to his sister-in-law
August 15, 1862
August the 15th., 1862
To Martha Sartain
Dear sister it is nothing but the mercy of God alone that has spaired us to live this
long. It is very painfull for me to have to write the awfull concequince to you but
take it the best you can Martha, your husband is deed [dead], he tooke the measeles about
the first of August we give him tees and he brook out as good as I ever saw and thay staid
brook out three days or longer and he commence mending and was doing finley and order come
and we had leave and me and Vandver went with the Redgiment and left Bill Beard with Lewis
and Thomas [Scarborough] and bill said he was doing well and on thoe 8 of Augt. he was
sent to the Bragde [Brigade] Hospitel againce his will. He dident wont to go to the
Hospitel and moving him was jest what cosed his death to my a piomian [opinion] Martha
while I was with Lewis I took good ceare of him and tended to him brought him leaves to ly
on and done every thing I could. I done every thing he wanted to do. It was
moving him what caused his death. It is all most more then I can do to write to you
his death but O that had the tung of a Angle to write something to you that would satisfy
you but O there is no satisfaction for you when you here this letter reed [read]. I
had ben at worke and never got home tell 10 o clock in the nite and I was powerfull
hungree before I got to camp but when I got to camp I went to commence eating my supper I
tooke one bite of Breed [bread] and Perry Thompson spoak and said that Lewis was deed.
I was struck so sevear I couldnt hardly speak nor eate a bit. I never
seed much more trouble in my life as I have sence last nite and aske god to have special
mercy on you and the children. I went home and went to bed but I could not sleep
much but dreamt I saw Lewis as well as ever he was but, he said to me Guilford now you can
git to go home and he coughson [cautioned] me of something but for my life I cant
recollect what it was. Martha if it was in our power we would send him home but it
out of our power. I couldnt git to go to see him nor tend to his things,
Thomas Scarborough went to the Hospitel with Lewis. He has got Lewis s money and Tom
will be at Redgiment before long. I will send his money to you. I will sen his
close and things to you as soon as I can and I will git the captain to fin and draw his
bounty as son as he can and I will send it to you. Martha I would willingly give one
hundred dollars to have him sent home but I cant git the chance to do nothing her. I
dont know where he was beared at, but Tom dos and if Tom wont him taken home and
Alford or some body will come after him I will help pay for carring him home, but it
wouldnt do any good but it would be a satisfaction to you but there is one
concelation. I no he is much better off then we are. I am satisfied that he is
in heaven this morning relizing the blessings of God with his elder brother. O that
we was all as hapy ass thay are to day. Martha I wont you and your children to meet
him in heaven.
Martha I have jest ben asking God to have mercy on you and bless you and I am prayin
for you every hour I live and I wont you to pray for yourself and children and not greave
about after him for he is so much better off then we ar.
I was so sorry he died here. I dont know want to do but I could no help it.
I wont us all to meet him and Larking in heaven. We have all got to dy and my
pray to god is that we all may meet a bove. Amen
Martha write to me again
So Fair well Martha and Children
Guilford Sartain Martha Sartain
Guilford, Lewis, Alford and Larkin Sartain were sons of Elisha Sartain and Frances
Bond. Thomas Scarborough was the husband of their sister, Patsy Sartain.
Larkin Sartain, Guilford's older brother, had died earlier in the war.
Lewis Sartain married Martha Beard on 21 Sept 1854 in Madison County. She was the
daughter of Samuel F. Beard and Elizabeth McEver. Lewis and Martha had three
children; Amanda "Mandy" (named after Martha's sister), John and Henry.
Transcribed and contributed by Charlotte Collins Bond