Captured Stationery – Confederate 11 Star Flag with Annotations: “Not Long May it Wave”… “God Dam the thing”
Albinus R. Fell, who went by “Bill” for obvious reasons, is writing home to his wife. Fell enlisted at age 22 into Company D of the 6th Ohio Cavalry. The 6th Ohio Cavalry had the distinction of serving under some of the most famous Union Cavalry leaders. On May 9th, 1864, Fell was wounded in Sheridan’s famous raid in Virginia.
Bill Fell is writing home on a really great sheet of Confederate stationery. The colors on the flag are bright and vibrant. A small notation on the left side of the flag reads: “J. K. Sutterley, Book Seller, Under St. Charles Hotel, N.O.” Fell does not date his letter although we know from the content that it was July of 1862. Beside the colorful Confederate flag at the top, above it, Fell has written, “Not long may it wave” and below the flag, “God Dam the thing.” Here is the content:
- Oh yes today I must send you this sheet of paper as it was taken this morning from a sesh. soldier. He had it in his knapsack with his clothes and concealed in town.
- You see it bears the emblem of tyranny and the cursed rebellion. Nell, I have not had time to write since the 7th. I wrote then to Dick, Tom and John R. Fell and a few days before that I wrote to you as sent by one of our boys that was going home.
- I have not had a letter from you since the 28th June nor anyone else. Ed. has not answered my letter yet. I heard yesterday that Riley was getting his discharge papers made out.
- Bob & George are on Picket today. Oliver wrote to his mother today. Bine is well and doing well (I’m tough we stand him). Perhaps you will get a chance to read J. K. Fells letter and that will give you some information in reference to my whereabouts etc.
- You requested me to write to Jeff but I am sorry to tell you I can’t do it. It would probably have been better for me to have stayed with you BUT I NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN CONTENTED UNTIL I HAD SEEN THE ELEPHANT.
- I am contented here and hope for a “brighter” future when we shall meet again. As for friends you are as well off as I am. The fewer we have the better we are off in this world. As to my taking care of myself I have nothing to say or do about it. I enlisted to obey orders and where ever we are ordered we have to go under through danger or no danger.
- You spoke in your letter about a little affair that happened to Hydes last summer but let the past be forgotten. We have lived together as happily I trust as any others and I hope the day will come when we will be again together (but not until this war is ended or I am).
- Need you look for me to return I have money plenty and when it is gone I have means to get more with. You say that money I sent home is not yours or mine (or nearly so) it does not belong to any but you know it yours and yours only. I would rather see it burnt than J. K. Fell touch it. It is money I earned honorably when I was driven from home (not by force but by abuse) and for you to say it is not ours is not right. Take it and use it. Throw it away or burn it but never let J. K. Fell get his clutches on it.
- YOU TALK ABOUT DEATH WHAT IS IT TO DIE I HAVE SEEN IT SEVERAL TIMES IN THE LAST TWO MONTHS, IT SURELY IS NOT FRIGHTFUL.
- You say also that the law is passed to send sick and wounded soldiers home but you did not say where those that had no home were to go. I will tell you where you will find all such soldiers and that is in the hospital. There is where I will go when I am compelled to through sickness or anything else.
- Uncle Sam is bound to keep me and I am bound to stick to him. I have now got to prepare for a scouting party. Be sure to address your letters in a plain handwriting and everything as I give the address and nothing more (only my name I will not write that for various reasons). Post Address 6th O. V. Cavalry Co. D. Second Brigade, Second Division First Army Corps of the First of Va. Yours as ever Good bye, Bill Fell.
- Pencil notation mentions “3 more of our co. prisoners. I received letter from you but not a word of writing.”
#L7-1862OH – Price $495