Will Fisher to his mother
Elk River, Tennessee
January 15, 1864

My Dear Mother,

I think I will write again today, although I have not received any letter since I wrote to you before. The last letter I had from you was Jan. 2nd. I was very glad to hear from you as usual and am under obligations to you for the two postage stamps and the sheet of paper, but don’t need any paper now and shall not for some time to come. You see I made about a ream of foolscap while at Bridgeport and that is all the kind I use nowadays.
In your letter you spoke very disparagingly of the Waverly. It does not quite agree with my views, but, however, I will do as you wish about it. You know I always was very much opposed to light reading like novels and I yet do not read a novel once a month. There is generally one novel in the beginning of a number in the Waverly, but with the exception of that, there is some of the ablest writers in America contributes to its pages. I have seen, under the heading of “Subjects for Thought” articles such as I never saw in no other paper, also “Biographical Sketches," anecdotes, science, and fine arts, etc. Perhaps you think I ought to have some such papers as the New York Times and Tribune. If so, let me say that we have all the New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Cincinnati, Chicago, Louisville & Nashville daily papers. Quite an assortment, surely, and you may rest assured that I read all the news, both political and military. I don’t suppose you have any idea of the time I have for reading.
Well, we can read most all the time, if we like, for we read when on guard and picket. What would you think of going on picket 24 hours and not have anything to do but to see that the men were relieved once in two hours, without anything to read.
I write tonight for the purpose of sending it home by Clark Darrow. He starts tomorrow morning for Cambridge to recruit & will bring you this.
In your letter you spoke of some stockings. The socks were all right & Lem says he did not write that he did not get them. How did you make this mistake? Did you ever get the pictures I sent home last fall of you and John? I have forgotten whether you ever spoke of them. I sent them home because I was spoiling them. I sent a knife a day or two ago. Please mention that if you receive it.
But my pen is horrible and it is getting late and upon the whole I feel rather dull. So I guess I will close.
If Clark Darrow stays till you read this, you can give him a piece of cake, pie and glass of wine, or cider or cold water.
I will write more when I feel better so with lots of love to Aunt Sarah and all the rest,

From your boy, Willie

P.S. Put in two or three of those old steel pens upstairs. I like those old pens of John’s even after he had wore them out. They are stiff and not sharp. I have to bear on with this hard or it will stick in. Put in a good heavy bunch of envelopes for Will when you have a chance.

Will again