Washington, Jan. 18, ‘63

Dear Father,

I now Sit down to write you a few lines as I promised in my last letter, and to enclose to you fifteen dollars in United States currency. I received $28.93 the payment and wanted to send you more but I wanted to get a few necessary articles, and for this reason retain the balance we were paid up to the 31st Oct. only, but as we expect, in a few days to be paid up to the 1st Jan. I think I shall then be able to Send you $22 more. You remember when I left home, that Robert let me have two dollars, and you will pay to him two dollars of this I send you now, and oblige me. I think he has waited long enough for it and tell him I am very much obliged for the loan of it.

I am not very well to-day, and of course you will excuse me from writing so brief a letter, I must however, before I close, acknowledge the receipt of those beautiful verses my mother sent me, and for which I thank her very much. I have rewritten them [in] all my letters.

I will try and answer Mary’s and Lizzie’s letter in a few days. Give my love to all and remember me as

Affectionate Son,


Robert Baird was born in 1843 in Mt. Giliad, Marion County, Ohio. He was the third eldest of the Baird children after Matthew and Samuel. In the 1860 census, he is 16 and living at home in Cedar Creek, Barry County, Michigan. Robert enlisted in the cavalry on August 5th, 1864 in the same unit as his brother Samuel – Co. H, 2nd Missouri Cavalry, “Merrill Horse”. Records indicate that while in Benton Barracks, Missouri, during the fall of 1864, Robert and many others in his unit, came down with the measles. Robert was brought home and succumbed on December 4, 1864. 205 other soldiers in his unit also died as a result of the measles.

Mary Baird, five years younger than her brother Robert, was born in 1848 in Mt. Giliad, Marion County, Ohio. She is 12 years old in the 1860 census and living with her parents in Cedar Creek. Her parents passed away in 1866, so she becomes difficult to track. She married Alphonse Larkin c. 1870, he was a farm laborer from the Hastings, Michigan area. They had one daughter, Lucy, who was 10 in the 1880 census and another Maggie, 12 years later. By the time the 1900 census rolls around, Mary and Alphonse are living with their 5 year old granddaughter Gladys. Mary passed away in 1904 from complications of diabetes. Alphonse (64) and his father Nathan (92) are living with Maggie (Larkin) Trumper in the 1910 census.

Who’s Matthew Baird?