Letter written by Marianna Bates from Syracuse to her friend Mary on May 25, 1861

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Letter written by Marianna Bates from Syracuse, New York, to her friend Mary on May 25, 1861: a machine readable transcription

PAGE IMAGESyracuse (Syracuse, New York) May 25th 1861Dear Friend Mary (Mary)

Memory tells me I
made a promise to you, and as I like not
to break my promises, I take my pen to
tell you of your humble servant. This epsitle
is not to be wholly devoted to that, but you
know our selves are wonderfully important
when we write letters. Indeed, I should
be dissatisfied to receive a letter from a friend
who sould write me nothing of herself in a
particular manner, and therefore, perhaps,
I am too much inclined to the egotistical
side of the question. Be that as it may, I
am glad to address you in this way while
distance intervenes between us, and we may
not speak as we have spoken in the past.

You are happy, no doubt, in your home
and home friends, and now while the

[Written in margins:] The following is written in the left margin of page 1.

Direct in Care of R Wood (Wood, R.) , Syracuse, N.Y. (New York) (Syracuse, New York)


PAGE IMAGE earth is budding and blossoming for our
hapiness and admiration. I know your
heart is filled with pleasure, and grateful
thoughts of the Giver of all this loveliness
and glory. Truly, our God is better to us
than we merit. He sends the smiling Spring
with soft sunshines, showers and flowers & all
the blessings of our lives, seeminly unmindful
of our murmurings at his holy will when it
does not coincide with our own. Spring is
my pet season, but here I am in the midst
of the noise dust and tumult of the city.
Nothing to remind me of spring time, even
when I go out to walk on some of the more
rural streets where I can see occasionally
a tree in its verdant robes, and semi-occasionally
a flower in the door yards or at back
a dandelion lifting its yellow head from out
the grass to be admired, I board on
Salina St. where all the business and confusion
concentrates, and to have the benefit of this
as far as I am able to appreciate it, I look


PAGE IMAGE out of the window where I sit writing, and see
a long row of stores &c, five stories high, and
that is all save the people passing. How would
you like such a landscape to gaze at for
months? I fancy you would prefer the one you
have from your own door, which is highly
picturesque and always beautiful, because never
really the same. Notwithstanding, these disadvantages
I am decidedly pleased with my
situation here. I am fortunately in a pleasant family
who strives to make my stay with them happy as
possible. My music teachers are very excellent
and the advantages for gaining a musical education
quite rare. The piano teacher is recently from
Germany (Germany) and teaches the German method,
which is superior to any other. I shall be very
anxious to come another time if possible.
Time has sped rapidly since I have been
here, only leaving me locks of his golden hair
as evidence that he has been across my
path. I have tried to improve the "shining
hour" but I never can feel quite satisfied with
PAGE IMAGE myself in this respect as I view the past in
retrospective. If I say to myself I will this day
improve each moment more to my satisfaction,
I find many things at night, omitted which
should have been done and many many
things done which had better been undone.
In thinking of this, I can but thank God for his
gift to fallen erring man. Glorious thoughts! that
we may be forgiven throught the intercession of Jesus
Christ -- Mary (Mary) how are you feeling
about the war? I know you are interested for the
safety of our glorious Union, and have possibly
done various patriotic acts, such as making shirts
and other comforts for the volunteers - Have
any gone from Penn (Pennsylvania) (Pennsylvania) ? Syracuse (Syracuse, New York) has been in
the greatest state of excitement since I have
been here until the departure of the Onondaga Regiment (Onondaga Regiment)
, when we had a little more quiet.
Six young men have gone from the house where I
board. Some of them are nearing the field of
contest others are in Elmira (Elmira, New York) . All the flags in the
city (and they are numerous) are now at half mast
on account of the death of Colonel Ellsworth (Ellsworth, Elmer E. (Colonel)) of
the N.Y. Fire Zouaves (New York Fire Zouaves) (11th Regiment, New York), that is a sad thing. Such a
noble man shot down for pulling down a flag
which was treacherous to our government, I hope the
rebels may be thoroughly subdued, and I beleive
they will, the right must be victorious, and we
can but believe the right and a righteous God
are on our side. If I were a man, I believe I
should go and do what I could to keep the
bright colors of our flag from being trampled
upon by Southern traitors. May our nationality
be preserved is my prayer to our Father, and
his blessing be upon the armies. I have now
written you a long letter I might say more
but forbear this time. You will answer soon, will
you not?

Your true friend Marianna Bates (Bates, Marianna)
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