July 28th 1864
I this morning with pleasure take my pen in hand to answer your welcome letter that I received yesterday and be assured it gave me much pleasure to hear from home once more and to hear you was all well. I may say I received two letters—one from Carvosso and one from you all in one sheet so I will try to answer both in my sheet as well as I can. Yours was dated July 22nd.
Dear son, I still have 3 letters on the way—one of the 15th, one on the 20th, and one on the 22nd which I hope you may get. Dear son, I am glad to hear that some of the crops is good but I am sorry to hear that the plums has fell off. But dear son, be satisfied with what you have. Say, if it rains soon, you will have a hundred bushels of apples. That will pay the rent for two years. So dear son, be satisfied and don’t work too hard to hurt yourself for if you had seen and felt what I have, you would be satisfied at home in a dry crust of bread and water.
Dear son, I was sorry to learn that Thomas Simpson was killed. Dear son, I delivered to William Starkey what you told me and he says he would like to have a letter from you. You say you want me to come home as soon as my time is in. That I will do for I am as lonesome now as you are. Dear son, I will have to stop. You see my sheet is fast filling up, so I add no more but remain your affectionate father till death.
Dear wife, I must now say a few words to you but you see I hain’t much room this time. What I will say to you, dear wife, is keep in good heart. My time now is short. I have told before that they could hold us till the 19th day of August that just one hundred days from the time we was mustered into the United States service. We was sworn in on the twelfth day of May and them 10 days the State of Ohio pays us for and the Unites States pays us for the hundred days. But I still say as I did, I do believe we will be home by the 19th of August. But if they do keep us till the 19th, it will be the first of September before we get home.
But dear wife, keep in good heart and the time won’t be so long. My health is slowly improving although I feel weak. My love to wife and children. — H. Barcus
[on separate slip of paper]
My love and thanks to the children all for the raisons I received. Oh, but they was good. N. B. Don’t send anything more for it ain’t safe. We may leave any time now in ten minutes time but still write and if we leave, let them go and if we are here, it will be a satisfaction. Write often. — H. B.
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