A Letter of Sympathy*

    Mary Grey Pitts, the daughter of Phillip Henry Pitts and his wife, Margret (Davidson) Pitts, of Pitts Folly, in Uniontown, wrote the following letter to her future husband, Lieutenant Mims Walker, a soldier in Longstreet's Corps, containing the sad intelligence of the death of his brother, John Marshall (Mack) Walker, and her brother, John Davidson Pitts. At the time of his death, May 24, 1864, "Mack" Walker was a Captain in the 36th Alabama Regiment. He died of wounds received at Resaca, Georgia, a week before his death. John Davidson Pitts, who was only 19 years old at the time of his death, was a member of Company D, 4th Alabama Regiment. He was killed at Gaines Mill, Virginia, on June 27, 1862.

                                                                Near Union Town Ala.
                                                                          May 31, 1864
    Mr. Mims Walker,
    How shall I express my heart felt sympathy for you in the loss of your brother Mack. Sympathy sounds so cold to you in this your dark hour of grief, and at best avails but little-but nothing earthly or human can alleneate [sic] your sufferings, so I pray God to have mercy upon you and reconcile you to your loss. You have doubtless heard through your own family of your brother Mack's sufferings and death. I have not been out to see dear Sallie as yet-thinking her grief too sacred to intrude upon. I too have mourned the loss of a darling brother, and oh! well do I know how desolate the heart feels after sustaining such a loss. Human nature never feels its own littleness so well as when standing around the bed side of some loved one writhing in pain-who is calling upon any and all to help. Oh! how frail and insignificant we are when we look at ourselves in the right light! In the wildness and bitterness of your grief I trust you may look into the rock from which you are hewn and to the pit from whence you are dug!...Oh! how I wish that the Cemetary of Woodville was properly kept. It hurts my feelings to go up there and see the neglect of the dead. Poor dear John and Mack rest near each other. I trust they rest in peace and pray God they may rise in glory...

* Harris, W. Stuart, Perry County Heritage: A History of Perry County 1814-1877, W. Stuart Harris, 1991, pp.216-217


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