Letter – Clark Edwards, 1863


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Letter written by Colonel Clark S. Edwards of the 5th Maine Infantry, to his wife, undated but possibly written June 26-27, 1863. Edwards writes that he has received 7 commissions for his officers. He hopes that his wife will not be worried about him, as he thinks he will be all right, and does not know how much longer he will stay in the army. He is hoping to get leave to visit his wife soon, or to have her visit him at camp.

-Page 1-

Friday Evening

     The mail has just come. In it I rec’d yours of June 14th, and was happy to hear from you again, and that you are all well. I do not hear from O. H. Mason, as he has not yet reached us. I presume if he knew we were here he would be out, as we are within 18 or 20 miles. Norm left us nearly a week ago and I presume he has seen O.P. before this time.

I was in hopes they would come here today, but perhaps they are not allowed over the road with their teams. I just received seven commissions for my officers. I presume you will see them in the paper – or the account of it. I am in hopes you will not be discouraged about me at all, as I am

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well enough off. I think I will come out all right. I do not know how long I will stay here in the army.

                         Saturday Morning

     We are still here near the C[ourt] H[ouse]. I do not know when or where we go. I am in hopes we will go into camp near here for a while as we have had a hard time enough since commencing into this campaign. If we go into camp here I will try and get leave for twenty or thirty days and visit you again, or have you come out here. Everyone is talking to me, so I do not know what I have written. I will write again tomorrow if we do not move. Love to all,                                   


Clark Swett Edwards, was born March 26, 1824 in Otisfield Maine. On June 24, 1862 at the age of 37 he enrolled as captain of Company I, 5th ME Infantry, in Bethel, ME. He was promoted to major on July 1, 1862, following the severe losses of the 5th ME at Gaines Mill. Edwards was promoted to lieutenant colonel on Sept. 24, 1862, and colonel January 8, 1863. He was mustered out of the service on July 27, 1864, at the expiration of the regiment’s three years of service. Edwards was brevetted brigadier general on March 13, 1865 for war service. He died in Bethel, ME on May 5, 1903. Many of his letters have survived, and a large grouping are in the Peace Collection at Navarro College, Corsicana, Texas.

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