Letter from Sidney Marshall Hinshaw TEXT="#000000" BGCOLOR="#FFFFEE" LINK="#660000" VLINK="#003366" ALINK="#FF0000">

1945 letter from Sidney Marshall Hinshaw to his daughter Hallie Mae Hinshaw
discussing the Civil War experience of his grandfather Leonard Washington Hinshaw

Courtesy of Amy Feldman

This is the story
I was telling you

My grandfather Leonard Hinshaw was born and reared in Western Va. mostly in Lee Co. near the Co. Site Jonesboro.
In 1860 he joined a militia Co. which later became part of the 64th Va. Reg. in the Confederate Army.
This Reg. was stationed at Cumberland Gap Va. at the beginning of the Civil War and saw action first at Jonesville Va. after a forced march from Cumberland Gap from where it was call to help repel an effort of some Union forces to take some stores the Confederates had at Jonesboro. They were able to drive the union forces away and bivouaced at at Jonesboro the night following a day long battle.
That night my grand father was able to slip away from camp and visit his family only a mile away. They sat up all night and my grand mother made cookies and half moon dried apple pies to fill

his haversack. Then just as the gray of early dawn first begin to show in the East he told grand mother and his family good-by to get back to camp before reville. That was the last time they ever saw him!
In 1868 following the War between the States my grand mother sold the small farm on which he lived and moved to Sullivan Co. Tenn. by wagon.
On the first night of their journey they camped at what is now known as Gate City Va. As was custom in those day one of the party asked for eggs & milk at a near by farm house.
The farmer asked who was moving and was told it was the Widow Hinshaw from Jonesboro. he said: "I wonder if it could be Leonard Hinshaw's widow If it is I have a letter for her that her husband had me to write a few minutes before he died. He never was able to tell me where she lived so I didn't know where to send it.
Being informed that it was the wife

of Leonard Hinshaw he brought the letter and gave it to my Grand Mother and told her where and how it was given to him. Both had been captured in the fighting around Richmond and sent to a prison camp in Ohio.
Grand father was suffering from scurvy a form of malturition and an epidemic of small pox was raging in the prison and Grand father contracted it
when he realized he was going to die he begged his comrad and fellow prisoner to write a farewell note to his wife and family on a piece of scrap paper but was unable to tell the address.
Although my grand mother had mourned her husband as dead until she received the letter there had been a faint hope that he was alive. it was both good news and bad while it removed all room for hope she knew definally that he was not among the living.


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