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SHELLMOUND TENN.
Monday morning Aug the 10th 1863

Dear & affectinnate wife

lone more take my pen in hand for the first time in severl days for the purpose of answering your kind favor of July the which came to hand yesterday & give me much satisfaction to hear from you one time more & that you wer all in common health.
I am thankful to god this morning if I know my hart that I can say to you that I am able to be up & able to write to you altha it is with a very nervious hand but I will do the best that I can.

Well Sarah I have bin tolerable sick for some time, but I am on the mend now I hope that I will soon be well but I exspect it will be some time before I git as fleshey [as?] I have bin for I am porier than I ever wer since I can recolect.
I have had the Diereah for along time & have had vevors for some time.
the Docktor has bin giving me meddicine for severl days till yesterday & I hope that I will not have to take any more soon.

I think that old Cain has treated me very mean by keeping me hear in Camps when I think that if he hed of sent me to the Hospittal I mite of got a furlough & I now mite of bin at home
he has give severl recommendations for furloughs & I dont think that tha wer any worse off than I have bin my self.
it may be that if I had a negro or 2 I mite git [to come?] home or if I had a hunderd or 2 dollars I mite by [a?] furlough
money is the thing in this war,

I supose that old Bragg has ishued anorder to give every man 10 days furlough that is one out of every 20 till the intire Army is fur-laughed but dont no for sertin whether it is so or not but I hope it may be for I have come to the determination not to stay out heal much longer with out attempting to go home
whether I go honerable or dishonerable I am determined to undertake it.

I never new a soldier put to death yet for the first offence of disertion & if I can only make my way threw safe I will not ask them any differnce for if I wanted to stay I think that I could make out till this horable war is over & if the South should gain her independance we will never have such times as we did before the war.
but I have give up all hopes of gaining our independence & from what I can find out it is the general oppinion of everyboddy that we are whiped & that bad.

Now Sarah I have give you my opinion of things now I ask you to tell me what you think of it & what you think concerning me coming home (?) any how.
but I intend to rest on a while longer & see how things will work & if tha dont work rite you neede not be suprised if you see me at home some of these days before cold weather.
I want you to let me no what you think of it.

Well anuf of that, Well you said that you had not got ary letter from me lalely
I sent you a letter a fiew days before I left Chattanooga I sent it by the hand of Mr. Beasley which I beleive was dated July the 10 & 11 one by [two words illegible] dated I beleive the 15 & I also sent one by Nason which I beleive was dated the 19 20 & 21 &(?) one by Mr. Harrison dated 27.28.&.29 & I got Elisha to write me one the 3d Aug. & sent it by mail
now you may no that I have rote tolerable regular you said you new that I was very sick or else I would of wrote & sent by Johnson.
you guessed very well about that for I was very sick the morning the [they? he?] left & the the boys had to write for them selves & did not have time to write for me.
I will try & do as you say about giting some one to write for me when I am not able to write myselfe.
I beleive that I have got all the letters that you said have sent me & I hope that you will git all that I have sent you.
I sent you $10.00 cts by Mr. Nason & also a pocket book which I hope you will get

We have drew more money lately but I dont beleive that I will have any to spair to send to you for since I have bin sick I have had to spend arite smart for something to eate & then could not git any thing fit for a sick man to eate. only one canteen of milk
I have not had any appetite to eate any thing hardly in 2 or 3 weeks
I bought me a dollars worth of irish potatoes yesterday & think that I can eate them.

I have thought of home a grate deal since I have bin sick & thought that if I wer ther that you could fix me something that I could eate.

My dear you say you would come to see me if you new that I could not come home.
I tell you my Dear the chance is bad for me to come home I would say for you to come if I new that you could come handy & had money enouf to bear your exspences hear & back
I recon it would cost you about 30 dollars to git hear in the cars & I think that would be the best way for you to come if you can git any baddy to come with you & you ar not afraid to ride on the cars as for my self I had rather rid on them than to ride in a wagon
you could come from Oklona hear in 5 days.
if you come either on the cars or in a wagon start with all the money you can
you aught not start with much less than 100 dollars if you come on the cars & if you come on the cars you had better not bring any of the childern exscept the Baby for it would cost too much to bring them all.

I supose that Taylor exspects to keep his wife hear all the time.
Sarah if you do come sell your beef first so you can have all the money you can,
ther has bin severl woman come in hear lately & if you take a notion to come to see me write so that I will no whether to look for you or not use your own pleasure about it
if you dont come I will risk coming my self.
Martin will begin to look for Amanda about the last of this week.

you herd a tolerable strait tail about us not having but 2 days rations to march from Shelbyville on for we did not have much more than that of full days rations.

My Dear have your wheate sowed in due time and have it plowed in well have it plowed in small lands leaving a deep water furrow & if you have it sowed on roling land have it plowed so that it will dreen off as much as posible.

you say that ther is talk of giving up Miss I have heard that severl times my self & if tha do give it up I think that all the Miss troops aught to come home & I belevie tha will & as for my self I will come if I can posible git ther.
I think that this war will be obliged to end soon.
if the Yankees dos come in ther treate them as well as you can & tha will not hurt you & if tha want to no what I am fighting aginst them for jest tell them it is because I cant help my self.

Well Sarah as I have rate you severl letters lately & rote all the news I new & I think you will git the most of them I will close for the presant
Exscuse bad scribling for I am very nervous this morning
Give my love & respects to all the connections & receive a large portion to your self

So I will close by subscribing my name as your afectionate Husband till Death

John. E. Hudson to
Sarah. J. Hudson

tell Bascom and Mary Ann I will try & by them a speling book & send them by Amanda
I herd that ther was some at Chattanooga at 2 dollars a peace
John Elkaney Hudson's Civil War Letters