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Ira Conine Papers: Transcripts - MS 673
July 4th 1864
This morning find me again in the school room answering another of your kind letters which I had the exquisite pleasure of receiving yesterday Oh how glad I was Only think I had had no letter for three weeks from you. Wasn't any wonder that I was glad! Do you remember where we were four years ago today I have been thinking of it all the morning What pleasure we seen at that time. There is nothing going on either in Findlay or Ottawa to do and that is the reason I am remembering today I have not been at home for more than __ weeks I went over to Haddoxes school house to Sunday school and church yesterday morning and that was where I found the letter I received from you also one from David E. Sanders he is at Atlanta Than I had almost forgotten that I had school to teach to day quarter past nine Oclock so I will have to leave off writing and attend to my business. Only four weeks and then I can write as long and as much as I please.
Well what do you think another letter from you to day. Father went up to Glen Cottage to harvest came this way brought me this letter also one from Brother George. George has gone back to Athens Ala. He says there are a great many sick scarcely any water and what there is hardly fit to drink I am afraid George will get sick again he says he has to be on the go nearly all the time patroling the road every other night
You seemed to have a great deal to say about that Photograph but as I consider the source I shall not permit myself to be offended at it You wish you was here so that you could tell me what you thought of it and what you thought of the original too. Yes I wish you was too I think I could make you talk decent the but you think you are away down there where you can say just what you please. I must put up with it. But never mind there is another day coming Perhaps I shall have the pleasure of paying you off in your own coin before I die. I hope so at any rate.
You think I am getting better acquainted Oh Sir I always have been acquainted with you as you say I don't take things quite so much to heart as I used to.
You think I havent forgotten those bad words I used to say to you. indeed I was'nt aware that I ever used bad language in your presence I think if there was any bad words used you did it yourself. Come now acknowledge it was yourself! Of course you will you know it was. Get letters only one a month how do you live. Don't think I could get along that was I would do as Lou Jenkins is going to do with Lon Binkly he went with the National Guard he has not received a single letter from her since he went away he writes to her every week and she answers but he never receives them. She told me the last time I seen her she was going to start to Washington City the next week if she received word that her letters had not gone through yet. If she does go I think she will be foolish. She loves that Binkly to well for her own good: Don't you think so?
Received a letter from Elize did you? poor girl she will soon be left ___ entirely alone her mother had another stroke of the Palsy last week lost the use of one side could'nt talk for a day or two. You don't want me to let my letters be so scarce. Why Ira I answer every letter I get and just as soon as I can. Sometimes I don't have a chance to send them to the office after. I have them written but I try to do the best I can I was sick last week had the mumps did'nt quit teaching thought some days I would think I could'nt stand to teach another day but I finely thought it out and am getting better now throat little sore yet.
[About one-third of the first page is mud-stained]
I don't know [illegible]need to write to you this afternoon[?] [illegible] but I think they [illegible line] I know I am [illegible]-ing up at [illegible] Glen Cottage [illegible] seldom if ever [illegible]olisted [illegible]
Dave McCullough[?] was in a few [illegible] when I was. Mother told [him?] I was in the bed room writing [he] came in before I could gather up anything he had two letters you had written to me and the one I was writing to you. I scolded and begged and coaxed and tried every way to get them. I was determined he shouldn't read them any way. After he thought he had teased me sufficiently gave them up. I told him he was the meanest man ever walked. Oh dear don't speak of flies and warm weather[.] If it is any warmer down at Knoxville than here I pity you most assur[e]dly I believe I shall quit writing till dark and then these pinch bugs are so plentiful that I am on the point of screaming all the while
I came here this morning[.] Started last night[,] had a break down[,] had to go to Gilboa to get the buggy fixed.
Charley R sent that package of letters to me this morning. They were all right.
When I came home this morning mother gave me two letters[.] one of them was a very large one[;] she had to pay six cts postage on it[.] She thought it was from George so she opened it. Could'nt make out who it was from could'nt read a word of it[.] I was extremely glad that she coulden't read it as it proved to be your letter of July 6th[.] There was another one dated July 2nd in which you said you had been looking at my "Photo" (The first time since you received [it] I expect) and you thought it looked as I used to when I would tell you to "Please quit" No doubt of it? Might have been thinking of those incidents at the time the picture was taken. But how should you know I looked then? You never staid with a Lady that had a candle Burning[,] how could you tell now I looked[.] There now I have caught you? Haven't forgotten how to tell stories yet I see!
