Letter of Milton O. P. McConnell to his father, Abraham Berry McConnell and his mother, Lucy Dougherty McConnell
March found the 48th encamped in winter quarters about eight miles from Guinea's Station. It appears that when Milton returned to camp from a visit home, he found himself with some problems over back pay with Captain William P. Harris. Perhaps he had not had official permission for his leave. A disgruntled Milton talks of joining up with Syvester McConnell who had left the 48th the summer before to recruit a company for the 27th Battalion of Virginia Cavalry.
He didn't leave. McConnell family history indicates that Milton died at Gettysburg. Captain McConnell also died there. According to the report filed by Colonel Dungan, Harris was killed "while bravely urging [his] men onward in the struggle" to take Culp's Hill.
The "William W. ____" referred to in the letter is quite possibly William Wesley Frasier, also of Company E and an original member of the Nickelsville Spartan Band.
Camp Near Guineas Station Va.
March the 6th / 1863
Dear Father and Mother
I seat myself this Blustery morning to drop you a line or two in _____ you will find that my health is good. Father I would have written sooner but since I came to this place I have been in no humor for writing or anything else though all of this may turn out for the Best I can't tell Well in the first place I did not leave home satisfied without the Ballance of our company Secondly as we came down on the train we met our Battallion going home and they told us that we could Remain with them if we wished under and order from Gen S. Cooper, A.V. in s fair General, But as we had not heard or seen anything of the order before we did not listen to any Body so we concluded to come on and see for ourselves and sure enough we have seen. Capt. Wm J. Harris when at home told us that if we would come with him we should have evey cent of our money that was due us before we left But what do you suppose he has done. I will _____ a trick that I shall ever Remember Sure, when we got here they were Ready to draw money had the pay Rolls made off and signed by the Maj _____ the pay Extensd all that was to _____ was just to extend our pay. But Capt. Harris would not suffer it done under the plea that we was turned over for Duty without any trial or without any punishment whatever & that we ought not to have the money that was due us. But had he done his duty we would have had our money in our own pockets. But the story is not yet told Capt Harris showing a little partiality (or as I would call it _____) he had H.T. Smiths pay extended and drew his money he haveing been at home as the Rest of us and about the same time that I had So you may guess my feelings at the present Well I think if we was at home we would see some men see _____ before we would come to that place We saw Capt. Gipson at Wytheville as we came _____ he told us that Maj. McConnell had swore he would have us Back to his Comd, well if he wants us all he is got to do is to send an order hear for us by some man. You may be sure we are not satisfied under the present circumstances. The Boys are Generally well Wm W. _____ & B C Ramey are not well at the present. I think if Sylvester would just write to the War Department explaining the _____ matter he could get a transfer for me under the Late order from S. Cooper
I must close
M. O. P. McConnell
Address M. O. P. McConnell Co. (E)
48th Regiment VA. Infantry
Write soon if you please