Felix W. Isreal
23rd Georgia Volunteer Infantry Regiment
Company K, "Young Cane Volunteers"
writing to Sanford Carpenter of Union
written late 1861 - early 1862
Mr. Sanford Carpenter,
Dear old friend this leaves me tolerably
well and hope that it may find find you and Family well. We are now stationed near at Yorktown [Virginia] but don’t
know how long we will stay here. We have drawn our arms this morning [for the first time since mustering in at Big Shanty,
Georgia in August of 1861. They were issued Model 1816 Musket converted to percussion. Before this they had to “borrow”
weapons or use Joe Brown's pikes for guard duty] I wrote home yesterday.
We came to Richmond the 15th of November
and stayed there till the 10th of this instant. Our business then was to guard yankee prisoners. I have conversed with a heap
of them. Some of them was very savey [as in Save the Union] and some were very humble. I saw Ely the yankee Congress member
that was taken in the Mannasas fight and talked to him. He is smart [aleck ? ]. I was Corporal of the Guard at the yankee
hospital 24 hours and saw and talked to all of them in there. With their legs shot off and shot in the face and some in almost
every way that looks like men could be to live and yet some of them say if they was out they out they would fight us again.
Richmond is a fine city six miles long. I have seen Jeff Davis and Steven [Stephens] and old John Tyler [Past Virginia Governor,
U.S. Senator, President of the United States and Representative from Virginia to the Confederate Congress. He died in office in 1862.] and A. Pryer [?] and lots of other
I now say of our place we are stationed
between York River and James River right on the York, but is only 12 miles across to the James River and in sight of the Chesapeake
Bay and 14 miles to the Bethel Church and 10 miles to Hampton Bight in a small neck of land, you see and in sight of the Enemy.
I saw them that their ships not 10 minutes ago and we are expecting here easy day, so say our General Magruder [Cmdg. the
Army of the Peninsula]. This is a strong fortified place. There is about 2 hundred cannon mounted here at this place that
is about here and we have 20 thousand troops here about this place. We are in 2 hundred yards of the verry [sic, for emphasis]
spot where Cornwallis gave his sword to G. W. Washington. There is a monument that stands on the ground [It still stands there.
See sidebar.]. Give my Best Wishes to all my Friends.
F. W. Isreal
I want you to write me.
Direct your letter
Yorktown 23 Regt. GV
Co. K in care of Lt. Col.
W P Barclay [of Union County]
Felix W. Isreal survived the war.
Original letter was found online at,