Letter from Julie Charlton to Thomas J.
Charlton dated March 28th, 1865
My own darling:
I received your letter dated ? March yesterday morning and altho you mention having written several it is only the second one I have received since your arrival at Liverpool. I have written you four or five letters and wrote you the first one as soon as I had an opportunity of sending it after I heard of your destination. I am sorry you have been feeling so unhappy about our situation here. We have not suffered at all nor been in want. Aitho many families have been almost destitute, but we have been compelled to receive rations. Papa had provisions enough in his office to have lasted his family for a year but when the Federals came in the store was broken open and everything taken out. Of course we had not ajerry in the house and for a few days lived on corn bread and salt beef~. But a day or two after two sea captains , old acquaintances of Papa's sent him a present of potatoes, mackerel , butter, tea, coffee and sugar that lasted until you sent me money from Bermuda (which I received and gave half to your mother). This money with the rations received have enabled us to live very comfortably. I had also some of the coffee and tea you had sent me from Bermuda so you see darling, I have not only not been in want but have had luuuries. I have nothing to complain of and a great deal to be thankful for.
I was so happy to hear from you yesterday and wanted to sit down immediately and write you a long letter and relieve your mind of any anxiety on my account. But mother was quite sick in bed with a severe cold and my nurse had gone home sick, so I had baby to mind and house to keep and had to defer my pleasure for today. I saw Mrs. Wyatt yesterday she had just received a letter from Mrs. Morris and promised to read it to me when I could go to hear it. Oh darling, I need not tell you how my heart yearns for you. How gladly I would come to you, how willingly under go any ? only to be with you, but I fear I might not add much to your happiness by coming to you. Your means are limited, it would distress you very much to be pressed for means in that land of strangers. And another thing, if I stay here I can share my means with your Mother whilst if I should go of course would be compelled to use for myself I never before felt the want of money. I never wished more for wealth had I possessed it. I should not have waited for you to have sent for me and have been with you now. I did think at one time of selling my silver[ ?] and the little jewellery I possessed and come to you but I thought It would be too great an expense to you and had better remain with Papa. And again I could not go to Europe without taking the oath of allegiance to the United States which of course I could not perjure myself by doing. I think there may be some arrangement made with Mr. Green to pay me my allotment. I have written you in several letters I have not received any since the September allotment.
I have heard it rumored that the Federals intended sending out the wives of Confederate officers. If so of course I shall be compelled to go into the confederacy, but one of the officers told Priss's he knew nothing of any such order. I want to remain with Papa and Mother until the last of May or first of June, then if I can make arrangements go into the upper part of the state. We will without doubt have a very sickly summer and I don't want to trust my baby here. He is now the picture of health. He has cut all his teeth and has had no trouble with them. How I wish you could see him. He is so lively. He is indeed a noble looking boy, but so fill of mischief He keeps me busy all day running after him. He broke my scissors you sent me, threw them out of the window and the second day pulled the basin off the stand and broke it. Yesterday threw his silver cup and my bibbs out of the window. I wish you could see him in his little grey coat trimmed with blue braid? and steel buttons, and his little hat trimmed with blue. He is twice the size of little Bessie.
I will send you an address in this letter to send my letters to New York. A gentlemen here kindly gave it to me and ? me. He by this address gets my letter direct for me. I think it better to send them to different addresses. I don't want you to send any more to Mr. Averill. Mr. G. Crane wrote Horace at Fort Delaware and told him if he would take the oath and not go to fight any more he could supply him with money and clothing. Horace told him his offer was an insult. He would receive no assistance from him on any condition and that their correspondence was at an end. And I had a letter from him yesterday he was quite well and in good spirits. I wish you could send me a small package to this address I send you. It would be better than sending me the money. Goods are very high here and not very good quality. I am very much in want of a black straw hat, one suitable for morning. I can't get such a thing here. The few they have are common and coarse and too bold looking. I would like some fine hem stitched handkerchiefs, some good stockings, not too
thick or too thin, two or three pairs, black kid gloves No 61/2, some socks for baby No.5, some blue and some white ribbon, two or three yards each to trim his hats and piece ? eye ? for aprons. I would rather have these things than the money. I sent you some time since a photograph of Tom an~ myself Mine very good but little Tom's very poor. I am going to make another attempt to keep him still enough to have taken in his little grey coat.
Priss expects to go out into the Confederacy on the flag of truce boat which goes out day after tomorrow. Your Mother will stay longer and probably go out when Mary goes. I wrote you in my last letter of your Aunt Margaret's death. She failed very rapidly after the capture of the city and her separation from Robert.
Tell Mrs. Morris I am very envious of her, not her gay dresses and parties and jewels but having the society of her husband and I so far away from mine. But I will try to be patient about it and let us live with a hope for a better day coming. I will go on dreaming of a bright happy future for us and God grant it may be realized. Don't be at all uneasy about me. I think I can get along very comfortably. Don't rob yourself to send me money I can get along with much less at home than you can in a strange land. If it continues healthy and I am allowed to remain I may stay here all summer. Send me some English stamps. Think of me always and write me often. Take good care of your health. Mrs. Morris writes you are looking well. I am glad to hear iL If you send me a package don't forget a toy for Tom. Priss and your mother are well and send love to you. Papa and Mother send love. Tom sends the sweetest little kiss and accept a heart flill of love from Yours ever Julia
Address Your letter Lees V. WaIler Bank of California New York
I have just received an order to leave the city Thursday morning. God knows when I shall ever see or hear from you again. Good bye. All officers wives are to be sent into the Confederacy. Don't be? I shall be well taken care of