April 9th, 1862
I take my pen in hand to inform you that I am tolerable well at present and hope these few lines may find you are enjoying the same blessing. We have got to this place after a long and tedious march. We got here last Sunday. The country through which we have passed is the worst torn up country I ever saw. The fences are nearly all burnt along the road and lots of the houses deserted and some of these torn all to pieces. We find some Union men down here but they are very scarce in this part of the world. This is a fine country about Nashville. There is some of the finest houses here that I ever saw and plenty of Negroes. We have had two or three insurrections in the regiment. When we fixed to start from Bardstown all the regiment except our company refused to go until they were paid off. But our company took the lead and the rest followed after. Then when we got to Munfordville and got our money they refused to go any further until we got arms and the Colonel went and got some guns that had been refused by several other regiments and told us when we got to Gallatin we should have better arms but we come to this place and this morning the Colonel ordered us to march on to Columbus 45 miles from here and selected our company to take the lead. But they told him plainly they would not go any further without better arms and I have heard that there is no more arms to give out to cavalry. I do not know what will be the result. I have not heard from you since I sent you that money but I hope you have got it. I would like to be at home with you all but I don’t know when I can come. There is no chance to get a furlough now. You must write as often as you can and direct your letters to Nashville, Tenn. until I write again. You must be contented as you can and stay where you are until I can get back again and trust to Providence. 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.