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The Ringgold Cavalry

The Ringgold Cavalry was organized in Washington County, Pennsylvania and participated or assisted in seventy-two engagements, mostly in West Virginia.

Camp near Romney, Va., May 18, 1863

Mr. Harper:
     It was with pleasure that I hailed your paper to-day. It is the first one that I have received.—It was to me, as hearing from home, a very dear friend. I was truly rejoiced. It is the first Gallipolis Journal that I have seen for nearly two years, and as I had always been accustomed to read it ever since I could read (my father has taken your paper for upwards of twenty years) you can imagine with what eagerness it was perused. I was glad to learn that "old Gallia" (my native home) was doing so much to encourage the many brave soldiers that she has sent out, to fight for our once glorious and happy country, the best Government that ever existed. I can hardly express my delight in hearing so much from the people, so true at home. I feel that "old Gallia" is still my home when I think of the many friends and acquaintances I have there, yet I have been absent from the "old French City" so long, that I expect the people would almost deny me citizenship of that place and vicinity.
     I have been in the Army nearly two years, (our Company was mustered into the U. S. service June 29th, 1861) and I assure you that we have experienced many hardships and exposures since that time.—Our Company have been scouting continually through Western Virginia, ever since we entered the service, and know (I was going to say,) every path from Parkersburg to Winchester, and thence up the Shenandoah Valley to New Market, but probably I would be going too far to say all of that. We have been in battle with a good many of the Ohio Regiments—(4th, 5th, and 8th are some of them) and better soldiers, or braver boys, never carried a musket. You will forgive me if I weary your patience with my letter. I was so well pleased to receive your paper! It holds forth, and upholds the doctrine that every true hearted American should represent—the maintenance of the Administration, and the vigorous prosecution of this war. We want peace, but we want an honorable one, and we will not have any other kind. We are fighting for a Union that cannot be separated, and we are willing if it be required, to serve for another term of three years, to save the Union and our free institutions.
     It is encouraging to know that the authorities have at last arrested C. L. Vallandigham, the traitor that has been worshipped so much by the "butternuts" of the North. I hope, now that they have commenced doing justice to the Union men at home, and to our soldiers, that they will continue to arrest all such men, and do with them likewise. Men like Vallandigham have been a great hindrance to our cause. They have discouraged our soldiers, and encouraged the leaders of this rebellion. I am in favor of hanging all such men as the authorities of Virginia did old John Brown.
     I will have to close as the mail is just ready to go out. Please be particular in directing your papers. Direct in care Lieut. Jim P. Hart, as Lieut. Myers has been taken prisoner by the "rebs" since I wrote for your paper.
     Yours respectfully,
     Geo. Gass, In. Co. Ringgold Cavalry

The Gallipolis Journal
June 11, 1863

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