TAKEN PRISONER AND CAMP PAROLE
On July 12, 1862 the 3rd battlion of the 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry along with four companies of the 4th Michagan Cavalry were surprised by a day light raid of Nathan Bedford Forrest’s 2nd Georgia Cavalry and the famed 8thTexas Cavalry. Almost all of the men in the Seventh were asleep at the time and very few made their escape. The battalion was encamped on the outskirts of the town. Capt. McCormick, Capt. Andress of company G and Lt. Mooney A.Q.M. of the battalion wereon a scout about 28 miles from the city, and escaped capture Company L on the evening before the battle mustered 67 men and McCormick reported after the attack as only having 8 men fit for duty. The 3rd Battalion only mustered 12 non commisioned officers and privates, 2 captains and 2 Lieuts.
Fortunately for Frank Reed he was captured in the early years of the war when a prisoner exchange system was still being utilized. Reed would not suffer the depredations of being incarcerated in one of the south’s notorious prisons such as Andersonville located in the pine forests of Georgia, where men lived in an overcrowded open area exposed to the weather, unclothed for months or years watching their fellow prisoners die from exposure and disease. or the deadly camp at Salisbury, N.C. that was just as horrible as Andersonville. After Frank Reeds capture he was almost immediately sent to McMinville and then on to Nashville where the men stayed for five days and then were entrained for Camp Parole, near Annapolis Md.
Being sent to Camp Parole was a life saver for the men of Reed’s company, because they were guarded by Union soldiers and were relatively free to do what ever they liked with in the confines of the camp. The exchange of prisoners was supposed to take about three to ten days, but like everything run by a governmental bureaucracy things broke down and the wait lasted much longer. Under the provisions of an agreement made by the United States and the Confederate States, which the U.S. did not recognize, the men who were captured would sign an oath that they would not fight again until legally exchanged. The method of exchange was supposed to have been man for man, rank for rank, they even set up a scale of exchange when their were more privates than officers. If a lower rank soldier was to be exchanged for a higher ranked officer the scale went something like this. For one Commanding General you could exchange sixty privates, for one Colonel fifteen privates for one NCO two privates.
The exchange system was finally started on July 22, 1862 after both governments agreed upon the rules to be used. It would end about 307 days later and the horrors of the Southern and Northern prison camps would begin. As stated the exchanges were to take place within 10 days but often took more than thirty days, because of the enormous amount of paper work involved in trying to figure out who was exchanged for whom. The initial exchange took place on the field, but some officials thought some of the men were allowing themselves to be captured in order to go home or to get out of the service. This was the prime reason that Camp Parole located in the east, and Camp Chase located in the west were organized .
As the men first arrived they usually came in via the water ways, they were in detachments of a few hundred to a few thousand. Some came in a state of destitution with little or no clothing, covered in filth and vermin. They lived in wooden framed buildings 90 X 20 and one story in height with a cook house in the rear. They initially were formed and counted and muster rolls were made out for each individual. Then clothing was issued as Frank Reed states, but before the clothing was issued the men were taken to the river and made to bath and throw away the filth and vermin ridden clothing. Camp Parole was guarded by 30 infantry posts but discipline was very slack, parades were almost non existent except morning and evening roll call. The ground out side the camp was covered with old abandoned tents and rubbish every where absolutely not fit for human habitation. But all in all the men didn’t mind the camp’s until spending long and boring weeks doing nothing started to ware on them. Reed shows the disgust with the wait in some of his letters.
The first news of the capture of Major Seibert and his command including Francis Reed and members of Company L reached the Schuylkill County newspapers on July 26, 1862. In these two articles.
Pottsville Daily Miners Journal:
July 26, 1862.
We are pained to hear of the capture or destructtion of the command held by Major Seibert, of the 7th Penna. Cavalry, at Murfreesboro, in the last raid of John Morgan, especially as we have strong intinations of neglect on part of the superior officers of that post. The Major we belove, is safe, but a prisoner, and nothing has been heard of him since his capture. It was supposed that Col. Wynkoop was with the battlion of his regiment which is incorrect. A day or two after, Major John E. Wynkoop was orderd with an escort of fifteen men, to make a reconnoissance, if possible, from Nashville to Shelbyville, and report. He passed through Murfreesboro which was garrisoned by one hundred rebel cavalry, undiscovered, until he reached the opposite end, when sixty of them gave chase for four miles. He narrowly escaped capture, by tearing up the planks of a bridge crossing a deep ravine. On his arrival at Shelbyville, he made his report, and was orderd with his battalion to join Gen. Smith at Tullahoma.
