1864-07-28in front of Petersburg, Va.
Camp 45th Regt Vet Vols

in front of Petersburg, Va.

July 28th/64

Dear Parents

Your most welcome letter of the 8th inst came to hand this morning and I hasten to reply. I was very glad to hear from you again as I am always to hear from my beloved parents. Your letter found me out in the 2nd line of pits where we went last night about 12 o'clock. A deserter came into camp and stated that the Rebels were going to make an attack upon our lines. They were meshing troops in front of our line. We were well prepared for them but they did not make any demonstration at all. We lay in the pits till about an hour ago and came back to camp We had one Lieut out of Co C mortally wounded in getting out of the pits. We were extremely lucky this time out. The Rebels threw their shells rather close but no harm done by them. I have not the slightest idea that the Rebels will ever think of making an attack here. Our works in front of the enemy are progressing nicely. I presume the drift will be ready to blow up in the course of a week or perhaps less, then we expect a bloody time for there will undoubtedly be a grand charge the whole length of the line but it must be made some time and it might as well come one time as another. Many noble boys must fall for the Rebel works are very strong here, and but little chance of flanking them in their present position.

Richmond is a hard place to take and will undoubtedly take a long time to take it and the loss of many good men but we will never fall in a better cause if it should be our lot to be numbered among the missing ones after the battle but if I fall I will try and fall nobly doing my duty in defence of our old flag. You wish the war to end but no more than I do. Oh how I wish that I could be home to follow the plow. I think I could train those little horse after a while. I am glad they are a good team and I hope to live to get home to take care of them before long but we do not know what is in store for us in the future. We will trust all with Him who rules the universe.

I think if I could get $150 for those steers I would let them go. I think that more than any pair of steer of common stock were worth. I would sell off some of the cows so that you would not have to work so hard. You can easily raise more by the time you will need them or till I get home if that day ever comes to help take care of them. You spoke of Fremont running on the Copperhead ticket. If he suffers his name to run on that ticket I hope he will go over and join the Rebels, then we will stand a good chance of getting a shot at him if he should show himself in print. I would like to see such men hung. Such men as that are just what keeps up this war and has kept it up so long and I hope they will get out where we can get hold of them. We will give them a Rebel's portion but I must close hoping to hear from you soon. This leaves me well. I hope it will find you enjoying the same blessing. My respects to all enquiring friends. My warmest Affections for yourselves. My paper does not come through yet but I suppose it is taken out in the rout. Good by for this time your Affectionate Son

J .D. Strait