Joseph Rutherford to [Hannah Rutherford]

Primary tabs

Page: of 3
Download: PDF (12.65 MiB)
Download: JP2 (423.4 KiB)
Camp at Whites Ford MdFeb 22d 1863My dear Wife

Page 1

I received yours of the 13th night before last and it [      ] me buy much, for I did not know but you or some of the children might be sick. I am sorry you were so much disappointed about my coming home so much should liked to have had the pleasure of being there I have made an application for a leave of absense and been refused. But I am going to try again and again, and see if I cant worry them out. The Col felt as much disappointed as I did. I will send you a letter he wrote me and you care judge for yourself. I stared in the highest favor with the Col. and he will do any thing in the world for me consistant with duty. A short time ago they sent for me to go to Washington to go into one of the general Hospitals but the Col said no or cant spare him he is regards the sanitary conditions of the regiment he listens to and has served out ever to stoping chills in bad weather. He is a noble man and he has the esteem and love of the whole regiment

Page 2

He [    ] for their comfort and physical well being and to ill that or abuse one of his men would be considered as a direct insult to himself and whenever he comes to visit us there heart felt cheers form the many threats of a thousand men send the air.

If I got a leave of absense it will be a very short one seven (7) days as it is all that any one can get now. But I feel that that will be better than nothing so much do I want to see you.

We are expcting to be paid off again in a few days and I hope it will be before I go home if I can "get to go". You explain about Lady lightfoot? and ask if I have parted with her? I could hair part a with her 50 trains if I would - No! I have not, nor will not part with her, there is not another horse in the regiment that I would exchange her for. This pretty smart - and trusty. No matter when or how or where I [     ] her she is as true as the sun. In jumping ditches or fording streams no matter how deep the water she is faithful. Do you think I could part with her under such circumstances? And if we are both spared to return from the War, we shall never be separated. And if any thing should happen to me it is my wish that you should have Lady sent to you, as my faith-

Page 3

ful friend and that Helen keep her as a gift from me. She is such a splendid saddle beast. You ask me to tell you all the little [        ] of my experience. There are hundreds of things that I could tell you, but I was in hopes to be able before this to tell them in person, and I can never think of any thing when I am writing. We are having another very soon snow storm with very high wind - and you can judge how or rack our frail horses and how cold a thin cloth house must be in such a storm. And there imagine our indignation, and contempt for [    ] scoundrally rascals at home who are trying with all their vile machanations to injure our cause and make our position still more trying. But a day retrobution is close at hand for there northern secessionist. The reaction has already command. And then wont there be a wailery such as their false hearts never dreamed of. If htey think it will be a [    ] thing to have their hearth stons made disrotate and their face lands blood battle fields let them come here and see the terrible efforts of a civil war. Just so [    ] as there is a God in heaven, if they do not cease their traitorous croakings they will have our guns turned upon them and with a

Page 4

will too. To think that we are suffering all the hardships of a life in the field and deprived of all the comforts of home both social and physical and all for the purpose of preserving to there very traitors the blessing of a fun and happy country, and then have then use all the means in their powers to aid and encourage the mortal enemys of theirs, and our, peace and happiness, is more than a true soldier and patriot will submit to in peace or silence. I am itterating the sentiments of every true soldier in our great army. They the "Copper heads" need not flatter [        ] that there is discontent in the army because a few miserable traitors like themselves direct or with home vile and infamous letters. They are always ready hear and believe, and cerculate evil reports of any thing [         ]our army, or our efforts, but an wilfully silent of any thing good concerning us Oh! the vile dogs how I would like to drown them. You speak of some that you would like to see drafted. I think you will soon have your wish grattified as there has a law been passed by congress to draft Every able bodied man (members of Congress not eccepted) in the loyal states. Wont these rotten [         ] them? Look on first page

Page 5

I have said more than I inteded to about our feelings her, and perhaps more than you care to hear, but then I got to thinking of the subject I get only indignant. You speak of Mr Parker feeling slighted - I am very sorry for it for I do not intend to slight any one. You tell him that I should have written to him before now but I was expecting to go home and then tell him all the news. You must give him my best respects also give Mrs P my high regards. Tell Mrs Sargent that if I can possibly get time I shall go and see her husband before I come home He is about 40 miles from me but that shall not make any differance provided I can get to him.

We are going to have religious services in my tent at 4 oclock P.M. and we anticipate a pleasant time. It being so stormy that we cannot have our usual services out of doors - so the officers are going to enjoy preaching the best we can. We are now of us any better than or should be, but we do enjoy our religous exercises. I wish elder Hall could jsut step in and see us I have wided my old singing faulties - and we have great times singing [      ] and secular music. We have some excelent singer among the officers, and I can assern you that it does away with what otherwise would be very lonely hours. If there is any more true direction in the service

Page 6

on the Sabath at home than there is here I am glad of it, but I dont [      ] it. I do not believe there are over 20 men in the regiment but have their Bible and hope book, and in some of the companies there are prayer muting held two or three times a week. Do people think we can be such a depraved set under such circumstances?

Tell Helen that I have got a piece of Music that I want her to learn when I come home so we can sing it together. If I do not [    ] I will send it to her. The title of it is - "There is music in the air" a short prety thing. We officers sing it a great deal. I do not want you to anticipate my coming home for it is very doubtful and one reason it it is very generally behind that we are on the Eve of some great event or movement which if time will knock all hopes of [    ] home fictile. I have not sen any thing of little your picture yet. You do not know how anxious I am to get it. How I do want to see the children and you too, and I hope I may be permited to see you all before long.

I must close this for it is really cold to write with any comfort I shall time to write more in this before the mail leaves therefore I will lay it aside for the present.

Page 7

Monday morning Feb 23d. The sun rose this morning in all its glorious splendor but the air is very sharp and cold. It was a very cold night last night, the coldest we have had this winter. I hope we shall not have many more such days or nights. The weather is very changable here, this morning we have to huddle around the fire to keep any way comfortable - by 3 o'clock it probably be warm enough to do without overcoats. You speak of the [        ] of some of our friends. Let them work a day will come by and by and then let them trouble for by the all that is good I will make them suffer for it.

I am well and feeling will exempt my disappointment in not going home. Give my love to the children and accept thousands for yourself

Ever Your loving husbandJ. C. Rutherford