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Vermont Artillery

2nd Battery Light Artillery
Letters From Home to
Private James R. Leroy

(Contributed by the 2nd Battery Light Artillery Re-enactors)

Searsburg, September 22, 1864

Dear Brother it is with grate plasure that I seat my self to rite a few lines to let you know that I am well and hope this may find you the same and all the folks is well but Granmother Crosier is prety sick they thought yesterday she was a dying and I and Adlea sat up with her last nite and she revived up and was beter I think it doutfull about her ever geten well and Abey is beter so she went to a dance wensday nite to Gates Tavern Finally got a leter from you last Monday with thirty dolars in it and one before that well when i got to Bratleboro I found Foster a riting for me to come down and see him and his leg was all swell up and his foot to but it was some beter when I came home I came home one week ago yesterday came by Nathan Davis and staid all nite and William fetch me home from thair Lucy Ann was beter then Tim has bought Frank Stockwell stears and gave one hundred and twenty five dolars Clinton and wife has ben hear on a visit Tim has had a leter from Burtan to nite he is in Washington in the navy yard to work get to dolars twenty five a day Foster would like to have you rite to him when you get time we are very thankfull for them photograph of yours Dudley went to the fair to Adams yesterday well it is lonesome hear not to see you at all Tate and wife was here sunday I had a leter from Foster tuesday nite his health is good he is Dresser thair now canot tell how long he will be Leander Shippey is to home on a furlo Tim is having his house painted on the out side I got your kind leter T Bratleboro we would ben at the Depot paeker go to S Choul and Elen and Sarge and Henry is to work at thair old traid well I must draw my leter to a close by wishing you good by and rite as often as you can and this you canat read

Maria Searsbeck to James R. Leray

Searsburg Sept 22

Dear friend James i take my pen to write you a few lines to let you know that i am well Have been to school part of the time Simce you left i Went to fair to North Adams yesterday started at 6 oclock got back at 4 oclock this morning that was rather rough i carried Leonise down there had a bit top time as i eber went any where it was the biggest fair the eber had around here we sold our harness to John Bellens he wrote the other night that he wanted it so we sent it to him by express I got that watch yesterday he was he has cleaned it up in good shape we made shingles enough last week and i went to school 5 days and father was sick most all of the time to come left $8 dollars we sold them right to the door leonise told me to tell you to write to her when you git time give my best respects to Teraneis and Groaes and expect a share your self i will try and keep the girls all right i am so sleepy that i cannt write so you can read it this paper is ranbeel good enongh for any boddy write soon and i will do the same so good by from Dudley L. C. To James R. L. I want you should write how you pass any the time

Searsburg Oct 26 1864

Dear Brother I now sit down to rite afew lines to let youu know that I am well and hope this may find you well and tough I have had one leter from yo when at fair haven and answered it the same nite I got it but I take it you did not get it when I got to Bratleborw I found Foster and he is thair now he was up hear the 12 of this month his leg is looking prety bad it is all sweld up and broke out I staid ten days with him that time if I had know he would staid thair I would not gon and left I have got one of your potograph and so has Foster and we are very glad of them Well William is hear now a few days helping bank my house and paper it he has got two weeks more work for Sam Davis he is goin to live in my house this I have had Chimney laid in the shed and I dug my potatoes and had six bushel and dug them all in one day and I delay pick them up for me I tell you I miss you and am glad you like Bidy keep the school this fall Bill OBrine has ben to home on a furlo of twenty days he went back last friday Tim has painted his house in the in red and the barn on the out side we have look for a leter some time from you and Deyour has got one at last Elen begin her school up in liaaur next week John Bellows has been Drafted and he has got a sub for three years and put him in the navey Iroin will get the whip and he say it is finer whip and he say god mit rukey Mary Rire has got marted to her Tamken at last well Mary Ann Will rite all the news so goodby for this time Well take good of your self an do not for get to rite Maria Graurbeek

Searsburg Oct 26 1864

Dear friend James i take my pen to write you a few lines to let you know that i am well and hope this will find you the same I began to go to school again today we have got our potatoes dug had five hundred bushels it seems rather lonesome some times i want you to write to me and tell me how you get along i and so sleepy to night seems so i would almost die Edward Miner has been here to see me and he said he should like to see you he has wrote to me 2 letter she is in Sprigfield I had a letter from Horatio he said he hoped you would come in his company had a letter from Jack he was well i have been pretty steady since you left i haint been any where since you left only to cattle fair i hope you will excuse me this time and i do better next time write soon. This from your old Uncle

