Transcribed and submitted by
Great Great Granddaughter of Charles Hennrich
Jan 30, 1863
The letter which you wrote on the 18th of January I received on the 29th of January and see by it that you are all well as I, thank God, also am.
The 15th I went into the hospital because I had a bad breaking-out on both arms. They are now completely healed again and I will soon be back with the regiment. They are camped about one mile from town.
Dear parents, you wrote that I had not written for so long but you cannot blame me for that as we were always on the march until the 10th of January when we returned here to Jackson.
You write that you had heard our regiment had been wiped out. Pay no attention to such gossip as up to now our regiment has not even been in battle. We have been near one several times if the rebels had only stood, but they always drew farther away.
And when you write that you heard that the regiment had been captured, for that the publishers had probably heard something to the effect that several of the 27th Iowa had been captured. On the 21st of December eleven men of our regiment were captured. They are all that have been captured from our regiment.
We will probably leave Jackson soon since most of the troops have already left from here for Memphis and from there, by way of the Mississippi, down to Vicksburg. Already a great number of troops have gone to Vicksburg. Several of our boys who went to Vicksburg with prisoners have returned. They say that everything was very expensive. They said that a rebel captain was on the ship while it lay at Vicksburg and paid nine dollars for one gallon of whiskey and five dollars, in gold, for one pound of coffee.
You wrote me about the blankets, that August knew nothing about it. I laid the blanket under the counter while he stood behind the counter. I told him he should give you the blanket when you came in. He said that he would do that. Then I met Hofman and told him to tell you that I had left the blanket with August. I had written your name on a slip of paper and stuck it under the string with which I had tied the blanket.
There is nothing much new. So far as I know all our boys are still well, and as for Fritz having his leg shot off, there is no truth in that as to date they have not come close enough to us to shoot off our legs.
The weather is quite warm. From the 16th to the 26th we had rain. The weather is now nice and warm.
Now I will close with many greetings to you. Give my best regards to all my friends and acquaintances.
NOTES:The "breaking-out" mentioned was the result of poison ivy, oak, or sumac which a number of the men got into during the march described in the letter. The Adjutant-General's report of the incident of the eleven captured men follows: "The large Union Army was principally below Waterford, extending to Oxford, Mississippi. We had fortified along the road between Waterford and the Tallahatchie and were in constant expectation of a cavalry dash by the enemy, but saw no enemy until December 20, 1862, when a small band of mounted men, calling themselves "Peach Creek Rangers", made a dash on our hospitals, then in the residence of Dr. Jones, three miles north of the Tallahatchie River. They captured eleven of our men, double-quicked them about fifteen miles, and paroled them. These all returned to camp the next day."
The details of the blanket incident and the identities of "August" and "Hofman" could not be recalled by Charles Hennrich when his letters were transcribed in 1935. "Fritz"referred to Fritz Benjegerdes of Garnavillo, Iowa. He was 21 years of age at the time of muster of Company D.