old.  6 months later he is shot in the eye at Petersburg June 17th, 1864.  As a gesture of appreciation, Hull was promoted to Sergeant in December 1864.  In this letter, Hull is explaining his situation to his friend Scottie back in New York.  Here is the letter:

  • Tilton. U. S. Gen. Hospital Wilmington, Del. March 26th, /65
  • Friend Scottie, Thinking that you would be glad to hear from me, I now take the present opportunity of writing a few lines to you. I hardly know what to say for myself for not writing to you before but hoping that you will forgive me this time and renew our correspondence. You do not know how good it seems to get letters from one’s friends when you are so so far away from them.
  • I WAS WOUNDED IN THE FIGHT AT HATCHER’S RUN ON THE 6TH OF FEB. AND WAS SENT TO THIS HOSPITAL AND HAVE BEEN HERE SINCE WITH THE EXCEPTION OF 30 DAYS.
  • I had a furlough for that length of time and went home. Oh, how good it seemed to get there once more. I came back here last Wednesday.
  • I WAS WOUNDED IN THE LEFT FACE. THE BALL STRUCK ME ABOUT ONE INCH BACK OF THE LEFT EYE AND A LITTLE BELOW IT AND PASSED THROUGH IN TO MY MOUTH.
  • I CAN NOT OPEN MY MOUTH ONLY ABOUT 1/8 OF AN INCH, AND YOU BETTER BELIEVE THAT IT IS HARD WORK FOR ME TO EAT.
  • I SOMETIMES FEEL NEARLY DISCOURAGED, BUT THEN IF IT IS THE WILL OF GOD THAT I SHOULD SUFFER, I HAD NOT OUGHT TO COMPLAIN FOR THE SON OF GOD SUFFERED BEFORE ME AND WORSE THAN I HAVE. I WOULD WILLINGLY GIVE MY LIFE IF IT WOULD ONLY STOP THIS CRUEL WAR SO THAT THE POOR BOYS COULD GO HOME TO THEIR FRIENDS.
  • Those that are watching the papers so closely to see if some of their friends are not among the killed, wounded or missing. What an anxiety it must be to a mother or a sister that has their son and brother taken prisoner. What an anxiety and suspense it must be to them.
  • I sometimes wish that it was in my power to extinguish the Destroyers of our once happy country at a single blow, but then I am but one among the many thousands that will do all that they can for their country.
  • Scottie, I am rather lonesome since I returned. I never felt so bad about leaving home before as I did when I came away this time, and I never enjoyed myself one half as well since I enlisted as I did this time.
  • I have not done anything but write letters since I came back for the very reason that we have so many lonely hours to pass away and you do not know how a letter cheers a fellow. Please accept this from your friend and well wishes.
  • Sergt. V. J. Hull  Address Sergt. V. J. Hull Tilton, U.S. Gen. Hospital, Ward B Wilmington, Del.   Write as soon as you get this and a good long letter and oblige Jay.   

A fine letter describing one of the multitude of horrible wounds from the Civil War.  Also, a nice display of patriotism and dedication to God. 

#L3-26-65NY – Price $295











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