Transcribed and submitted by
Great Great Granddaughter of Charles Hennrich
29 Dec. 1863
Your letter, which you wrote on the 10th, I received the 28th and see by it that you are all still well, as I, thank God, also am.
Dear parents, how much longer we will stay here I do not know for the rebels, under Forrest, are beginning to burn the bridges and tear up the rails again.
The 27th the rebels attacked the passenger train as it approached Lafayette. The engineer saw that a rail was pulled loose and immediately stopped the train as he knew at once that something was amiss. He had started to back up when a heavy fire was directed at the train. The guards returned the fire at once and the train backed away. At least that is the telegraphic report that we received the evening of the 27th. We will probably have a more detailed account of it when the train, which had not arrived on the 29th, does not arrive.
Our company is now stationed at the Memphis and Charleston depot in Memphis and must do guard duty there. It is a dangerous place as the rebels have tried several times to blow up the depot, through which two of the bums were shot and the thing discovered.
Christmas passed fairly good for us here. I spent Christmas Eve on guard and how the New Year will come in, we will have to wait and see.
Now I must close. Many regards to all of you. I wish you a prosperous New Year, peace, contentment, and everlasting happiness.
Brother Fritz, you write me that I should send you a revolver so that you can shoot the New Year in for me as you seem to think that we have nothing to shoot. You can probably shoot about the New Year. Here shooting for fun is not allowed for when a shot sounds here everyone opens his eyes as everyone knows that it is not for nothing. It is dangerous here at night to stand guard or to go uptown. One hears every morning that someone has been shot. Here everyone will be watching into the New Year. Here one must keep his rifle loaded at all times and, if it becomes necessary, also shoot.
I must close and greet you all again. Greet Ernst, he never lets me hear from him