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A Funny Letter from a man dodging the draft in Mississippi

Discussion in 'Civil War History - General Discussion' started by Championhilz, Feb 5, 2016.

  1. Championhilz

    Championhilz Sergeant

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    I found the following letter in the correspondence of Mississippi Governor John J. Pettus - I tried to transcribe it just as it was written:

    Satartia, Miss., Feby. 13th, 1863


    Honl. Gov. Pettis

    I want your honor to appint me to git a compiny horse troops. The infernil melisha offersers and Sheriff bother me to deth and if you will appint me to git a hoss compiny I can dodge the draft and then it aint worth while to git any hoss compiny and myself and neighors can git off.

    They tell me you have got the Jefferson and Adams County and the Klaiburn and Amite boys off in this way by letting them voluntere in hoss compinies to git out of the cussed draft. Why not let all do it Governer. Pleese write me to Satartia soon and oblige

    Your firnd

    John T. Hodge


    P.S.

    I heer the hoss cumpinies break up the melish and then break down theirselves.


    John J. Pettus Correspondence

    Series 757, Box 944, Folder 1, Mississippi Department of Archives and History
     

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  3. MRB1863

    MRB1863 Captain Forum Host

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    I am glad he had the oppertunity to git his point acrost!
     
  4. TinCan

    TinCan Captain Forum Host

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    MRB,

    I bet he run OFT, if''n he didn't git his hoss company.
     
  5. Anna Elizabeth Henry

    Anna Elizabeth Henry 2nd Lieutenant Silver Patron

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    LOL! I thought I was reading Gone With the Wind there for a moment :laugh:

    Seriously, I majored in English and I'm surprised he could even write with such atrocious spelling. However, I do have a clear picture of him surrounded by his friends at a worn kitchen table holding a pencil, shushing them while he tries to concentrate as they shout out various points to make to the governor :x3:
     
  6. leftyhunter

    leftyhunter Lt. Colonel

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    Great find! By 1864 has you know enthusiasm for the Confederacy was waning fast and Unionist guerrillas where taking over parts of Southern Mississippi such as Jones County. Mr. Hodge was far from the only unhappy camper in Mississippi.
    Leftyhunter
     
    PeterT, kepi, Waterloo50 and 2 others like this.
  7. Waterloo50

    Waterloo50 Major Silver Patron

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    How did Governor John J. Pettus respond to that letter I wonder, he probably read it out loud at dinner parties, just for the entertainment value.

    Your firnd
    Waterloo
     
  8. MRB1863

    MRB1863 Captain Forum Host

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    Now, thar is a safe bet!
     
  9. PeterT

    PeterT 1st Lieutenant

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    I hope he was well aware he was meant to be fighting for his "rats" ... Gettysburg movie flashback
     
  10. Rebel_Giratina

    Rebel_Giratina Sergeant

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    That has to be one of the weirdest reasons to "jine the cavalry" I have ever seen.
     
    Cavalry Charger and rosefiend like this.
  11. Ole Miss

    Ole Miss Sergeant

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    Gee makes ya proud to be from Mississippi.
    Regards
    David
     
  12. MattL

    MattL Sergeant Major

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    Very amusing, thanks for sharing. I have Hodges ancestors from Mississippi, I wonder if he's a cousin lol.
     
  13. alan polk

    alan polk Sergeant Major

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    I wonder what he’s getting at in his post script? I’m assuming “melish” means militia? If so, how does forming a horse company that will break up the militia that will eventually break down the horse companies help his cause? Any idea what the fellow is getting at here?
     
  14. WJC

    WJC Moderator Moderator

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    Love it! It is funny, for sure, but it is 'the way we were'! Thanks for sharing!
     
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  15. Stony

    Stony Captain Trivia Game Winner

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    Don't blame him one bit.
     
  16. John Hartwell

    John Hartwell Captain Forum Host

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    Well, he's a young man with sense enough to know he'd be a d*mn fool to get mixed up in that (or any) war -- but, that's about where his "sense" ends.

    "Why not let all do it Governer?" sounds like a darn good idea.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
  17. Ole Miss

    Ole Miss Sergeant

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    I am certain that all of y'all have read and understood Mr. Hodge's letter as well as the governor did. Obviously the man was a military genius and any further study of his ideas and plans would not result in any further clarity.
    Regards
    David
     
  18. 7th Mississippi Infantry

    7th Mississippi Infantry Lt. Colonel Forum Host

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    :bounce:

    Well . . . we still have plenty of those accents down here today.

    It's a slight bit different from the Deep South aristocratic accents of Shelby Foote, Eudora Welty and others. :wink:
     
  19. 7th Mississippi Infantry

    7th Mississippi Infantry Lt. Colonel Forum Host

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    :roflmao::roflmao:
     
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  20. Burning Billy

    Burning Billy Sergeant

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    If I was in your shoes I'd be hoping he was!

    This letter is gold. :bounce:
     
  21. Cavalry Charger

    Cavalry Charger 1st Lieutenant

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    What I admire about people like John T. Hodge...they tell it like it is.

    There's an expression in Ireland...'there's no back doors on them'. It means someone's a straight talker.

    John T. Hodge was a straight talking man :D (even if his spelling left a little to be desired :wink:)
     

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