Letters (a sampling)
Please note that there are a total of 48 pages of these letters in this work and only a few of them have been copied to this page! Please use the index to determine if there might be another specific letter of interest to you and contact, Lisa K. Slaski, (township section editor) or Nancy K. Murphy (author/compiler) for the exact verbage from the pamphlet!
page 1: from William Wallace to his father.
New York June 3rd, 1860
I take my pen to write another letter. I have wrote five before this and I will keep a writing untill I get an ancer. I have been in New York over two months and have not heard from home yet. I be gone to think you have all forgot me. I expected a letter last night but no letter came. I feel very uneasy because I am a frade you did not get my letters. I have sent you papers every week. It must be very plesent out there now. It is very warm here. Nothing but noise, busel (bustle) and dust. No grass, no birds, no trees.
John Wallace has moved his family to New York. He lives only two blocks from where I live. His house in Troy was sold under a morgage. He has taking a Licker Store in Beekman St., near Fulton Market. He will hire a bartender and put him in the Store and folow his old business himself. John is a clever fellow. He is to clever for his own good. He is one of the greatest talkers I ever seen. He cant stop long enuf for the barber to shave him. John makes a grate deel of money & spends a grate deel. Altho he dose not any licker, he says he was the smartest one of the famely.
I cant think of anything more to write at presnt. As quick as I here from home I will write agane and tell you what I am a doing and all about all my travels since I left home. Was over to the Navy Yard last week and saw the United States Frigate "Niagra".
Tom & Pat Green from Grayville is in New York. I see them most every day. No more at present –
No 40 Stanton St.
New York City
P.S. Give my respect to all the folks. I will write as soon as I get letter from home. If you have writing before you get this, it will go to Sixth St. but I will get all the same.
page 4: from William Wallace to his sister Mary:
211 Front St., New York City
Mary L. Wallace
Herkimer County, New York
Headquarters, Depot No. 3
May 23, 1861
This is the first time I have had time to write you, but better late than never. I am well & and so is the Capt. & all the Officers of our company. We have 5 men in the Hospital, 3 with the Measles and 1 with a bile on his face & one with a bad cold. They will all be out again in a few days.
The Capt. sent that Indian Boy from Norway to Jale yesterday for disobeying orders. He was sent to the Police Station. I went to see him this morning and brought him some breakfast and he promised to be a better boy if we would let him out. Capt. Corcoran will take him out this afternoon.
We have good board at present but it was rough when we first came here. We quarterd in a church in Chaple St. and dine at the Adams House. I have one now about four hundred men in the Church. I think we will go up to the Baricks 1 * miles back of Albany in a few days. Col. LaDew is here most of the time. He will be elected Col. this evening and then we will be all right. I wrote a letter to Dave & one to Pa & one to Thomas, but I received no answer from them. I received a letter from Mary A. Kidd (now my wife) and she and boy are well. I would be pleased to have you write to her if you choose.
Capt. Corcorran sends his best respects to you and says you are just the girl he likes. I am sorry I could not see you longer before I left but I could not help it. The Bugle sounded - I had to go. Don & Gus are well and are good boys & behave themselves like solgers.
The Regt that David C. Nethaway belongs to left Albany and are now at the Battery in New York. I see Nethaways folks most every day. They are all well. I suppose Ann is at Daves. If you see her tell her I will write to her soon. I will send you my likeness as soon as I get my uniform. You must tell Jane to write often. I will write a letter to Elen today or tomorrow. Now I want you the moment you get this letter to ancer it and send it to the Post Office the first chance you get. Write a long letter. Tell all the news. If you dont, I will box your ears the first time I see you .
You must go home as often as you can. You recollect Ma is all alone this summer. There was a large fire here last night & all the boys helped work the fire engines and it was great fun for them. No more at present. We have all each a new cap, 1pr. socks, 1 pr drawers, 1 flannel shirt, and one pair of shoes. We will get our uniform soon.
From your brother,
Direct to Wm. Wallace
Albany, N Y
in care of Capt. Corcoran
Headquarters, Depot No. 3
Page 30: from Dave Netherway to his wife, Jane (Wallace) Netherway:
Camp 81st N.Y. Vol
North West Landing Bridge, Va.
Nov. 28th, 1863
I was very agreeably surprised night before last by a rec of three letters at once. Among them was yours of the 15th written before you left Albany. Was very glad to hear from you so soon again (having rec one last Friday week). It found me as usual, well & enjoying myself as much as a man can under the circumstances that I am placed. You see by the heading of this that we have moved camp lately, but of that I wrote in my last (since coming here). Have not fixed up yet much on account of not knowing whether we would stay in this camp or not but now the boys are commencing to stockade their tents, etc.
