Roswell Farnham to Laura

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Head Quarters 12th. Regt. Vt. V. M.Wolf Run Shoals Va.March 21st. 1863Dear Laura:

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Your letter of March 16th. was rec'd last night & Mary & I read it with a great deal of interest. I am glad you are getting along so well at home & really feel that you have an establishment of your own. It will do you good to be dependent upon yourself more than you ever have before.

I am glad the pictures pleased you. The ambrotype was the best one that has been taken here. The reason that Mary's face is not clearer is her horse did not stand still. He moved his head as you will see by looking at the bit, & that shock her.

I did not think Mr. McKeen would read my letter in the Sabbath School or I should have been more particular. I wrote to him in quite a haste, but hope there was nothing that should not have been said.

I meant to have written you to have a glass put over the picture & am glad you intend to have it done.

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Remember me to Aunt Mary. I would not bandy words with Tom Johnson or any secessionist. It is not worth the time.

If Dea. Shaw is willing to keep the money you had better let him do it & only pay you the interest. Be sure not to use any of the principal. Consult with Mr. Batchelder in regard to it. He will explain it all to you. The note you have in your hands belongs to you & it being in my name (if it is) makes no difference. It is that note, I suppose, that Dea.Shaw wants to pay the money upon. The notes were all written running to me, so as to save trouble.

If Mr. Shaw insists upon paying the money you will have to take it, if due. If it is not due you had better take only the interest as it is secured by mortgage & you will find it difficult to invest money now.

Give my very best regards to the Misses McKeen as well as to their father & Mrs. M. Tell Phebe that I received a "Christian Banner" from "Jenny Bradford", & the reason that I have not acknowledged it directly is that I have hardly felt in a fitting mood to do so. Say that I appreciate all the kindness expressed in the compliment to my goodness, & will try to deserve the good opinion of my friends.

I believe now I have answered your letter.

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I have written to Col. Webster in regard to Cyrus & shall hear from him soon. His address is Col. J. D. Webster, 1st. Ill. Light Artillery, Superintendent Military R. R. Memphis, Tenn. I wish we could have known that Cyrus was sick or could have had one word of communication with him. Let his matters at home rest until I get home & then we will have every thing arranged satisfactorily to us both.

You now see how Ormsby's course has injured you & me as well as Cyrus. He has an execution against Cyrus for over $500. & that will take his share of the property to pay.

I wish I had one of Cyrus's miniatures out here I should be glad to have some of my friends see it. I wonder if he knew where I was.

We have just had another snow storm. We have had snow or rain every two days since this month came in, & it is getting to be very unhealthy here. Twenty in the Bradford Co. are sick, and within the past week nine have died in the Regt. The health of the Regt. is much better than it was five days ago.

My health has been very good, tho for the past two days I have suffered from a very sore throat. It is better this morning. I have kept within doors pretty well as it is now snowing & did yesterday.

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Col. Blunt is now at the Station all the time and that leaves me in command of the Regt. At present I am also in command of the detachment at Wolf Run Shoals, as Col. Randall is away. So that my command consists of two Regts. and a Battery of six pieces. I say this to you so that you may see how responsible a place I am in at times. My horse has taken a new turn & is getting better. It will be a month however before he will do to ride much.

You have before this seen some acc't fo the cavalry fight at Kelly's Ford on the Rappahannock the 17th. We heard the guns all the afternoon distinctly. Artillery was used to cover the crossing of the cavalry. We shall not probably have any fighting in this vicinity, altho small rebel bands are continually patrolling on the other side of the Occoquan. We took a rebel Major & three men near Dumfries the other day & they took one of our picket posts last week, consisting of four cavalry men. Our picket line is alarmed almost every night but there will be no extensive fighting here.

Write often. Remember me to Mr. Strickland, Chas. Harding & other friends.

Mary sends love to you & Mc. & to the McKeen girls. Mary says she wont have the McK. girls put in after Mac.

Yours affectionatelyRoswell Farnham