Oh yes I oft why I did'nt turn you off You sur[e]ly deserved to be turned off and well you know it[.]
But then I guess it was to be so[.] Well I guess there is no harm done unless you choose to make harm out of it and know you wont do that. Ira you say you think you could get a furlough if you wanted it I should like to see you very much[,] yet I think it is better for you to stay till your time is out[.] While you have a good situation keep it. Only a year then you will be home[.] Oh if I was only sure that nothing would befall you in that time I could be perfectly satisfied but in the army there is no telling what accident will happen[.] Dilworth is dead killed with a shell[.] he leaves a wife to mourn for him.
You want to know how I was going to spend the fourth[.] I spent it in the school room in the evening went to hunt berries[.] I tore my dress scratched my hands and did'nt get as many berries as I could eat.
Thank you for your invitation to dinner[.] Hope you had a gay time[.] We hear from George nearly every week[.] Sent an ambrotype home last Week[.] It looks so much like him I am going to have it framed to hang up to the wall[.] We sent him a box of things last week[.] I received a letter D. H. Randall four weeks ago to day[.] have'nt answer[ed] yet[.]
Capt. Mathias started for Nashville last Monday[.] The last letter I received from him was last Spring just before they came home as veterans[.] I never answered it[.] I received a letter from David E Founders[?] answered yesterday will put it in the office this eve[.] You wont care if I write to him will you Ira? He is just a little boy friend of mine[.] No Ira I am not acting the sly on you[.] That would be mean of me[.] I did not write any thing about my correspondents to you because I always had something else to write and then I think of them so little that I never think to say any thing about them to you.
Write all the foolishness you wish to[.] I'll forgive you all
I think I have answered your letter of July 2nd. Yours of July 6th is so long I hardly know where to commence[.] At the beginning: Well I will just to please you: got the kiss did you? how did I expect you to get it off? The best way you could of course! Put one in loose shall I? Well here goes[.] Be careful or it will fly out when you open this letter[.]
That poetry was rich was it? Oh no this war cant last always[,] neither will your time in the service last always[.] I should give up in despair if [I] thought it would! Oh yes I think you are a dear good boy only scold me about once or twice a month and that is'nt as much as I deserve! Tired was you when you wrote? I am really sorry for you[.] Poor consolation! best I can give though!
You are perfectly excuseable for not finishing your letter that evening[.] You was in rather a bad fix[.] Ah there that is too bad[.] I had'nt intended to answer that part of it! Excuse me will you[.] Had a notion to swear at the Millers had you? Shouldn't let your angry passions rise[.] Remember I don't allow you to swear! You invited me to dine with you but if I was there you think you did'nt see me! Of course you did'nt see me! no person ever does see thier guardian Angles but they are alway's with them[.] Did you eat a big piece of that berry pie for me? You had better next time or I wont be your guardian angel any more[.] Perhaps you will get within hearing some time[,] then you'll care if I call you a "plug"[.] How could you guess so strait about that old widower? of course it was him that I was after in prefference to the [illegible] but I did'nt think you would take the hint so quick! Guess I'll learn pretty soon to keep my secrets to myself[.] I have decided which would make the best man but I am a[l]most afraid to tell you[.] Maybe you would'nt agree to it[.] You need not explain the dash on the third page of your letter! The dash is enough with out the explanation! Well I am sorry that you never allow even your actions to scare you! If you did perhaps you would be a better boy[.] You cannot fully understand what I mean about there being an undefined dread of the future! It is this[:] that you may never live to get home[,] may have to meet death in some terrible way and away there among strangers and think what a life of wretchedness I should lead if that should be the case! Oh it is not enough to give one a dread of the future! You think by my writing of late that there is something I [no further pages]
[in top margin of page 6]
Do you know what you wrote at the top of your letter how provoking! Do please quit or I'll let you know what you are doing
[in top margin of page 1]
We met, ere yet the world had [illegible]
To with up the Spring of youth
Amid the holy joys of home
And in the first warm blush [illegible]
We parted, as they never part
Whose tears are doomed to be forgot
Oh! By that agony of heart
Forget me not, forget me [not?]
