February 19, 1863

2-19 letterHeadquarters 2nd Divn near Falmouth, Va.

My dear mother:

After a hard rain all day yesterday and last night, we have a cessation this morning and some indication of fair weather again.

I scarcely went out of my tent, at most only into the neighboring ones here at Hd. qrs.  I have not been upon my horse since last Saturday night when I returned with Mr. Stinson, as I think I wrote you, from a visit to the left of the Army and the 5th Maine.

Otis asked me this morning whether I would not like to go with him to Philadelphia as he intends to take a Leave on ten days soon.  I told him I would be compelled to get some clothes if I did so and that perhaps I had better not go.  He said I could go if I chose and I will consider the matter meanwhile. Continue reading

February 14, 1863


Oliver Otis Howard

Headquarters 2nd Divn
2nd Corps. Feb. 14. 1863
Near Falmouth Va.


It is getting pretty late and we have had reading and prayers, but I can’t go to bed without telling you that I have thought much of this day 8 years ago, since then how much of experiences in the retrospect.  You seem just as young, just as beautiful, and I think a little more so to me now.  There is so much freshness in our lives.  I would like to lover-like to pay my addresses to you tonight.  Never mind the wedding dress, nor the tiny slippers, nor the choir cake.  To me it would be a wedding night if I were home even without the bonfire.  Goodnight.

Oliver Otis Howard to his wife, Elizabeth Ann Waite [Oliver Otis Howard Papers]


February 10, 1863

Head Qrs 2n Divn
Near Falmouth, Va

My dear brother [Rodelphus Gilmore]
It is my turn to write again, almost doubly so, as Rowland sent me your last to him. It is a bright warm morning like some April day in Maine.
Otis is sitting upon a Military Commission for the trial of a Rebel citizen who was with a party of Rebel soldiers who fired upon some of our troops. It may cost him his life. Otis is the President of the Comn. It consists of several Generals and some 3 or 4 Cols. The Comn sits at the Phillips house and Otis is going round by the 3d Maine. Continue reading

February 7, 1863

Near Fredericksburg, Va.

Feb. 7.  Clear, promises a fair day.  9 A.M. orders to fall in.  Start for camp.  We arrive at 9 P.M. roads very muddy.  Our Expedition was to burn the Rail  Road bridg[e] which crosses the Rappahannoc[k] River at  Rappahannoc[k] Station on the Orange & Alexandria RR.  The enemy lost three killed, our side lost none.  The bridge was effectively destroyed.

Diary of A.M. Riddle [Civil War Miscellany]