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


6 pages


1 Fort Hamilton Aug. 8. 1863 My dear Wife: Your last letter reached me last evening, a little behind time but very welcome. I believe I forgot to allude to myself in my last and for fear of a similar omission this time, I will just say here, that I am getting along a great deal better than I hoped to. The swelling has nearly left my foot, and it is very little painful to the touch except in one or two places. The shin has regained its usual color and on level ground I can walk about with very little inconvenience. If I could wear my boots, I should go to Slater's to board to-morrow. I intend to dine there to-day, with Capt. *Pell*, who is employed on the new *port*. He is a pleasant gentleman and his wife has been very kind to me. We all boarded together at Miss Bigelow's. We got along very well with our Vol. *Corps* Officer. When he first assumed command Capt. Putnam got on his high horse and began to rampage, for to say sooth, he has put on a good many airs since he has been praised for his conduct during the riots. I told him to contain himself if possible, and not to borrow trouble (I frequently give that piece of advice you know) -- that perhaps it would not be so very bad after all. Well, when we came to know our *Capt* we found him a very agreeable companionable man, a good officer who was rather disgruntled at being obliged to assume command, and not at all disposed to interfere with any of us. Stacey is Port Adjutant and the Col. is governed in a great degree by his suggestions, which of course are all in our favor. I send you enclosed the scrip certificate which can be used this year in part payment of the premium on my life insurance. When I get my pay this month I will send you the whole of it, which will be enough, I think to pay my interest to Johnson Perrine and the balance of the premium too. If it shd fall a little short, you can get the deficit if it is necessary to pay it before I can send you more; it won't be more than ten or twelve dollars. -- How many fancy flannel shirts have I? I can only find two besides that brown striped one. I have an impression that I brought three. How is it? There are but two now that I can find. -- I do not think that Mrs. Lay has been at the fort, at any rate she didn't call on me and I have heard nothing from her for a long time until I rec'd your letter. -- Piper has been here several days. He was married to Miss Ross on Thursday. Franklin was groomsman and gave them a wedding dinner at the Maison dorée. He came back sick as I believe I told you in my last letter. He has had his leave extended and will be here the *most* of the present week. I don't think you need ever distress yourself about sending *patterns* to Mrs. *Oxley* -- who desires to be remembered to you and expressed a strong wish to see you again. Her children are about as sorry specimens as I have ever seen. The younger cries incessantly and both are running about in the dirtiest and most ill-fitting garments that ever were seen. She seems to have no taste, and no faculty for dressing them. Indeed she seems to me to pay very little attention to them. Their father who is by no means particular, is constantly ordering them into the house to get clean clothing on them but they seldom get it. His arm is doing well and the doctors hope to save it. I think it very doubtful, however, as he is very *fretful* and almost childish about letting the Dr. get out a piece of bone which must be got out before his arm can get well. The Dr. says it couldn't hurt him more than it would to be bled. 2 Yet he can't be persuaded to have the operation performed. Doesn't it seem strange that a man who could stand up to shot at for weeks should have so little resolution when he is called upon to endure. We had a grand review this afternoon. All the troops at the port were out. The Review did not go off very well -- perhaps as well as should have been expected. I would give a good deal to be with you this evening. I long to have a good romp with our dear little ones and to see and kiss the little stranger. I fear however this great pleasure will be denied me for some time, nor can I look so far into the future as to be able to guess when I shall enjoy this blessed privilege. It may be nearer than I imagine, but I "don't see it." We shall have to possess our souls in patience until the good time comes round. I think we shall have it some day, but perhaps not until the "cruel war is over." That is on its last legs now I think, but unless vigorously dealt with, it may *near* a good while *or then*. The war is dragging very slowly now, and I doubt if any thing will be done of any importance -- except the operations at Charleston -- before next month. After the severe marching of the Army of the Potomac in the last campaign the men need rest. *Rosecrans* may do something, but he is the only general who seems to be ready to march. I hope he will go into East Tennessee, and clean out the rebs, without any unnecessary delay. The people of that region have suffered so much that it is high time they were under the protection of the glorious old flag once more. -- Kissing wife and bairns by letter is not satisfactory, but that's the only way I have to do it now. Oceans of love to all of you. From Luther



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