The following is from one of many
letters written by Matthia Wilson, a Union soldier during the Civil War, to his
wife, Ruth Mosher Wilson, in West
Camp Near Black River Oct. 4, 1863
My dear wife,
is a beautiful Sabbath day and I thought I would spend part of it writing to
thee. I received thy letter of the eighteenth last evening. I think one of thy
letters has been miscarried. The last one that I received before last evening
was written on the sixth. That was a long time to me without hearing from thee,
my own loving companion.
heavily the time passes when we are expecting to get a letter from the loved
one and are disappointed. Days appear almost as long as weeks did when we were
living so happily together. I often think of those days and wonder if we will
live to see as happy days again.
expect we will have to move again soon. I expect we will be moving back toward Vicksburg. The guerrillas
are getting bold. They shot a Lieutenant of our Division last Thursday night
while on picket, and Joseph Alger came very near being taken prisoner
yesterday. He was about one mile and a half from camp and four Rebels came very
near catching him.
am enjoying pretty good health now. I was very glad to hear that thee and our
little ones was well. Please excuse this short letter as I have a piece of
poetry that I want to copy and send to thee that I think is much better than
anything I could write.
am perfectly satisfied with the way thee is managing our affairs. I am very
near out of pocket handkerchiefs.
As ever, Thy loving
husband Matt Wilson
Lena Ruth Hampton
Back in 1955 a call
went out from the editors of the then CAPPER’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of
letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in
their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell.
So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and
in 1956, the first My Folks title – My
Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the
shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true
tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available
to our growing online community.