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


4 pages


Camp Near Bealeton Dec. 10 1863 My Dear Wife: A short time after I had mailed my last (the 8th), I read yours of the 29th which is the latest I have from you. - I don't know whether you have rec'd my trunk key - if you have please look over my papers and see if you can find an Ordnance Return of the Second Quarter of this year. I have some receipts in an envelope with some Retained Accounts, but whether they were put into the trunk or not, I do not know. If the key has not arrived when this reaches you, get some one to open the trunk. The lock is not very good + I suppose I shall have to get a new one any way. If there should be three (3) Ordnance Returns for the Second Quarter (ending June 30th*1863) send these all, with whatever voucher there may be with them Through not having these papers I was not able to make my Return for the Third Quarter and now the Fourth is about to expire. I am not certain that you will find the papers I need, my impression being that they were left in the drawer of a table I had sent up to *Tompkins* Square + sent back when we left the city, + have been *lost*. I have obtained *duplicates* of some of the vouchers if not all for the Third Quarter, so that I could *easily* make out my return if I had a copy of my return for the Second Quarter. Please make a thorough search. If you find them at all, it will be in an envelope without any *colurement* on it. Make the examination soon as the end of December will soon be here and I want the paper as speedily as possible, or to know that they were not in the trunk. You write on the 29th that it was bitter cold. I found it so too, and I had the full benefit of the weather. I was roused at twelve to go to the Brigade Commander to learn what we were to do the morrow and after I had learned there was little inclination to sleep. However, I had gone to bed early + the loss of sleep did not trouble. We started at three + when we reached our destination we were on the cold brow of a bleak hill where the cold wind almost froze our marrow. And there we stayed thro' the livelong day without fire + without food. Our Minnesota officers say they were suffered so much from cold even on the coldest days in that Northern region. It was almost like going back to one's home, to reach our old camp to find a rousing fire awaiting us and a supper *crackling* hot all ready for us. You need not send me the drawers at all, we buy new ones. I have two pairs patched up with the third so that I think I can make them serve me, until I can get home, by wearing them trim about with my *red ones*. - When you receive the check and the money from my pay *?* you will have funds enough to do as you choose about Xmas - and I hope you will do what you feel like doing. - *Miss Gregg's* charge seems to me to be high, as she is a young inexperienced teacher, deriving perhaps as much benefit from teaching Sella as she receives herself. But, I leave the matter with you to do what you think for the best. - Things are dull and monotonous enough in camp. It is too muddy to be pleasant to *walk* about and I have had enough riding for some time. We are jammed into together much closer than there was any necessity for, and for that very reason perhaps we shall be kept here all winter. Gen. Meade is expecting to be relieved: if he is we shall probably be pitched*across the Rapidann again and have another campaign similar to the operations of Burnside + #Hooker last winter. If he is not, the army will probably fall back near Washington to go into winter quarters. It is said, I know not how *?* that the Regular Cavalry + Artillery have been ordered away from this army - the former to the West + the latter to Washington. Goodbye Love. Thine L.B.B.#



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