The capture of Major Seibert: On Friday last, Mr. Seibert, formerly a citizen of this boro, but now a resident of Philadelphia, received a telegraph dispatch from Nashville, to the effect that his son, James Seibert, Major of the 3rd Battalion, 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry, had been taken prisoner in the recent fight at Murfreesboro. He was not hurt. Quite a number of his men were also captured but subsequently paroled by the rebels. We are not aware that any of them are from this county .
Col Wynkoop of the 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry, writes that four companies of his regiment were captured at Murfrresboro, with all of the officers, except Capt. McCormick, Capt. Andrews and Lieut. Moore. Major Seibert, Col. Duffield and Gen. Crittenden are prisoners. Fifty two men of the battalion, escaped capture and reached Nashville. The entire regiment started subsequently, under his command, to Murfreesboro. The loss to the command was 150 men, in killed, wounded and prisoners. The Colonel’s health, we are happy, to hear is good.
Nashvill Tenesse July 19 1862.
You no doubt by this time have heard of the battle at Murfreesboro and are uneasy in regard of me. But I have been fortunate enough to escape with out as mutch as getting a scratch. You no doubt will like to know all the particulars conserning the fight. I will try to give you them as near as posiable, as I was in it from the comencement till our General Surendered on Sunday the 13th at about half after 3 oclock in the morning. Gen. Forrrest made a dash on our camp. Discharging their guns into the tents and killing the men in their beds. We were not aware of an enemy near they compleatly suprised us. The most of our men had gone out on a scout about 12 oclock at nightor their would have been more killed then their was. 4 men out of our batalion were killed and 10 wounded. None of our company were killed 3 were wounded not dangerously. The 9th Michigan Regt. Was encamped behind us and they soon came to our relief the rebles had to scaddadle they took with them a great many prisoners, took the men out of bed and would not alow them to put on their clothes. Harry Snyder and eight men of our company were taken barefooted and bare headed and two were taken naked altogether. The rebles made them run for 12 miles over rough and stony turnpike and did not alow them to rest till they had gone 28 miles from Murfreesboro.
I should have been taken prisner the first charge if it had not been for the man that slept with me, he puled down the tent cover till they were leaving camp then I crept out and gave them a good by shot, the shots fell thick and fast around me for a while but none tutched me. The men had all left our camp excepting Major Seibert and I then went over to the Michigan their got a musket a piece and found skirmishers and folowed the rebles to town. One hundred men fought from 4 in the morning till 12 oclock at noon. When about 25 hundred surrounded us and demanded us to surendered. Col. Parkhurst conclued it was best to surrender as our force was to small to holde out. Major Seibert was very angry when annouced to lay down arms and give up our self as prisoners of war. He had fought all morning with a private uniform on. He escaped without a wound or scratch but it was very close, 8 buck shot passed tro his cap. After we surrendred the reble General said privat property should be respected we packed up our clothes and put them on our company wagons then the rebles burnt our tents and everything that was in them that they did not want. After they had plased us under guard and got us started of towards McMinvile the main body turned back and attacted the nine [ Michigan } and Hesites Ky battery which was encamped 3 miles from us. And by 4 oclock they made them surender, burnt their tents and all their clothes. We were marched 22 miles than put up for the night and the next morning taken to 3 miles beyond McMinvile. And the next day they paroled the whole party but the comisoned officers. They were to be sent to Atlanta Georgia. Then the night at McMinevile the men took all our clothes from us broke open the officers trunks and took everything away did not as mutch as leave us a shirt for to change. We got to Nashville on Friday night nearly dead, we had to foot the whole way and from Saturday night till Friday night we had only got 3 meals of viteuals. The whole force captured I dont think well exceed 9 hundred men, the killed on our side was some 20 and about 50 wounded and the rebles acknowledge a loss of 300 men, they destroyed an emence lot of stores. They burnt the depot sawed the stringers on the rail road bridge. Gen Duffield was wounded it is thought mortaly, he was wounded just as he steped out of his tent. One of the reble Col. Was wounded and two majors.
