Tuesday, April 08, 2008

William J. Cheney of 1st Heavy Artillery Vermont

William J. Cheney of "D" Co. VT 1st Heavy Artillery writes on two pages of the letter, dated July 3,
then his Cousin Fannie writes the other two pages, dated July 4, 1865.
It appears he wrote "July 3, 1864" - but in keeping with the content and other date,
I'm sure he meant to write 1865. He writes of settling down to work, his discharge & Bounty pay and the obvious post-war effects of the fear of shells and bombs dropping around him.

Transcibed in part::
June 3rd 1864
Dear Cousins
Here I am once more at home in the long period of three years but not for good quite
I have got to Burlington & I get my discharge & pay I have not had any pay for six months & my Bounty which is $75.00. I have over $100.00 charged in the Regt. I could not get my pay till after the middle of next week or this week tis now so I thought I might as well come home for a week & spend the 4th as any way I thinking perhaps you would like to see some of my poor handwriting and once more I thought I would put a few words into Fannies letter...

...My health is good first rate...I am going to help Father Shewin at his haying this year...I expect to be what they call a light hand this year for it has been most three years since I have done any such work but it seems kind of good to get home & work some. Yesterday I hoed 1/2 day went first rate seemed much better than to hear a shell coming over Whicher Whicher Whicher Bumb - but then things have played us out I hope for they throw things rather careless.
Write me as soon as you get this...your own true cousin,
Wm J. Cheney
1st Vt. Arty
Bond mustered out.
Good Bye.

Cousin "Fannie" then writes:
Stowe, July 4, 1865
"..What gay times you are having keeping house by yourself. Well I am taking some comfort Will is at home again but not for good. Came last Thursday night & you may bet he was a welcome visitor. His Regiment arrived at Burlington at three O'Clock & he got a furlough & left that night. Charlie hardly knew his father & his father was about as bad off. The left George and Ed at Washington they are well. Chandler and Jane are at home.
...I am doing all sorts of work this summer have made a barrel of soap & white washed some and cleaned the the whole house now I am making Charlie some dresses will send you some pieces & when I get him rigged up I am going to quilt a bed quilt then weave my table linen just getting ready to be married...[more]

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