August 24, 1864
I again address you my accustomed weekly letter. I have not received anything from you for nearly two weeks, but your letters may have been lost in transit if written. I have had a line from Miles since he went to Meadville. He will have to study hard to get the worth of his money, while boarding costs $5.00 per week.
Nothing important has transpired since I wrote to you last week, though the enemy have been raiding through the Country not far from this place. They have torn up the railroad between here and Knoxville, but the damage can be repaired again. A gun-boat with a six-gun-battery on board went up the river towards Knoxville this evening.
Things seem to remain in statu quo about Atlanta. There is constant skirmishing along the lines but it don’t amount to much. More men are needed in our Armies, as many will soon be discharged on account of the expiration of their term of service. Our final success evidently depends upon the reinforcement of the forces in the field. The enlisting of negroes in this part of the Country to fill quotas in the North, has proven a failure entirely. It was, as Genl. Sherman says, bad policy in Congress to pass such a law, for we would have gotten all this class at any rate. Sherman does not countenance these Sharks who deal in men, and fill their pockets by buying and selling substitutes.
I saw Jno. Lusher, Dave Lytle, Henry Smith and the rest of the Venango Co. boys last evening. The Regiment to which they belong is stationed in this place and act as guards for the trains between this and “the front”. Their term of service will soon expire and they will all be home. There is considerable sickness in this City now but it will be more healthy in a month or so from now. I continue to have good health.
How are your matters relative to your speculations in oil territory? What is the price per barrel for oil now at the wells? How are those wells on Sandy coming on? Give me a little history of all these things in your next.
I wrote to Ma last week—I presume she got my letter. I told her to ask whether you paid the express charges on my badge and how much they were. Tell me about our candidates—who they are and how they will run. Is Pennsylvania’s vote on the amendments to her Constitution any index to the vote for president this fall? It don’t seem to me that Lincoln will get such a majority. Will Amos Myers get the district nomination.
Melons, apples and peaches are very plenty but still dear in price. I think of nothing more—my love to all the family.
J. D. Chadwick
Next and final posting: October 27, 2014
Jonathan E. Helmreich
Meadville, PA 16335