Give my best respects to all enquiring friends.
Dan Paul is with us he was taken prisner and released with us.
Annapolis, Md July 31th 1862
You no doubt have received my letter from Nashvile after our return from captivity among the rebles. We lay arround Nashvile for 5 days then were sent to this plase to be exchanged, we arrived here yesterday morning since we have come here, we have heard that exchanging has been stoped, what will be done now with us I can not tell, we are all very anxious to be exchanged and to go back and square accounts with some of the rebls in the vicinity of Murfreesboro. I which you would send me a few dolls in money. We are intirily out of money. The rebles took all my clothes they did not leave me any thing except what I had on. I have no change of and I am pretty dirty now. Harry Snyder is situated worse than what I am he has no shoes, he has come about 800 miles barefooted and forty out of our battalion and in that fix. I was fortunate to meet with Samuel McQuade and Mrs. Mays brother here and I got a change of shirts from them, they are in 76 regt. Col. Staunton they both like soldiering at present, they’re guarding the Ohio and Baltimore R.Road and Annapolis. I dont know how soon we will be able to draw any clothes from the government. If you can do it I which you would send me several shirts strong white ones, direct to Annapolis Md. In care of Major Givin 7th regt. Pennsy Cavalry. This is a very fine plase right on the bay. Yesterday I was down at the warf and eat as many oysters as I wanted too. If we do not get exchanged I shall try and get a furlough from here to go home for a few weeks. Yesterday we heard canonading south of us, what it was for we were unable to tell. Some supose it was out towards Gordansvile where the rebles were in strong force, so reported I would close for this time by sighning my self your son.
(Signed) F.W. Reed.
Direct Your letter to Annapolis Md. In care of Major Givin 7th Zregt. Pen Cabalry.
Annapolis Md. August 6th 1862.
Your letter came to hand this morning and I was glad to hear from you and to know that you sent the shirts. Tho we are not so mutch in need of them now as for some days ago. We received one shirt a pair of stockings and those that were barefooted got shoes. That is all that we received in the shape of clothes. A pair of pantaloons and a jacket will be about all that I will need. The rebles burnt about 40 doll worth of clothes and books of mine, they did not as mutcxh as leave blouse. I received the two stamps and two dolls. The bundle has not come to hand yet but expect them this evening. The best way to send a box will be by express to Annapolis, you must judge of the eatables which chose to send we have got so as to be able to live on anything, while with the rebles. Six days we had only two meals. Dan Paul is hear with us and is well he wishes that you would please go to David and get his brown jacket and light neck tie and send them along, and if he has some good thing good to eat he would except it. Garret is still with the regiment, Juleps Wrinkle was in the hospital sick when we were taken prisoner. I have not seen or heard since then, but I will write to the company to day to esquire after all the boys. Let me know who is the captain of the company in Port Carbon. I have not received letters from Mr. Meddler or Fred and have wrote several times to both. Major Lutes from Ringed is in the 67th Reg. He says he knows father well and wants to be remembered to you and Mr. Givens and Mr. Mays family. I send you a copy of our Paroled given us by Gen. Forest. This morning we prisoners have sent to the Secretary of War a Petition to exchange us immediately or send us home on furlough or discharge. What will be done remains to be seen yet I hope he will pay some attention to it, for if we are compelled to lay here in this camp we will all be sick. Give my respect to all friends, to Mr. Lawrence and Mrs. And Mr. Matinee and Mr. Guiterman. Send me a neck ties and also one or two pair drawers. I will close for this time by signing myself your obediant son.
(Signed) F.W. Reed
Paroled list of the 7th Regt. Cavalry.
The following is the names of the none comisioned officers and privates of the 7th regt Pennsy Cavalry in the service of the United States captured by Brigadier General N.B. Forrest, Murfreesboro Tneesee on the 13th day of July 1862, and now held as prisoners of war. Do except their discharge against these confedrate States. During the continuence of the war, nor to give information of any military movement of this brigade untile regulary exchanged.
