Letter from Bradlee, Samuel J.

Soldier: Bradlee, Samuel J.
Allegiance: Union
Unit/Service Branch: 10th Artillery
Home State: Massachusetts
Date Written: Sunday, December 25th, 1864
Location: Defense of City Point, VA
Correspondence Type: Letter
Subjects: Camp Life, Combat Description, Comrades, Eastern Theater, Family, Home, Sickness, Suffering, Camp Life, Combat Description, Comrades, Eastern Theater, Family, Home, Sickness, Suffering
Link Source: http://www.bee.net/dmann/
"Fort Merriam"
Christmas Day

My Dear Wife

Just four short years ago tonight you and I solemnly plighted our faith to each other, for so long as we both should live – you my darling are now far, far away from me in our Northern home, and (surrounded by your little innocent babes,) I can fancy you teaching the evening prayer, or lulling the young head to sleep, with that sweetest of all songs a mother’s lullaby – I was Officer of the Day yesterday, and of course was up most all night. As morning was near dawning I made my usual rounds, to watch the tired sentinels, and see that all was right – Returning back to my quarters, how swiftly memory brought back the last Christmas Holiday and contrasted it with this – It seemed as if I could almost hear the Christmas Chimes – Strange Chimes we have we have here – Cracking Rifles, and booming Cannon, sometimes on the Picket line, bright clashing Saber strokes, ends the monotony. I am coming home, God willing, and before long –

I have been very sick again, owing to a severe cold settling on my throat and lungs – I could not talk or swallow except with great difficulty –

Even now the Doctor wants me to go to the Hospital, but I won’t go again if I can possibly do my duty properly here – My horse is partly to blame for my cold - I rode him down to the Hospital and the Point, coming back I stopped at the Sanitary Commission a moment, I tied "Black Ned" to a post, and I thought him all right -, but soon after I went in Mr. Ned slips off his bridle and takes French leave - When I came out to ride home, I had no horse, only a bridle - The night was pitch dark and the roads muddy _ I borrowed a Lantern and plodded home on foot, carrying the bridle - When I got home, no horse was there - So I laid down in my tent for an hour or so to wait and give him a chance to come home, but Mr. Ned kept away – So buckling on my saber, with my lantern in hand, away I went again down to the Hospital, and after hunting until Midnight I found the black rascal, snugly stowed away in a stable – He had been picked up by a guard, and put there – His feet had to travel coming home that night - . I had no bridle either –

Yesterday we had a fine drill, all by the Bugle calls – worked first rate

Please ask Grandmother if she got the letter I sent her with some Secesh money in it?
Don’t forget it Pet –
Love to all – Kiss the children for me

Your own Husband,
Samuel J. Bradlee
Senior 1st Lt.
14th Mass. Lt. Battery