First Lieut. Edward Charles Parker, Company E 94th New York Infantry – POW Gettysburg (Sent Home Famous Letter from Libby in a Button!) – A Long 16 Page Letter in Ink from “Opposite Fredericksburg, Va. May 18th, 1862” – With Wonderful Descriptions, Suitable for a Magazine Article
If you are interested in the 94th New York Infantry, or just great descriptive letters, here is one for you. Writing home to his wife Julia, Edward Charles Parker gives an extremely detailed description of Rickett’s Brigade and the whole sad situation of Colonel Viele’s drinking and abuse and the addition of their new Colonel Root.

After discussing leadership, the placement of Officers in the regiment, and his hopeful selection, Parker gives a wonderful description of FORT LYON, then describes in detail their trip down the Potomac. READ HIS DESCRIPTION THE REBEL BLACK HORSE CAVALRY ENCAMPMENT. Parker then goes over their trek to Fredericksburg giving Julia a long list of his personal equipment and finally great descriptions of Fredericksburg:

“The ladies are the strongest secessionists in Fredericksburg. The ladies are so prejudiced that they will not pass under or near the stars & stripes.”

Parker spends several pages giving explicit details about his visit to Washington, D.C., describing each building he visited. Example:

“The patent office where we saw so much that you could not tell what you did see. It put me in mind of an immense toy shop. I saw there Washington’s Cabinet coat worn by Gen. Jackson at the Battle of New Orleans, Jany 8, 1815. Also saw the silk robes presented to James Buchanan by the Japanese, & also swords and swords, guns, etc. presented to the President of the United States by the Turks and other heathen powers which are of very curious workmanship. I saw the torpedo & infernal machine that was to blow up the vessels of the Union fleet, constructed by the Rebels. Besides getting a view of Washington, the Patent Office is a great curiosity.”

Next, Parker describes their review by General McDowell, “He rode a splendid dapple grey horse… The Chaplain addressed the Regiment on the text ‘we have all got to give an account unto God.’ After the Chaplain had finished, Col. stepped forward & said, “Soldiers, I don’t know as I can say anything more that will set this truth that our Chaplain has been addressing us about, but I want to bear my testimony to this truth. This is my principles which I intend to live & die by, so far as it is in my power to do,” & also told the men that he expected “we should all go home before we die,” but he wanted “the men to do so that they could give a good account of themselves, etc.” His remarks were to the point & the heart of every man to him, and most every night after dress parade, the Chaplain stepped forward & makes a prayer which was never done while Col. V was command of the Regiment. He told the men that he wanted them not to drink Liquor & not to swear any more than they could help & that he wanted them to be Christian soldiers.”

Toward the end Parker states, “The most part of Virginia is settled by a lauded aristocracy. That is a few own all the land & cultivate just what they choose & keep the rest in a state of nature so that the poor man stands no chance. There those that are rich are very rich & those that are poor are very poor. While we were encamped at Brook’s Station, I went to find some milk, & I found all the people poor, living in log houses that looked as if they were 100 years old, just high enough for a person to stand up. Some of the houses had thatched roofs. A great of the wealthy have joined the Rebels, & many of the poor have been pressed into the Rebel service. I stopped at one house where I found a woman 30 or 35 years old with two children, one a little child about 2 years old, and another about 4. Her husband had been pressed into the Rebel service, & now I think a different class of people will settle this state which will be better for all.”

Along with the complete transcript of this letter, we will include a photocopy of Parker’s famous button letter from Libby and a transcription of it… wish we owned that one. The letter we offer would make an excellent magazine article, and has to be a $2,000 letter.

#L633NY - Price $1,250