Digital Collections @ St. Lawrence University

Dear friends at Home I again seet myself on the flore

Dear friends at Home  I again seet myself on the flore
Dear friends at Home  I again seet myself on the flore
Dear friends at Home  I again seet myself on the flore
Dear friends at Home  I again seet myself on the flore


Sunderland, John
Sunderland, John
African Americans--Louisiana--History--19th century
Donaldsonville, Louisiana
Original letter: ink on paper, 4 p.


Plantation Camp near Donaldsonvill La
May 15th [18]64
Dear Friends at Home.
I again seete myself on the flore with an old box to write on to pen a few lines to you to let you know that I am well and I hope these few lines will finde you all enjoying the same blessing.  I have not received my letter from you this last weeke but I intend to keepe up my practis of writing to you every Sunday and I hope that you will do the same so I can have one letter a weeke from home.  Well we have had some moving around this week[.]  their [there] has ben five companies here all the time until yesterday but company C left here for Donaldsonvill yesterday and Co. D left this morning for New Orleans.  So we have Company A F and K here now under the command of Colonel Wilkerson and Cos [Co.’s] D M B and L are at N.O. [New Orleans]  Cos H and F are up the river on another plantation under the command of Magor [Major] Remington and so we are scatered around all along the river to gord [guard] the property and the River so that boats can pass for all along the river that is within 10 or 15 miles of it there is plenty of rebels.  Ower ordley seargent was passing from ower camp to Magor Remington the other day and was fierd at from some bushes but did not get hurt but their was several balls enterd his horses neck so he had a rather nawrer [narrow] escape but he got into camp with his horse and we sent out a scout but did not finde any rebbs.  We think that they are sculking around to get some of ower oficers for we have taken some from them.  I suppose that you have heard of the great battle at Red River and the great Massaecre at Fort Pillo [Pillow].  Their [there] was hevy canonading in that direction this morning and we think that General Banks is having another battle with the rebs up their [there].  You spoke about wheat I have to read her [here][,] well we do not have any thing only now and then some of the boys will get a paper [?--newspaper] and then there is a great scrabelong to hear the news[,] but I have seubescribed [subscribed] for a paper entitled the Union ***[,] it is published at ***[.] their [there] is some of the boys in Company S that a writes for it[,] it is a new paper got up in purpose for this regiment and they exchange with all Boston[,] N.Y. and Washington papers so we can get all the news and I shall send it home as often as I can.  I want you should send me some two cent stamps in your next for we have not got any pay yet and you will have to keepe me in stamps now.  I was on fatige [fatigue] Duty downe to the landing loading hay this forenoon and I must close my writing now to go down their [there] again for I have to worke now whenever I am cald on sunday or no sunday. 

May 15th at 7 P.M.
I have just come in from work and eat my supper of tea and sweend [sweetened] biscuit and now will resume my scribling to you.  The boys tell me that it was read on dress prade that ower head quarters was at New Orleans and that ower Co was going up to Magor Remingtons Camp so you can address your letters to New Orleans now for they are detrmind [determined] to keepe us around the citys somewhere but I am glad that ower company is not going there now but I think that we will be sent there this fall.  We got a papers from New Orleans to day stating that Greant [Grant] Had had another battle with Lea [Lee] and had got between him and Richmond[.]  I hope it is so.  Well I have not heard from Dar for 3 or 4 weeks but I think that I will get one this week[.]  Well you better believe that we finde it rather warm down here now and the flise [flies] and insects are enough to eat a person up[,] the flies are like a swarm of bees.  I must say that I have seene enough of Negros for we are rite amongst them here all the time[,] rite where they live and work[.]  there [they’re] is some 50 famelys on this plantation and they are of shapes, forms and colors[,] there is one here that is as white as any person that I ever saw[,] his parents wer both black and his hair is just like the other nigers[,] only not so black[.]  we all think it is quite a site to see his[.]  the negros here all belong to the Baptis or Methodist Church[.]
Well I must say that this is a splendid country here but the war has stoped most all the business[.]  there [they’re] are nice saw mills all along the river but none in operation now and the land is not more than half tilled now and that is all the buisness that is don here now.  But some of the planters have the most gardens that I ever saw both flowers and vegitabls I have seene in some places a acres of flowers of all and descriptions, corn, cotton and every thing else looks well here know [now] and I hope that we shall stay here all summer to see one seeson in the south.  peeches and other fruit is doing first rate here this seeson[.]  well if you can finde head or tail to this letter you can do better than I can for it is maid [made] up of most every thing.  Magor Williams and Ell picket send there [their] best respects to you and they are both well now[.]  Ell had a letter from home yesterday and he say that they think that Hirams woman will not live[.]  well it is after taps and I must close[.]  give my best respects to all enquirers friends and write often to your son
J. R. Sunderland 


Rights Management: 
Original materials may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (more information).
Date Original (Precise): 
May 15, 1864


Digitization Specifications: 
Scanned at 600ppi on Epson 1000XL scanner as 48-bit RGB uncompressed TIFF images. Images resized to 960 pixels wide, 150 dpi, and saved as JPEG (level 10) in Photoshop CS5 with Unsharp Mask of 60:1.
Date Digital: 
October 3, 2011