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Ira Conine Papers: Transcripts - MS 673
Glen Cottage April 18th/63
Again am I seated to respond to your most welcome letter of April 8th which I received to day, I am well but very lonesome as is the case with me every sabbath day. Your letter of April 6th by your Ma was received and I am going to answer it first. You stated in that you had but time to answer my letter while your ma was there, I dident very much expect aletter for I knew that you would have enough to occupy your time but I think I should have felt a little disapointed if you had not have written a few lines if you had not have written a few lines Ira you say that I shall take care of your letters untill next winter when you think that this Rebellion will be over and you will be home. A great many think that the war is about over but I think it is too good news to be believed. I hope it will be so. The reble flag came through safe I will take the best of care of it and especily the staff as it is the part that you Rise so much, you say that you had a couple ladies ask you why you did not break off your engagement in Ohio, I suppose they dident consider that there might be hearts broken by breaking an engagement Perhapse it would be an easy matter for some people but I assure you it wouldent be for me, I dident make my engagement without a great deal of consideration and forethought and I consider it not trifling affair, Ira I meant it for a life time and I don't know whether you did or not, I was up at your pas house the evening that your ma came home, We sat up prettie late that evening. Your ma told us how you boys were prospering, I think it is fine souldierng you have down in Ky Pity all the soulders couldent have such fine times and then you think that I am not going to get rid of you so easy, I am glad to hear it for I have not seen a person for two weeks but what they would have something to say about my fellow marring a southern lady, There was two stories going while your ma was gone to Ky one was that you had married a reble girl and deserted and gone to the reble army Another was that your ma had gone to see you married to the girl whose pictures you sent home I knew very well the stories were not true but that did not keep the people from believing it
Ira I did think that I would not mention another word about our troubles here but I cannot drop the subject and have you think for one moment that I ever made Dave Linear or Ell Woodruff confidents of mine As far as Dave Linear is conserned I have not spoken a dozen of words to him since last November, and that is true,, I cant say that Ellen has told me nothing for she has told me a great many thing and if they are true I am glad that she did tell me, But as for me making a confident of her that is not so, Ira you know that I never liked her well enough for that and if she was always giving you h---[ell] for going with me what did she mean by telling me that she had heard peope say that they couldent think what Jane Bysel was about to let Ira Conine go with her that you was to ruff and that we were not suited for each other at all, and more than this that your ma told her that she was sorry that you would go with me that she would a great deal rather have you marry All Alward and a great many more thing that would be useless to mention, but as for me respecting Dave Lenar I never respected him abit more than you did I know what he is, some people think because I don't talk about him that I believe all he says I know that he is a mean man but Ira I do think that there are lies laid to his charge that he knows nothing about, Ira please don't refer to him again in connection with me for I have nothing to do with him There are some more things that I wish to write to you as things have gone as far as they have Among the letters that you sent home to me by your ma was one or two letters that she (your ma) had written to you. I don't know whether you sent them purposely for me to read or by mistake at all events I did read them and I am very glad I did, In the letter she wrote to you she said that I had insinuated as much as though I knew something on your Fathers and her character if Sallie told her so she told her what was not true for what did I ever know of your Fathers - mothers characters
Ira all that I wish for in this world is that you will get home safe then I can tell you all that has been said Perhapse you will not blame me so much then..
Some of the folks in our neighborhood have been more than making parties for the last two or three weeks Jim George has had two dances, The last one consisted of married Ladies, ___________ couple, Don't you think they are pitching in prettie strong? I will tell you who all was there. Elie Mathias wife Jo Mullen and wife Dave Linear and Han Ward Lyda Mullen Eplys boys Don't you think they would cut a swell dancing Jim George is going to have a dancing school at his house so if you wish to learn any thing in that line you better come home as soon as possible and take lessons, Liza Humphries is going to have a party tomorrow evening a birth day party. I had a quilting on my birth day.
