My plan with this blog is to publish letters on the 150th anniversary of each individual one. So for example, my first letter publishing will be September 3, 2011, exactly 150 years to the day when John sent home his first letter to his parents Peter and Katherine Derr. Before that first letter is published, I will blog on background for John and his family to give you a feel for his life and times. Now...I warn all of you that these letters, while being unique for being together after 150 years, are...in general....rather boring. You will be seeing the writings of a common soldier. Not a General or a Captain. Not a great strategist or world leader. Just a common soldier...who at the time...was more interested in where is pay ended up, or getting a parcel from his parents to supplement his diet. Still, I hope you enjoy them as much as I have over the years.