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


4 pages


Nokesville Va. Feb. 1. 1864 My Dear Wife: Your letter dated the 24th and post-marked the 28th was received this evening. When the mail came, I helped to assort it, but there appeared to be no letter for me. So I sat down disconsolate to play long-seven-up with Capt. Winthrop. While playing an officer came in and began to over-haul the pile. He presently handed me one which he said appeared to belong to me. I took it very eagerly you may be sure. Reading your letter is about the only comfort I have, for I haven't quite reconciled to sitting down in the mud and spending the winter in it, as now seems my destiny. The newspaper to-day contains the Proclamation announcing another of 500,000 men. That's the way to do it. I hope the War Powers have determined to have enough men to finish up the rebellion this summer. It can be done if the ranks of our regiments are all full, but not without. We are beginning to think the job is too easy, but we shall undoubtedly find some hard places before the war is over. If we all think the task a hard one, and exert ourselves accordingly, I guess it will all come right. We have had just such weather as you describe, but it is pretty much forgotten in the past two or three days of rain and fog and mud. It rained all last night and most of today, but cleared away at sunset. It is foggy to-night. Bad weather keeps us close at home, and going about is rather dangerous on account of the guerrillas. I shall have some cavalry under my command to-morrow and then we can take care of ourselves when we take a ride. My Head Quarters is on hills which tho not much elevated above the land near me, still commands a very fine view of the surrounding country. I have not ridden over it yet but shall in a few days. I have very pleasant times with my officers generally. At present Capt. S. is on a big drunk. He went to Alexandria to attend a court martial as a witness and came back in two or three days on a high old bust. I have him shut up in his tent to prevent scandal. When he get rational again I mean to tell him such conduct won't answer, and if he transgresses in like manner again I shall send him back to his regiment. You know he is Gen'l Meade's brother in law, and would no doubt have been on his staff but for his disgusting drunken sprees. In these he is very much like Charley Soule. I have heard that when away on leave of absence he generally goes home drunk and remains so while there. You have very little idea how disgusting he is when *very* drunk, and how his sweet little wife can preserve any respect or love for him passes my understanding. I congratulate Miss Mary on the first tooth; I hope she will get through with them all before next summer. So Susie C. has got her name in the newspaper: she has made an *early/easy* start. By the way, has Robert gone back to Washington yet? I suppose he would by this time. Perhaps he has some business at home which will detain him. I wrote to him two times since and am anxious to know when he does come, that I may try to see him. People talk of the excitement of a soldier's life: they don't know how dreary and dull it is for about nine tenths of the time. We are having the monetary part now with a vengeance. Remember me to Sella and Frank #and Rob and to yourself! Thine as ever and forever, L.B.B.#



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