1864-08-10in front of Petersburg, Va.
Camp of 45th Regt Penna Vet Vols

In front of Petersburg, Va.

Aug. 10th/64

Dear Parents

Your most welcome letter of the 2nd and 3rd came to hand this morning and I hasten to reply. It is with heartfelt pleasure that your letters are perused. It seems almost like being at home and conversing with you. I rec'd a letter from Mother on Monday with those stamps. They were very acceptable. I answered her letter the same day of receipt. You spoke of my writing to Walter about that box. The box came last evening but most of the things were spoilt. The butter is rather old but after taking the outside off it is not so bad as might be. It is full as good as butter that the boys get at the Suttlers and pay 75 cts per lb. The shugar was good, the dried beef very good, the cherries excellent, horseradish, one bottle broken, the other I have not opened yet. I presume it is good. The bread and cake all spoiled. Had I received it while at Annapolis it would have been splendid. It is better now than I expected after lying so long through the warm season. If we stay in this department through the winter we can get boxes very handy. My boots I got at Sears last spring I burned one of them at Annapolis one of those rainy days and almost spoiled it. I tried to get it fixed but could not until the morning we left. Then I was so hurried that I could not wait to have it done to suit me but they are very good yet but will not last me through the winter on account of being burned but they have saved me from going bearfoot as many of the boys had to that drew shoes and I think if I had drawn shoes on this campaign, they would have cost me more than the boots did. If you go to Scoutts at Osceola you may order me a pair made of the best French calf No. 6. Have them steel shank and heavy nailed the heels or plated, taped and nailed and if we remain here I will send for them when I want them. I want them made in the best of order and shape. I dont want no great big sloppy boot but a snug 6 that will fit my foot to march in. The paymaster is about but I do not know when he will see fit to pay us our green backs. I hope before long if there is anything coming to us. About that bond, if you can get a chance shove it off. If you can get the town bounty do so and use it if you want. I will give my reasons hereafter for wanting that county bond turned into some account as soon as possible.

Everything around this part of the lines passes off as usual, picket firing all the time, casualties occurring daily. Our ranks are diminishing steadily. Soon there will be nothing left of the old 45th. We have now about 220 we draw rations for, about 150 guns out of 900 and over, but I must close hoping to hear from you soon. This leaves me well. I hope it finds you enjoying the same blessing is the wish of your ever Affectionate Son

J.D. Strait

PS The boys are all well that are here. Rally is writing now at the same table. He is one of the color guards. Henry Foot and Dan Ruggles were well a fiew days ago.

J .D. Strait