December 26, 1863

West Point

Dear William,

I received your letter of the 18th inst. You asked me to write as soon as I got my box. The box got here today, it contained a turkey cake, apples, etc. also a dressing gown which fits me exactly and is a very nice one. Christmas we had a very good dinner of turkey, etc., at the Mess Hall.[…]

The standing for Nov. is made out. I came out in Philosophy 58, Chemistry 67, in Drawing I had no standing made out. I did not draw any for November.  I have not been well for a few months past. I was taken with a lame ankle, it swelled up and was very painful, there did not seem to be any cause for it. The Doctor called it the rheumatism. I went to the Hospital on 29th Oct. and was there little over three weeks. I was out about a week when I got worse and had to go back again, stayed there over a week, got better and came out for good 8th December. I have not done Military duty since but think I shall be able to return to duty in a few days.[…]

I was sorry you was not promoted to Major but perhaps there will be another chance soon. […] I should like to have you write as often as is convenient.

Malcolm McArthur to his brother, William McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

December 6, 1863

12 6My Dear Mother:

I have received Father’s letter in which were enclosed, copied by you, those beautiful lines of the Dean of Canterbury -

“One fragment of the blessed Word,
Into the Spirit burned,
As better than the whole, half burned,
And by our interest turned.

Yes, the discipline of our Heaven by Father is best, but at times how hard it seems. We shrink from trials, and disappointment is bitter to us. Yet, how it purifies; and how glad it makes the spirit, when, leaning on them, we walk strongly through all.

I have also recd a long interesting letter from Catherine which in a few days, perhaps, I will try to answer.[…]

I am quite comfortably situated in every respect.

William McArthur to his mother, Sarah Prince Miltimore McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

November 29, 1863

West Point

Dear Father,

I received your letter for the 22d. inst., you complained of my short letters. I think we are about even on that item. I write so often once a week. I can not make out a very long letter.

I have written a letter to Mother which I will send in this mail. I spoke to her about a Christmas box. I hope you all will think favorably of the plan. There is only a month to get it ready.

I hope you will excuse my short letter this time since I have written another long one home.

Your Affectionate Son,

Malcolm McArthur

Malcolm McArthur to his father, Arthur McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

November 27, 1863

Limington

My Dear Brother,

Father has written you this mail, but the letter is sealed, so I must send a separate envelope. I wrote you some time since, but I fear you did not receive the letter, for I did not put on the outside the name of the county. I wrote in regards to my going to California. I was finally decided to go, so you may expect me soon. I shall try to get an opportunity to teach. What do you think of it? I should wait to hear from you, if it did not take eight weeks. So it is I think I had best go without. I shall want a good boarding place secured before I arrive so that I can go immediately to it. Everything will be very new to me, but I can in a little while, I guess, learn their manners and customs. I wish I knew exactly what things to purchase so that I should not have to pay so high for them there.

I should rather teach Drawing than anything else, but most anything I should be willing to teach. […]

Charles McArthur to hist brother, Malcolm McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

November 16, 1863

West Point

Dear Father,

I received your letter of 8th inst. with a short letter from Mother enclosed.

I am sorry you feel so bad about my demerits. I did not get into any bad habits but was unfortunate. When I can find the time I will copy them off and send them to you and then you can judge for yourself.

There is nothing new.

Your Affectionate Son,
Malcolm McArthur

Malcolm McArthur to his father, Arthur McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

November 14, 1863

Dear Malley,

It is Saturday evening, and there is little leisure, and will devote it to you. I suppose you will like to hear how we have been getting along since you left home. Cathrine [sic] went to Portland twice to see Dr Fitch, he gave her medicine, told her eat beef and ride, and keep out of doors as much as possible, for a while she was better and grew worse, one night was very sick, I went in for Mrs Clark, and got Mr Clark to go for Dr Livett, that was there three weeks last Thursday. He thought her very sick. He advised not to go out, she has not been out since, and is a great deal better. I feel quite encouraged now, think if she is carefull  she will get quite well. […]

How are you getting along at West Point? That interests me and all of us. Try will all of your might, to do your very best, the happiness that you will confer in your friends, by so doing, will amply repay you, so, don’t let your ambition flag, or get discouraged, at the difficulties. I should like to have you write to me, how you like your new studies, if they are interesting, or if you find them very hard. Anything about yourself is exceedingly interesting to me. Do you have the same room mate? Do you take lessons in dancing? In riding? Is you [sic] time agreeably spent, as it was last year? Please write me one good long letter. Do you look back upon your vacation with pleasure? I regret that I did not make it more interesting, and pleasant, about home, so that you could feel truly, ‘there is no place like home.’ Now my dear son, I do hope you will try to do your very best in your studies, in your conduct that you can look back upon your life at West Point with pleasure. [...]

Sarah Prince Miltimore McArthur to her son, Malcolm McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

November 9, 1863

Limington

Dear Malley,

I want you to write me a good long letter, let me know how you are getting along with your studies, are they very hard; I see by the report your rank is not so high as last year, I want you to try with all your might to do your very best- don’t  relax your effort in the least. I want you to take a high stand in every respect in murrals [sic] and religion, as well as in intellectual and scientific culture. I wish you would write me a good long letter once in a while. I will answer all your questions, and write all the news.

With Love,
Mother

Sarah Prince Miltimore McArthur to her son, Malcolm McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]

October 25, 1863

West Point

Dear Father,

I received your letter of 21st. on 24th inst., Saturday. I think this new arrangement will be a great deal better.

In your Sunday letter you seemed to be pained on account of my getting so many demerits. I am very sorry for there is no danger at all of my being found and the demerits don’t amount to much, it may through me down one or two files in General Standing. I don’t care much about getting my standing by demerits. I hope you will feel easier about my demerits hereafter.

You want me to send my weekly marks. I will send them to you when I can remember them though you can not tell how I am getting along by  them any more than you could if I should send you so many Hebrew letters.

Do you have letters from Charlie often? I wish you would tell me what town he is in, I have forgotten. I will write him as soon as I find out.

There is nothing new here.

10-25

Malcolm McArthur to his father, Arthur McArthur [McArthur Family Papers] 

October 18, 1863

West Point

Dear Father,

Your letter of the 11th. inst was received on 14th., Wednesday. I believe you got my letters Wednesday, now if you should mail a letter to me the same evening I should get it Saturday  evening and I could answer it Sunday. I think we had better try that arrangement you spoke of last year for a while at least. Don’t you think it would be a good plan?

I received a paper from William this week. I am getting along well in my studies. There is no news.

Your Affectionate Son

Malcolm McArthur to his father, Arthur McArthur [McArthur Family Papers]