• Civil War Soldier Bloomfield Describes Travels From Slave To Free States, Railroad Building

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    4 pp, 5 x 8, Civil War soldier letter (possibly Ohio) regarding his travels from Washington to Chattanooga, mentioning slave states and free states, Murfreesboro, January 4th, 1864 to his sister.

    “It appears along time since I have written to you that I have forgotten where from. I have rec. no letters from you since I have written.  Our Regt has traveled over a great deal of the country and at present is laying in Chatinooga [sic] where we had a big and glorious fight which the papers has already informed you. I was not into it for ever since the last of July I have had the diarrhea but still I complained not and done duty at last on 23rd of October I had to knock under. I had gotten so poor weak and then I have been in the hospitals. At present I am in the above one. I am quite comfortable and getting along finely. It appears like civilization than being in the camp. The doctor says he will get my discharge. I never will be fit to undergo active service again. I am to old and can’t stand the charges of camp life.

    “We left Warrenton Junction about 35 miles from Alexandria or Washington on the Orange Road by cars and came through both of them places passing through the whole length of Virginia and Maryland again in Virginia through Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee to Alabama on the Tennessee River at Bridgeport where we left the cars it being at that as far as they could run in consequence of the Rebs destroying the Bridge. But it is all built up again and the cars with supplies are running to Chatanooga. We passed some most splendid country and all through the free states were Rec with open arms and encouraging smiles, our wants attended to bountifully. What a contrast from the Slave States and we knew how to appreciate it. We were seven days and nights aboard the cars changing three or four times in crossing rivers. Part of the country we came through was very Mountainous. You would have thought it almost impossible to construct a Rail Road over Mountains on the sides and is under them where we passed through several tunnels. I must confess it struck a terror some times in passing along on the side of a mountain where you could look for hundreds of feet below you and the cars running on the verge a precipice as it were. If they should run off it would be instant death.

    “I have seen William’s Regt the 102nd and got all the particulars until the hour of his death. My informant says he scarcely spoke. He seems to have lost the power of utterance. His exclamations were Oh Sis or Dear Sis. He went with him in the cars to Alexandria where he died after arriving.

    “In all probability I will not be here when you receive this which I hope you will give my love to all and accept a good share for yourself”f.

    “I remain yours,

    “Affectionately, E Bloomfield”

    Letter is in excellent condition. Folds, light toning and some phonetic spelling.

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