I havent been at any of their Parties neither do I intend to go to any of them. My school begins at the old Sharpsville school house on the 27th of April. I expect to put in some lonesom days before I get through with it, Ira I hope I shall have the honor of a visit from you while I am teaching, I get $12 a month and board myself and _____ with be at home, Andrew McCullough is to be married next Thursday to Squire Derlings daughter I had a letter from home this summer to make us a short visit, I think it is more than likely that Angie and him will make a wedding for us too Wont that be nice, I think I have written bout all the news I can think of this time if you did say I should keep it to myself for I don't believe you meant it when you wrote it,
Ira you wanted to know what I meant by that Post script at the bottom of the letter that I wrote to you, last, I don't know as I had ought to tell you but as you wish to know perhapse I had better tell you, There was a certain person staid all night at at your fathers house The same evening I took a letter up there for your folks to put in the Office the next day, It was a letter that I had written to you, After I went home Han and Sallie took the letter up stairs opened and read it came down and told your ma what was in it, before the person that staid there all night, that person dident prove to be as great a friend as your folks thought they would be, They came and told me a bout it and said they thought it would be doing me a kindness to let me know what was going on and I am thankful they did. Who would'ent be I would like to know I have never said a word to any of your folks about it only I did say to Sallie once when she had her mad up that I knew things that her folks thought I knew nothing about, I presume that was what Sallie meant when she told your ma that I was incinuating as though I knew something on your Fathers and Mothers character I don't know what else she could have taken it from The Lord only knows I never meant what Sallie says I did. Now Ira you know the reason why I wrote that Post Script I thought if they had opened one letter for me (and I don't know how many more) they wouldent be a bit to good to open another and I thought if they opened that one and seen the Post script at the bottom it would put them thinking that I was not all together ignoriant of what was going on
I would tell you who it was that told me it would onely make more trouble here at home and I am determined that shall not be If you ever come home and wish to know then who tolde me I will tell you but I hope these things will all be forgotten then for I think we will have other things to talk a bout of more importance I am not angry at your folks I can forgive and forget and I am thankfull that I can Ira do you think that I am to blame entirely for every thing that is said and done, If any one else was in the same place I am I am afraid there would be a great deal more said I must quit writing it is getting so dark that I cannot see to keep the line I will try to be a good girl as you say Ira I hope this letter will find you in better health than it leaves me I have a very bad cough settled on my lungs dident hardly feel able to write to you to day but I thought I had better write while I could please Ira write soon very soon Ever your own Jennie
McComb Ohio June 7th/1863
Your good and kind communication now lies before me pleading with undo eloquence for an answer and I can impose upon myself but few tasks which afford's me more pleasure than conversing with you through the silent messenger of the pen. I was glad to hear that you are well I hope you will continue so while you remain in Dixie. We never know how to enjoy health until we lose it. Ira I didn't take offense at anything you wrote to me. I know you just wanted to remind me of a few things. I am glad you did so and of course your pardon is sealed long ago.
Capt. Mathias wrote me that our stories do not agree very well. It doesn't make any difference to me though for I don't care what he thinks. I received a letter nearly two weeks ago from him. It lies unanswered yet. I presume ere this letter reaches you you will hear that I have John Mathias picture.
Ira I feel ashamed to have to tell you I have got It. It came altogether unexpected to me I never thought of such a thing as him sending me a picture. Ira you say you have had your fortune told and you cant help but believe she told the truth. I hope it is all true excepting your being taken a prisoner. I mean in what is going to come to pass provided the dark haired girl relates to me. Perhaps there is some other Ladie that would answer the same description. But should it be that I am the one she meant no darkeyed woman or man can have any influence over me in telling lies. Ira I have learned a lesson since you went away and I am determined that nothing shall ever diminish my love for you let come what will I have made up my mind that I will believe not anything that I hear until I see for myself. I am going to get my fortune told some of these days see if they correspond. There is an old woman living out near Spear's that tells fortunes. The girls have had their fortunes told I heard that Mary Mathias was to be married in side of a year. I am thinking it will be a rather young marriage.
