Identifier

MSS.6.159

Date

7-20-1861

Subjects

United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865; Bruen, Luther Barnett--Correspondence

Notes

6 pages

Transcription

Ft Hamilton July 20th 1861 I rec'd yours of the 17th this afternoon, two or three hours ago, and have just taken my seat, my dearest, to begin a long letter to you. _ I called on Belle B. this afternoon, & had no difficulty in finding her. She was looking very well and professes to like Brooklyn very much. The school is growing & their prospects are good. Little Mary B. has grown lively & is quite pretty, tho' her mother says Mr B. spoiled her good looks by cutting off her curly hair. _ Last night we had a grand "sewing society" . I haven't been to one for some years, except at the Collin's last winter. This was a very differnt thing from what we usually see. We sent up the band from the fort & had a dance. I danced three times, but it wasn't much fun. It will be better when you come. Barney Williams & his wife (actors)was there; he sang two or three comic songs which amused us very much. They live at Bath, two or three miles from here, in very good style, I believe. Sunday night. I didn't get very far in my long letter last night, did I? Perhaps I shall do better tonight._ The suggestion came into my mind yesterday, that you had better bring Ernestine with you. I suspect we shall keep house! I will probably rent a furnished one tomorrow; & will certainly, if my interview with Major Clitz, who supercedes me tomorrow, should prove satisfactory. We are greatly mystified as to the position our regiment will be placed in by Congress, and are at present afraid that we shall be turned into volunteers. I think I shall hold on should this prove to be the case, at least until I get my money back. The effect of such action on the part of Congress would be to drive the republican officers back into their old places and perhaps give me a chance of promotion, which I should undoubtedly try to take advantage of. I would be consoled to some extent for the change by getting an addition of thirty or forty dollars per month to my pay. _ It will be pleasant to spend a few months on the sea shore and perhaps we shall not have another opportunity very soon. We will take advantage of it, therefore, so you may go on with yr preparations. _ If I rent the house you will fined Ernestine very useful, & if you should choose to make her cook & hire a nurse, you would feel much better satisfied that the bairns were not abused, if she were in the house. The house I propose to hire here has six rooms; a pretty large parlot & a bed room of the same size; a cozy little dining room, a kitchen & two other bed rooms. Houses are very scarce here, and the case-mates are too damp to put you and the children in. I don't like to bring you into them because there are no other ladies here now, and it would not be very pleasant to be surrounded by young officers & have them watching all your movements. If Robert does not want to keep the office open, he had better have the things moved out and give it up. I would rather, however, that he would do nothing until we are certain what Congress will do for our regiment. If we are made regulars then shut up shop. There is a man to be found at J.M.Lewis tailor shop who will do to superintend the moving. Jack Jordan has spoken for the office if we give it up. I would not like to sell to A. *Hiresman* unless he pays the money, I might as well give my books away. By the way his father has a German book in 4 vols. which he ought to return. _ I have not thought of any thing for you to bring since my last but a *coil* oil lamp. I think we have a very good one at home which will come in play here very well. Please hunt it up & get it ready for use._ On second thought, I believe we took back our good one, but if we have cheap one, it will save the price of another. So you thought I was coming home for you, so did I until you wrote, you would prefer to have me go home with you. I would avoid the two trips, if possible, on account of the expense. You must not think of coming on alone. You need not give any one much trouble. Your baggage except a small carpet sack ought to be checked thro' to New York. You will then have no trouble with it. Prepare enought eatables to last you a day or longer, & put a bottle & cup in your basket, so that you can give the children a drink whenever they wish one. Telegraph me when you start & by what route. You had better not give up your baggage checks to the Express man who will ask you for them unless he will send them to the Fort. Our Head Quarters are no 38 Broadway & if the baggage could be got there before 11 A.M. it would come right down to the Fort. I will write you further about this, before you start. _ I do not think it likely that I shall be sent on the recruiting service. Majors never are. I dont think you can do without a nurse & think you had better bring E. _ I think I have expounded the washing question sufficiently, at any rate, if we live in our own house, we can do as we please. _ Our groceries we can buy of the quartermates & get them at the cost price, so that we can live quite as cheap and a thousand times more comfortably than we could at a boarding house, or the hotel. _ You can go out of the Fort with the children as much as you please if we live in it, ditto _ er if we live outside. Cant you manage to come east with your aunt Caroline? _ As to books, bring what you like, but not too many. You may bring Burns & Ben Johnson for me and a scrap book which you will find at the office, on one of the shelves on the north side_ I believe I have answered all your questions, so I'll just kiss you & the bairns & say good night. Husband

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