Letter written in
1863 by Samuel C. Golladay 

From the camp of the 35th Battalion Virginia Cavalry


Confederate soldier Samuel C. Golladay wrote this letter to Lydia McInturff. It was written from camp in Loudoun County, Virginia.


Sept 5, 1863

Camp near Frt Giliard Loudon Cty 

My Dear Miss Lydia,

I seat myself this pleasant sabbath morning to drop you a few lines to inform you that I am well and still in the land of the living, but you may depend it is a very hard living. Our gums have become sore from eating corn. We have it very hard sometimes. Nothing to eat(?) for two days and three days but thank god we are all in good health which is more than the folks are at home by what I can learn.

I haven’t heard from home but once since I came down this last time. I am getting tired of writing for some news from the fort. (1)

I have been in several small fights since I saw you. I was in a fight last Tuesday up at Barbe’s Cross Roads. (2) We captured 25 yanks and killed 5 or 6 and also captured 27 horsed and equipment. But the Colonels horse was killed but we did not lose one man. Enough of this.

We had a very good prayer meeting this morning here in the grove conducted by Lunt (Lieutenant) (3) Strickler and it made me think of the old times we used to have enjoying ourselves in going to meetings to hear the scriptures explained to us. Oh if I could only be with you to-day to attend preaching at Joppa, (4) but alas we are parted perhaps never to meet in this troublesome yet needful earth again. But I still hope we may meet again and enjoy ourselves.

The boys almost pester me to death. They say we are as good as married. All we have to do is stand up before the parson. I do not give them any satisfaction. No way, but I hope my feelings may never be wounded by the refusal of the promises that has been made by one so far as you. May this forever rest on your mind if they are worthy of your notice and if not cast them away. I hope you will think of these things if you think I am not worthy of you. I beg you to tell me so, but I am not much afraid that you will ever refuse to tell me anything you think.

I would like to know how souk is getting along, wether she is still making preparations to get married. I am thinking we will soon come to the valley and if we do I will come home but I will come as soon as I can any way. You must excuse me for not writing sooner. I could not get the chance. I am now sitting in the corner by myself writing you now. I must close. I want you to answer as soon as possible if not sooner. So no more but remain your lover until death.

Corp. S. C. Golladay


(1) Samuel's mention of the fort is in reference to Powell's Fort Valley in Shenandoah County, which was the home of both Samuel and Lydia.

(2) On 01 September 1863, the 35th Battalion Virginia Cavalry attacked the 6th Ohio Cavalry at Barbee's Crossroads in Fauquier County, Virginia.

(3) "Lunt" is probably Samuel's abbreviation for Lieutenant. Harrison Strickler was appointed to the rank of Lieutenant in June of 1863. After the war, Lt. Strickler became a minister.

(4) Joppa Church was built in 1855 and located near Edith in Shenandoah County.

Letter from the Loy Golladay Collection, courtesy of Thomas R. Golladay family


Note: Commas, periods and paragraph breaks have been added to the above letter for readability. However, they were not in the original letter.

This page last updated on July 14, 2010