Digital Collections @ St. Lawrence University

Dear friends at home I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines

Dear friends at home  I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines
Dear friends at home  I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines
Dear friends at home  I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines
Dear friends at home  I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines


Sunderland, John
Sunderland, John
New Orleans, LA
Original letter: ink on paper, 4 p.


St Louis hospital
Nov 24th 186[4]
Dear friends at home
I take the presant opportunity to pen a few lines to you in answer to yours of the 2 which came to hand yesterday and very glad I was to hear from home for it is 5 weeks today since I reseived your last letter which was written on the 2 of October and you say that you mailed one to me the 22 of Oct. but I have not reseived it.  the last letter I wrote home was written on the 2 of Nov and you wanted to know wheat I was doing on that day[.]  well I was writing home and thinking all the time about wheat a nice time I would have if I was their [there].  Last Friday I wrote a few lines and sent a book to Charley but it came back to me again yesterday but I shall send it again and the few lines that I wrote I will send in this so you can see how I felt while writing them.  Well Mother today is thanksgiving and I have jus[t] got up from a nice diner[.]  we had mashed potatoe and baked turkeys with some nice mince pies to top off with.  I have ben thinking all day about home and wheat kinde of dinner you would have but I thought all the time how you would not enjoy it for you would be wishing that I had some[.]
Well Mother I suppose you want to know how I am getting along.  Well when I left Uncles I was feeling quite well but after I was in the hospital 2 or 3 days my dieree began to trouble me a goodele but the doctor checked it pretty well and then sent me to nurcing [nursing] but I was not strong enough to stand it so I had to take to my bed again for a spell but I comencd [commenced] nursing again last Tuesday[.]  I have now 10 patients to take care of and that is my fool [full] amount some times we will not have mor[e] than 6 or 7 but my beat is full now.  I have to get up at 5 Oclock evry morning and make the beds and then get the brekfast for my patients and then sweepe up and cleane the fier [fire] place and spit boxes[.]  I generly [generally] get my work done by 9 P.M. except Wedensdays and Saturdays and then it takes longer for we have to moop [mop] the flores.  Well you wanted to know wheat kind of a fellow john was and if I saw wheat he wrote.  Well I did not but he tolde me some few wordes that was in his last letter about me and sead at the same time that he suposed that I would not like it and so I know by that wheat your fears wer about me but you neede not trouble your self for I know the effects of Liqurs well enough.  Now about John[,] he Is a good boy and kind to evry poor soldier altho he is a southerner and he would do as mutch for me as though I was his own brother.  But liquer is wheat runes [?--ruines] him.  their [there] was not a day while I was their [there] but he came home the worce for Liquor and it all came out of those barells he spoke about[,] but his mother nor Uncle knows nothing about it[,] they do not know how mutch likes he does drinck[.]  Well you have ben expecting me home but I do not think I shall get a furlough this winter and I do not think aunt will come north untill spring if she does then.  Well Mother we have not got eny pay yet and I do not think we will before the middle of January so if you thinks best you mite send me 2 or 3 dollars in your next.  for I would like a little spending money I supose I could gett it of [off] Uncle if I would ask him but he has done all a Father could for me now but offer me money.  Coz [Cousin John] wants I should ask Uncle for some but I will not.  Coz would give it to me himself if he had it but he had to go to his mother for money to ride on the cars from the house down to the store evry morning.  You wanted to know about the medisin.  Well I have taken sevrell kinds of medisin for the dieree but they do not cures me but I think it helps me some.  I have taken that that F. Vanwaters sent and I think it helped me some but it did not stopp the diree.  Now one of the boys got a box of things from N.Y. and he seys it did not cost but 2 dollars to send it and I have ben thinking that if it did not cost eny more I would have one sent.  Now I want you should go to the express office and see wheat you can gett a box sent here for and if it does not cost more than it would to by [buy] the things here I wish you would send me a few things.  If you conclude to send[,] you may gett me some cheese, honey, butter and some of those nice sweete appels if you have eny[,] some spruice or tamrack gum and eny thing you can think of[.]  you may send some snake head, northernmost or eny kind of erbs [herbs] that you can gett and if you send eny more of Vanwateres medisin send the directions how to take them and some tea, coffee, putt the tea and coffee in a little bag you mite send me 2 handkerchiefs and 2 towells and if you can get 2 pair of gloves and 2 pairs of socks without eny delay in sending you may[.]  do not for gett [forget] to send some maple shugar and if you can gett a nice bottle of catsup to eat on meat send it to [too].
Now I do not want you should send a box if it is agoing to cost more than it is worth for I had rather by [buy] them things here but if you do send be shure and send as soon as you gett this and have the box made with a staple and haspe [hasp] so I can lock it up.  Father will know wheat I want.  Now Mother I want you should write all the news and be shure and tell me the truth about Father[.]  how he caries on since I have ben away from home if he comes home and buses [?--bosses] you as he eust [used] to and if he will not help to gett a box redy to send to me I do not want one sent[.]  about me voting[,] I did not have a chance to pole [poll] my vote but if I had it would of ben for old Aabe and I shall always concidder [consider] it my first vote.  You may direct the box to me[.]  No more this time[.]  write soon to your son.
New Orleans L.a.
Co K. 11 NYC
Care of W.H.H. Witherell

I have no stamps and so I must send without.  When you write tell me how mutch postage you have to pay on my letters


Rights Management: 
Original materials may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (more information).
Date Original (Precise): 
November 24, 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