United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865; Forrer, Sarah Hastings Howard--Correspondence; United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Women
[Howard Affleck + the Pattersons] Dayton June 7th 1862 Dear Augusta I have just returned from opening your house. All is well there excepting that you are not in it and I miss the merry laugh of the dear little ones and thy sweet smile of welcome. I hope the time is not far distant when I shall see them all. Uncle has been cutting the grass, but has not quite finished, which gives the yard a rather ragged appearance. I sent the sermon on Death to Aunt Mary and also thy letter, and received an answer a few days ago. She is in deep grief which nothing seems to relieve in the least. She was very much pleased with thy kind letter and said she had not read the Sermon, but would do so, and hopes she would find some consolation in it. I wished much to bring her home with me but she thought she could not come now. I have just heard Mr. Gregg is dying. Thee remembers the Gregg's family, that Sallie *Wilson* wrote to thee about. It seems his health is not good at any time, now he has pneumonia. He will leave a destitute family I fear. How much misery there is in the world! I am glad thee had a visit from your Uncle and Sister, and it must have been pleasant to see Mary Shaw too. Does thee wish the sermon on death to be preserved for thee? I told Mary to save it, for I did not know whether thee wished it or not. I have all the papers thee sent safe for thee wherever thee may want them. We have had a pleasant visit from Kate Kelly, of four days. She is very pleasant, more so i think than any of the sisters, and we expect Mrs. K. and your Aunt Caroline to come soon. They will make a short stay. I stopped one day in Columbus, as I came home with Caroline, and, we took tea with Mrs K. She is pleasantly situated and seems as happy as I ever saw her. If one must be left, it is well to be left so comfortably situated as she is. I saw Robert Corwin in the street a few days ago, He was going to Washington soon he said. I asked him if he would see L. soon. He said possibly, and then said "I think Luther had better resign." "I do not think a man with a family ought to go to war" Well, said I. Tell him so. John is full of admiration of the children, all, but of Rob in particular. he thinks he is "grand". I think the journey has benefitted him. I am sorry very that Mary could not go with them, It would have been so very fine an opportunity, and I think Betty could have kept house very well; but she was afraid to leave in my absence, And, indeed, she was not prepared to leave home; for I have put off her work to the last. I think of doing something for her this week. And hope nothing will prevent me. The past week has been rather a fatiguing one owing to company. And I have done very little in the way of sewing. Betty is still with me, and when her friends send her word they would come and bring her home to them. She refused and said she wished to stay with us always unless we wished her to go away. Of course I wish her to stay, and hope she will. How it will be if they actually come and coax her I do not know, but am sure it is better for her as well as me that she should stay. I wonder if Sella is not going to write a letter to grandmama, and tell her all about the Fort and her dear little brothers & Papa and Mamma? Tell her I saw a little cousin of ours, while I was away. Little Mary Howard Patterson. A very sweet little girl. I know she would like to play with her. She lives about two miles from Bridgeport on a high hill from which we can see for miles around the country. A very pretty place it is, and a sweet little cottage the Dr., her grandpapa, has built for them to live in. It is the place where poor cousin Howard lived, and farmed before he went into the army, from which he came only to die. There I saw a pair of beautiful white turkeys which he bought at Worthington, while *encamped* there, for his sister, little Mary Howard's mother. I hope you will all visit them, the Pattersons, some day and become acquainted with them. We are all pretty well. Remember me affectionately to Luther and the Children. As ever thy Mother Mrs A.B.Bruen Fort Hamilton, N.Y. Harbor, N.Y.
Catharine Mitchill '31 Collection of Family Letters, Wellesley College Library, Special Collections