Rear of Vicksburg, Mississippi – July 5th, 1863

Mrs. Lottie McCormick,

Your note of June 21 has just come to hand and I will reply to your inquiries without delay – Your husband – Madam, is interred on a beautiful knoll on the south side of the main road – two miles east of Vicksburg or not far from the “two mile bridge” on the Vicksburg and Jackson Railroad, Warren County, Mississippi.

He was buried decently – had a good coffin, which “by the way” is more than can be said of most others who fell in Rear of this “Rebel City.”

William, as I have said in my first note, had many friends – was esteemed by all his associates. He of course had his faults as most others do but they were few and I think they deserved ones pity more than censure. I have been acquainted with your husband for several years – always agreed very well together except on “political questions”, men you know will differ.

You wished to know how William had enjoyed himself – well his health had not been very good for over a month which dispirited him to a certain extent, but at the time of his death he had almost entirely regained his wonted vigor both of body and mind.

I am none of those who believe in foreordination, but I must acknowledge that there was something strange connected with William’s death.

On the evening of June first we had eaten supper and were about starting to work when William remarked to us, his messmates, that he felt a strange fear in going up there to work, that he was almost certain of being shot. We advised him not to go, but he replied that if he did not go, he would be accused by the commanding officer of playing off, he therefore went and you know the sequel. It seems from this that he had a strange and unaccountable foreboding or presentment that he was to die.

Fearing that your patience is already wearing, I must hasten to conclude, I am happy to announce to you the glad tidings that Vicksburg is at last ours. The enemy surrendered yesterday about noon. The victory is a glorious one, but dearly bought. The greater part of our army are now on the way to Jackson to meet Johnson’s forces. Our troops are all in fine spirits.

With great respect I remain

Cyrus B. Anderson

P.S. If Marion H. Dodd still lives in Fredericksburg, please give him my regards – tell him I am well.

(In honor of those who shaped me, and in conjunction with the 2012 Republican National Convention which I am fortunate enough to be able to attend, each evening I will post a blog about my convention experiences, and each morning I will post a personal family document or historical story which will help you understand what makes me tick.  If you read all the historical posts, the last day, I promise you, you will feel the gratitude I do for our patriots who sacrificed their lives and fortunes for our freedoms.)

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