From the Battle of Pickett’s Mill: Last Letter Home

RoddieShawOne hundred and fifty years ago today, as the battle of Pickett’s Mill raged a few miles to the east, 21-year-old Lt. Roderick “Roddie” Shaw of the 4th Florida Infantry quickly ended a letter to his uncle: “I leave now for a skirmish myself for 24 hours. Goodbye until tomorrow evening.” The following morning, Shaw stood up from the cover of his rifle pit for some reason. The crack of a Union musket was heard, and Shaw dropped back into the pit, dead. The shot had struck his neck and severed his spine, killing him instantly. Incidents like this were common occurrences during the Atlanta Campaign, and they showed the changing face of the war in 1864.

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