ÒWhen I was taken I was surrounded by about 200 of Rebels, me and the Captain aloneÓ
Camp Convalescent VA
Sunday, July 12, 1863
I received your welcome letter yesterday afternoon and was glad to hear that you was all so well. I sat right down and made my little Ida a ring. I hope it will fit her. I made one before and broke it. I thought I would not try another one, but I see by your letter that she expected one so I went to work and made one and will send it in this letter. Poor little one, I am sorry she was so sick. I had to work hard to get it done yesterday. It was 2 oÕclock when I got your letter and I went to work and before dark last night I had it done. I wanted to send it in this letter.
Dear Clara, I have given up coming home. For all that I have tried, I still am here. They say we will be exchanged now pretty soon and then there will be no hopes of my getting home. I hope you will not be more disappointed than what I am. It seems as if I canÕt go back to my Regt. without seeing you.
I shall send my money to you now. I donÕt know whether I shall send it in this letter or by express. If it donÕt come in this, you may look for it by express. I will find out how much they charge by express. If they donÕt charge too much I will send it that way for I think it is safer. I will send you 20 dollars and then I will have 12 dollars left and I shall send ten of that afterwards if I donÕt get a furlough.
Dear Clara, I suppose the letters I write to my folks they donÕt get, for I saw a Utica Herald here with a letter advertised for George and I suppose it is one that I sent him about 2 weeks ago. I suppose by the time you get this you will have been to the picnic. I hope you enjoyed yourself first rate. When you answer this tell me how it came off. I wish I had of been there to go with you, but then I do see picnics enough here every day. I am getting sick of them. You know what I mean, drums, fifes and bugles and soldiers, I almost hate the sight and hearing of them.
Dear Clara, them stockings you spoke about, I will try and answer your question. At 37 cents a dozen, 4 dozen will come to 1 dollar and 48 cents or eleven shillings and ten cents, 12 shillings lacking 2 cents. But I suppose by 37 cents they call 3 shillings a dozen and that would make 12 shillings for 4 dozen. If they only paid you 11 shillings, they cheated you out of one.
Them pictures we had taken, you see Fletch stood in the best light. If I had of stood where he did we would look different. But then you know he is the best looking and maybe you look at that a great deal. His folks has one just the same. There is no difference between the two. Dear Clara, I canÕt think of anything else to write so I will come to a close. Take good care of your health and little Ida.
Bill Jones is nobody to tell you such stuff. Even if it was so, he did not act like a gentleman by telling you of it because I happened to belong to that Regt. There is some talk about Co. A, some of them surrendering themselves without a struggle. How true it is I canÕt tell, but thank God I was not one of them. As near as I can find out, there was about 18 of them that run in a house and then give themselves up, but I was not with them. When I was taken I was surrounded by about 200 of Rebels, me and the Captain alone.
And now hoping this may find you all as well as it leaves me, I will close. Hoping to hear from you soon. Give my love to all. God bless you my dearest wife.
I remain yours in love and truth,
Sergt. Co. A 146th Regt N.Y.Vols