Have to come to hard tack now & I tell you that I find out my bad teeth now but we get some potatoes of the Secesh so we do not starve. Sent out a forage party yesterday & got some 12 hogs, a couple of beeves, etc., so you see that we will have some fresh. Have not been troubled since coming here, but we are threatened very strong by the enhabitants of being torn away by the Geurilers soon but if they come they will (be) some Geurelies here to meet them.
Since writing the above, Ike Deverpos (?) has come in the tent with a letter that he has received from Hinckley since I saw him last. I tell you it does one good to get holt of one of his letters. They sound of the true stuff.
Eight o’clock at night. It is rainy to night but that makes no differance to us. Just had role call & will have to hurry this so as to be ready to blow out lights at taps. Will have a chance to send this in the morning so must finish it to night as I will not have time in the morning. John has rec that money all safe, he says, & I wrote to him to keep it until you called for it. Leut. DeForrest has not come back to the Regt yet & may not come in some time, but those photographs will come exceptable at any time. That letter that you wrote me from Troy never came to hand, but you see that I have two out of the four that you sent.
Sunday morning. The Taps came rather to early last evening for me to finish this so I will do it this morning. Now Jane, I did not mean to scold you bad for my not receiving letters oftener that I did, but it was for to remind you of your careless disposition, as you say, so as not to forget me. As to your plan of enjoyment living with me on my return, we will talk of that when the time comes.
Where is Ann. Have the impression from a letter that Fallen had from Abbott that she was then at work. Let me know.
Give my respects to all my friends. Let me know how you are situated & what you are doing, etc. Kiss the children for me & do not let them forget me.
From your Dave
Page 42: from Jane (Wallace) Netherway to her husband Dave Netherway.
Wednesday Morning, September 19th, 1864
My Dear Husband,
My last was written Sunday but I feel like writing this morning and think when the spirit moves, I must act. However, I suppose you have no particular objections to hearing from me as often as I choose to write. The children are a great deal better. Willie went to school this morning. Nellie is up again but her sickness took off her flesh at a great rate.
Your letter of September 4th I recived Monday last. Was glad to hear from you. Dont know as I can tell you all the men that went from Ohio, not knowing, but some were William Jonson, Arne Morse, Wallace Bullock, Peter Wallace, Warren Page, and Johny Corcoran. That is all I know, but a great many of the old 34th (or 39th) boys went. They are going in a new Regt. I forgot to tell you in my other letter, Willie Shaft run away and enlisted and was before Petersburg before his folks knew anything about it. He sent his bounty to his Father, thirteen hundred dollars. It will make the old man rich.
Ed Wilkenson got his men in New York. Am sorry Betsy wrote such stuff about you. It is the first I heard of it. Guess she made it up herself, consider where it came from and let it go at that. Bill Becraft lost his child a short time ago. They felt very bad - it was their only child.
Received a letter from Lib the other day saying John went up to the Governors rooms to get your promotion to first Lt., but some one was ahead of him and had your name on the books as first Lt., and they were to have the papers made out and sent to you soon. If that is so, you are all right, but I suppose you will hear of it before you get this. Now Dave, if you succeed in your promotion, I have a little friendly advice for you which I hope you will not take amiss as coming from your wife. It is this: You must pay more attention to spelling and writing an order or a report. (It) would not look very well coming from a Leut with half the words spelt wrong. William says that was his greatest trouble. He used to carry a pocket Dictionery with him to consult. Now you will not be offended with me for writing this to you, for you know it is for your benefit I say it.
I had heard something of Dunck comin to the mill. I guess that Walters is there. John Bilsburow has been in the store but his health was so poor he was obliged to leave. Dont think Dunck would suit there long. He is too big a man, but perhaps he may. Hope so, at least. You wanted to know if Sam was at home. He has been and stayed a week with wife and little girl. They lost a child last winter. The Dr. says his wife is in a very interesting condition at present - this will be the fourth. Sam used to think we were acting shamefull having so many, but think he could preach better than practice.
Must draw my letter to a close. I live in hopes you will come home this winter. Know you will if you can possibly. My respects to Fallen. I must bid you good bye. Have them socks most ready and will send next week. Send you a paper.
Good bye from Jane.
A notation in a notebook of Clara Wallace Overton states:
David Nethaway, Second Lieut. - July 21, 1864; First Lieut. - Sept. 16, 1864.
Killed at battle of Chapin's Farm, Va., on Sept. 29, 1864; buried on the field.
He most likely never received his wife's last few letters and I assume the War Department returned them to her; that is probably why they are included with Dave Netherway's letters. How sad.
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