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LT: February 19, 1865 Charles Personius

Editor’s Note: This item is part of a collection of letters from New York engineers written while their units were at the Siege of Petersburg.  Researcher and Engineer enthusiast Dan O’Connell generously donated all of the items in this collection for use at The Siege of Petersburg Online.  These transcriptions are copyrighted by Brett Schulte and may not be used without my express written consent.  I do not have images of these letters so some errors could be from transcription or in the original.

Camp of the 50th NY Vol Engrs
Near Popular Grove Church, Va.
February 19th, 1865

Dear Parents,

Having nothing to do now that inspection is over I will scratch a few lines to the loved ones at home. We are all enjoying good health and I hope this may find you the same. The weather is beautiful. Never have I seen finer at this season of the year and the birds are chirping their merry notes to gladden our hearts and the sun sheds her warm rays upon us making everything look cheerful and bright in and about camp and not a solitary gun is fired to break the stillness of the morning air.

All is quiet as if peace reaigned supreme throughout the land and I am reminded of many of the Sabbaths I used to spend at home only we have no church to attend. I have not heard a single sermon this winter but don’y imagine that we are al heathen yet – the Christian Commission supplies us with considerable religious reading besides giving us Testamnents and small hymn books and so forth so we are not quite devoid of christian influence as yet.

Co Spaulding is building a large church but I am afraid we will have to leave here before it is completed and then it will do us no good for the work on it goes very slow. Co H has the job.

1st Lieut drurfy has been assigned to this company but is detached at the commissary so he will be of little benfit to us. I have seen nothing of our new Captain yet and do not know for certain that it is Van Reneselaer as I wrote you a few days ago. I saw Gilbert Personious yesterday. He is looking very tough and rugged. He belongs to Co. E 64th NY and came out as a substitute. Olive Snow’s husband is in the same Co. and Regt.

3 o’clock p.m.

After writing the above I seated myself for dinner when who should pop into my tent but Lieut E. Lounsberry and Nelson Edwards of the 179th NY and we got dinner for them and had a real good visit. They thought we had things rigged up just about right around here and they took a real fancy to Col Squarters . The boys from the hollow that are in that Regt. Are all well now. Nelson is cook for Ed and has a nice thing of it. Their camp is in front of the Jones House. The Capt will know where that is I guess. I received a letter from you this morning dated the 13th. The money came through all right. We have received no letter of the 10th .

I will close as the sheet is nearly filled.

I remain your affectionate son,



Other Letters Written  By Charles Personius at the Siege of Petersburg:


  1. Personius, Charles. (1865, February 19). (Letter to his parents). Personius Brothers Letters (CL 105, Box B, Folder 38). Booth Library, Chemung Valley (NY) Historical Society, Elmira, NY.
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