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New Haven
May 3rd 1861

My Dearest Son,

I have felt as though I could not compose my feelings enough to write to you before to day. I have seated my self this morning however and will endeavor to write to you. You must have supposed when I heard you had enlisted that it gives me great pain. I had no idea of your taking such a step without writing to your Parents and consulting their feelings before enlisting. I have been a long time confined to the house and was rather low spirited and when Mary’s letter came with the news I almost wept myself sick and I feel very very sad. You are my only Son and I am growing old and did hope to have you at some future time settle down in New Haven. I suppose it would be of no avail to make you any offers as you appear to be so bent on going so I will desist from saying any thing more on that subject. If you go I can not feel to say I give my consent as I do not think there is any call for you to go, at least for the present. There is more here than they know what to do with, men that are here waiting to be called for. All that has comforted me has been in thinking that the regiment to which you belong will not be called for. But if you do go, God bless and protect you will be my earnest Prayer and that you may be preserved from the many temptations with which you will be surrounded and that you will be watchful and prayerful is your Mother’s sincere desire. You can have no idea of the privations you will be called on to endure. I see enough every hour of the day to make me shrink from your going, but enough said on this subject at present.

I wish to have a good photograph taken as you can get and send me soon. Have it taken soon. I am not satisfied with the one you had when you was in College. Let me know the price and I will send the money in a letter. Wont you attend to having it done very soon. . . . Be very particular to have the atitude good wont you? Mine is so large, perhaps you will like a smaller one. If so I will have one taken for you. You will I know love to look at your Dear Mother now and then if you go.

We all of us spent the day with Hattie yesterday. She gave us every thing nice to eat and drink. Little Georgie is a smart little fellow but wants somebody with more resolution than Hattie to govern him. He has a violent temper but I can make him mind. When I speak he has to mind and he knows it. 

I am not able to meet with our ladies who are all engaged in sewing and doing many things for the soldiers but have sent two women to sew and we have made shirts at home some. I should send Nettie as she is very kuick with her needle but I cant spare her now I am lame. It is almost five weeks since I have been confined to the house only as I have rode a number of times but it costs a great deal to ride. I have had a large shoe made and I can get about the house now but I have had a very bad foot. It has been very black and swolen and it is so unfortunate that it should be the same that I sprained some eleven years ago and it has never been strong. 

Your Father returned from Bridgeport yesterday where he has been gone some days. . . .  We are going to have fresh shad and new apple pie. I wish you were going to eat dinner with us. Make much of your good fare for you will miss it by and bye. You will hardly relish pork and bean broth after so long eating Mary’s good fare.

The companies [of soldiers] are just going along to dinner and such a dirty miserable looking set. Not half a dozen in the company looks decent. Oh! how tired I do get hearing such a constant drumming. . . . 

Wont you write soon and dont forget the Photograph. It is dinner time so I must conclude. With my love to the family. If you only know the anxiety I feel least you should get sick or suffer in any way. I cant help feeling so for I am so constituted. All would send love I know if they were here. I am not a Spartan mother but if you go all I can do will be to pray for you. Good by Dear boy. 

From your ever aff. Mother,
E. E. Dutton

[Marginalia] Why dont you send me a Litchfield paper now and then? I wish you would. There is to be a Patriotic Concert at Music Hall this evening. . . 

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