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Augusta County: Mary A. Smiley to Thomas M. Smiley, July 27, 1861

Discusses details regarding the battle of Manassas.

Thomas M. Smiley

July 27th /61

Dear Brother

Received your letter yesterday & now hasten to answer it & give you the desired information as far as I know myself. The loss of the South in Sundays battle is reported to have been 500 killed & 800 wounded whilst the North admit a loss of 5,000 but it is estimated at 10,000 by the south. All their cannon was taken except two pieces 67 in all amongst them the Shermon battery which is said to be the most famous battery in the United States Besides there is no estimate to be made of the amount of small arms taken a great many besides those belonging to the slain. they just loosed their belt and cast away their arms knapsack haversack & all in their retreat. Old Scott's carriage is said to have been taken all his plans & dispatches & his epauletts. They had not the least expectation of a defeat & their plan was after taking that place to feast one day and then to go on and take Richmond. We have got back enough of provisions men amp;c now to pay for what was taken from us in Western Va. The prisoners were let of on parole & have gone home but I think it was scarcely worth while going home. Pa hailed a man the other day and gave him his dinner that was in the fight at Laurel Hill and was taken prisoner The company were from Halifax Co and going home on parole. He said they were kindly treated by McCleland. He appeared to be very near give out. Pa having come from Beards and wanting to write some has left very little for me to tell Sib Strain brought home a Charly Bell, on Wednesday he had his arm & shoulder shot of though he did not die until after he started with him. Strain started back yesterday he was not in the battle he could not find his company & was only a spectator to the bloody work. Johnsons men it is said fought till 11 oclock and were about being flanked & his men being exhausted were about to give way when Beuregard came to his assistance & afterward Davis when they charged for them. They could not stand the cold steel and ran. It is reported that we came very near getting Seward as for Scott it is not known what became of him The militia are still at Staunton some of them have been at home several times though. It is raining today & pa & ma have

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gone to Uncle Jim's They wanted to see Arehart before he starts He expects to start tomorrow I reckon he is afraid to stay longer also George Clemmer and his father they expected to go to the Junction but Uncle J intended telling them of what you wrote so I dont know what they will do. You are very silent about your spell of sickness You must be afraid to tell how bad you were for we heard from Bil Arehart that you were very bad. Pa wants to know why you dont tell more particularly about it, you put almost to good a face on the measels quite a light disorder I suppose you think. We started a letter Tuesday to Winchester I reckon you can get it there if you want it there was a good deal of it for Tish & me both wrote

Nothing more but remain your affectionate sister

Mary A Smiley

Thomas M. Smiley my Dear Son
I have just been to Wm Beards hearing a letter from Samuel written on tuesday after the Battle at the Junction he Says there is not a man of the Southern Gards killed or wounded but Captain Williams who was Slightly wounded with a Splinter threw agaist him by a cannon ball Striking a fence or Some timber and Struck him a cross the face but so Slightly that he is Still able to be with his Company Johnsons Army Suffered very much especially the Virginia Regment Baxter Ott is killed and Several others from Augusta & Rockbridge all of whome I do not remember I have heard from President Davis Dispach both to Congress & his wife Stating the number killed & wounded South 500 killed 800 wounded and the North a great many prisners the killed not known but they piled on top of one another in front and were Strewed over the ground thick for ten miles we took it is Said Sixty Seven cannon with the great Sherman Battery and thousands of Small arms of evry discrption and provisions anough to last the whole Southern army for Sometime and camp instriments of all kinds but I have taken up so much of the paper I will close by remaining your Father &c Wm Smiley

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