Rose Cottage, Ohio
Dear Absent Solider,
How are you prospering this pleasant morning? Fin[e]ly I hope. You will see by the heading of this where I am.
Han came after me yesterday eve in the buggy[.] Charley R. was to have been here last evening but failed to come -- he and Lyda M. have been improving the time pretty well since his arrival -- Perhaps he couldn't leave his last night long enough to come to see me[.] Well it makes me no difference[.] all I wanted to see him for was to hear from you.
Seems kind of natural to get into the old neighborhood again[.] I am sitting up stairs by the window where I can see all over -- everything looks just as it used to. I thought this would be a good time to write you a few lines while the girls were all busy Han feeding the calves Eliza washing the dishes Sallie playing Lady and our Ma sweeping and making beds[.] now I have told you what we are all doing I will tell you the pleasure of again receiving two of your most interesting letters[.]
Father came from Ottawa yesterday morning brought the letters with him[.]
No doubt you had a gay time visiting with the Tennessee soldier and his sisters[.] I love to hear of you enjoying yourself[.] Had Mr. Parker to visit you had you? Quite a distinguished visitor[.] You speek of being sent to the front[.] Sorry to hear that, I had hoped you would stay there awhile[.] You sur[e]ly have been very Lucky ever since being in the service and perhaps there is still more luck in store for you[.] I hope so at least[.] Should I hear of any ladies at Ottawa wish a correspondent I will refer them to you as any Lady would deem it quite an honor to correspond with a solider who had fought bled and died for his country three or four times[.] Sallie came upstairs says tell Ira I am going to write him in a few days[.]
From your description of your quarters at Knoxville I think you ought to enjoy yourself nothing to hinder you[.] No indeed I do not agree with you in regard to that Scripture neither do I think mother would[.] You know I always said that I didn't believe as you did respecting that nor I never shall[.] You think I might do as you do[,] throw in an extra letter once in a while[.] It is just as much as I can do to answer a letter and then they are so imperfect that they are so scarcely worth reading[.] The reason why you write more letters than I do is that I very often get two letters at one time then I answer them together[.] If I could sit down and write a letter with as much ease as you can I would write one everyday -- it seems to be natural in some to be good letter writers but it never was my lot[.] I often wonder that you have not dropped em a correspondent long ago when there are many others that are far superior to me in that respect and many others[.] That was a very heroic young laday that avenged her lovers death[.] There are many other that would not scruple to do as she did were it possible for others to do so --
I think you might have taken pity on Loo J.[?] throwed away my picture and taken hers but that is just the way with you always a "cruel wretch"[.] I cannot tell you any thing about Moll Alward as I have only seen her once this summer and that at church but I hear of her occationally[.] I heard not long since that Jake Smith went up to McComb got in to a fight came home by Alwards was a drunk as he could be[.] Moll went out to the gate coaxed him to go in to the yard and she got water and washed the mud and blood off of his face and clothes and told him if he had done what he once promised to do he would not have been in that fix[.] So you see she still cares for him yet. Well I must quit writing now and finish some other time as Han and I are going to Coatses this afternoon to pay Orissa a visit.
Monday Morning July 25th
As I have one hour before school time I shall improve it by conversing with my soldier[.]
Charly R came down to see me yesterday[.] The same old boy that he always was[.] Lyda M was along with him! I don't care about coming home just at present -- Lida would captivate you without doubt[.] She is a perfect heart smasher since having her eye straitened[.] There was a wagon load of us went to Haddots school house to meeting yesterday[.] the preacher didn't come so we were disappointed[.] I walked from there over to my school house went to meeting at five Oclock[.]
Han received a letter from A..A.. Saturday Eve he is well does not ever expect to be sent to the front as he has lost the use of two fingers by a catarrh Han is more than glad[.] she says it is only 13 months now and then the boys will be home -- no telling what will happen in that time[.] Eliza is living at your fathers[.] her mother died last Tusday -- a week from next Friday Eliza is going to have her sale[.] her and Sallie are going to school either to Findlay or Ottawa next winter[.] Dilworths funeral is going to be preached next Sunday at 3 Oclock in McComb[.] he was killed the 7th of July -- lived one hour after he was shot--gave directions concerning his property requested Lieut Porter to write to his wife[.] The letter was printed in the Jeff his last words were "Oh my dear little wife"[.] She takes on dreadfully -- was making great preparations toward going to housekeeping as his time would have expired in the course of a couple of months[.] This war is making sad havoc among our old 21sters[.] John Morrel was killed a Jones and Paisse that lived have in this neighborhood were both killed. Seems there will be very few veterans that will return at the close of this war[.]
been raising all the morning another thunder storm coming now[.] Almost afraid to stay in the school house lightning and thundering so hard[.] Do you remember that night Jo Mullen was sparking Jim how it lightened[?] That was a night long to be remembered -- 9 Oclock time for the bill to ring! Last week though? I wont be sorry either! I can go and come when I please and do what [I] choose after school is out[.]
