Valentine G. Barney to Maria Barney
One year ago to day or this evening rather my company was organized and I got
home about midnight to tell you the news of my election which was not very
pleasant to you then, but I think since you have come to the conclusion that it
was the best thing I could have done and perhaps saved me from being drafted and
obliged to serve as a private besides having the dishonor heaped upon me of
being a conscript Nearly a year has past since I left home and many changes have
been wrought since that time I think has been a year of benefit to me I think I
prepared to get along with the world than ever before. in fact this is one grand lesson one thing is certain we will all be content with less comforts at home than we used to be When I left you I thought that one would year would see this war ended but I dont know as it looks more like ending than it did at that time but it cant last forever that's certain. We were very unexpectedly paid off yesterday 2 mos pay and up to the 1st of May. I will send in a few days an order for my allotted pay which is $ 120- and a hundred of what I draw here so you will have more money than you know what to do with- I find on figuring up and counting what is now due me that I have saved for the year a little over
$800- I counted in the amt I recd before I left which you have paid and called in $200- which leaves 600 on hand. you have 100, 120 in Treas. I have 200 and 180 is now due me, which makes 600 This is full as well as I expected considering the amount I expended in going home and the high price of every thing we have to buy. There are but few officers who save as much as that I am in hopes of saving enough to be able to go into some business when I shall have done with war. We are getting along here after the old sort. Two regs of our Brigade are out to the Black Water river on a reconnaisance we expected to go but for some reason were left The 99th N.Y. Reg. (one of our brig) had some trouble after they left here and got into quite a mutiny
Twenty of the ring leaders were arrested and sent back, and our men have been guarding them. They are kept marching constantly night and day and are now on their third day. They have only bread and water to eat and carry their knapsacks when they refuse to march they are "gagged and bucked" for four hours which is worse than marching. The Gen says he wants to almost kill them before he lets them off. I have heard nothing as yet from the new promotions but we expect every day to get some news of them and see the newly promoted gents come out with new straps on. I expect my Orderly will be 2nd Lieut but of some other Co. Every old 1st Lieut will be Capt except Sherman and there would be no hopes for him.
if he should be in the regt till dooms day in fact no more than there is for me to get promoted. and I dont think as much, for he is looked upon as "small potatoes" by all the officers and there is no doubt that if I had a different 1st Lt. I would have been better off myself, but "what cant be cured must be en- dured" (dont mention the above) I am glad James Ballard has concluded to build his house for I like good neighbors You may tell Mary I am glad we have no window in the back of our bed room because I hate awfully to be kept awake nights hearing babies cry- As A. Ward says "N.B. Sarcasm" Well I guess you will think
this letter a mixed up mess but as there are many uninteresting things and but a few interesting they are con sequently mixed. Lt. Jewett is stretched out on the bed (if I may call it one) reading the last St A. Messenger. he gets them regular and writes for it occasionally so we deep posted on Vt. news I continue well with the exception of slight diarrhea and this warm weather effects most every one the same How does your garden get along and how do the children do? do they sing any I want them both to learn so they can sing with me when I get back Kiss them both and look our for their health as well as your own.
Affly Yours. V.G. Barney
Capt. Co. A. 9th Vt.