Dudley L Crosier to James R. Laeray

Searsburg Oct 26 1864

Dear Brother it is with pleaseur I set down to write a few lines to let you now we are well Darius received a letter from you to night and they sent it down to us and we was very glad to hear from you we have been a looking a great while for a letter from you and was glad to hear you was well and likes well we have not heard fromn you since you wrote that letter to Maria we got 2 letters from you and there was thirty dollars in money the Neighbor are all well except Mother Crosier She has been sick all the fall I dont think she ever get well She is very feble she has had watchers this some time William is here he is a going to move in to Foster house and make shingles he has moved up a load of potatoes and aples and when he gets him a woman he is agoing to keeping house I expect that will be next month Daries got thrown from his horse and hurt his back and side he is all round but he cant work much Dedie is keeping school now her school has been stoped about 3 weeks lucina Ballou that girl that lived to John Canedy she was to east Hampton to work and she had typhoid fever and died down there Bedie an Mrs Canedy went down and stayed till she died she was brought home and burried to South Readsbobo last thursday Berton is to Washington to work in the Navy Yard he has 2.25 a day and pays 20 dollars a month for board Elen is going to commecne her school next week up in Texas she has been agoing to school Truman is to Sams yet he and Abey went to Brattlebobo last saturday Dudley went to adams last saturday and Looisa Oaks come home with him she is over to Sams to night Tim has got his T bushels he has got his oats threshed he had 15 bushesl of oats Welthy and Parker sets up with Mother Crosier to night Dudley and Louisa set up there last night Dolly and Welthy have been to New York a visiting when Irvin gets the ox whip he says it is Jimy Whip he tells about Jimmy prety often we have got house all painted in the inside but the shed kitchen Stockwell has done the painting Tim went over to bennington and see the Judge and he says that Tim is your gardeen just same as though you had not inlisted and he is holden to see to your things the same as though you was here and when you want money send and we will send it to you tell Grover his brother was here night before last to see if we had head from you they was well you must write as often as you can and take care of your slef we will send five dolars in the letter and when you want more send for it. Good Bye for this time M & T G Crosier

Searsburg Dec 5 1864

TG Cosier You wanted to now how much we sent in the box we sent 23 lbs of shugor is 25 cts per 3 lbs of butter I hope you will get your box all right Grover had to pay 5 dollars for sending Grover box but I dont now what this will cost Tim saw Grover yesterday I beleive they were all well I have not heard from Mr. Tikes Dudley and Elmer sent you some Spruce Gum I am agoing to put tis in the box and send another letter by Mail I sent you some cake Gratia and Adella sent you some cookies they thought it would taste better if they sent them I dont now whether you [will get] the letter or box first Maria sent you that pint Rasin cake of Shugar we bought them little cakes of shugar of Sam paid him 25 cts a pound that was all the small cakes he had so we had to put in big ones but you can break them and make them small ones Write as often as you can you will get the rest of the news in the letter

Searsburg VT Feb 20 1865

Dear Brother I will answer your kind letter which I got from you and was glad to hear form you and hear that you was well it found us well Lucy has got guit smart again we are well as comon and hope these few brokin lines will find you the same Rasho Willson is at home on furlow Starts back next Monday Tim and Wilded Sumner is agoin out to Washington When he gose back you mension in your letter if I had sent your picture to here I did the next day after I got them and thare is two left I Want you should write back what you wanant don with them fathers folks has move back onto thare old place pleas answer Chloe letter and direct to her seen she wrote to you directions chloe I (or J) Davis WIlmington Dudley has got a new harness cost thirtyseven dollars I cant think of much more news to writ so I will close for this time so good by pleas answer

From your brother Wm G Leray and his Wife Lucy A leray

Searsburg The 21, Feb 1865

Will James I suppose you want me to write you a few lines of nonsinse and that is all I can write for william has wrote all the news Rasho is at home and theis is ball as a party some share almost evry knight but we have not been to eny of them yet theis is going to be one down to Hartnil grill next wensday night but I guess we shell not go but I cant think of much more to write this time so I will close for this time buy bidding you good buy