Ira how in the world did you hear that story creepy Davie made up, so soon. I just felt like chawing him when I heard it. He is nothing but a mean, dirty, contemptible liar. I wish some of the soldiers would come home and thrash him within an inch of his life. Shooting is to good for him he wouldent suffer enough that way. Han Ward too! She told the story as often as Dave did: they ought treat her as they do with the rest of the rebel women. Take her cross the line! I don't know what I should do if I had such a husband as Kate Guear has and had a sister that acts as Han Ward does. I believe I would poison her. I must dress for church and finish my letter this evening so good bye.
I have just returned from church, the preacher didn't come, so we went for nothing. Jo and Harve started for the land of Dixie the first day of June. Jo's wife is staying at Groves. I don't think she has anything to take care of but herself and that is more than she can do. I think it is a fine thing that she has not anything else to care for. Dear help her if she had. I think it a pity that ___ can't get along any better than she does. But she was deprived of a mother so young and has lived every place and any place. I think that had ought to be considered. Poor girl I wish her all the good luck in the world she will have trouble enough at any rate!
You say John Mathias doesn't believe your story. I think it was rather heavy. No wonder he didn't believe it. John & Angie have quit and I rather think she will sue him. I would if I was her, if he was mean enough to disappoint her in that way I would be mean enough to make it cost him a thousand dollars or two! John has a fashion of playing of on the girles but there is one he wont get the chance to fool I hope Angie will put him though.
It is getting dark I must quit writing and go to bed I was up late last night. My father went up to your fathers after the letters. It was very late when he got back but I knew I would get a letter from you and I sat up all alone waiting. I was well paid for staying up for I got just the best letter from my own dear boy. Write very soon Ira!
Yours in love till death
PS Ira have you had a letter from Eliza H. yet? If she ever writes you a letter let me know wont you! She says she is going to write you a letter and tell every thing she knows about me first because I told you that she had so many beaux it is all in fun of course but if she writes you letter please let me know.
Dave Cary was here last week. He is old Dave yet, I wish you could hear the advice he gave me concerning you and John. Well Ira I must tell you something that will surprise you. Fred Stall went to Findlay and volunteered and was sworn into the United States service under Cap't Preble! He is to start the first of July. I dislike very much to see Fred go! We will be lonesome for a while. I wrote for George to come home. Whenever Fred wants to tease me he always gets to telling of what he used to hear you and I talk about when he slept on the lounge, he heard some things that I would a great deal rather he had not heard! But then he will never say anything about it, he says he wont.
I always read my letters
Before any one else does
School House Thursday Morning
Ira please excuse my different kinds of letter paper I forgot to bring paper with me this morning _____ this out of a coppy book. I want to finish my letter. It may be that will have a chance to send it off before night. Ira I was just thinking this morning if you would send Angie your picture we would just be even Don't you think we would
I think this getting to be a rather a bad state of affairs Angie writing to my fellow and me writing to hers I am going to write to Julie ___________ fellow some of these day.
Mathias and Angie have never stopped writing so I heard to day.
I was at quarterly meeting last Sunday your ma and I went up in the buggy Sunday morning father and mother and your father and sister Have went ____________ I will close by saying that I am well please write very soon and oblige Jenie
They may bear thee away to a far distant clime
They may bid me ne'er hope on this earth to be thine
They may tell me thy haven soon another will be
But they never can win my affectionats from thee
_______ in you this happy hours that our spirits first met
And though years have since passed I cannot forget
Though absent I'll whisper so softly to thee
Oh say Dearest one art thou thinking of me
Ira please excuse blank paper I will try and do better next time write very soon Ever you own Jenie
Glen Cottage July 18th/63
Yours of the 14th has just been received I was laying on the lounge sound asleep when the letters came It didn't take me long to get awake when I found there was a letter from you. I have been very lonesome this evening as it is Saturday eve.
Mother and father went over to Spar's to stay all night. Ira I could'nt help wishing you was here as you used to be.
What grand old time we did have together. How I wish I had those days to live over again. But wish wont make it so will it?
I had a letter from Fred this Eve. It was a very short one He knows what it is to be a souldier by this time poor boy who can tell what will befall him within three years.