Then you still presist [persist] in being a second Brigham Young! Well I suppose I will have to submit but remember I am to be first best! in everything too.--
You haven't forgotten that Reble letter yet[.] Your Mo found it and read and burned it while you was at home -- when we taked about she never dreamed of me knowing any thing about it[.] now Ira don't you never hint any thing about it to them or they will know that I told you[.]
I can think of nothing else to write and I you will say before you get through reading that you have enough such scribbling and blotting[.] You say Lieut Wallace would like to have a correspondent from Ottawa[.] I will give you the address of a lady that will correspond with him[.] I heard her say she wanted a correspondent Address Miss Maggie P. Stanton
Box No 27 Ottawa Ohio
I will assure him an answer and a good one too! There is another lady that would like to have a correspondent but she is a religious lady[.] Perhaps the Lieut could suit her[.] She is also rich and would make a splendid catch[.] her address is Miss Maud Vinton Ottawa Ohio[.] You better write to the first mentioned lady and have the Lieut write to the last[.]
I will close by the request of an answer soon
Think of me oft at twilight of hour
And I will think of thee
Remembering how we felt its power
When thou wert still with me
Ever yours Jennie B
To Ira Conine
July 30, 1864
As I have not written you a letter for more than a week I shall now endevor to drop you a line
My school closed Friday and I came home to day. Mother is very sick has the fever and rheumatism. So you wont expect much of a letter to day. I received yours of the 18th to day was glad to hear from you I also received two letter last week dated 10th and 13th. At the time I received them Father said he would come by the school the next day wrote to you had the letter all ready to send to the office but he never came at all I was really provoked at him when I knew that I would have no other chance of sending them. I knew too that you would get in a fix if you did'nt get a letter
But now I am at home and I can answer your letters as soon as they come So you will have to excuse me this time and perhaps I can do better in the future.
I should love to answer the three letters I received from you last week as there are many things in them I would like to answer but I am staying away from mother longer than I had ought to now. They are very good letters all that heart could wish and as I read them over and over I feel that I am incompetent to answer them as they should be answered. Yet if you will persist in writing to as poor a letter writer you will have to put up with them as best you can.
I am glad Ira that you do not wait for answers every time you write to me I don't want to flatter you But I do think I have the best Soldier boy in the Army to write letter. Indeed you are a real clever boy to send all my letters home I always did think you was clever only once in a while you would tease alittle.
I can keep the pen that will be the same as if you had it yourself will it. Yes indeed I do think that is saying a good deal without giving me a chance to say a word, "I can't see" the one about us.
Had a nice dream of me did you? I guess you must have quit haunting me I have'nt dreamed of you for a long time.
The evenings were very pretty here for a while four or five of us girles went a horse back riding the other evening and when we got back we all went into the river we had a nice time of it.
You think you will never be caught in another such a scrape if you get homesafe glad to hear it But I should'nt wonder if you would be gone again before six months not if I can keep you from it though. Your Pa gave me his Photograph when I was up their last week. He is a dear good Pa! Better than all the rest of them They were all to stingy to give me any of their Photos said I might have the ones you have but that was only an excuse I don't care they can keep them if they don't want to give them to me.
July 31, 1864 Sunday After-noon
While Father sitting with Mother I thought it a good chance to finish my letter I don't feel one bit well to day was up pretty all night mother's not any better Went to Gilboa for Doctor Noe I am afraid she wont get well
Had long letters from George last week. The 9th Ohio started on a raid in to Georgia. There was four or five hundred horses give out and George's among the rest they had to return to Decater I as glad that his horse did give out perhaps George might have been killed.
Hoping to hear from you very soon I will close. Father and Mother with myself send our best wishes to you
Jennie M. Bysel
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