Yours truly from your sister LA Leray

Stamford March 11th 1865

I received your very kind letter last night and was right glad to hear from you and hear that you was well and enjoying yourself, you must excuse me for not answering your other letter I waited so long that I did not know where to direct it, the reason I did not answer it was because we was setting our farm ans furniture and everything pertaning to farming and housekeeping and we are a going to move wish in a week if nothing happens. so you see I will bid farewell to the Green Mountains. I have been to Searsburg only once since school was out I staid a week then, presume I shall never go to Searsburg again. Truman and Abbie were down here week ago last saturday and staid all night had a pretty good visit they are quite intimate I should say by the appearance of things guess it will make a match I dont know whether there will be any Trimstone or not. I think that Will & Lucy have been doing a big thing since I saw you, when you read this drink toast to their happiness I understand that Will does not use any of his copperhead sentimints since he went to Searsburg, three times for him but I guess if he should get down to his father Davis'she wuld be as copry as ever, I pitty him, Dudley and Grace were down here last thursday & staid all night a farewll visit perhaps, he said his father had gone to Washington. Burton wanted him to get him into business rather a poor mark for a young man, I should think that he would feel rather cheap to ask for help for he has spent his money very freely & foolishly. but it is none of business what he or anyone else does, but if I Louise was writing, if you ever see Burton ask hime if did not prophesy right when I told him that Abraham Linclon firescrous soul, would be president, and if he dont remember when tell him when he crossed his name out on the Bennington Banner, and wrote little Mac's instead, he is precious little now in name and soul I dont know any thing about his body, I thank the Lord for that, you spoke in your letter about this war being very near to close I think so myself I hope so at least and without the taking my father & brother but if it cant be done with out thier shouldering their guns I will tell them to go and bid them god speed, for I would sooner sacrifice my life than my liberty, I know that it is hard to part with friends & relations that we never expect will come back but it is easier to sacrifice a few friends than give ourselves up to use a real yankee phrase, to a pack of thieves, hogs, cutthroats & c, and I hope that Jeff DAvis & a good or great many more will be justly punished for thir villainous attempts at the north it is quite pleasant here today but rather cold we have had quite a thaw but it is freezing up again the has been about 7 ft deep here and in Searsburg they said it was four ft deep rather of a delightful country up in Vermont I want you to write what kind of a looking place you are in and have been in since you left the Green Mt. My letter is getting rather longer than is proper to write but I beleive that soldiers never tire of reading letters if they are not very sentimental please write soon and accept my kind regard and oblige

Louise L. Oakes
Wancord Lake County Illinois

Manchester Nov 29th 1863

Ever Remembered Friend, As you are doubtless expecting a letter from me I will endeavor to gratify your expectation by writing you a few lines Which I trust will gladly receive believing that they are dictated from a warm heart It is with a degree of delicacy that I pen correspondence with a friend but as I seat myself this pleasant Sabath to answer your kind letter which was only received last Wendesday and read with pleasure often have I thought of you and all of your folks and especially Mrs. Babb I was happy to hear that she was along so well. We have thought often since I came home and has my folks. Tell her from me that I think she has got well paid for what she suffered dont you Tell Sarah you dont know how I want to see those babes especially Martha that little cunning six pounder but I must hasten as time is fast passing and it is most dark and I must write you all of the news, as I presume you would like to hear how Martha is getting along these hard times, as they all term it, I am still at home, Mothers health is better then it was when I came home but she is not able to do much, I persume Mrs. Babb told you how he up & left her. She had quit a sick time of it. Hallie and I was up with her till most mid night We went down to the Doctor he said he could not do much for her, he said she was liable to drop away any time. We sent down to word to put folks and they came home a week from the next wendesday after I got home they still remaine with us, tell Mr. Babb that Mr Heath has met with a grate lost went to driviny job team but he did not drive long before he got his horse hurt so he could not use him for some days and then he went to work with him again as we suppose he had got quit well, but to his grate supprise he went out to feed him one night and he could not put his foot to the floor, and he has been growing worst till last Tuesday when Pat was olige to kill him it was a grat lost to him, but then has most lose but I must bring this long letter to a close, hopping this letter will find you all enjoying good health, my folks all send their best respect to you all, and Mother said she wish she could stop in and see Mrs. Babb and the babies, kiss the little dears for me, give my best regards to all of your folks and to Mr. Babb folks to,and especially your father receiving a large share yorself, so good by Please excuse all mistakes as Pat sat close by me and torment me so I cant hardly writ Plese write soon Yours with many kind Wishes for your welfare Martha G Emerson Manchester NH No. 4 Peach St. Oh I forgot to write and tell you that I have beus all round but I cant find a girl that I think you would like but if I find one I will write and let you know Martha

April 31, 1865 Searsburg VT.

