United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865; Bruen, Luther Barnett--Correspondence
Fort Hamilton July 30, 1863 My Dear Wife: I am getting along very well. Not having had much experience in sprains, I am watching its different stages somewhat curiously. I don't remember the accident you refer to in your last. But this time, two or three days after I was hurt my foot began to grow blue, & nearly the whole of it took purple, some parts nearly black, parts of my toes were very blue. After this began to go away my big began to grow black; first I discovered on going to bed one night not having taken off my drawers nor socks the night before, owing to the absence of my orderly who was sick, I was surprised to find a dark blue spot about 1 1/2 inches square above my ankle. Now my leg half way up to my knee is pretty blue and *plenty of* the pain is there. However, everything is getting along very well. I am able to-day to step on my foot quite heavily and think I shall be able in a few days to walk about some. I haven't been away from my quarter further than Mr Burke for more than two weeks. The rumor to-day is that Gen. Brown is to take Command of this part after he has been returned that is the day after to-morrow. I do not know how true this is, but the story comes to me with so much circumstantially that I think there is great probability of its truth. This won't suit me and I shall try to get away just as soon as I can. I am determined to do no more duty under him, if I can possibly avoid it. Our new Comd Gen was here yesterday. He came without any pomp or circumstance and quietly inspected the fort. When he went away he knew something about the work, which cannot be said of much of the other inspecting officers who have been here during the past year. He is a lean Pete *oldish sort* of a man, not quite too old or attenuated, however, and remarkably taciturn. They say he *smiles* like *thunder* and is an excellent officer. It will be a bitter *dose* for Gen Brown to take command under him, but it seems a retired officer has no option. He must either go where he is ordered or resign. He would much rather not have a command than have it under Gen Canby, who, by the way is the Col of *L-Col* so King's regiment. I am very glad to learn that Howard has a prospect of getting promotion. There is nothing which soldiers so pant for as that. I shall try to write to him before long, as I ought to have done long ago. But for a while there was so much uncertainty as to where he would be that I thought it would be "Loves Labor Fort" to write to him, and *later* I have had more writing to do than I could conveniently manage. Young Miss *Mary* seems to be so *cross* that I am sorry you did not give her the *racer, new romantic* and sophomorious name I proposed. I am afraid she is inclined to "take after" her great-aunt, and if her manners do not improve soon I shall insist on having the name changed. I *am so disgusted* by the *crying brats* who live next door to me that I don't think I can have any affection for any body of that sort. I advise you to buy some *unclear* or Miss *Meadow's Soothing Syrup* which I have heard highly recommended, and try to get a little rest and peace for yourself. I don't think the baby ought to worry the life out of its mother. Perhaps if you got one or two good nights rest, the baby's bowels would be in better condition. Don't you think its worrying is the *unclear* of its worrying you? Love to every body, more particularly yourself. Thine as ever, L.B.B.
Catharine Mitchill '31 Collection of Family Letters, Wellesley College Library, Special Collections