Warren City July 15 1862.
Second Sergt. F.W. Reed 22
Third Sergt. H.H. Snyder 21
Third Corporal L.B. Husted 22
4th Corporal S. Milmore 18
5th Corporal F.S. Ebbing 39
Private John Hutcheniers 18
Private Merrick C. Seely 30
“ Isacc Marvin 18
“ James Patchin 23
“ John Smith 27
“ Abraham Bauer 22
“ Jacob Hartman 41
“ Linsley Newcomer 20
“ John Duffy 22
“ Augustus Sheet 21
“ Charles Coveney 21
“ Sebastan Delside 28
“ William Reader 22
“ Harrison Bechtle 23
“ Francis Hobsen 58
“ D.S. Irland 26
“ Jacob Upling 17
“ John Shaw 60
Camp Parole Annapolis Aug 18 1862
Yours of the 12th came to hand today, and it caused quite a stir, the boys all in to see and of course, corteseys had to be extended to them, which soon run out the cakes. Everything was in good condition and all tasted better than any thing we have had since we have been in the service. The shirts came to hand some days ago. Danl Paul, H.H. Snyder, and myself have the bread and dry beef and catsup which we will keep to feast on for a week or so. The elder wine was excellent and all in the tent join in their respects to the giver. Mrs. Mattisen, H.H. Snyder is especialy anxious to be rembered to her. You can tell her I shall allways be under obligations to her for what she has done for me. I have not forgot my brother and sister. I often think of them and would like to see them. The clothes were all in good time, father must not thing that our captain C.C. McCormick is a coward far from it he was the bravest of the brave, at about 1 at night when we were attacked the captain with about 60 men of our bataliun whent out on scout towards Lebanon and was back within two miles of town. When we were attacked but he could not get in to us. So he retreated towards Nashvile. He is now with Col. Wynkoop at McMinevile, and I see by the paper that the Col. Has had a fight with the rebles at Sparta, he killed some thirty of the rebles than retreated to the main army. Our Luitenent from Reading,A.D. Bechtle played the part of a coward, in plase staying and fighting the rebles like his men he escaped by skadadling, and when he started of he called out run boys the rebles are coming, he started of but the boys would not follow him. The boys are all well, our camp is daily increasing Paroled priseners from Richmond. They all give sickning accout of their treatment while among the rebles, Danial Paul says you shal tell David he is very mutch oblige for all the thigns. To day the boys were mustered in for pay it is now almost four months since we received the last pay. I have a [ cyst ]on foot I am not able to walk or have not been able to walk for the last week. It is something like fellen it is very painful, but is getting better in the course of 4 or 5 days I’ll be able to walk again. I have right good bioys with me so no difficulty to get things done. Dave Pauls letter stated that it was reported that he had alowed the rebles to come in on us, and not fired a gun, he never was on picket in our neighborhood it is all false, give my respects to Mr. And Mrs. Matisen to Mr. Laurence and all the friends. I remain your obediant son.
To my mutch beloved parents
While still awaiting release from Camp Parole Reed would learn of the tragic death of Lt. Nicholas Wynkoop, the son of Col. George C. Wynkoop and also of the great heroic act by Col. George Wynkoop. the Seventh Pennsylvania was involved in a fight at Galatin Tenn. On the 21st of August with the Seventh Pennsylvania in the advance. About 8 a.m. a line of battle was formed by Col. Wynkoop on the Louisville and Nashville Pike. For nearly two hours the Seventh endured the rebel fire, close to 10 o’clock the 3rd Indianna cavalry arrived and formed their ranks on the right rear, and the 4th Kentucky formed on the left. The firing was intense between the opposing forces. Quickly moving the Seventh to the edge of a fence along the pike on the right side of the road, Col. Wynkoop ordered Lieutenants Vale and Greeno to make a saber charge. With the rebels falling back and in disorder Col. Wynkoop was orderd to stop the charge and fall back to the fence. The order to fall back was recived by the men of the Seventh with disbelief. The rebels seeing that they were not persued reformed and made an advance on the Union troops. Wanting to charge the advancing rebles the men begged the General Johnson for the order, but he orderd the men to dismount and lead their horses and attack the rebels with their revolvers, the attempt failed. General Johnson then orderd a retreat along the whole line, in falling back most of the wounded, dead and dismounted men were captured. While in this retreat Lt. Nicholas Wynkoop, Aide De Camp to Genral Johnson was shot through the head, falling from his horse he was left in the road. Falling back further the men reached the Cumberland River, about 5:30 in the evening Genral Johnson asked for a parley and drew up the terms of surrender.
