Letter written by Rush P. Cady, lieutenant in the 97th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, Company K, to his mother of Rome, New York, from Camp of the 97th Reg. N.Y.V. near Fletchers Chapel, Virginia, January 19, 1863

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Letter written by Rush P. Cady, lieutenant in the 97th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment, Company K, from Camp of the 97th Reg. N.Y.V. near Fletchers Chapel, Virginia, January 19, 1863, to his mother, Mrs. Daniel Cady (Fidelia W. Palmer) of Rome, New York

Part 1
PAGE IMAGE                                                            Camp of the 97th Reg. N.Y.V. (97th Regiment, New York)
                                                            Near Fletchers Chapel, Va. (Virginia) (Fletcher's Chapel, Virginia)
                                                                      Jan'y 19th 1863.
Dear Mother,

                                                  Your letter of the 12th, inst.
So full, of good sheer, gratifying news, & golden
counsels, came last evening; & the same
mail brought one from Gustavus (Palmer, Gustavus M. (Captain)) , dated at
New-York (New York) (New York) , the 12 (13th), both of which were
welcome indeed.                    I was glad to know
that he was doing so well, & enjoying him-
self so highly in his social intercourse
with friends, in whose esteem he has
been elevated, by patriotic gallantry, &
whose friendship may have become more
generous, from their sympathy for his
suffering. I also received a letter from
Eliza (Cady, Eliza) three or four days ago, informing
me all about Gustavus (Palmer, Gustavus M. (Captain)) , & the pleasant
times they were having. Eliza (Cady, Eliza) is certian-
ly enjoying most valuable opportunities

Part 2
PAGE IMAGE For improvement, both as to her social &
mental qualifications. The experience she
is now acquiring, by her residence in New=
York (New York) (New York) , will doubtless prove the most fruitful
of her life thus far.                     I have been trying,
for several days, to get time to write home
again, but have been so busy with the
work of making out Quarterly & Yearly
Returns, some of them requiring a very
great amount of labor, of which those who
have never had the Experience, can have but
the faintest conception.- A large part
of the work that should have been done
during the year & the last quarter (if we
had made out our Returns & kept all our
accounts properly) has been compressed
within the last 10 days. I have worked
with the utmost patience & perseverance,
day after day, & frequently late at night,
after all others had been long abed, in order
to attend to all the requirements of Co. K. (Company K.)
correctly, & within the allotted time,
& now it gives me pleasure to say that
Part 3
This extraordinary work has been ac-
complished, quite as satisfactorily as the cir-
cumstances would permit. Soon af-
ter finishing my last Return, this after-
noon, information came that the Pay-
master, so long expected, in vain, had
at last arrived & was paying off the other
Regts in our old Brigade (now Col. Root (Root (Colonel)) s' (Root's Brigade) )
& would be ready to pay us on Wednesday.
This intelligence is highly satisfactory to all
the soldiers, though this satisfaction is considerably diminished
by the fact that we are to be paid for
only four months, whereas there is 6 mo's
pay due. I draw only 2 mo's pay now,
having been paid to the 31. Aug. when I was
at Washington (Washington, District of Columbia) . Yesterday a number of
commissions came, including Alexander (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) 's
& mine. They are signed by Adj. Gen. J. T. Sprague (Sprague, John T. (General)) ,
& by Gov. Seymour (Seymour, Horatio) . We have to
be “mustered out” of our former rank &
“mustered in”, to the new one, requiring
considerable formality & the expendi-
ture of a quantity of Gov't Stationery &
Part 4
some time in filling out the blanks, &c.
but we are ready to get mustered, tomorrow,
so that we will be just in time to
draw our pay according to promotion,
as we could not do, unless we had the
necessary “documents” to show.

                    In a few days, I will send my com-
mission home, as I shall not need it
here, after being mustered. You have my
first commission at home, haven't you?

                              Two or three days ago, rumors
became rife again, of an immedi-
ate movement, & then we received or-
ders to have on hand 3 days rations,
& 60 rounds of cartridges per man. These
orders coming while we were yet in
the midst our work of making out Returns,
spurred us up some, in order that we might
be ready at the Earliest possible moment.
Last night, on Dress Parade, Col. Wheelock (Wheelock, Charles (Colonel))
informed the Reg. that he had
just received orders to be ready to march

