October 2011


Letter written to Baird from Enos. P. Chandler, a farmer, as noted in the 1880 Census. Born in New York in 1815, he was close to 47 years old at the time this letter was written.

Cedar Creek Oct. 20th 1861

Dear Sir, you letter of the fourth inst, was received by the last mail. I was glad to hear from you, but Sorry to read the news it contained. The Service has lost a good soldier and the country a good citizen. Samuel L. Phillips was a good hearted man, I received the letter you & Linns wrote me, I got it about the first of September owing to sickness in my family I did not answer it, and now it is too late. I wish you would ascertain the name of his Captain and the number of the Company in which he served, and also the amount of pay that was due him at the time of his death, an let me know who to write to, to get information on serving his affairs, myself & family have all been sick this fall but we are better now and we get some news from the army that is cheering to all the neighbors except S. Doud, the Larabees, A. Gordimin & A. Mott. So you see their forces are small in this section. Friend C. P. Dickenson had got up a flag, Uncle P. Howard also, and we all take off our hats as we pass under them, you may rest assured, that our prayers are for the Safety of the Nation & its Brave Defenders Oh, Matthew you cant imagine how often I have wished myself ten years younger or at least, healthy and robust, that I might take part in this struggle. Jonathan Valentine and two of Mr. McShane’s boys, just over in Baltimore [Township], they went to Chicago. Hewey S. Johnson lost his wife this summer, and he is about being married again we have a very wet fall, but no frost to speak of until this morning and then not very severe. Wheat is mostly going in late, in consequence of wet weather. Crops are very good this season I do not think of any think of any thing more of importance to write and therefore will draw this lengthy epistle to a close, if your patience is exhausted by reading this, write to me again as soon as you can and I will endeavor to be more prompt for the future, this from your Sincere Friend and well wisher Enos. P Chandler

To Matthew Baird

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PS Please write soon and let me know all you can learn of Linn’s affair
                                                                                                                                   E.P. C.

Samuel L. Phillips  was from Ottawa County, MI and enlisted in Co. I of the Third Michigan Infantry on May 13, 1861 in Grand Rapids for 3 years, age 32. Mustered June 10, 1861. Died of disease at Georgetown, D.C. Sept. 5, 1861. From Record of Service of Michigan Volunteers in the Civil War 1861-1865, vol. 3.

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Who’s Matthew Baird?

First page of letter written by Julia. HCP Collection.

This letter from home was written by “Julia”. Unfortunately, the author’s last name is not known, and thus no background information has been located.

Hickory Corners Oct 15th 61

Friend Matthew

I was surprised indeed when I got your letter for it was the first new I had received of yous having gone to war. I was very glad to hear from you the [illegible] so perhaps that you are so far from home. I had about made up my mind that you had forgotten me. But I find that you have not. I have often thought of you and the happy days we used to spend at Mr. Elliot’s those pleasant, those sunny hours will never be effaced from my memory. Do you remember that Sunday when we went to School pond together within years, a thousand other little incidents do I think of I seems hardly four years ago time flies so swiftly away. Little did we dream then that our country would be in such a condition as it is now and how little did we think that you would have to take up arms against a sister state, those that fight – for their stars and stripes fight – nobly and may their efforts prove successful in restoring our land to its former peaceful tranquility. May God prosper the right and soon put an end to this civil war. Do not forget those dear ones at home who watch with eager anxiety – each mail that comes to hear some news of the absent one and forget not the friends that you left in Barry, may the remembrance of past scenes and happy hours induce you to write often we can never live over the past – only in memory and may they never be forgotten. I should be glad to hear from you as often as you find it convenient to write and be as familiar as you please.

From an old friend.  Truly
                                               Julia

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Who’s Matthew Baird?

Oct. 2nd

Nothing has occurred since my last date of any importance, till with in a very few days.

The rebels have evacuated and abandoned their works on Munsons Hill and the hills adjacent, and have retreated with their whole advance line toward Bull run. The Union troops now occupy those hills and our advance line is thrown out as far as Fairfax. Where I heard the rebels a few weeks ago playing in division the ever glorious Star-Spangled-Banner, now the air resounds with the strains of that noble tune sung and pledged by true, loyal, and patriotic men.

Considerable excitement was created in this and other camps belonging to the 4th brigade. The day-before-yesterday, by rumors being circulated that the enemy were returning upon their lately abandoned works and had begun an attack upon our centre. The rumors were however false. The reason why the Brigade was called and (which was done) was because we had received orders to march or to hold ourselves in readiness to march, and the alarm was sounded for the purpose of testing the energies of the men. A real fighting spirit was manifested. We have orders now however to hold ourselves in readiness to march at a moments notice. The camp is all quiet however at present. People still continue to seek safety in Washington. Three teams are passing along while I am writing, fleeing from the country, and the rebels, and seeking safety within the Union fortifications.  

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Who’s Matthew Baird?