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 Headquarters 97th Reg. N.Y.V. Mercerville, Maryland, October 19, 1862
Headquarters 97th N.Y.V. (97th Regiment, New York)
Mercersville, Md. (Maryland) (Mercersville, Maryland) Oct. 19. 1862 Dear Mother,
I was exceedingly delighted at
the reception of your letter today. Although five
days old, it contained fresh news to me, & was
doubly welcome, as being “full of love, of kind,
affectionate interest & encouragement.”
I also had the privilege of reading quite a no.
of Utica (Utica, New York) papers- Heralds, Telegraphs, & Observers,
containing considerable Co. news, & all the par-
ticulars of the Departure of the 146. Reg. (146th Regiment) It was
certainly a most shameful affair. The Cit-
izen, containing my letter to Mr. Knight (Knight (Mr.)) , also came
duly to hand.- For the last day or two I have
been engaged in writing a letter for the Citizen,
which will probably reach Rome (Rome, New York) in time for pub
lication this week.
I have just written to Miss Mary
Wright (Wright, Mary (Miss.)) , in
answer to a letter from her, inquiring about
Will (Will) . He is now at the U.S.A. General Hospital ,
3d Ward, Camden St. Baltimore (Baltimore, Maryland) .
Serg't Alexander (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) has written two letters
& all the particulars of Starrs Sherman (Sherman, Starrs) 's
death, to his friends. A brother of Bingham Knight (Knight, Bingham) 's
wrote to me, from Columbus, Ohio (Columbus, Ohio) , in
quiring all the particulars of his death &c.
I have to day answered his letter to the best
of my ability. The fellow by whom Knight (Knight, Bingham)
send the package containing a few of his things,
is strongly suspected, & justly too, of taking
the watch. He is known to have left a watch
at Frederick (Frederick, Maryland) , to be repaired & sent to his home
of Taberg (Taberg, New York) ., & this too, a few days after Knight (Knight, Bingham)
s death. I have a plan laid, by which I may
be able to ascertain the truth of the matter,
& perhaps recover the watch.
I received a very acceptable & entertaining
letter from Eliza (Cady, Eliza) , on Thursday, which I
will attend to shortly. Have also exchanged
letters two or three times with Lieut. Warren (Warren (Lieutenant)) ,
since my return; & all together, have done
considerable writing lately.
You see that we have not yet moved,
though we have been for some time under
orders “to keep constantly on hand two days
rations, & be ready to march at an hours
notice.” Other troops in our vicinity
moved yesterday, & doubtless we shall
start soon. The movements of our
army on the other side of the river, seem
to indicate that another great battle
is at hand. But I hardly anticipate
that we shall participate in it, however,
we cannot tell. We could easily march
from here to Bunkers Hill (Bunker Hill, West Virginia) in two days.
It was reported here, that since
the rebels had been driven by and Charlestown (Charlestown, West Virginia) ,
their pickets along the appointed
side of the river from this point, &
above, had been withdrawn; but some
scouts informed our officer of the Picket, this
afternoon, that 80 rebel cavalry had been
seen at “Hard Scrabble”, not far from the
river, on the other side, above here.
Several of our officers have returned to
the reg't within a few days past; viz. The
Chaplain, Capt. Parsons (Parsons (Captain)) , Lieut's Parsons (Parsons (Lieutenant)) &
Wood (Wood (Lieutenant)) . Our numbers are gradually aug-
menting. Our Reg. now reports 320 men
& officers, present; 265 for duty; & 160 absent
let. 19# sick & wounded in the hospitals.
It is now probably, I believe, that three
full Co.s will be added to the Reg., which
will necessitate a consolidation of the 10
Co.s into seven, so that many, who had
anticipated & deserved promotion,
will be disappointed. I think
that the Co.s should retain their sep-
arate organizations, & be filled up by
drafted men.- 1st Serg't Henry Owens (Owens, Henry (Sergeant)) (who
ran against me for 2d Lieut.) was here last week, to
get his Discharge Papers signed. He has been
sick over three months. Alexander (Alexander, George (Lieutenant)) is now
1st Serg't, & ought to be promoted to a Lieut.
for bravery in all the battles. He & I visited
the battle-field a few days ago, where our Division
& others fought.- I will give Eliza (Cady, Eliza) some
acc't (account) of what I saw, in my next letter.
Our mess still flourishes. Bill of fare today:
sweet potatoes, Boiled eggs, fried onions, toma-
toes, stewed chicken, apple-butter, coffee,
tea, milk &c. This of course includes
breakfast, dinner & supper.
This has been a beautiful day; the weather has
been quite pleasant of late, though the nights
are becoming quite cool, with heavy frosts.
Nature has already assumed her garments of “many
colors,” & the trees are casting their foliage. But
it is getting late, & I must dispose myself for
a night's rest, with nothing but my blanket & a little
straw between me & the ground, which makes a bed
sufficiently hard to suit even me. Love to all, & good night.