Homer Curtis, 2nd C.H.A., October 19, 1864
Officers Hosp. Annapolis Md.
Wed. Oct. 19th 1864
Dr Friends at Home
I think of so many things I wish
to say to you that while I have leisure I will write some of them.
I wish to know all about house affairs from the moment I left until the
present moment. Did Miranda + Mr. Edmund go up that Thurs. and
did you ever return with Miranda and let the dishes stand. When did
Aunt Sarah + Mr. Edmund return to Northeast. Has Lucys school begun.
O and a hundred other little nothings. Who is going to get that pretty
album and those really pretty lithographs that I got so angry at Uncle
Louis about! Did your cash hold out to get home, girls? Mine did so
much better than I expected that I must tell you about it. Perhaps
you remember I told you what I had outside the even $100.00 would not
take me through New York, but it did more took me clean through to
Annapolis and was not quite gone there. Dont you think the pleasantest
hours we had in B'port were those at Aunt Lucys? I do and the pleasant
est hour that up in my little room, talking over prospects and the past
and future. You dont know how bad I felt at the depot when I thought
the train was coming and Fannie away. I felt bad enough to leave you
at all, but I think I could not have gone without a sight of both your
faces. I believe there were others on the platform when I left, but I
recal none, can remember no faces but those 2 slightly tearful ones.
I wonder if a few tears from my eyes would not have started those dumplings
from my throat. I could have sobbed like a boy, but that would have done
very little good and would not have been much to my credit anyway,
so I swallowed grief and tears with election returns from Penn. etc. from Tribune
Have you ever heard from our groups yet? When they come will you not send
me one in which I am capped. Dont let Charrie pay for any. For she more
than paid me for her tickets, and now while I think of it wont you pay
Fred Colemans blacksmith bill, less than a dollar, he told me I am sure
but the exact amount he had forgotten and Jobel a little bill for fixing my
boots which my hurried leave prevented me from paying. Pay and send
the amount to me if you please and I will remit. Please write too if
you get the invoice I subscribed for Mrs. J.S. Carliss this morning and you ought
to get it this week sure. If not write to that office and I will advise Mr. Tribuno
of his duty. I took the precaution to note the number, date and letter of the bill
and date and place of the mailing, so I will give Mr. T. some particulars
if he does not send on his paper soon. Lt. Chapin has left us for
home. He got his discharge yesterday and I presume is nearly home now.
(Thurs. morn 20th Oct.) I did not see him very much while he was here
for he was in another ward, but I saw he did not wish to return to the
regt. indeed he told me that none of the officers of the 2nd that had been
here, wished to go back. He spoke harshly of Col. Mackenzie and of
his treatment of the 2nd saying that he would much rather go back to
his old regt. (the 15th C.V.) and be infantry sure. Did I ever tell you
anything of Phil? He was private in the 15th C.V. until Burnsides battle
of Fredericksburg, when for special bravery and daring he was promoted 2nd Lt.
He told me that he was in no way responsible for what he did that day
as he was so full of whiskey that he did not know anything he did,
but I hope he overdrew this part of his story, for it seemed like he
might have been brave without whiskey - much more to his credit.
He is out of the service now and quite happy I think he looked so when
I met him yesterday noon as I was going to dinner. He did not lean
on his staff heavily at all and his face looked brighter than usual
He went off without bidding me good by even, he was so excited and pleased
I was sorry about those vignettes of mine. For it did seem as though
they might have been better. I think Mr. Eriksons taste in poses is not
very correct. There was no necessity of my looking so gawky. For really I can
be better looking than that. For I have been by other artists, however I do
not care very much. I'll get some new pictures when I get promoted.
I wish ma + Fanny, you would some time send me your cartes. I regret now
that Ma could not have gome to N. Milford with me, and you girls to N. Britain
but I could not see how it was to be done in the time of it, and it is just a
little late now. Do you know I am afraid you did not see me in the
best light, when I was home? I found everything so new and still so
natural that I was confused a bit at first and then I wanted to be so
very free and boyish that I fear I sometimes rather overdid the subject.
But if you knew how I enjoyed every moment I spent in Conn. most
especially those hours at home, you would easily forgive my follies. I
can never enjoy anything more in this world than those little tete a tetes we
used to have after the company was gone, and then Miss Strong was abed.
But there are new names, new faces for me now, for a time.
After breakfast, Phil did not go yesterday after all. I met him going to b'fast
but he goes today, so I will have an opportunity to see him and bid him
adieu. I have just come off from the wharf with Capt. Harding and Lieut. Dale
We went down to see the paroled prisoners from Charleston via Fortress Monroe
per steamer New York. A sad, sad sight. Officers looked comfortable generally
but the poor boys were almost gone with starvation, some half dozen quite so.
Some 40 of us go before the Board of Examination this morning, and I
should not be surprised if some of us went out to reinforce "Sheridan
Sheridan, Cavalry Sheridan" in a day or two. I would like to go if
I could stand it there, but if it was just as convenient I would prefer
some lighter duty for a few days, until I was a little stronger in body.
My appetite is good now, not so voracious as when at home and I am
very regular in meals and hours and would soon be strong and healthy
I hope if left here or put on light duty, but if sent to front I shall
try to get well by the way, and it may be best so. I shall be satisfied
any way, and shall never forget to thank God for the privilege I enjoy
of seeing you all at home and so well whatever may befal me in
the future. We all enjoyed it I think and will all pray that some
day not far distant we may meet again for more than "forty (40) days"
I am sure we shall meet, and I hope here in life, but if not it will be,
I trust, in heaven and there will be no leaves of absence there to annoy
us. Phil went off about 2 or 3 o'c and long ere this, is buzzing up toward home
so now I am quite alone and should be very lonely if I could not write to you
and the other Friends. I am trying hard to get my diary and correspondence
up even, but it is no small job, and is far from completion yet.
Friday morn. Still here, but without anything near to relate. We hear
rumors of a fight up the Valley, and it is said Sheridan has
defeated Longstreet but as yet it is only a rumor. Hope it's true.
Lt. Dale, a new friend of ours of the 4th Va. Inf. 8th A Corps is going
up to the army today. I wish I was able to go with him, but
shall have to wait a few days. Dale is a splendid fellow and
has seen a great deal of service under Grant, Sherman + Sheridan
Was wouded and taken prisoner at Vicksburg and has since been
in all the Valley battles under Crook, Hunter, + Sheridan,
I got a months pay this morning and I will send you the note
now to be applied on the note I gave you. It is better interest
than I paid you, in fact is the best of anything but the five twenties
Lou can get the coupons cashed in Litchfield I presume. Dont expect
me to flood fore with money, probably I shall send for some soon
but I would rather not break this bill, for I wish you to have it
and the interest. Besides I have plenty of money yet. Horace.