This letter was written by Elizabeth Anna (Green) Adams (1827-1913) to her brother, Capt. James Harvey Greene who was serving in Co. F., 8th Wisconsin Infantry, at the time. The letter was written within days of the sudden death of Elizabeth’s husband, William Adams (1824-1863) — a merchant in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Elizabeth and Harvey Green(e) were the children of Eli Green (1799-1852) and Mary Fox (1798-1887). Elizabeth and William Adams were married in 1845 in Hamilton County, Ohio. Sometime after William’s death, Elizabeth married Mr. A.E. Auld.
Judging from this letter, Elizabeth Green did not receive much, if any, formal schooling. She tended to spell words phonetically, much like her mother. I have added punctuation to the letter but have otherwise attempted to preserve the spelling as written.
Addressed to Captain James H. Greene
8th Wisconsin Regiment
2 Brigade 30 Division
15 Army Corps
September 12, 1863
My Dear Brouther,
How shall I tell you of my dredful sad affliction for when Mother wrote to you that Mr. Adams & my self had not returned. We got home wensday the 2 & he was buaride the next wensday the 9. He was not sick at tall. Did not go out all day Sunday, Monday morning five oclock he said he felt very bad. He wished mamey would get up & go to the drug store & get him some medson. He told her to tell them how he felt. She went soon as she could, brought & gave it to him. He was to take it evr[y] [h]our. He had taking it 6 times when he threw it up, la[i]d down, went to sleep, slept only a few minits, got up, comenct to dree him self, said that he was a going up to the shop. I thot he could not go [as] he was to weak. He threw himself on the bed exclaiming that he was agoing to get out at Detroit. I jumped & went to him. He was purple in the face & the frouth was coming out at his mouth & nose. I holerd for Mother to run for a doctor. She had not much more than got to the gate when he was gone.
Oh Harvey, I cannot discrib my fellons when I found that he was realey dead. I thought it was hard when pap dide but oh nothing in comparison to lose a husband & the farther of my children. It seams now that all is a blank befor me now for he was such a good Husband & farther. The children will miss him oh so much.
I don’t know as yet what I shall do. I think I shall cary on the buisness the same. The forman is a very [h]onist man. I wish you was here.
I am glad that you are in such good spirits & well. Oh, that you mabe spared to return home safe & sound to your little famley, for oh what is the loss of a Husband & farther – thare place never can be filed the same. God grant that you mabe spared is my prare. The Doctor pronounced it Apoplexy.
Write soon Dear Harvey. Mother, mamey & Durey join me in love. Remember your sister in affliction, — E. A. Adams
Here is a second letter written by Elizabeth Anna (Green) Adams to her brother, Capt. James Harvey Greene.
Addressed to J. H. Green, Comp. F, 8th Wisconsin Reg., 2nd Brigade 1st 16th Army via Memphis
Mailed from Cincinnati, June 14, 1864
June 11th 1864
My Dear Brouther,
You will think that your sister has forgotten you not receiving a letter for sow long a time but not so I neglected thinking I would write every day. Mother & Tiny was often writing. I ansured you first. We ware all sow much dispointed when you wrote that you could not come. What would I not give to see you once more. Write soonas you get this. I do not know wheather I have your right directons. If you have change youre place, let me know. And how you are getting along.
Harvey, you must excuse this, if you was here & knew how I had to write. Mr. Moodey is here & he is a bothering me so. We are all quite well.
Now Harvey, I want you to write often if you don’t write but three words, just to let us know that you are well & hole.
I am still liveing in my house. I think I shall rent it this fall. I have the house & lot clare & a few thousan to rais my family on. Nothing mor. Rem[em]ber your sister, — Elizabeth Adams
The children join me in love to thare uncle.