Joseph Spafford to Mary Jane Spafford

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Miss M. J. Spafford
Upper FallsVermont


Camp SewardNear Washington D. C.Saturday Nov. 1st 62Dear Sister,

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I have been so busy that I have not found time to write for a number of days but as I was on guard last night (the 2d time I have been on since we went into camp at Brattleboro) I am free from all duty to day so now after I have taken my nap I am going to write a few lines to you. We struck our tents on capitol hill day before yesterday & marched to this place, crossing long bridge & marching up the river on the Va side about 4 miles. We are now about half

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way between Washington & Camp Griffin where we stoped last winter. The weather is beautiful. Probably we shall not stop here long but I cannot tell. To day we got orders about 10 o’clock to pack everything & be ready to march in half an hour. We got all ready & was just going to strike our tents when the order was countermanded, & we are waiting now not knowing what will be the next order. We may stay here a month or we may leave in the morning. The Vt Cavalry are encamped about 2 mls from us, I have seen a number of the boys but none of the boys that I know. I am keeping a very brief kind

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of a Journal which I shall copy and send you sometime if I find time, as Homer & I used to correspond you know. I thought prehaps you would like to see exactly how we are getting along each day. I got me a boy (not a nig) while we were coming from Capitol hill here. While we were resting near long bridge 3 boys came to me & asked me if I would not take one of them along with me. They said they had no place to stop, that they had no parents living, & that they had been staying in Washington for some time past. I asked the Capt if he was willing

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to take one along with us & he said he did’nt care so I told one of them I would take him. The others then were more anxious than ever to go. I told them to ask any of the Officers they saw if they would take them. They did so, & Capt Foster (Ludlow Co) took one & Capt Dix the other so the three are with us in camp. They are all smart boys & enjoy it finely. I think I have got the best one, & when I come home I shall take him along with me. His name sounds Irish but he has no brogue & is a smart little fellow. He is 13 years old, rather raged but not dirty, & is as polite as a basket of

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chips. I shall as soon as possible get him some cloths. I think I can get them to fit him at the Q.M.’s. If I was at home I would have you make him a suit like Capt A’s ‘darkie. I like him much better than I would a nigger. If I ever have a chance I will have his picture taken & send you. He said his father died about a month ago & since that time he had been getting his living among the soldiers at W-.

I suppose George will be along next Tuesday. I think he will enjoy this life but cannot tell. Where is Sophia going to stop? I could not

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think of anything I wanted that I did not take so I sent for nothing by Geo.-

The boys are all well & enjoying it nicely. Az says that he should want another bounty of $100 to induce him to go back to F. & stay. He plays the bass drum in our drum corps so has very little to do. Brink is getting quite reconciled & is having a pretty good time. I will send you a list of the ones that I want you to send or give my pictures to & you can give them to who else you please. I want you to send me one of yours as soon as you get some as good as the old one of yours.

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I shall write you as often as I have time to, but you know I cannot write so often when we are moving every day or two as when we stop in one place all the time, it seems to break up all the time I have not yet recd a letter from home since we left B-, but look for one to night. – My health is as good as it has been any time since I came home & better of the two. I have slept with nothing but my rubber blanket between me & the ground all the time so far & have not got a bit of cold. I will write no more to day. Love to father & mother. Write me often. Love to all enquiring friends.

As Every Your Aff. BrotherJo.
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All the boys from our direction are perfectly well.

P.S. I forgot to tell you my boys name, tis Daniel McOrlif

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P.S.2nd Since writing this letter Theod. Hutchinson has visited our camp. He looks tought & well.

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Direct to
Co. E 16 Regt Vt. Vol.
Washington D. C.