With rebels in their rear and orders to surrender Col. Wynkoop and Col. Kline of the 3rd Indianna drew their sabers and sounded their bugles and charged the rebels before them, the rebels scatterd in every direction. Col. Wynkoop and Col. Kline crossed the river and rode into Lebanon that night and the next evening arrived in Nashville. Losing only 1 officer and 5 men killed and sixteen wounded.
General Morgan later sent a flag of truce to General Buell and demmanded the return and surrender of Col. Wynkoop and Col. Kline with their regiments stating that they were legally surrenderd by Gen,. Johnson.
Camp Parole Sept. 3 1862
Yours of the 23d Inst. You are anxious to here from me as it is now some time since I wrote you. Wy I did not write to tell you I was waiting to here what would be done with us. I was in hope we should know before this time, but still we arte kept in supence. And it looks from appearence to day that we are destined to stay for some time at this plase. The whole camp has been reorganized. New tents in plase of old ones, and all thro it has the appearance as tho we would winter here, which I hope I will not be the case, we are all heartly tired of this style of living. And are all anxious to be exchanged but no attention is paid to our petitions. I have wrote to our captain to go to Gebneral Comanding the western divisin to have us exchanged, but have no answer as yet. On last Saturday I wrote to governor Cartan in regard to us, I expect an answer today. I only which we could get out of this plase. Never have I been so discourage as since here. Ever one is dissatisfied all want to go home or be exchanged. So their is continual growling, we are being comfortably quarter now, the boys will all have blankets, and tomorrow they will get a new suit from head to foot. We have plenty to eat and drink coffee twice a day fresh bread every day, fresh beef three times awe, salt pork three times a week, bean soup three or four times a week, and salt beef at any time, so we dot suffer in the eating line, nor I do not think we shall suffer for anything to make us comfortable as far as clothing is conserned. All that we want is our pay. Watermelons and cantelopes and peaches are very cheap, and we would like to get some but the shiners arte wanting. I think that we fare fuly as well now as we did at Nashvile and while we were with our regiment. But then we cannot be so well satisfied, we have nothing to do here and time lays heavy on hand. The day before yesterday 25 of our regiment arrived from Gallitin Teneesee were they were taken by Morgan. They seen luit Wynkoop and one of them was with the Liut when he fell, he was asked surender 4 or 5 times but always said as long as he had a chance for his life he would not surender. He was entirly surounded by reble soldiers but fought til a bullet peirced his brain and he fell from his horse a corps. The men all cannot express how brave Col. Wynkoop fought, General Johnston surendered the whole comand, but Col. Wynkoop told him he should not surender to a gurrila, he would sooner wade knee deep thro blood, than turning around to his men he said follow me and I will lead you thro safe all of his men that had horses folled him and some Indiana troops, and he cut his way thro the rebles and 400 men with him. After he had got some six miles Gen. Johnston sent and ordly after him to tell him to come back that he surendred the whole comand, but the Col. Sent tje ordly back to tell Johnston that he would not come back, and if he did he should go back and tear out his traiter heart. He took his 400 men to Nashvile and a large number of prisiners. If all our men were like Col. Wynkoop the rebles would not fare as well as they do. He has sworen never to surrender to a gurilla as long as he has a shot in his pistole or cartdridge in his pourch. Three men that were taken at Gallitan were taken to hartsvill and their they were drawen up in the street to be made the laughing stock for the women of that town. The reble soldirs would point their fingers at them and say. Look ladies here are your pets, one of the men remonstrated against such treatment and they were going to gag him. They were not alowed to go to Nashvile, but had to walk to Bowling Green 95 miles from Gallitan. All their clothes were destroyed they came as poor as we came, nothing but what they had on their backs. Numbers are arriving daily from richmond and other plases from the south they all have the same sorrowfull tales to tell of their treatment while in rebeldena, our camp numbers now about 25 hundred men.
