Will Fisher to his mother
Kelly’s Ford, Virginia
September 7, 1863

My own dear Mother,

It seems as though it was an age since I had heard from you or written. All the excuse I have for not writing is that I have felt a little lazy and have neglected it longer than I was aware of till I happened to think it over this morning. I don’t like the news I have got to write this morning, but I don’t feel to censure myself much for it, but perhaps I was in some respects.
A few days ago they began to talk of paying again, the sutler had some very nice shirts which I took a great fancy to & I thought I had bought and paid for a good watch out of my spending money so I thought I could just as well buy these shirts of these sutlers, consequently I got them and had him wait till we were paid. The shirts were woolen army goods, I think the name of it is all wool delaine. The price (hold your breath) $7.00 for the pair, $3.50 a piece.
Well, yesterday when we went to the pay table I found myself charged with the loss of a gun. The guns are $19.25 which left me $6.75 out of $26.00. I suppose you would like to know how I lost my gun. Well, when we were on the march, we stopped one day at a place called Salem for dinner. We went out into a field and our regt. stacked arms in line and we went about preparing dinner, but when we come to start again someone had stolen my gun. This is a very frequent occurrence on the march, especially if they can find a very nice one as was the case with mine. We have all of us often lost guns on marches, but was always able to find one that I could pick up.
I felt very bad about it but there was no use crying about it. If it had been Maj. Porter that paid us instead of Maj. Sherman, I think he would have rectified it but this one was a slasher. He could pay them faster than they could call off the names. He paid the brigade in one day and it took the other one two days to pay our regt. Capt. Hall was the man who ought to have paid for it but he did not. He ought to have put a guard over the guns of the company as is the custom.
Well, you see, I was in debt for the shirt and had not enough to pay for them, say nothing about anything for tobacco, so I borrowed 10.00 and agreed to write home and have you pay to the ones they might order. So if you will pay 5.00 to Mr. Hiram King, and 5.00 to Mrs. Charlotte S. Scott you will greatly oblige me.
I hope this will not cramp you for anything, and I shall certainly make it up if I live. I should have sent $25 dollars if it had not been for this.
Lem is well, and also had a gun, and straps besides, charged to him amounted to 22.50.
The cavalry all went across the river yesterday and I am a little afraid we shall have to follow. I should much rather go to Penn. after them. I think forward will be the order.
Love to Aunt Sarah, and all the rest.

I am your boy,

I sent some pictures of our Gens. the other day by Mr. Jenkins. I did not have time to finish before he left. Slocum, Meade, Williams, and Knipe. The two last drink.