Part 5
PAGE IMAGE 5 at an hour's notice, & warmed (warned) all the men
to get their things in shape, so as to be able to
pack up within the specified time, after the
reception of marching orders. It has
been very fortunate that we are not yet
ordered off. The weather lately, has been
much colder than usual, & a few days
ago was rainy, & very windy & cold.
The wind was so high that two or three
trees were blown over in camp, to the
damage of some tents; & we couldn't have
fires in our stoves, for the smoking, & we
felt rather miserable & uncomfortable,
sitting in the cold, while engaged in
our literary & other occupations. Our
tents then seemed rather frail & unstable
tenements, though comfortable & substan-
tial enough for most weather. I think I
wrote you, in my last letter, about re-
ceiving the other box. It was brought
by a Mrs. Hill (Hill (Mrs.)) , a friend of Mrs. Menden- hall's (Mendenhall (Mrs.)) 's, who came from Mrs. Banner- man's (Bannerman (Mrs.)) 's. I am not acquainted with the
Part 6
lady, but think she must be the wife of
one of the officers of the 88th Pa. (88th Regiment, Pennsylvania) in our Brig-
ade.- The apples were exceedingly nice,
also the cookies & some biscuits sent by
Mrs. Mendenhall (Mendenhall (Mrs.)) . The candy was a “kiss from
grandma,” excepting half that I gave to Alek (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) .
The dried beef & fruit, & saleratus, &
pepper, as well as the butter & dried ap-
ple, that came in the first box, have
been kept until the present time, instead
of being turned in to the mess; as Alek (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) &
I have calculated to have a mess of our
own, as soon as our kit arrives from
Washington (Washington, District of Columbia) . Mr. Comstock (Comstock (Mr.)) came tonight,
I understand, but not having seen him,
do not know whether he has brought our
things. Lieut. Carpenter (Carpenter (Lieutenant)) has sent
in one or tow (two) Resignations, within a
week, & they have been ret'd “disapproved”.
But he has continued to persevere in
his efforts to get out of a service, so
distasteful to him, & for which he is so
little suited. He says, that if his last
Part 7
resignation is not accepted, he will
go before the “Examining Board”, appt'd
to examine the qualifications of such
officers as may be ordered before it,
upon the supposition of incompetan-
cy.- He vows “he will never go into
another battle”. I am glad he has not
succeeded in leaving before being paid
off, or he owes me some money.

                              Am sorry to say, in answer
to your questions about our Chaplain, Sabbath
Services &c, that we would be better off
without the Chaplain we have, as he really
does next to nothing but stay with the Reg.
& draw his pay, which amounts to a handsome
sum, per moth, as he ranks as “Cap-
tain (Captain) of Cavalry”. He exerts very little positive
religious influence, & few in the Reg. I think
are much the better, not to say wiser for
his ministrations.- It would hardly re-
quire all of one's fingers on which to
count the Services which he has held in
the Reg. (when he has preached) since
we left Boonville (Boonville, New York) . It is most un-
fortunate, & deeply to be regretted that
this is so, as a good Chaplain, such as
Mr. Bellamy (Bellamy (Mr.)) would make, might be

Part 8
PAGE IMAGE 8 of inestimable benefit to a Reg. & might
exert such an influence, & impart
such knowledge as would go far
towards preventing soldiers from sinking
to that low level of moral depravity, to which
the tendency, is so strong. If there is
a redeeming feature in the Chap-
lain's (Chaplain) record, I think it is that he
has assisted in the care of the wounded
at the Hospitals, after battles.

                              I forgot to speak of the letters
in that box, from Ella (Cady, Ella) & Dannie (Cady, Daniel L.) ; they
were very good indeed; Ella (Cady, Ella) writes
an excellent letter,- indicating a prom-
ising future, for her, I think. Dannie (Cady, Daniel L.) ,
though so young proves himself a “chip
of the old Block.” Some of these days
I will answer Willies (Cady, William G.) s' 6 letters, all in
a batch. Tell all the children &
Grandma too, that I writing
to the whole of them, & haven't time,
often to write separate letters to them,
but they are under none the less

Part 9
PAGE IMAGE 9 obligations to write to me, as they have
time enough; & they may be assured
that their letters are a source of much
interest & gratification to me.

I must compliment Grandmother
for her comparative excellence in
writing, considering that she has had
so little practice. I experience no dif-
ficulty in reading her letters.

                              Accompanying the aforesaid box,
was a good letter from Mrs. Menden- hall (Mendenhall (Mrs.)) , which I duly answered, to the
best of my ability.

Uncle Billy (Billy (Uncle)) & Aunt Yave (Yave (Aunt)) , are getting quite
a little brood around them.
I dont know as I remember the fellow by the name of Bull (Bull) of whom
you speak, in connection with Cous. Hattie (Cady, Hattie) .
Though young, she is quite mature, & will
doubtless make a good wife.

Remember me to Uncle Nathan (Nathan (Uncle)) & Aunt Calista (Calista (Aunt))
& Cous. Ann (Ann (Cousin)) . I am sorry to hear that
he is all the time failing.-

Please present my kindest regards to Louise (Sturdevant, Louise)
& Gussie Perry (Perry, Gus) , & say that I would like to give
them a friendly call, & perhaps take them out
riding, or go out serenading with them, & Smith (Smith)
& Collins (Collins) (who would be along to open & close gates,
& make himself generally useful). My congratu-
lations & compliments to the newly married coup-
les, of my acquaintance.- Will write Gustavus (Palmer, Gustavus M. (Captain))

Your Son.
Rush P. Cady (Cady, Rush Palmer) .

Part 10


I enclose a letter for Gustavus (Palmer, Gustavus M. (Captain)) ,
                        which I took the liberty of open-
                        ing, a short time ago, in order to
                        remail it, & forgot to do so.

Tuesday morning- At about 7.30
A.M. we received orders to march at
12 o'c. M. to day. We are in the bustle
of preparation. Haven't had time to write
to Eliza (Cady, Eliza) . Expect to cross the river &
fight a battle.- The Paymaster
goes along with us & will pay us at the
first opportunity; but Alek (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) & I have-
n't been mustered yet; am sor-
ry on his account.- It is quite
cold- will be rather hard bivouacking
on the ground, at night.

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