||Pine Bluff Ark. March the 6 1863
Dear Wife and children,
I take the pleasure of writing you a few lines which will inform you that I am not well at this time. I have been sick several days, but I reported able for duty this morning. I hope I will be all right in a few days and hope when these few lines reaches you they will find you and family well. Martha I have not got any letters from home in so long, I began to think you have got tired of writing to me, but I think it canít be that. It may be on account of the hynates [?] that we donít get any mail. I want you to write to me once every two weeks if you can and tell me all the news you can and tell me how you are getting
along in this world and how the neighbors treat you since I left and tell me how the stock is doing and whether you got anybody to mark and brand the calves that came since I left, or not. I wrote to you, to try and get somebody to do it for you and give them a part of the calves to mark and brand the balance for you. I also wrote to you to sell all of the beef cattle you could. You can hire somebody to get them up for you and pay them for it. I want you to take good care of our hogs and try to tend to them as good as you can. Martha I tell you I see a heap of trouble since I left home. You know I can stand a heap before I grumble. I thought that I would write nothing home about the way we
live out here. But as the rest as the boys is saying something about it, I will too. In the first place, we sometimes get meat and then we get none. We have been living 4 days without any thing. This is not the first time that we have done without. Some weeks we have plenty and others we have none, so you can see that it is a feast or famine with us and that is the reason there is so much sickness here. When they get something to eat, they nearly kill themselves eating. There is great dissatisfaction among the soldiers, some of the regiment [is] talking about going home if they donít do better. They have promised to do all they can towards getting something to eat. Our regiment have not cut up any, but they will if something ainít done. I hope we will live better here after. I donít
Write this to distress you at all, but I knew you would be aware of it and I thought would tell you of it. But I hope peace will soon come and we will get home and then we can eat, drink and be merry with our little children. I pray [to] God it may soon come. Tell Molly and Billy, howdy for me and kiss them for me and tell Billy and Molly they can kiss me every day if they want to. Martha, ____ the first thing I think of when I lay down and the first when I get up. I mean you and the children and home, home sweet home. I wonder Lord that I [will] ever get there safe. We will meet before long. So fare you well, my dear.
D. E. Young.
Write, Write. Direct your letters to Little Rock as you have been doing. All the rest of the boys is well.
D. E. Young to M. Young
Source, Linda Houck