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May 1st 1861


My Dear Mother,

For the last week since I received your letter I have been in such a perpetual state of confusion and excitement that I have not been able to write. I have been up at six o’clock in the morning and off drilling all day in the neighboring towns. Today we have no drill and I have an opportunity to write. I have intended to for a long time. Today the ladies are at work for us making up our shirts, blankets &c. Litchfield is a slow place to rouse itself but when once it is excited the old spirit of the Wolcotts & the Tallmadges shows itself. Companies of volunteers are organizing all around us but we Litchfield boys though few led off the rest with the exception of the Winsted Company. I never was in better spirits than I have been since it was finally settled that we could effect a union between the Litchfield and Walcottville companies. Since that time we have joined with the Ferryville boys. I feel sad of course at the thought of leaving my friends behind but I know of very few who can go better than I can.

Last Sunday we had a most inspiring sermon from Mr. Richards. Few preachers in the State could have equalled it. He spoke of the different duties which devolve upon different members of a political community, and he said it was the duty of some to go forth and fight for their country’s flag. However we do not yet know that there will be any fighting and we may hope that the time will soon come “when the war drums beat no longer and the flags of war are furled in the Parliament of man, the Federation of the World!” But whatever may be the issue our duty is plain before us.

I am sorry our rendezvous is to be in Hartford and not in New Haven, but we shall have an opportunity to see one another before our regiment starts for Washington.

I was sick when I received your letter and it did me good except the insinuation that as a Democrat I would not sympathise with the action of the Administration. I hope you are now convinced to the contrary. Party lines are obliterated hereabouts with the exception of a few old secessionists who stick to their old dogmas and obstructions.

Write soon and as long a letter as you can find time to. I have lost all my prejudice against long letters and want them as extensive as I can find time to read. Mary and the children are well: Lillie expects to commence school this morning with the new teacher, Miss Taylor. I can hardly realise that I am going off to leave them. Everything is as quiet and peaceful here today as if war and tumult were unknown in this whole land. The change will be great from country life to camp life but a cheerful heart will carry us through. My best love to Nettie and Hattie.

Your aff. Son,

P.S. I will write again soon. I write with the office full of men.


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