Letter. [Oliver] W[aldo West], Fort Nansemond, Virginia, to 'My dear lyra" [Sarah Stilson], Lima, New York
West responds to Stilson's letter of 17 January, above. Describes an engagement at Kelly's Store, Virginia, near Suffolk, on 30 January 1863; continues to be critical of the Emancipation Proclamation ("You know that the President, wherever our forces 'held occupied and possessed' Southern states or portions thereof, especially refrained from freeing the slaves: but where we did not have power, and where he could not, there he declares the slaves free . . . . If that isn't crawling through a knot hole to suit 2 factions, I never saw any such exploits."). Condemns Horace Greeley's recent ministrations for peace; if peace and Southern independence are to be the result of the war, "what in the name of the orphans and childless mothers it has made, was it begun for?" Holds out hope for the success of Hooker with the Army of the Potomac; calls Burnside "an ingenuous, generous and modest, and withal yet unfortunate man . . . ."