Last week and on Sunday we heard heavy firing towards Fairfax Courthouse, the rebles I supose are making one more effort for their cause, this afternoon we can here canonnading but it is more distant, but I think their is some fighting going on as the firing seem to be so regular.
Mrs Smith from Port Carbon was here a week ago. I was glad to see her it was a familiar face from Port Carbon. She I supose told you how we are situated, but our condition has been very mutch improved since then, my foot is geting right well and I think in the course of a few days I will be able to put on my shoes. In regard to sending a box it is not worht while. We have enough bread and meat and I would not ask to pay express money, I would sooner pay it myself [ than ] give it to them. Their is a rumor afloat in camp now that we are to report to Harrisburge, which I hope may be true, than I shall be able to get a furlough for a few days, here their is no use for apling for any I think I have answered all your enquiries and give you all that I can think of at this time. I would clos with my best respect to Mr. And Mrs Mattisen and to Mr. Laurence.
I remain your obedian son
(signed) F.W. Reed.
Camp Parole Sept. 9 1862
Mutch Beloved Parents,
I again take this oppertunity to write you. This is now the second that I have written to you. I am quite anxious to here from you, to know the state of the feeling in Port Carbon and the county. This mornings paper has very discouuraging news, the rebles are reported to be threatening our state if that should be the case you must not be suprised if you see me or here of me in the state, for we Pennsylvanians are not going to lay in camp here inactive while are friends and homes are in danger, I have wrote the Govenor asking to be exchanged, and to day we have sighned another petition to him asking to be taken to our own state. If he willnot do anything for us we are going to do it ourselves. We will not desert but go to our state and take up arms in spite of the parole given us, we will not go out of the state maby but if they dare to come into the state we will fight them there. The excitement is great here in camp all kinds of rumors afloat, some that we are exchanged and others that we are exchanged and others that we are going to be taken to Pennsylvania. We changed our camp yesterday, two miles from the city of Annapolis. On last Friday 1100 prisoner arrived here they were taken at the battle of Buls Run, some of Col. Seigfrredds men were among the number , they all praise the conduct of the Col. Thro the engagement, alsways at the head of the regiment cheering on his men.
The news you have there as well as we have here, nothing new is going here with the exception of the citizen are drilling daily, forming companies for the defense of the state. It has been rumored that some of the military stores from Baltimore were being removed to this plase for safety. Extensive military operation are going on at Baltimore. I am well with the exception of my foot, I am not able to put on a shoe yet. Daniel Paul received a letter from David, he was not very well pleased on not receiving no money, as he contracted some bills which he calculated to pay soon as he reveved his money. It is perfectly safe to send money as the rebles are not near any of the railroads leading to our part of the state. I should like to have a little money again those two dolls have run out and I have also run in debt for washing, which is a Negro woman of this plase, I should not like to go off without paying her. Send me a few postage stamps in the next. If you send any money send it immediately on receiving this for we may move in the course of a few days. Give my best respect to all inquiring friends, no more for this time I remain your affectionate son.
Camp Parole Sept, 1862
Your welcom letter came to hand this afternoon and I haste to answer. We have ashurance from our officers that we will be taken to Harrisburg soon, their to recruit up for our regiment. The general impression is that we are exchanged. My foot is not well yet vie been with the doctor several times, he burnt it with castic but it seem that it is determined not to heal up, now seven weeks that I have not been able to put on my shoe. Why Port Carbon must be entirely deserted at present. But I hope that have gone for State defense, may soon have the opertunity to return home. By acconts from the Patomac the rebles are geting the worset their the reble Long street is reported killed and Hill surrendered and nearly the whole reble army demoralized and beating a hasty retreat back to the sunny south. Danial Paul is not very well, he comended to complain on last Sunday. Since then he has been getting worst. I am afraid a fever is setting in on him and the poorest kind of provisin is made for sick in the paroled camp. The sick lay on the floor without any covering except such as the rebles choose to leave them have which they sent them from their prisin, the doctors have left them in hospitals for two days with out anything to eat. The fact of oit is if a man gets sick here he is left to live or die as the case may be. Danial Paul received a letter from Garet Hasker yesterday, they are still at Nashviile and are making preperations for battle. They have cut down all the woods in the neighborhood of Nashvile and are tearing down some of the best buildings in the city to build forts on the spot General Buel is their. The balance of our regiment is detailed as escort for the General. Garet is well was at the time of the writing of the letter. Harry Snyder has nuralguae in his face which makes him considerable face now. Several men of the 48 regt. Are here they were taken at bull run. One of Christ Kochs boys are among the number. Some more are expected to night or tomorrow morning from the Potomack, our camp numbers 11,350 men. My respects to inquiring friends, I would sign my self your affectionate son.
