March 28, 1862
I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am well at present and hope these few lines may find you and the children and all the folks well. We started from Bardstown last Sunday and got to this place on Wednesday evening, a distance of 45 miles. And yesterday we were paid off up to the first day of March and tomorrow we start for Gallatin a little town on the Nashville railroad 24 miles this side of Nashville and I don’t know how long we will stay at that place. Perhaps not more than a few days and I don’t know where we will go to from there. I hope that peace will be made by that time & we can all go home. I send you twenty dollars in this letter and I don’t want you to be too stingy with it when you need anything for yourself or the children. I expect we will be paid off again the first of May if we are in the service that long. I tried to get to come home before we started for here but the Col. would not let any of the men go. The Col. still says that I shall have an office of some kind in the reg. We are to get our arms today and then we will be ready for a fight if we can find anybody to fight. I want you to be contented and I will come home as soon as I can. Although it may be some time before I can get to come. I am not afraid of anything but sickness and the worst weather is over now. And there will not be apt to be much sickness now until July or August and I hope not then. Our neighbor boys are all well that are here with us and the health of the regiment is very good. You must write as soon as you get this and direct your letter to Gallatin, Sumner Co., Tenn. The balance of the directions as before and if we should leave there before the letter gets here the PM at that place will forward all the letters for our regiment on to wherever we go to. So nothing more at present but remaining your affectionate husband until death.
A. A. Harrison
Absolom A. Harrison
Company D, 4th Regiment, Kentucky Calvary Volunteers (Union)
A. A. Harrison sent the following letters to his wife Susan Allstun Harrison. Susan’s grandmother was Nancy Lincoln Brumfield, Thomas Lincoln’s sister and President Abraham Lincoln’s aunt.
These letters were transcribed by A. A.’s great-grandson Ronald A. Harrison who introduces the letters with the following background:
“A. A. Harrison and his brother Jo (Joel) apparently got caught up in a recruiting drive and enlisted in the Fourth Kentucky Calvary, U.S.A., without even going home to tell their wives, Susan and Martha. The first letter appears to be letting Susan know what has become of her husband. The two brothers served honorably for roughly a year. At the end of that time A. A. was medically discharged. At roughly the same time Jo died in a military hospital in Nashville. Only recently has anyone in the family known Jo’s fate.”
Letters found on this web page January 2008.