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Norfolk, Va. Febry 4th 1864
My Dearly Beloved Mother,
You will not be surprised, I
presume, to hear that I have re-enlisted: it has only been
accomplished after many delays, and persistent efforts on my part,
but I resolved if it were a possible thing, it sh’d be
done, and to day it was: if I had not friends,
I sh’d not have succeeded: I hope you will not re-
-gret this step, though your maternal love does not ap-
-prove it. With me, it is one of honor; the need of our
Country, at this time, sh'd be, and I have no doubt is, predomi-
-nant in your heart, and after the first thoughts of it,
I feel, you will thank God that you have a son to
help fight her battles;- as I have written before I feel
that no young man who is well, that has my spirit,
can hesitate now to come into the field,- I go further
can, any one that regards his honor --- and I feel
continual gratitude to Almighty God, that I am physically
fitted for a continued length of servic; better fitted even than
I was a year and a-half ago; for am I not "tougher"?
I can not write you at length on this matter as I
w’d like, for want of time, but (D.V.) we shall soon
see each other, and then I will tell you what I can’t
write; I do not know how soon I shall receive
my Furlough, but hope it will be soon.--
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Ephraim Williams, b. 1837 in Deerfield, Massachusetts, enlisted in the Union Army August 27, 1862. He served in Maryland, North Carolina, and Virginia during the Civil War and afterwards on the Kansas frontier where he was wounded in an "action with the Cheyenne Indians" in 1867. The letter to his mother reveals his re-enlistment in 1864 for the "need of our Country." He asks for money from his older brother, William, for cloth for his shirts and requests that Eliza, his unmarried sister, make them before he arrives home "so she may have more leisure time then." Soldiers at that time supplied their own clothing.
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Letter to Rebecca Jackson Williams from her son
| author Ephraim Williams, Jr. (1837-1902)
| date Feb 4, 1864
| location Virginia
| height 9.75"
| width 7.75"
| process/materials manuscript, paper, ink
| item type Personal Documents/Letter
| accession # #L99.145
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