“They are Wooden Heads”

Sick, hungry, and fed up with Army politics pretty much describes Robert Patterson’s letter to his father on July 24, 1862.  First, Robert tells his father that he has been sick since his last letter.  Second, he notes that heavy rains have flooded the rivers and supplies are not making it to the camp.  As a result, the troops are living on minimal rations.  Finally, Robert writes extensively about appointments made by the Colonel to fill vacant positions that have caused a “regular row in the regiment.”  Robert notes that he would not complain if they were competent men, but instead “They are all a set of wooden heads” and “not fit to fill the places assigned to them.”  (Transcript of Robert Patterson Letter, July 24, 1862)



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