Here is a letter written by my great-great-great grandmother, Martha Clark, who was a nurse serving under Dr. Miller of the 60th Ill Reg. 66 Rena, while stationed at Camp Cairo, Ill. It was written sometime in Feb.1862 and after the Battle of Ft. Donnelson and before April 1, 1862. She was writting to her son "Jake", Jackson Clark.
Son, my affectionate child, it is with the greatest of pleasure that I take this opportunity of answer you with a few lines to let you know that I am well. Your brother Timothy is not well, he has had the mumps, but he is on the mend. Tom has gone to Columbia, we expect them to this place. The boys all expect to get their money soon. If Timothy was well I would start to see you all on tomorrow but as it is I shall have to stay here until the boys get well. The folks were all well the last letter I had, I have been here at this place four weeks. I want you to write let me know how Simpsons, Tige Pearson, Zuby Pakery, Merider and Dery Avons are. Ned Orvins was shot in battle of Ft. Donnelson. Tell all the boys I want them to write me. We are loosing great many men here with the measles, mumps, and typhoid fever, we lost 23 since in this place. My son, I want you to take care of your health and Character, don't keep company with bad fellows or play cards and drink too much. Remember the all seen eye of God is ever upon you for the purpose of his one day but learn obedience to him who created you. Bear in mind make a good soldier and not fear death or tremble when the enemy approaches you stand firm, don't fear. I would like for you to get afurlough and come and see us here, but I do want you to go home and see how they are getting along by the first of April, I must close direct your letters to
Camp Cairo, Illinois in care of Dr. Miller, First Sergant of the 60th Reg. Volint.
Martha Clark died of diarrhea before peace was declared while nursing soldiers. All of the boys survied the War. Timothy Clark served with the 60th Ill. Inf. Co. E and is buried in Thebes, Ill.
In Oct. 1997, Washington D.C. unveiled a Memorial dedicated to those women who have served our country throughout the different wars. My mother submitted all of the necessary paperwork to make sure Martha Clark's name appeared there along with her own.
Thanks to Janeth L. K. Hargis for this contribution.
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