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Civil War Cadet Life
Samuel Letter, September 28, 1862
VMI Archives Manuscript #0061

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V.M. Institute
Sept 28th, 1862

My dear Mother-

In vain have I been looking for a letter from you now for a long time, but have not received one since Austin arrived, and I am getting quite uneasy about you all; but I hope that nothing is the matter with you all. I wrote to you (or Pa I should have said) Sunday before last, and I would have written to you last Sunday but but "circumstances alter cases" and I could not get an opportunity. How is your health getting? Oh! I hope you are perfectly well by this time. Is Cousins Magie and Betie staying with you now? If they are give my love to them and tell them that I answered their letters when I wrote to Pa. If they do not receive them you must let me know. I suppose you get the papers now, and have seen an account of our great victories in Maryland, therefore I will not bother you with an account of them. Have you heard from Rennie since he left? Please let me know where I can direct my letters so as he may get them. How does Pa get on with the farm since he left?

Yesterday one of my roommates (as it was his time) went out in the country foraging and about 12 o'clock he came in with two very nice chickens with their heads looking like some one had hit them with a rock; well I was not with Morgan but I guess the chickens tried to hurt him and he had to hit them in self defense. Anyhow we had a very nice breakfast this morning in old 45 (no. of our room) of fried chicken, butter, and warm biscuits which I assure you was not at all objectionable, and I think from experience that the old saying is true that "stolen things always eat the sweetest."

Austin has quite gotten over his homesickness now and is very well; he is writing home also. I am in excellent health and spirits and hope before this reaches you, you may be enjoying the same blessing. I must now close as it is time to go in to Bible recitation. Please excuse this poor apology for a letter for my room is crowded, and you know I never could write where there was a noise. Tell cousin Sarah that I intended to write to her this evening but really I have not time and she will have to excuse me this time. Give my best love to her and tell her that if she knew how I am pressed with my studies she will excuse me. Give my love to all the family and all my relations; remember me also to all my inquiring friends. You must not expect many letters from me now as I can't find time to write. I must now close; please write by every opportunity. Tell Mollie that I will write to her the first opportunity I have.
Your devoted son, S.F. Atwill.