My Dear Mary,
I know it has been a while since I last wrote but I’m afraid that fewer and fewer letters will come. In fact, I am even lucky to be alive. We blue coats terribly underestimated the redcoats. We arrived in Virginia thinking that this would be a short battle and an easy victory. What happened was a different story; the redcoats surprised us especially with their counter attack, causing the war to last 7 days. Not only did the south win, we lost a lot of men, including young Maxwell, my sister’s best friend since she was five. My main problem is that I am risking my life for a cause I don’t even support. Slavery was not a big issue before so why has it now torn apart our country? I, myself, as you know, fully support slavery; it is good for the country and the slaves are better off than most impoverished whites; unfortunately, being a Northerner, I have no other choice than to put on the blue coat and fight. I am afraid this is all I can write for now; the general wants to work on a new war strategy.
My Dear Mary,
Sometimes I wonder if we will ever meet again. Each day of my life, I regret fighting in the war; sometimes, I wonder if things between us would have been different had the war not occurred. As you know, life after the war has not been any better either. I spent four years fighting, risking my life for a cause for a war that I did not originally support and now that we’ve won and it’s over, they won’t grant the blacks the freedom that an extreme amount was shed for? Why is the government taking so long to give black men the same rights as blacks so that my fight would not have been in vain? Sure they have had some progress such as passing the 14th amendments which granted blacks the right to American citizenship and the 15th that gave them the right to vote, but that is not enough; the supreme court is not doing much to enforce the amendments and the Executive branch is not committed to reconstruction at all. It’s almost like the war has been fought and everyone has forgotten why. With the ku Klux klan terrorizing everyone and thing favoring a black and with Rutherford B. Hayes signing the compromise, agreeing to remove all federal troops from the South to secure his presidency, it seems that all hope for reconstruction is gone. Well, I can only wait and see what the government decides to do.