Camp Fredericksburg, Va.
February 8th, 1863
Dick Lowery will leave for home sometime tomorrow. Though I have
nothing of any interest or importance to write, still it is proper that
I should write just to let you know that I am well. We have all managed
to make ourselves pretty comfortable by building chimneys to our tents
or tent flies (as the case may be) and I believe I have suffered less from
cold than we did last winter. We have had great sport of late - snow-
balling; whole regiments and brigades engaging in the mock-war fare with
all the sportive glee of childhood. I have seen snow on an average
twelve inches deep, and in some places fully three feet deep.
Tell the children I think there is a heap of beauty in the snow when
it covers everything up as it does sometimes here in Virginia, but it is
all melted now and the mud at present is as deep as the snow was sometime
ago. I think it hardly possible that we will fight here before March.
The roads are in such terrible condition General Hooker will surely come
at us as soon as practicable. The northern papers say that he will come
with the next big freeze when the ground will be as firm as pavement. I
hope you people have all made up your minds to a long war. No more fur-
loughs will be granted so I will not see you until next winter. After the
war is over I will make a desperate effort to get a commission in the regu-
lar Army. It would bring me a nice living and no work to do, and that
is what I wish decidedly - eighty dollars a month, nothing to do, and a
gray coat, a sword and some authority. In war times this amounts to
nothing, in peace it will be splendid - But the chickens should not be
counted before the eggs are hatched. The next battle may blow me into
thin air. And now with the best wishes for yourself and family I remain
most Respectfully and affectionate your son,
Paul Turner Vaughan
The children think perhaps that I was killed int he last battle. They
are mistaken and all letters directed to P. T. Vaughan, "Co." 4th Ala.
Regiment, General Law's brigade, Fredericksburg, Va. will reach me.
[typed transcript of original]
Captain P. Turner Vaughan, 4th Alabaman