19 September 1862

Camp Chase
Arlington Heights
September 19, 1862

Dear Wife,

I am well and enjoy myself as well as I can away from you and the little ones. I take a look at you all every day. I would not take one hundred dollars for that picture. Brother John started for home yesterday. He will see you and tell you all about how we get along here. He has been home sick ever since he came here. It was no place for him.

Frank, Ed H., & I have just bought ½ peck of onions for 33 cents — rather dear but quite a rarity for us. We have nothing to eat but bread & beef & rice once a week. If we want anything else, we have to buy it. But we get on very well. We have to drill 5 hours a day. Co. D & Co. F are drilled as skirmishers. We have not been in any battle yet but do not know how soon we shall be.

Secretary Seward rode past our camp last night. There is between 2 & 300,000 men encamped around us.

There has been some hard fought battles near us. Our side has beat so far. Glory! The chaplain has come into our company to mess with us. He is Mr. [Frank C.] Morse of Blandford. I want you should write and send me papers everyday if you can. Tell Uncle Lewis, ¹ Uncle Enoch, Mr. Watson, Mr. Drury, and Mrs. Fairman’s folks to write to me and I will answer them if I can. My love to them.

My love to you & the children. Tell them to be good children & remember their Papa. Remember me in your prayers.

From your husband, — Wm. A. Bartlett

¹ Lewis Bartlett (1796-1863) of Westhampton, Massachusetts, was William’s uncle. He was married to Pamela Kingsley (1801-1840). After her death, he married Sarah Durkee (1800-1891). He died on 19 September 1863.

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