Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Civil War Letters

On one of my trips to visit my mother back in the early 1950s I noticed a beautiful old desk that she had recently inherited from her father.

Stuffed into one of the pigeon holes were 35 letters that were written by my great grandfather to his son during the Civil War. They were all in the original envelopes stamped and dated from 1863 to 1865. They are now in my possession and will eventually be donated to the Mystic Seaport Museum.

The letters are a treasure trove of family life during the war, and describe in great detail his ship building activity during that period. Here is what he wrote to his son on "Sunday evening, January 4, 1863."

"We raised our new flag on the Ship house on New Years for the first time, and the next day on receipt of the Proclamation of President Lincoln freeing over 3 millions of slaves. We hope we are commencing a new Era. At any rate the Government has taken the stand and if they are properly backed up by the People it must succeed sooner or later. We are progressing and I think that we shall not go back"

more to come.


Ginnie said...

Bud, this is absolutely fascinating. I know that the Mystic Seaport Museum is a great place but wouldn't more people see these if you were to donate them to the Smithsonian? I would imagine these letters are really valuable and might fill in some gaps for the Civil War buffs.

kenju said...

I vote for the Smithsonian too, Bud, unless you have a special connection to Mystic Seaport Museum. What a wonderful collection to have!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

This is really an amazing letter....And here we are, all these many many years later....145 years...right? Still struggling with many deep prejudices in this regard. These are such treasures, Bud.....I hope you will share more of these with us.

cameron said...

hey brands, this is so interesting. am sending to william as he is such a history buff too!