Erasmus J. Allton Civil War Letters

Raleigh N.C.

April 20 –65

Happy am I that I am again permitted to write you a few lines to inform you that we are all as well as usual and you may be assured that we are in the highest glee. For the war is now about at an end. Richmond, and Petersburgh is ours and not only the citys but Lees whole army are Grant’s prisoners and we see Lees soldiers returning to their homes to find them evacuated and ruined. Sherman and Johnson are now trying to come to terms of surrender and I expect that before this reaches you that Johnson will have surrendered his whole army to Sherman. I hope so at least. Johnson gave us Raleigh without a fight and it is now in our possession. Sherman told us this morning that he expected to lead us to our homes in a few days, and it may be that in ten days we will be on our homeward march if nothing happens. The news of the assassination of the president of the United States was sad news to this army. Many soldiers have sworn to have revenge and undertook to burn the city of Raleigh but they were detected and there is now a heavy guard all around the city to prevent the soldiers from carrying out their plans, and they also attempted to take the life of a rebel General that is in the city, and he has to be closely guarded. We mourn the loss of our noble president for a greater man never lived or governed a nation[.] He was true to his country and he has done all in his power to put down this rebellion, and did it but never realized it for just as peace was about to crown his efforts, he was assassinated. He is no more on earth but his name will live for ever in the hearts of his countrymen. The air is very hot and close here[.] We sweat like harvest hands and are very lazy[.] we are now in camp and doing very well. Plenty to eat and plenty time to eat it. I will now close my letter hopping it will find you well and as highly elated as the American army. Write soon and just sign the initials of our names for fear we leave hear and I don’t get your letter and it falls into other hands. Remember him who never forgets you.