Dear uncle it is with plasure that i am well an hope this will find you the same you said that Gratha must not get maried to Gail Grover till the 5 September Uncle William has back from ptohton to work School is a gain to bgin monday Ellen Cosier is a gain to keep School that leter that you sent to Irvin think good eal of that nite that we got that leter. Irvin got it he got a pen and a ink botel an down an to rote James a leter. Gal Grover Went home With Mary Gosbeck to nite Mary I della Cosier SAME PAPER Sam Went to Soth Readsboro and bought him a yoke of oxen of Clinton he paid two hundred and 15 dollars for them Abey and Ann have been up to Daries to day to morrow is Janes birthday you better believe Irvin wa pleased with his letter William was here and he read it to him and then Irvin set down and he read along letter he read Jimme was acoming to see himand he got apen and paper and he would write to you and then he wwould read he thought as much of his letteras any body could he writes to Jimme and Foster pretty often Foster is to Brattleboro he expect to stay there his time out Maria is here she is well Aunt Patience says she will try and write next time and Grathia will write next time that Camp Girl is gone from Warren and they have got Jane Bishop ther now I must draw my letter to a close hoping to hearT not writing sooner but I will try and do better I calculate to keep one on the road all the time

This from your true Brother and Sister T G Crosier and Met Cosier

[Envelope has Heartwellville Vet May 2, 1865]

June 11 1865

Dear Brother I now seat my self to answer yur kind leter which came to hand last nite and found me well and hope this may find you the same and I am a shame I have not rote before but I have bin a moving and had a good Deal to do and am keeping house now well Foster ha got his Discharge and got home once more and you Beter think it seam good to have him to home once more and I wish you war hear to and i Trust you will I was sory t hear you war under marching order well perhaps you like to know what hav beCome of Bill and wife She Bards with us and he maiks shingles for sam well I must tell you how much stock we have got a lot and one kiten and one cow and three hens and Foster has gan to see if he can get a roaster and to hen and shall have a pig this weeke Charles Band wife has got ebbaby and so has John Bell our got a baby Bill and his wife has gon up to Warenss to day and Sam and pheby Ann and and Maryann and Ant Pa all has gon to Derras and as for Dudly he red he was gain to Ride out and we have got one Acar of potatoes planted and a garden and Foster has worked till he has blistered his hands all up well it is plesant hear today I wish I Could have some of your blackberries to Eat in some milk well the is not much now to rite so bood by for this time and Rite not think I do not want to hear because I was hedless and did not rite because I do want hear this from you sister Maria Grousbeck

[Envelope is #69, Foster Grousbeck on back ]

Searsburg June 13 1865

Good Evening James Dear Brother I set down to inform you of our health which is good at present hoping these few broken lines will find you enjoying the same good blessing we recieved your letter that you sent to Irvin and was glad to hear you was well we recieved your letter last night it was dated May 27 and I guess you have not wrote a letter to anyone that was more pleased than Irvin was when we read the letter to him and then he took the letter and he read along letter about Jimme as he calls you he said he was coming to get the colt and he should have Dudley new harness and whip and he wanted some paper and pen to write to you if he could write he would answer your letters he says he should now you Jimme but I dont now as he would now you Aunt Patience and Irvin and my self went up to Darius to day and Sam and Phebe Ann was up to there to and Maria came over there William and Lcy went up to Warren today Daris and Maria and Abbey got letters from you last night it quite p;easant an worm but things are not as forward as they are where you are we have not had any Strawberries yet bt they will be ripe soon Jersha Bellows has got a girl and so has Chloe Bond got a girl Lewis Bailey is Maried to Permelia Welds Hiland Filler is going to carry Ellen Crosier to Adams tomorrow there is going to be a circs there Dudley is a going to carry Stephen Bishop to the circs Parker is a going bt I dont no who he is agoing to carry Jack Pike has got his discharge and is going to be married theT so he told Dudley Good Evening JAmes I will try and write afew lines I have been over to Sams to day they are all well I have been a making Irvin Some Pants he feels qite big now he is abig fellow to wear Pants Elisa Wilson was here yesterday and Abbey and Ann went to Mr Stockwells yeaterday and came back to Darius and staid last night we are having some nice weather now adays June the 16 I will finish this letter I commenced this last Sunday and Maria and Lucinda wrote you letters last Sunday and so I thouhgt I would wait afew days before I sent this and not have them all come together we are all well and so are the rest of them you would laugh to see Irvin with his new pants on he thinks he is aman now Henry Shippe is to home ona pass we have got 5 little Pigs and 6 lambs and 10 Sheep we milk 3 Cows you said you was nder march orders and perhaps you will be on your way towards home I hope so bt take care of yourself and avoid bad company as much as yo can they are discharge them as fast as they can get ronnnnnd to it there is not much news to write so I will close hoping to hear from you soon M A C T G Crosier SAME PAPER this is from M A C T G Crosier to JAmes Leray Searsburg June the 15 1865 Dear Uncle it is with great pleasre that i take my pen to answer you kind letter which i received in de time it found Me well and i hope this will find yo the same i have Just got home from Whitingham to night Went out there and got a load of hay i have teamed enough this spring to come to 100 dollars i git from 5 to have to find my self Jack Pike was married to day i suppose to Hinnie Gibson the next thing you will hear i will be married I will ask you to my wedding i must draw this to a close When yu get home we Will have a good time Write again D. A. Crosier

