February 1864 Letter by Private H. R. Greenfield, 1st New York Dragoons - Scout Across Rapidan River Nets Prisoners & Horses

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sold out

February 1864 Letter by Private H. R. Greenfield, 1st New York Dragoons - Scout Across Rapidan River Nets Prisoners & Horses

150.00

Item No. 8734679

An interesting February 1864 letter written by Private H. R. Greenfield of the 1st New York Dragoons to his wife. He described participating in a scout across the Rapidan, in which a handful of rebels and horses were captured. He wrote of friends in the regiment who enlisted in a different company, and regretted they had not joined his own, saying that his company commander, Captain Alexander K. Thorp, was “a very good captain.” Responding to his wife’s question about a possible furlough over the winter, Greenfield replied that it was “not very easy getting furloughs for there has [been] so many of the old soldiers gone home.” The 1st New York Dragoons, despite being “1st” had been organize in the summer of 1862 (originally the 130th Infantry). The letter reads:

Camp Near Mitch. Station
Feb 9th 1864

Dear Wife
I now improve the time in answering yours of the fourth. I was very glad to hear from you and to hear that you are well. I am well and I hope these few lines will find you the same. George and Ren is well. Mary I have been on a scout with our Regiment. We crossed Rapidan River and had a little brush with the Rebs. Ren and [Private] George [R. Beach] did not go nor Mite. I was not obliged to go, but I wanted to go so the Captain said that I could go if I wanted to and so I went along. We took some Rebel prisoners and some horses. We was gone from camp two days and one night. It was very muddy going. Mary I was in hopes that George and Ren would come in our company for Cap. [James] Lemen is a good captain. He does not want his boys to go on duty when they are sick, like some of them does. But Mary Cap. [Alexander K.] Thorp is a very good captain. I think Ren is better than he was when he was home. He is fat and looks more rugged than he did when he first came, but [Private Philander H.] Bush, the poor fellow, stands with the pen in his hand and the tears in his eyes. He looks very homesick indeed. I suppose he is thinking of that Kelly girl all of the time, but he will have to spend many long months before he can see her again. He will find that there is some difference between soldiering and riding out with the girls. Mary I saw Mary Beach’s likeness. George got one in a letter. It looks very natural indeed. Mary I wish you would have your likeness and Ett’s taken as you did and send it. I want to see if you have changed any in looks. I am going to have my likeness taken before long and I will send it to you. Mary tell Ett if I was there I would make her smile right out loud well, I would. As it is almost noon I will have to soon close. I will try and write more next time. You spoke of my giving up coming home this winter. Mary you know that it is not very easy getting furloughs for there has [been] so many of the old soldiers gone home, but Mary you need not look for me until you see me coming. So no more this time. Give my respects to all of your folks and my love to you from your
Ever true and affectionate husband
Robert H. Greenfield

The 3+ page letter was written on a stationery sheet measuring about 5” x 7 3/4”. It is in excellent condition with little if any foxing or toning. The letter was written in ink, but it has faded a bit. Quite readable. Creased where originally folded.

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