Ira I guess Mathias must be mad at me too It is nearly two weeks since I wrote to him and no answer yet I shall be perfectly satisfied if he concludes to not answer at all. It will be no disappointment to me.
As to Angie saying that she was writing to give the souldiers copy. I think she said it I Know she did.
I might have written that to you some time ago but I thought perhaps you might think that I did not want you to correspond with her and I think you might hear it from some other source first. It made me mad when I heard how she was talking for I knew that you could write better letters than she ever seen without coppying from her.
Dear me if she had the chance to make fun of my fellows letters as I have of her fellow would'nt she beat it. But thank fortune she cant do that I believe she is ashamed to have John write to me that's what makes her so mad if my souldier boy would write to all the girls in the country I am very sure I would not have to be ashamed of his letter writing.
But enough of this I hope you enjoyed your good dinner you wrote about Would you be so kind as to inform me who that souldier is that can make as good a pie as any woman I would like to engage his services after the war is over. Do you think he has any engagements at the present?
I presume Ky is a very good county for raising grain and I think it had ought to be a good place for Infantry, I am sure there is Cavalry enough there, plenty of that from Ohio.
The statement you made in your letters concerning that Lady certainly could not be beat in Ohio at The present Hurrah for old Ky? That beats my time altogether. Ira I would'nt fancy the idea much of you losing this letter and some souldier finding it with Jennie B's name to it so be very careful! Is 11 o'clock I am very sleepy good night.
July 18, 1863
Well Ira I have just returned from church I think this as warm a day as I ever put through I pity you if it is any warmer where you are Magg McCheaster and I went to Hedoe school house to hear the Dunker preach we went horse back we cut a swell you better think There was so many there they didn'nt more than half get in the house your Jennie R was there she looks brisk as ever. I am glad you enjoyed yourself so well at the picnic. My school begins tomorrow I have had 3 weeks rest I have 4 weeks yet! With my love to you I will close. Write very soon
Ira I have new name now the call me Brigadier all together. You would laugh if you knew why I am called that But I cant tell you
I am going up to see your Sisters this Eve.
Glen Cottage Aug 25th/63
Your letter came at last Although I thought it never would I have not received a letter since you went away more gladly than I did your last Almost three weeks since any of us have heard a word from you
Ira I think since you have got so far away you don't think of home and Jennie as often as you used to Why don't you write more
We are all well and doing the best we can Our folks have all gone to a Union speech this Eve at the Ridge school house Nearly every person in the neighborhood have gone but me I thought it would pay one better to stay at home and write to my souldier boy
I should think you was beginning to know how souldering goes by this time Keep in _______ heart don't get discouraged two years will soon roll around By that time I think you will have done your share toward supporting the government you say that pie baker is engaged or married I should say Well I am sorry indeed but I suppose it cant be helped not Perhaps you will learn before you get home how to bake pies
Well Ira I had quite a distinguished visitor at school the other day Who do you think it was It was Capt Mathias your honor he came home very unexpected to all he looks very spruse fat and hearty and acts just as important as any person could he went to Cleveland yesterday but he expects to come back again he has come home to get the Drafted men the draft is going on this week Christ Sholty and Quint Porter are at home now Dilworth is also coming this month there will be a wedding then John M says that Dilworth is the sickest fellow to get home he ever saw in the army
Minerva Long was married last Thursday to a fellow by the name of Cline They were both at church last sabbath at McComb I wish you could have seen them It was worth ten cts a sight Ira do you think you will get to come home on furlough. I will be so so so glad if you do I want to see you so very much the last account we had of the 118th Regt it was on the rail road they had been pakced up two or three days ready to march.
I hope they wont go for so you will get to come home my school wont be out for three weeks yet I am teaching 4 months Sallie has gone to McComb to school It is getting late I will finish in the morning
I will have to make a short finish of my letter this morning Father is going to town and he is in a dreadfull hurry
Your folks are all well except your ma she took sick Sunday Eve but she is getting better now
Han is going down to Apgars to day to stay a week wont she have a good time Ira be a good boy write very soon and get along as well as you can don't let them conscripts get the better of you
No more from your own Jennie
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