CAMP ON MIDDLE CREEK, KY., January 9, 1862.
As officers of your brigade, who have willingly rendered the promptest obedience to your orders, in no manner desiring to dictate to you as our superior officer, but feeling, with you, the deepest interest in the success of your command, we nevertheless feel constrained to make known to you, in the most respectful manner, our views and wishes, and solicit your earnest attention to them. We started from Virginia, with but part of our men, leaving more than 200 sick, and since the first day's march we have left all along the way our sick and disabled soldiers. The men now doing duty-and doing it without a murmur-have been necessarily subjected to hardships, exposure, and the deprivation of regular and adequate supplies of food, which are every day exhausting their energies and breaking down their health. Besides the ordinary inflammatory diseases incident to a winter campaign, fully one-half our men have been for more than a week suffering from dysentery and diarrhea. These are first-rate soldiers, whose term of enlistment does not expire until next fall, and whose strength and energies should be preserved for the more active and efficient duties of the coming summer and fall; but we feel much more interested in the preservation of their health as our neighbors and friends who have at our solicitation entered into the service, and whose friends and families to us for their safety and preservation. While we would be willing to make any sacrifice to advance our cause, we feel satisfied that we can accomplish no good result this winter. The people among whom we have come have not appreciated our cause to the extent of quitting their homes to unite with us, and we are now in midwinter, in a country poorly provided with the means of subsistence, exposed to an enemy more than double or treble our numbers, with roads which,if not now entirely impassable, must shortly become blocked up with snow and ice. This condition of things must necessary increase the exposure of our men and render their supplies of food more uncertain, and thus every day aggravate the causes which are now wasting their energies and strength.
We do therefore most earnestly and respectfully solicit you to order our regiment to such point that we can go into winter quarters without the apprehension of being harassed by our enemies; where supplies can be procured and conveyed without the chance of failure, and the health and lives of our men can be preserved and protected.
With due deference to your judgment, we suggest some point in Virginia or Tennessee, contiguous to a line of railroad, where we can, during the winter, be subject to your orders, and from which we can move out int he spring strong, healthy, and able to do efficient service in the cause we all have so much at heart.
Most respectfully submitted.
BURWELL AKERS, W. J. JORDAN,
Captain Company I. Captain Company F.
GEORGE H. TURMAN, A. DICKERSON,
Captain Company G. Captain Company A.
JACKSON GODBEY, H. SLUSHER,
Captain Company B. Captain Company D.
JNO. J. WADE, JAS. C. TAYLOR,
Captain Company E. Captain Company C.
JNO. S. DEYERLE, S. H. GRIFFITH,
Captain Company K. Captain Company H.
Brigadier General HUMPHREY MARSHALL,
Commanding First Brigade, Army of Eastern Kentucky.