One of our family treasures is a set of letters written in German. We had a few of them translated. This one is from George Eberlein. Georg Eberlein was the brother of my gr. gr. grandmother, Anna Dorothea Lottine Eberlein Katzung. I have shared some of these letters here: The Olive Tree Genealogy - Past Voices
P.S. Most of the members of the family spell Anaker as Anacker
June 18, 1863
As I am still alive and with a little time on my hands, I take a pen to write you some news. Yesterday we had a little bit of fun with the rebels as our people dug themselves into their bigger forts and filled them with powder. Yesterday we opened fire at 4 p.m. and waited until all the rebels came into their fort and then we tried to blow up the fort, one after the other. Twice we were repelled but the 3rd time we succeeded and planted our canons there right a way.
Dear parents, many lives were lost, even though it did not look too terrible when we blew up the fort. One could see the rebels flying in the air and what was not shattered was burned. And in the coming days more shall be blown-up. I don't know yet how many death and injured we have. I am satisfied that with God's help I got out of it unharmed. The rebels should give up soon or they will all be blown to hell. They left Fort Heindson with 1300 prisoners but they will have to give them up soon as well.
A person gets 1 pound of cornmeal for 3 days and a handful of beans, nothing else. That's why they will have to give up, they won't be able to make it long. We get as much as we can eat, ham and meat, beans, rice, sugar, and cheese, more than we can eat and enough crackers and flour. Only beer and brandy is not available. I have not heard from my brother Ferdinand yet and so far I have not gotten anything from you.
Please answer me soon and send me some news. All the best to all of you. Greetings to Georg Anaker and please tell him to write me a letter, and say hello to all our friends from me.
My address Georg Eberlein
29th Regt Wis Vols
Gen. Hovigs Division
13th Army Corps