• Civil War Letter: Yankee Wounded in Gut May Not Survive Serious Injury -- 17th NY

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    HENRY G. MERVINE was 40 years old when he enlisted on August 18, 1862, at Medina, NY, as a Private. He was mustered into NY 17th Light Artillery on August 26, 1862 and mustered out on June 12, 1865.


    Very fine 4 pp, 5 x 8, ALS, Camp of 17th NY Battery, Fairfax, C.H., VA, April 22, 1864.  Cover included.


    “…The news about poor brother Charles is very sad & though the last account from himself is encouraging & hopeful yet I cannot but feel great anxiety & many fears for his safety. His wound is in a very dangerous part. Three cases of similar nature have come under my observation at this place all of which provide fatal – though one of the men lingered along & was thought out of danger for a number of days.  I have heard of but very few instances of recovery where men were shot through the bowels particularly on the field of battle where the suffered could not have immediate care & the best surgical attention. 


    “In Charlie’s case I doubt not that he is in good hands & sincerely hope he may come through all right – but cannot but feel anxious till I hear again from him…


    “For myself I am improving in health. I have returned to duty though keep as quiet as possible & shun all the work I possibly can for I feel pretty sore yet & like an old man. I have been engaged writing for the Captain the past two days…I am glad to do it for it clears me from other & harder work.


    “I have some doubts about your being able to exchange the place. It might be sold perhaps. It ought to be worth $800…I would rather it were sold & you should rent some small house in the village till I return for I don’t know what I may wish to do then. I think strongly of getting far away from Medina. I do not like the place or the inhabitants. A large number of our Company propose to go far west & for us to form a settlement. Perhaps the government will give us land…”


    Folds, toning. Very readable.



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