(Signed) F.W. Reed
Camp Parole, Septa, 12th 1862
Yours of the 12th that came to hand today. And I was very happy to here from you. I know that you are all well yet I was getting quit uneasy I had not heard from you for two weeks, I received two dolls and two postage stamps. Since Mr. Smith has been here we have improved our appearance and our camp is mutch cleaner than that one was. We all have new clothes all look like soldiers again. I am glad to here that people are aroused and preparing top defend the state. I do not think it will be nessary for many to leave their homes, this mornings news is that Jackson is retreating over into Virginia at Williamsport and also that the rebles were defeated with teriable slaughter at Harpers Ferry where they had the fool hardness to attacked our forces under General Franklin. I did expect that I should go home if the rebles attempted to invade our state, but have givin up the idee now, George Fraze r of Comp K of our regiment tryed to leave camp on Wednesday last, but was stoped and is now in jail for mutny in camp, he was going to take about hundred men with him, and if my foot would not have been sore I should have made the attempt with him.
My foot is stillsore I am not able to put my shoe on, which is very unpleasant. I can not tend to my duties in camp. Otherwise I am in good health. The whole camp is improving in health. H.W. Snyder is well and wishes to be rembered to you and Mr. W.H.Laurence. We have not received any pay yet but are promised from day to day, we know nothing about exchanged fifty diffrent storys are raised then the day to day a story has considerable sirculation that we leave to night for Pennsylvania to enter the state service, and a nother that we will be discharged from the service. Our camp increases every day, we number about 4000 men now. John Super was here today he wants to be remebered to father.
It shopuld become nessary for militia to come to the defence of the state it would drain Port Carbon entirely of men. Lett me know in the next who are captains of the different organizations. Then my love to all, give my best respects to all enquiring friends, to Mr. W.H. Laurenmce and to Mrs. Matesen and I remain your most obedient son
( signed ) F.W. Reed
It is certain that we are exchanges but you can write and direct here if you write imediately if not and we should move ill let you know.
Harrisburge Sept, 29 1862
We arrived at Harrisburg on last evening strain. Stooped at the park house this morning reported Captain Esington. We expected to leave for Cincanatia this afternoon but the boys are coming in so slow I doubt very mutch that we will get off for the next 2 or 3 days. Some of the men I am afraid will get themselves into some difficulty by staying away. We meet Mrs. Medlar, we had quite a plesent chat as far as Port Clinton, we where parted enclosed you will have a photograph of Harry and one of old Mr. Hobsen of Reading.
I am well at present and as soon as I can find out when we leave I shall let you know. Harrisburge is still as active as ever.
I remain your obedien son.
(Signed) F.W. Reed
Harrisburge Oct, 3rd 1862
We are now about to start for the seat of the war, I thought I would drop you a few lines so that you would not be uneasy if I should not write for a week or two. Father will see Mr. Robert Kean. I sent my watch back with him and the key I had forgot to winde it up last night so I had no time after all. I concluded it best to send it back. I am well so is Harry Snyder. As soon as I get to our company I shall write to you. You need not write till you here from me again. My best respect to Mr. W,H, Laurence. I hope he is well by this I am very sorry I had no time to go and see him before leaving town but the time was short. My respects to all friends I would close for this time by sighning myself your obedient son.
(Signed) F.W Reed