Raw Bacon (April 8, 1862)


Alfred Covell Woods

No 1

Near Yorktown

Warwich Court House, Va

Apr 8th, 1862

My Dear Aunt,

Do forgive me for delaying so long to answer your very kind and welcome letter but I have been so situated that I have seen no opportunity when I could infringe upon my duties enough to find time to even write you a few lines owing to the removal of our Regt from Tennally Town (Tennallytown, MD, 4 miles northwest of Washington).

I did not receive your letter until after our arrival at Fortress Monroe. Since then we have been toiling through the mud and water driving the Rebels and taking a few Batteries on the way. We have now come to a stand still for the Rebels have five miles of Batteries before us to take and we have got to wait for some large seige guns before we can shell them out. General McClellan was here yesterday making a reconnasance and he says we shall soon have work enough to do. The Rebels throw their shells over our heads here almost every day to aggravate us but they do us no harm. Our light artillery can not reach them and we have to put up with it for the present. We are all in good health here. Provisions are very scarce. Last night my supper consisted of a piece of raw Bacon. The roads are almost impassable so that the teams cannot transport provisions to us. All that we got we have to forage from the enemy and that at the risk of ourselves. Sometimes if you look on the map you will see where we are on the Peninsula between the James and York Rivers. I used to wish when were at Tennally Town that we could be placed nearer to the ememy but l did know the privations the advance of our army had to undergo until we were placed here. Some of the Regiments in our Brigade are within speaking distance of the enemy.

The weather for the last two days has been wet and cold. Our Boys have been engaged night and day in throwing up intrenchments. We have no tents. No fires are allowed on the advance only to cook by.

I have just returned from a short point above here where I could see a Regiment of the enemy drilling in the skirmish drill. The main body of their troops together with five of their Batteries are about half a mile from here. lf they knew how we were situated here in the woods they could shell us out of here with ease.

(A C Woods)

Letters of Alfred Covell Woods.

Contributed by J. Tierney


For biographical information on A.C. Woods, see:




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