1862-12-04Camp opposite Fredericksburg, Va.
Camp opposite Fredericksburg, Va.

Dec. 4th 1862

Dear Parents

This pleasant afternoon I am trying to write a few lines to you. Yesterday we rec'd our pay and last night I started $30.00 to you by check to Sherwood as usual but how soon you will get it I do not know but probably as soon as this letter. I expected to have got $20.00 off one of the boys but he thought he could not spare it this pay day but what he has to spare I will get after this if you want it on the conditions I mentioned once before. He says we can have it for two years. It won't be long before we have two months more due us and if we get it the fore part of January I can send you $20 more then of my own. I had over $30.00 of clothing more than we are allowed. Government shoes are so poor that I have to draw 5 pair in one year and we are charged $1.84 a pair. I want a pair of boots and if we get where I can buy a pair without paying too much for them I will get them but they charge such prices for them here that I can't afford it only from $7 to $15 a pair and poor at that. There is nothing of importance going on here. We have no signs of winter quarters yet and I don't know as we shall get into any better quarters this winter, but I think we can stand it. I think as wages are I could earn a little more at home besides enjoying a little of the comforts of life to what we do here, but Uncle Sam don't look at the comforts of life as of any importance to the soldier. If ever I get out of this scrape he can whistle for soldiers for all my coming to war again though had it been what I supposed we were coming for I could put up with hard life and privations but when it comes to cheating a man out of his rations and then making him march and carry his house upon his back it is not what them traitors recommend it to be. Last Monday I went down to see Uncle Norm. He looks as hearty as I have ever saw him. As I haven't any more to write at present and guess you will not want any more this time unless it is better than this. Please write as often as convenient. Give my respects to all who may be interested. This from your ever Affectionate Son.

J .D. Strait

Direct as usual