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30 June 1861, Carter Henry Harrison to Janetta Harrison
Sunday 30th June 1861
My dear Mother,
Writing is an unusual occu= pation for sundays with me; but it is one of the least harmless occupations in which I can engage- situated as I am. To day was appointed for the first muster on Pay Roll to be made out, & the Col is now going through with that – and as I am quartered with him in a small temporary “shanty,” I can’t get much quiet. That is one of the greatest [pivations?] I have – often longing to with= draw for a little from the crowd and confusion and noise around me. In fact my dear Mother, I confess I now [ ] long to get back once again to the [ ] all the dear [ ] I love [ ] is not right to indulge [such?] feelings that [...is?] the post of duty – & wherever that is we should be contented & happy. I know too that my Heavenly Father sends chastisement to show me the utter vanity of those things which engage so much of my thoughts & affections.
Tuesday 2nd July. Since I commenced my letter, I have been supplied with a tent & was occupied all day yesterday in fixing it up. I am now regularly established in it, & am greatly pleased at having a place to myself. If I was supplied with a horse & a donkey to wait on me, I should feel quite “set up”! Randolph of EH left his at Farifax Court House, & I have been trying to get them but can’t hear from him. I take my meals with the Officers’ mess in a very nice shed.
wonder if you’ve experienced the change in the weather we have? It turned cold in the night, & after vainly essaying to sleep, I got up & put on nearly all the clothes I had, but still suffered too much with cold feet to be able to sleep. I couldn’t help shuddering at the thought of that we might possibly be out til cold weather set in!
I wrote you a few hurried lines from Richmond. I spent only two days with my wife & little ones – returning on Monday. Alice is better. I hear from her occasionally – the last letter was written friday by herself. Her improvement is very slow, but still I trust she is improving. Our recent affliction in the separation from our youngest darling, then the calling away of the little babe I was never permitted to see, often [precesses?] intensely on our hearts. Then my anxiety about her health – all together with our other troubles, [ ] me a heavy load to [ ] [it?] is the Lord, [ ] am sure He [ ] need one [ ] way give us comfort [ ] beyond our utmost conception.
I saw Maben Hobson on Sunday on his way back to join his comp’y – and was glad to hear from him that you were all well. I have nothing new to mention. It reaches you through the newspaper sooner. I think the number & frequency of skirmishes between ours & the enemies outposts is rapidly increasing & I know that our forces are being gradually moved nearer to Alexandria. The inference from which is that a general engagement is imminent. I cannot help feeling confident of the final result being favourable to our cause – albeit we are so [unmindful?] of the true source of all power – and so [ungrateful?] for the blessings of the past. Looking to God for help and guidance and leaving the issue to Him, we are ready to move with