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Madison, N.C.

Sept. 10, 1863

Gov. Vance, Honored Sir: 

          I trouble you with a few lines to inform you of some matters up here in Old Rockingham. My motive; viz, the good of my county; is my only apology.

          I am glad to say we have few deserters in our county. There are however a few in the north west corner where there are several disloyal persons residing. Our Home Guard was called out yesterday to attempt the arrest of these deluded men. The Regt consisted probably of one hundred men, horse and infantry; a few had good arms, many with inferior ones, and some without any: while some were on horse back, some on foot, and some in buggies.

          These undrilled and unequipped men, are gone to cope with drilled men, armed to the teeth. Six Bush Whackers of the kind can kill and disperse the whole Regt.

          Now while I will give up my husband cheerfully as any other woman to serve his country; I do protest against his being taken into the woods to be shot down like a deer. Besides, it is impossible to catch many deserters, while the tories harbor them, and feed them.

          With great deference to your far better judgment, let me suggest a plan to reach these dangerous enemies. It is this. Send a few Regulars into each of the worst counties, with orders to quarter on the disloyal portion of the population, until the deserters are brought in, self interest will soon compel them to lend their assistance. This has been tried in Floyd Co., VA, with the happiest effects.

          If the Regulars can not be spared, I will not object to my husband’s going to help fill their places for a time; where he will be prepared to defend himself and his country.

          I will simply mention that in Guilford Co, the mass of the common people are Tories. Forsythe and Randolph are little better. It is not uncommon to hear people wishing “Jeff Davis and his Cabinet were hung”; that “The Yankees would come through” and many similar things.

          When mothers, wives, and sisters, talk thus, what can we expect but desertion from the army? I am ashamed and sorry that these things are so; but I can only use my limited influence, and pray the Great Ruler of Nations to open their understandings, that they may see the right way.

          Please pardon this trespass upon your time and patience; and accept the congratulations of a patriotic woman, upon the happy manner in which you guide the great helm of the “Good Old North State.”

Very Respectfully,

Mrs. M.B. Moore

[Endorsed:] File—Reply that regular soldiers can’t be spared. The militia must help.  ZBV

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