Joseph Spafford to Mary Jane Spafford

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Miss M. J. Spafford
Upper FallsVermont


Manson House Hos.Alexandria Va.Sunday Mar 30thMy Dear Sister

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Your letter was so long coming that I began to think I was not going to hear from home again at present but at last it came & you can easily guess how wellcome it was. I recd a letter, or a few lines, from Ellen in a paper and answered it by writing her a letter in which I told her she might tell you I was not going to write home again until I recd a letter from there; I stuck to my word. I recd a letter last night, and answer it to day. - This hospital life grows rather dull after one gets to feeling pretty well. Rainy days when passes are not given to go out, I sit in my room all day long reading, writing, and thinking. I hear from my room, from the time I first wake in the morning till I go to sleep at night the clank, clank, clank, of the

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soldiers (artillery & cavalry) swords as they rattle on the sidewalk as they are passing up & down. That sound is almost as regular as the ticking of a clock, from morning till night. The artillery & cavalry swords are very large ones with steel scabbard and consiquently make a great deal of noise. Every little while we hear a band, and look from our window to see the Regts as the come in here, to go “down the river”. There was a Regt just come in and is laying around on the sidewalks in front of the Hos. Probarbly they will have to “fall in” before long and go aboard some one of the many boats that are at the wharves to day. It seems to me as if they will get troops enough to do pretty good buisness bye & bye, wherever they go. Within the past two week there has lots of Regts & Batteries gone down, & they are still going. –

You say Abbie wrote me

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last Oct. (you have mentioned it a number of times before) and wishes to know if I recd the letter. You may tell her that I did not. Give her my love & tell her that if I receive a letter from her I shall answer it. –

I am afraid Lizzie is sick, as you say you are. I have not recd a letter from her for more than a month before that time I almost always recd two a week. I laid it to my moving about so that the letters were lost, but since you say you have recd none I realy begin to fear she is to sick to write. –

I did not know that Jim Dudley was Captain of a Co. in our Brigade, he is probably in the 5th Regt.

I dont wonder George is sick of Windham, do you? –

I will write no more to day because I have nothing to write when

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I begun. I shall write you often wherever I am. My love to all, Grandmother Uncle C.- &c. Tell uncle Able “Good morning” for me. Good by, write me often. With much love I am as ever your affectionate brother


P.S. Dont mind about sending me Envelopes & paper here, I have a great supply at present. I always feel disaponted when I get a thick letter and on opening it find it half blank paper I think that might just as well been written on and made a good long letter. J.