Valentine G. Barney to Maria Barney

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Camp three miles from Suffolk VaApril 22nd 1863My Dear Maria,

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I recieved a letter from you last eve which is the third I have had which was directed to Washington. it appears you were in Danby and at Uncle Davids though you did not say at whose house you was but by your speaking of Mary I concluded you were there I hope you will enjoy your visit there well as no doubt you will amongst so many of our relatives and kind hearted friends It would give me much pleasure to enjoy a few days there with you with all those I hold so dear but fate has laid out a different place for me at this time and I must remain in it let it come as it may Things here with us continue about as they have since we arrived. Our Gunboats and batteries keep up almost a continual fire on the woods on the other side of the river and where the Rebs attempt to throw up earth works and the crack of the sharp shooters Rifle is heard at almost any minute of the day. Five Cos of our regiment went out on picket yesterday and I was in command of them and I will assure you my duties were not very light as I

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had to visit every post and report to head quarters every hour during the night as to the condition of things in general but nothing transpired during the time we were on unusual except that the 89th N. York reg. went over on the other side of the river and captured a battery of 5 guns and 125 prisoners and were but one our in accomplishing it. Two companies of our reg went over with 4 of the 10th N. H. but did not get across till after the taking of the guns and Prisoners. Our folks lost 2 killed & 6 wounded. We are now expecting to march every moment as we have got orders to have every thing in readiness to move at a moments notice so our haversacks are filled with Hard bread and pork. in mine I have a small tin box filled with sugar, one with butter, & one with coffee and a tin cup to steep my coffee in so I live pretty high. Sartwell has got our blankets rolled ready to sling over our shoulders and we dont care how soon the order comes to fall in- We by sending down to the city or rather up to the city caught quite a variety of food so S- has to toddle pretty often and he brings back butter which I would not eat at home which costs 50c pr lb potatoes at $2.00 per Bu. Ham at 20c per lb and other things in proportion but soft bread it out of the question and we have to use our teeth more than I like. We have quite a large Army 30,000 here and we think it will

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puzzle the enemy to cross the river, and many think it is not his intention to make any attacks at all and I am inclined to think the same. You no doubt see by the papers how things are prospering her and know as much or more about it than I can tell you. We get papers here but seldom and then they cost 10 cents ea. so what little news we get is rather dear. I am sorry that I cant send the children any rings but had we stayed there (in chicago) a few days longer I would have had some ready for them but now they will have to wait for a while I was thinking yesterday how differently we were situated from what we were six years before for on that day I became the possessor of my dear wife and the source of a great portion of my happiness and I might say nearly all. How many happy days have we spent together since that time. I look back on them with much pleasure, and I believe we are to see many more such days and may god speed the time when we can again be so situated as to enjoy each others society. Give my love to all our folks in good old Danby- and continue to write as often as you have Kiss Carrie and Fred often for me and I will remain your devoted and

Affectionate HusbandV. G. Barney

We are in Col Duttons Brigade and Gen Gettys Division of the 9th Army Corps which is the 3d division. The other two are in Ky