Letter – James Peckham, 4 July 1865

2015.002.011e

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Letter written by former Colonel James Peckham to his mother, from St. Louis, Missouri. He and his wife have both been ill lately. He writes that he is still working as tobacco inspector, but will soon be licensed to practice law and will be going into partnership with a friend named Selah Squires. Peckham hopes that his wife will be able to go east in the summer, as the conditions may be better for her health.


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July 4th 1865

My Dear Mother,

I have not heard from any of you in New York since my return. I have been night sick with a billious attack but am better, and now Kate is down with a severe dysentary. The weather is very hot and I never saw so many flies before. I never got that business fixed up until last saturday and before I could get so that Staunton would act, had to remoddle the the whole thing. Instead of one fifth I only now got one sixth. I though that much of a loaf, better than none at all. I am still Tobacco Inspector, but business is dull. I shall be licensed to practice law next week and am going in partnership with an old intimate friend of George, named Selah Squires. Mr Squires is from New York City recently, & has to settle somewhere west for his health. I regard him as a good enough lawyer for me to go into business with.

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I want Kate to go East this summer & hope she will. Ask Nic if she cant get board somewhere in the Country where she can get fresh butter milk & chickens. She is getting weak mighty early in the season & I am afraid she cant stand it here.

Kiss Fan Belle & all the youngones for me and spank Fan besides once in the while

My best to Clark & all & everybody and each one, and the whole squad, and Eliza.

I see Nic & George Bennett have struck ile. Bully for ile.

God bless you & all the rest, Remember me to Sarah & Henry.

Love to all.

Good Bye

Affectionately Your Cub

James.


James Peckham was a member of the Missouri Legislature before the Civil War and was a strident Unionist when the state was debating to secede or not. He left the legislature and organized the 8th MO Regiment. Peckham served as the 8th MO Regiment’s Lt. Col. and led the regiment at Shiloh and Pittsburg Landing, TN, and at Jackson, MS. He later went on to lead the 29th MO. After the war he published a book on the history of the war in Missouri and General Nathaniel Lyon. He passed away in 1869 and is buried at Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis, MO.

Letter – James Peckham, 29 January 1865

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Letter written by former Colonel James Peckham to his mother, from St. Louis. Peckham is now a tobacco inspector, and he and his wife Kate have a new house. Governor Thomas C. Fletcher has promised Peckham that he will stay in this new role, after long talks with the Commissioner of Internal Revenue and the Secretary of the Treasury in Washington. Peckham writes about he and his wife’s efforts to furnish their new home, and talks about the possibility of visits from a few friends. Also enclosed is a letter from Kate to Peckham’s mother, in which she also mentions their new house and the recent cold weather.


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Saint Louis January 29. 1865

My Dear Mother

Kate & I are amusing ourselves this evening, writing letters – she to her own mother & I thought I would write you. It may be very possible that I shall go to Washington City in a week or so upon some business connected with my office, and if I do I shall return by the way of New York in order to see you. Kate & I are both well & we are now at house-keeping – got a nice place & continually accumulating something in the way of furniture. I think I shall Keep my office – Governor Fletcher when in Washington about a month ago called on the Commissioner of Internal Revenue & the Secretary of the Treasury, & had a long talk about me, in which the promised him I should not be removed. That is all I ask of the Governor, is to keep me where I am & he has promised to do so & is trying to do so. I dont think I shall be disturbed at all.

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Kate & I make a great fit of it, at marketing. She knows nothing about meat & I know but little, but we manage to be very lucky & get good stuff without knowing it until it is cooked up. However, we are improving & have a good girl. you would laugh to see us. We have plenty of room & but little furniture – but we are gathering a piece here & a piece there & I hope in a month or two we will be prepared to see somebody if that somebody should choose to call on us. I shall not be surprised if Nic comes west this spring. I would like to see him here and will be prepared to entertain him. Nic. Raynor tells me he bought quite a bill of good of Nic. It might do good to Nic to come out here. I know everybody here & can trot him around in double quick military style. I hope you are getting stronger & in better health. Kiss all the young ones for me. Give my love to everybody May God bless you all. Yours Affectionately

Jim

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Dear Mother,

James has told you about everything I believe that would interest you – we are really housekeeping at last. I teased James into it – James said I had “House” on the brain and at last told me if I would find a house we would go to housekeeping, and I found the house and we are quite settled down in it. I enjoy this way of living much better than boarding How is Amanda and the baby – has she named the little girl yet? I often think of you all and should like to see you. I have purposed writing to you and Amanda for a long time, but as usual have been negligent. James is growing so fleshy you will scarcely know him. During the past week the weather has been very cold, to day is warmer. I shall be glad to hear from you and Amanda. Kiss the children for me. Give my love to Miss Eliza Amanda and everybody else accept much yourself from

Yours affectionately Kate.


James Peckham was a member of the Missouri Legislature before the Civil War and was a strident Unionist when the state was debating to secede or not. He left the legislature and organized the 8th MO Regiment. Peckham served as the 8th MO Regiment’s Lt. Col. and led the regiment at Shiloh and Pittsburg Landing, TN, and at Jackson, MS. He later went on to lead the 29th MO. After the war he published a book on the history of the war in Missouri and General Nathaniel Lyon. He passed away in 1869 and is buried at Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis, MO.