ENG Section: 1853
October 18, 2008
An Uncommon Soldier
By: Lauren Cook Burgess
“Father, you needn’t be a feard to write any[thing] private to me for I can read all you can write. I suppose you thought that I would have to get somebody to read it for me but I read it all myself.”
This quote reminds me of how women were once considered to be unworthy of an education. To think that she had to explain to her own father that she had the skills to read his letter really surprised me. There are a lot of incorrect words that can be found through out of her letters but the content is clear and easy to read. Someone obviously taught her how to read and write.
Rosetta Wakeman is happy with the fact that her letters are uncensored and that she didn’t have to rely on anyone to help her communicate with her family. The fact that she sent those words to her father really shows me
“Mother, I use all of the tobacco I want. I think it will keep off form catch[ing] diseases. I wish you all well and I hope that I shall meet you all again, so goodby for the present form you affectionate,”
I had no idea that people thought tobacco could prevent diseases. I’m trying to understand where such a concept would come from. I wonder if all the soldiers smoked tobacco to keep from getting sick.
“When you think of me think where I am. It would make your hair stand out to be where I have been.”
I’m reading her letter as an outsider. I analyze her words and wonder why any one would decide to place themselves in such a situation. This quote is clear. Her experiences must have been full of distruction and chaos.
“I can tell you what made me leave home. It was because I had got tired of stay[ing] in that neighborhood. I knew that I Could help you more to leave home than to stay there with you. So I left. I am not sorry that I left you. I believe that it will be all for the best yet. I believe that God will spare my life to come home once more.”
Rosetta Wakeman was a woman who cared deeply for her family. Her love for them was so strong that she placed her life into direct danger by becoming a soldier.
“I don’t know how long before i shall have to go into the field of battle. For my part i don’t Care. I don’t feel afraid to go. I don’t believe there are any Rebel’s bullet made for me yet. Nor don’t Care if there is. I am as independent as a hog on the ice. If it is God will for me to fall in the field of battle, it is my will to go and never return.”
she seems so ready for her mortality.