On May 19, 1864 — about a month before his death — Thompson native and Union soldier Pvt. Henry Washington Brown did what he’d done for most of his military career: He wrote home.

“I had the Ague the night before last,” he wrote to his parents. “I had a chill about 9 o’clock. I vomited up everything in my stomach. It left me with a dreadful pain in the pit of my stomach. I was in such pain I was nearly distracted. I wish you would answer this if you can read it. I am liable to stay here some time.”

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