From Jerome to “Dear friends all", November 28, 1863

Dublin Core


From Jerome to “Dear friends all", November 28, 1863


Peirce, Jerome
Dear friends all
Cumberland Gap, KY


From Jerome to “Dear friends all"


Jerome Peirce


Jerome Peirce Collection, National Park Service


HIST 428 (Spring 2020), University of Mary Washington




NPS, Civil War Study Group, Nathan Varnold (trasncriber)


For educational purposes with no commercial use. Courtesy of National Park Service, Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania NMP, FRSP 16095-16102 (FRSP-00904).


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Letter #179


Cumberland Gap, KY

Text Item Type Metadata


Cumberland Gap, Ky 28th Nov/63
Dear Friends all,
If you could just look in upon us you would see a little of the shady side of the soldier’s life. Sat morning. Have just had thunder and lightning and it is raining, dull and steady. No breakfast as yet, too wet to get a fire started, etc. I mailed you a letter last in Barboursville, Ky about two weeks ago. We were there plodding along with the teams until we arrived at the “Gap” same day forenoon the 25th amid a rain storm. I mounted on a mule. On reaching the “Gap” everything was at a stand-still. Rebels in front. Burnside at there at Knoxville. So, for us, we could leave. Things still remain the same. News from the front kept secret and all who chance to be going to their Regts., officers, mail and all, are detained here for the present.
A week ago yesterday our party, those I came with, consisting of seven of the 21st Mass., some from Ills., Michgn., Ind. and Penn., convalescents from Camp Nelson, broke up, some returned with the teams and the rest were put on duty here. The 21st men, with the one of 36th that came back with me (Carter, Co. “A” of Lancaster and 12 others) are all attached to Battery “A” on the highest point of the “Gap” Ky. side. We have pitched our tents and are making ourselves as comfortable as we can on half rations and small houses. It rains often, as the winter comes on, but we are in the woods with any amount of firewood and leaves and we manage to keep quite comfortable. There is a “scare” here and artillery is planted at every available point and small detachments to tend them and pickets in the nights. As good fortune will have it, Col. Bowman of “ours” is here [as] Chief of Artillery and is very kind and sociable as opportunity offers and as we go to the “Gap” every few days to draw rations, I see him. He, like all the rest, are for Knoxville when the way is opened. Lieut. Hodgkins is here today (36th) and has charge of the mail and by his kindness I received yesterday letters from wife and yours of the 8th Nov., the first news since I left home. He searched the mail and took them out. More are somewhere and shall get them now if possible. News by letters is disappointed. Allie speaks as tho there had been a big battle somewhere. We see no papers and know nothing what is going on, only that Andrew is Gov. [Governor] again, New York Republican etc., etc.
A rumor here says that the Rebs have left Virginia altogether and will concentrate hereabouts, that Meade’s Army is on the way here. This latter item came by a letter recd. by one of the soldiers here from Cincinnati, that part of his forces were there in C. [Cincinnati] etc., etc., etc.
Let me thank you for your letter and also for attending to Allie, sending her aid, etc. and selling the stove. I was anxious to get to Regt. in hopes if would be to my advantage pecuniaryly. I have served to the best of my ability since I came out and my family write to say nothing more require that I make the most of my life here and if I can get a lift I intend to the first chance (This to you friends). Drafting! Yes, and business excellent and commanding good pay etc. If the country is really to be forgotten and men dragged by the “neck and heels” into the field, what are those to think who are in the field with the enormous sum of $100 or $125 bounty behind them? (I understand bounties are high). The real sacrifices and true motives of some of us will be appreciated sometime I trust and for you and others, kindness to my family. Well, I can only try and do my part.
Allie does not feel indifferent because she does not visit O. [Orange]. She could enjoy it but the truth is she don’t feel to afford it and does not like others to be at expense for her. Please don’t let her know this but that with the fact she works hard, and I wish my term of service was up for her sake. But one must hope for the best and struggle on till we have help or “go under” and God save us from that.
Give my best regards to all friends even the senator-elect, if you see him. Good for him! (A. A. Ward). Nothing reliable from the Regt. Have not written and I did not think letters could go thru.
As ever
Bro. [Brother] Jerome

Am glad to hear from the Ballous. A mistake giving him up, I think. Heard that Boyden was discharged, etc. Where are those left at Camp Dennison, Ohio?

Rev. Levi Ballou gave the sermon at the funeral service sermon held for Jerome on Sunday, June 19, 1864, in the church in Orange, Massachusetts, where Jerome had been the “Sabbath School Superintendent.” Rev. Ballou made reference to several letters that Allie had shared with him in that sermon.

Original Format





Jerome Peirce 1863, From Jerome to “Dear friends all", November 28, 1863, HIST 428 (Spring 2020), University of Mary Washington


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