Bradford Sparrow to Alner D. Sparrow
It has now been a week since I wrote to you. I have received no letter since I
came here except a paper that came this morning. I have not read it much yet,
have not had time, but I noticed the death of Mr Robinson & Otis. It must be
lonely house. The Repository was a welcome visit or I have not had many papers
to read. I suppose of course you have written & I shall probably yet a
letter before you do this. I wrote in my last that we were under marching orders
well we did not move until last last friday morning when we
moved about a mile.
Racoon Ford Oct. 6th/63
You see I left off rather sudden just then I had to go on dress parade & rec'd your letter at the same time but did not get time to read it until eve. I read it by fire light at the same time rations were being issued for 8 days & orders to start the next morning which we did & marched until 4 clock, we come 14 miles & set down to rest before making a camp while there a picket was detailed & I happened to be one we come 1 1/2 miles more & to the lines where they counted off & I happened to be so luckey as to be on the rescue so I did not go out last night but had a good chance to rest & I am now waiting orders to fall in for duty. I feel quite well this morn, after the march.
my health has been firstrate since I have been here, there has been good water where I have been so far so that I have not used much pepper though I have a plenty, but that bell pepper you sent was just as acceptable. You wished to know if the five of us from that quarter were all together. Now only Ira & I are in this Co. Swift is well Ira has been pretty well. I have not got any coat yet but have put in requisition for an overcoat. I shall not get a dress coat until they get through with their long marches & go into winter quarters if I can get along without. I have not had much time to read my bible since I have been in Va, but hope I shall have more soon. The war prospects are uncertain I cannot realy tell make up my mind rather there will be much fight-ing on the Potomac this fall or not
but I think there will be no hard battles for very soon for a portion of Lee's army has gone to help Brad & two corps of this army gone to reinforce Roserans lately so I dont think there will be any great campaign here until they return there certainly will not unless the rebels attacks, there may be some skirmishing for we are close to them, the picket line right here is within speaking distance of their's I do not think the war will close this year unless something, besides fighting ends it, but it is the general opinion here that a year will end it.
The Vt brigade is now 15 miles S. West of Culpepper acording to the grid board here & we was 4 or 5 miles beyond there yesterday morn so we came about 20 miles without stopping more than 5 minutes any where stoped once in 2 hours I suppose we are on the Rapidan or near it but I have not seen it we expected to come to Raccoon ford on the Rap ---- n but I dont know as we are near it only what the boy say
When we go into winter quarters I shall want somethings
so I will tell you what I want now that you may get
them ready. I want some boots most of anything. They tell me here that I dont want a lined boot for they have so much wet that when it is once wet
through the lining will keep wet some like kipp boots better than calf on
account of the wet boot I guess a good heavy calf boot is as good as
any, make the heels low ish & not very narrow & the bottoms as heavy as you think best have the
legs just about as long as the legs of those boots I
sent home, have the outer edge of the soles come well out so to protect the uppers. I want something for a night cap either
cloth or yarn & a neck here high, have a good heavy one like that large one
I used to have
I want a pair of woolen mittens with  & a pair of stockings  went a vest. When you  tell me where Uncle. Or-  Daphne & Hattie  them. I am glad to  so well with your work & going visiting & trying to take comfort. I hope you do not worry about me & think of me as one that is to be absent forever but only for a short time, do not make to much dependence on my coming home on the quarter for I dont believe anything in it & do not think I shall be disappointed for I  my self quite contented & gave up all thoughts of getting away. The news about Justus & Wesley was rather sudden I heard Addaline Reich --n was dead what was the matter with her What is Lee Doty going to do now & what do with the farm George
was on & what will George do what has Jimmy done & Charley going to do, is there another draft going on in Vt or going to be one I heard Len. Davis had enlisted how does Len D---s get along Tell Ellen I see no reason why she can't take comfort now & old Abe said he prayed for Moses last winter that he might live to write his  serve his time out & enter the regular army & I hope Lucinda will be lucky to get a fear soon for it is time to have evening pastries tell her to hurry up her cakes, give them (E&L) both my best wishes
I am glad you took pains to write with the rest. you wished you could write a good letter & thought you could not unless you could write news, what you wrote was just what I needed to remind me of the
parent that has given me so much valuable advice & to awake feeling calculated to keep me on my guard for the snares that the soldiers is liable to be caught in, you spoke of Uncle Addisons apoligies for not visitng me while on the Island they looked small to me at I should wrote to Uncle Solon but but you recollect Uncle Addison requested me to write to him if I ever entered tharmy besides I thought he would be more like visit me being y that Uncle S- being younger & not so much afflicted & down spirited Oct. 8th In camp I got here last night. I have told you that I was on the reserve force. Our folks were afraid of being attached & I was put on pot night,  last I stood post 2 hours, laid side of the first the rest of the night, in the morning I was on the skirmish line, but the rebs kept off, though the day, the rebs pickets were changing papers with ones, the rebs are post firing in sight, they are on hills got a strong position, no battle unless rebs pitch in, found Ira in camp pretty lame after the march. Len Davis is here in the got here yesterday & H. Dirg with him, give I will stop cant think of and thing to wirte I will try think of ome thing when I am more at lesiure.
Yours TrulyB.R. Sparrow