Letter written by Sergeant John W. Wiggins of Company F, 39th C Infantry, to his brother Joseph A. Wiggins, from Shelbyville, TN. Wiggins is replying to a letter from his brother, and writes that he is glad that Joseph is safe. He mentions supporters of Abraham Lincoln, and says they “showed themselves to be what they represent.” He remarks on the deaths of family friends. Wiggins has heard of recent reinforcements sent to the Union army at Tullahoma. Wiggins mentions their hard drilling, and how they have a new brigadier, General William B. Bate. Wiggins hopes that R. B. Vance, who was recently promoted to brigadier, will get command of his brigade.
Mr. J.A. Wiggins
its with pleasure that I put my pen to respond to yours of the 7th which has been before me only a few days I was truly glad tohear from you and hear that you had come through on a [???] and from the account you gave me that you was in a tolerable close place and it also seams like the Lincens [Lincolns] and their gallant Leader showed them selves to be what they represent I can inform you that I received a letter from home today and they was all well it was dated Apr 12th it said that Geminie Welch was dead and I also received one from home a short time before this and it said that Calvin Colvard wife was dead;
I expect that we will have something to do in a short time the enemy is reported to have received a reenforcement of (20,000) twenty thousand
and it is reported that they are reenforcing at Tulihoma [Tullahoma] with 3 Divisions from Miss and it is also reported that they are reenforcing from VA; I would be mighty glad to see we are living tolerable well at present we have to drill tolerable hard we have got a new Brigadier Gen Bate Col R. B. Vance has been promoted to a brigadier but has not been ordered on duty I am in hopes that he will get command of this Brigade Brother Burton was examined and came clear of conscript so I recon I must close for the present so no more only remian Your Brother Respectfully
John W. Wiggins Co F
39 Regt NC Troops 2nd Brigade
John W. Wiggins, age 19, from Cherokee County, NC, enlisted in Company F, of the 39th NC Infantry, circa February 23, 1862. He is listed as a sergeant as of November 25, 1862, and was wounded at Stones River on December 31, 1862, but returned to duty the next day. He was promoted to 1st Sergeant of Company F on March 1, 1863. He was fatally wounded at Chickamauga on September 19, 1863, and died in the hospital on September 21st. He was twice reported on the Confederate Honor Roll for valiant service, at Stones River and Chickamauga.