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


6 pages


[1862] Fort Hamilton Dec. 23. This is pretty near Xmas, my dear, but I afraid it wont bring much fun for either of us this year. I don't know but I may go up to the city then and on New Years day to see how they do things in Gotham, but I am not certain that I shall do so much even as that. Your note reached me yesterday, but as you have not told me when the taxes must be paid and what is the amount thereof, I can do nothing till I hear from you again. I am sorry those costs are so long coming. - Good for sister Brady! But I am afraid she will hardly be paid for her long and tiresome journey. However, traveling is not much harder than working as she does at home, so I hope she will enjoy it. I should be very glad to see her here, but do not expect to. I wrote Howard and Mary on Sunday; and hope both letters will get thro' safely. Having send you a letter by the afternoon mail of Saturday, I tho't I'd give my usual letter-only to the other two. I suppose you won't be very mad. The defeat at Fredericksburgh made me very sad for a while, but I felt very much relieved when the army got back to their side of the Rappahannock. All was not lost, at any rate. And I have not lost my confidence in Burnside. This is his first defeat and he has not won his last victory, I think. Still, one may be almost excused for despairing of his country make so many trying defeats and so many evidences of weakness in high quarters. The 'crisis' in the Cabinet has tended to make matters look worse, and altho' *that* temporarily *plantend* up, the public will have little confidence in its harmony or earnestness, until the government has made some decided progress in "crushing out" the rebellion. Emma, I believe has quite captivated the carpenter. He has made her a very nice kitchen table which was brought home yesterday. She says she is to have it when we go away. To-night he is "keeping company" with her in the kitchen. I suspect they have met each often at Ann's, and that the visit is quite agreeable. I believe he has been in the habit of bringing shavings from the shop to her daily, for a week or two. I suppose the shavings will show which way the wind blows quite as well as straws are said to. Gen Schenck, you see, has assumed command at Baltimore. I had a chance to write a letter to him to-day, but preferred communicating directly with the adjutant General. I may have to write to him yet. It will be very pleasant to subscribe myself "your off sent" to him wont it? But there is lots of humble pie in this world and somebody must eat it. It would be very selfish in me to decline eating my share and thereby compel some poor fellow to eat a double portion. So I shall bolt it. Life is quite dull in the Fort, tho' if you were here I doubt not I should think it pleasant enough. I have written what I think about you coming on, and hope you will not be in too much of a hurry to get back, if you think staying will be pleasant and beneficial. I don't want you to expose yourself to a long and cold ride & come here to feel the worse for it all winter. Some ride will have to be run, undoubtedly, but I should like to make it as small as possible. I can't very well send you any money till after New Year, perhaps not then. There is some doubt as to whether the paymaster will have funds to pay us this month. I shall try to get it if any money comes, very hard. I was lucky last month, but may be less fortunate this. You had better not make your calculations to start before the 15th of January and I intend, if I can manage it to meet you at Buffalo. That is, on the whole the pleasantest route, and I can meet you nearer home on it than on any other. Captain Wilkinson's case has not yet been disposed of. He has a companion in arrest, Lt Dewey, who he proudly claims to be as "low flung" as he is. How Lt Dewey will come out, I don't know, but he has been very careless, disobeyed orders & made a great deal of trouble so that I was obliged to put him through. He has some good points, but I am afraid will never make a good officer. I regret that is my luck to bring officers before a Court Martial, but I am bound to do what I consider my duty regardless of consequences. Besides, I should probably get myself severely rapped on the knuckles if I did not take notice of the delinquencies of those under my command. - Has Sella got well enough to go to school yet? Tell all the children that Papa wants to see them very much & would send many kisses if the paper would hold them. Love to all, from thine dearest



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