Good Evening James Dear Brother I take my pen in hand to write a few lines in answer to your welcome letter which came to hand to day and was glad to hear from you and to hear you had got smart again and I hope you will remain well but I have been afraid you would have the fever it is so hot down there we are all well except TIm has been quite unwell 3 or 4 days this week with the Summer complaint but he is better he went to stamford today and carried a load of Shingles for Foster but he said it hurt him to ride you anted to know our opinions about your reinlisting we think you had not better reinlist if you live to have to have yor health till your time is out you had better come home than inlist Tim thinks it is a hard place for you those regulars are made up of all kinds of men it is vry different from inlisting in the regular army there is a Great many taken out of the State Prison and those that dont care for anything and Darius was here to night he says not not inlist you will be sorry and Warren says so to and Foster says you have not any notion of inlisting he dont believe I have not seen PhebeAnn but I have seen Abbey she says she nows her folks would rather yo wold not inlist and Maria and Lucy Ann dont think yo had better William is not here he is to Jothams to work ahaying Jothams has been sick most all summer but is getting better now. Good Morning James I will try and finish this letter Otis and Lovel and Polina is here today Aunt Patience Tim and myseldf are to home the rest are gone to Meeting Elder Flicks Preaches Elder Bishop and his wife (preach Dudley and Parker have gone to Readsboro hunting girls i guess but dont now Irvin was pleased with is letter you would laugh to see hin when he read your letter to Irvin he will say Jimme means me and then he will laugh Ellen Crosier and Hiland Fuller has just rode past here Lovel has got his discharg and so has Otis Crosier the boys are all coming home as fast as they can get there discarge Dudley ment to wrote in this letter but he has gone away to day so I shant wait for him because I want to send it to the office so you can get it before you inlist for we dont any of us want you to inlist we think you had better cone home when your time is out than to stay to make a big thing out of it it is very unhealthy besides being in very bad company and you will have enough to give you a good start in the world so I have you told our opinion about your inlisting for I am afraid yu would be sorry if yo Should inlist but after you had put your name down there you wouuld have to stay if you lived so I think you had better come home when your time is if you dont get your discharge before I have told yo or opinion now so now you will havehave to do as you think best about inlisting I shant write so long a letter this time for I want to send it to the office and I will write mor next time Aunt Patience will in the next letter but we have got company and I cant write when there is a mess around atalking there is not much news to write so I will close for this time hoping to hear from you soon so good Bye for this time This is from you Brother and Sister T G Crosier Mary A. Crosier to James R. Leray

July 15

Dear Uncle it is with great pleasure that i seat my self down to rite to you to let you know that i am well an hope that this will find you well dont you enlist agan but you must rite to me more often or i shant rite to you atol so you may rite to me or not I would like i cant think of much more this time Jack Pike is maried to fany Gipson of north adams George I pike has got home from the war he and James Pike came up here they went home yesterday I must close for this time from Mary Jolella Crosier to James R. leray

[Writing is very child like hard to read. No Envelope]

[Envelope has Searsburg, #71, & T G Crosier on it Folded to show Mr. James R. Leray MARY is written on it also]

Dear uncle it is with great pleasure that I seat my self down to write a few lines to let you know that I am well and hopw these few broken lines will find yo the same How do you like the looks of the Ols women down sout the next I hear from you that you are marriad tom a Negro woman ncle Foster has got hiis dicharge and Ant Maria has gon to keeping house I went and see her today Mr. Hale is sick Farther went over to see him to night gratia went over to ncle Sams and staid there last night School I dont keep today Irvin went up to uncle Derius yeaterday any prity rot to day yu must expect poor righting i suppose you have head ripe Strebery before now send some in a letter to me you must right to me if you dont rite to me i shant to you but if you will to me I Will to you i must close by saying good by from Mary J Crosier Searsburg Vt. Mary J Crosier to James R Leray This is Irvin letter he want to write to Jimme Here is one of Irvin Greenbacks he wants to send it Jumme Irvin G. Crosier

Aunt Patience let him have a pen and paper so I wrote this on the other side to you Other side is scribbling no words.