Camp _________, Tennessee

July 27, 1863

Dear Companion & Family,

As I have arrived safe to the Regiment I will send you a few lines. The present time finds me in tolerable health. I was quite unwell on the way down here but am some better now. We got to the Regiment last Thursday and we found everything was all wright.

The Captain said we had been reported as discharged and we did not belong to the company any more, and we are now going to wait until we get our discharge papers made out and then we are going to come home. It maybe 3 weeks before we come but we will come as quickly as we can. We are now along way from home, a good ways into Dixie, the regiment camped on top of the Cumberland Mountain and it is cool and pleasant up here.

Well as I haven’t anything of interest to write you at this time I will close you need not be worried about me for I am doing very well down here. As soon as this comes to hand and tell me how you and the children are, tell me all the news. I will stop for the present, answer soon. I remain your affectionate husband as ever.

George M. ________

The Cumberland Gap, July 5, 1862 Harper's Weekly

The 51st Illinois fought at Stone’s River (January 1-2 1863), Chickamauga (9/63), Kennesaw Mountain 6/64), Atlanta (8/64), Franklin (11/64), and Nashville (12/64).