Well John I think the Southern Confederacy is failed and the Union is all righ(t) again or soon will be. I think I can see the end of the rebellion. I think the hard fighting is all done now and I think the day is not far when we can all go home and live in peace. Since Richmond has come down and Lee has surrender the prospect looks favourable of us soon gitting home and I hope soon too then I will pay you all a visit in the Pine Hills. John I want you to let me know the nearest point to the Rail Road from where you live so I will know where to git of ove the cars when I come down. I will be down soon after I git home and I look to git home soon if all goes well.
I think I will git home a gainst July, I want to start as soon as the last gun is fired. I dont want to be on expence longer than possible well we air now near the Virginia line betwin Tenn and Virginia we was on ouer away to Lynchburgh but it over taken before we got thearer. So we air laying in the mountains but I we will soon start back to Chattanooga then I think the next move will be home Well John I have not mutch to write at this time but by me the next time I can give you more news. So I will close this
The letter was to John Cowan, born 1831, died 1902. Spouse of Catherine Mathias. Property maps of Fulton County PA from the 1860 show his property just west of Knobsville. Descendants of John are believed to be in the "Cowan's Gap Cowans" YDNA group. His parents are believed to be James Cowan and Elizabeth. DNA results and where he was living are consistent with Cowan's Gap Cowans, but documentation showing the relationship between James Cowan, and John Cowan, has not been found.
D.C. Miller was serving in the Union Army when he wrote this letter from Blue Springs, TN, in modern Greene County. He identifies John Cowan as a cousin, implying that John's mother may have been a Miller, and DC was her brother, but other relationships are possible. While its clear from the letter that DC is serving in the Union Army, no unit roster has been found to confirm this.