This article on letter's home from Hood's Texas Brigade was written by former member Lee Rainey back in the late 1990s. It appeared on his now-unavailable website. It has been recovered from that website and it is reprinted here in its entirety.
Letters from Hood's Texas Brigade to the Folks at Home
One of the common activities of soldiers during the war was writing letters to family and friends back home. Several collections of such letters exist for the Texas Brigade. By far the best is J. C. West, A Texan in Search of a Fight (By the author, 1901, reprinted 1995). Another large apparent collection of letters is found J. B. Polley, A Soldier's Letters to Charming Nelly (orig. pub. 1908, repr. Butternut Press, 1984), though this book has an interesting puzzle associated with it. Historians dispute whether the letters to Charming Nelly ever existed as such, or whether the collection was created after the war by editing a variety of material. Whatever the date of composition, this book remains a valuable source for wartime life in the Brigade.
Two smaller collections of letters have also been published. J. R. and C. A. Heller, The Confederacy Is On Her Way Up the Spout (U. of Ga. Press, 1992) has the letters of various members of the 18th Georgia, which served with the Brigade in 1862. Wartime letters also appear in R. W. Glover, ed. Tyler to Sharpsburg: The War Letters of Robert H. and William H. Gaston (W. M. Morrison, 1960.)
One of the fun features of the website has been hearing from folks all over the world who are interested in the 4th Texas. One surprising contact was Mrs. Leta Currie-Marshall of Lopez Island, WA. She was surfing around looking for information on an ancestor, Adam Damm, who she knew had served in the 4th Texas. After some checking, we were both amazed to find that he had served in our company.
Pvt. Adam Damm enlisted in our company in May 1861, and died of disease at Richmond on April 25, 1862. Leta was kind enough to share with us this letter from Pvt. Damm that her family has preserved. Here's another example of what a real soldier from our company was thinking about far from home. Leta, thank you so much! This is like reaching out across more than a century to actually touch a member of our favorite unit.
Bright banner of freedom with pride I unfold thee;
Fair flag of my country, with love I behold thee
Gleaming above us in freshness and youth;
Emblem of liberty, symbol of truth;
For the flag of my country in triumph shall wave
O'er the Southerner's home and the Southerner's grave.
Confederate States of America
Richmond, Va., Nov. 6th, 1861
I hope you have Received my Letter of the 25th day of September. I have not Rec. any answer yet and do not know if you have received the $40 Dollars I send you in the same or not we will leave here tomorrow where to we do not know we will go from here to Manassa from there we will Either go to Fairfax Courthouse or join the first and second Texas Regiment on the Potomac River. The Latest fight our Army had was near Leesburg on the Potomac it is said we would have another Fight before long at Fairfax Courthouse our Boys all seem to be glad to get away from here for every thing is selling so high that they can hardly afford to pay for it Dry Goods are selling at least three hundred per cent higher than in Texas at the time we left there, some of our boys are in the hospital here. Frank and myself are in tolerable good Health now, we have lost another man out of our company since we arrived here his name is Patric Rogers from Montgomery County Tom Barnes is very, but not Dangerously, Sick with the thyfoid Fever we had Election here today for President an other officers. Colonel Hood of Texas is our Colonel of the 4th Reg. and Wigfall of Tex. our Brigadier General Tom. M. Owen was promoted as Comissary for our Regiment R. H. Bassette of Anderson is promoted as Colonel Adjutand.
This is all the news I can favor you with at the present but one individual I liked to forgot Mr. W. H. Lawrence who has deserted us since since we Arrived here he has not been heard of since he left.
give my best Respects to all,
you will please Address your letters to
A. Damm Richmond Va
Care of Capt. P. P. Porter
4th Reg. Tex Volunteers
P.S. Dear Brother you wrote to me about Tom Willey about me owing him some Money I do not think that I owe him a single cent he sent me his Account for $81.30 and charged me for things that I paid him the cash for. I send you by the within a note on S. G. McDonald you will please tell Steveson to Collect or make him renew the note.