1st Sgt. Angus Campbell McPherson, Co. K, 7th Georgia Infantry, On his Wound and Recovery and Casualties

27 01 2022

Letter from Sargent McPherson, of the Davis Infantry, to his Brother J. McPherson, Esq.

Richmond, July 26.

Dear Brother: Having a fine opportunity to write you a letter, I hasten to make use of it.

As you see, I am in Richmond – came down yesterday, with one of my comrades, from Manassas, (Alonzo Sneed – I suppose you know him,) who was wounded in the foot by a grape shot. I am also slightly wounded in the head, by a Minie rifle ball. It was only a ”tip,” but the tip went into the skull, but without any fracture. I did not think it went to the bone, until about an hour abo, with two glasses, I could, with a pair of scissors, probe top the bone without pain.

The particulars of the battle you will find in the Richmond papers, fuller than I can give them; but I will say that it was a terrible, bloody battle, and I was in it. I have seen the horrors of war, in all its blood and terror. My curiosity is satisfied; but I am as anxious to again brave its perils to defend our country and repel her invaders.

A man who has never witnessed the carnage of a battle field, can form no idea of its terror and grandeur. It is true, that during the intense excitement of the conflict, the sight of a man being shot down by your side, or another mangled by a bomb, does not affect you; but, after all is over, and you walk over the field of strife, you have time to consider and reflect on the horrid scenes around you – here a man, perhaps your friend, with a bullet through his heart, cold in death, others torn and mangled – some dead, some dying, others wounded beyond hope of recovery – mutilated bodies and parts of bodies – it is horrid to contemplate, especially when you remember that, amid all this carnage, you was one of the actors, and only the smallest partition of bone was between you and death.

The Yankees were so badly whipped that they did not ask permission to bury their dead, nor take charge of their wounded. We did so, but many of them were in a deplorable condition before we could render any assistance. * * * * Such scenes were at first was sickening, but they were so numerous that we soon got “used to it.”

It was my full intention, before I ever know what a battle was, to take charge of any of my particular friends who should get hurt and spared. I expected the same from them. Sneed, I am sure, would have spent all he had and his time for me, had there been occasion. I shall do for him all in my power. I have brought him here, and have him in one of the most noble mansions I was ever in. He has a room to himself, fitted up in the most magnificent style. We are now in the care of Mr. Thomas W. Dudley, sergeant of the city of Richmond, who has offered to take charge of us both until there should not be the least sign of a wound on us, and would be happy to take charge of as many more as his house would hold, without fee or reward, except the pleasure of serving the protectors of his country. The good lady says we shall be considered as her children as long as we are under her care.

I have been pleased with the kindness and hospitality shown soldiers all through Virginia, who seem to view with each other in doing all they can for us, except at Harper’s Ferry, where I believe the people would have betrayed us, if they could.

I suppose you have heard of the death of Jhon A. Puckett. There never was a braver man on a battle field than he, or one with a kinder heart in the camp. He was shot dead while shouting and encouraging the boys, who followed him as they would a father. His death is much lamented by the whole company. Mr. Bagwell was also killed on the field. Of the Davis Infantry, two were killed, and eleven wounded. I should like to give you a detail of my past few weeks, which has been pretty rough, if hard marching, and actual starving occasionally, be considered rough.

Tell everybody that I am yet alive, and expect to be in at the big battle at Alexandria before long.

Ever your brother,

(Atlanta, GA) Southern Confederacy, 8/2/1861

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Angus Campbell McPherson at Ancestry

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Angus Campbell McPherson at FindAGrave