Letter from Frederick William Seward to Frances Miller Seward, September 15, 1861

  • Posted on: 1 December 2021
  • By: admin
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Letter from Frederick William Seward to Frances Miller Seward, September 15, 1861
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transcriber

Transcriber:spp:ecw

student editor

Transcriber:spp:axm

Distributor:Seward Family Digital Archive

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections

Date:1861-09-15

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Letter from Frederick William Seward to Frances Miller Seward, September 15, 1861

action: sent

sender: Frederick Seward
Birth: 1830-07-08  Death: 1915-04-25

location: Washington D.C., US

receiver: Frances Seward
Birth: 1805-09-24  Death: 1865-06-21

location: Auburn, NY

transcription: cnk 

revision: agw 2021-03-12

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Page 1

Washington. Sunday morning
Sept. 15th 1861
 My dear Mother,
Thursday, after you
left us, we began the organization of a
new Bureau in the State Department, to
have charge of the papers relating to arrests
and suspected persons. There is so much
of this business at present, as to employ
three clerks. – In the afternoon, Father
Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10

and Anna
Birth: 1834-03-29 Death: 1919-05-02
drove out to Gen. Blenkers’
Birth: 1812-05-12 Death: 1863-10-31

camp which is near the outposts on
the Virginia side. The Germans who
compose Blenkers division, gave them

[top Margin]
Hand Shiftx

Frances Seward

Birth: 1805-09-24 Death: 1865-06-21
Frederick Sep 15’
1861
Page 2

a hospitable and enthusiastic welcome,
took them to a point where they could
see the guns of the Confederate Battery
on Munson’s Hill, and finally sent them
back to the Long Bridge under escort of
a troop of horse.
Friday morning the town was made
cheerful by the news of two victories, Gen.
Rosencrans’s
Birth: 1819 Death: 1898
and Gen. Pope’s
Birth: 1822-03-16 Death: 1892-09-23
, as well
as by the intelligence of the arrests in
Baltimore. We concluded that you
had got through Baltimore just in
time. That afternoon we drove out to
Piney River and explored the road along
Rock Creek, a wild & beautiful drive
through the woods, along which a telegraph
Page 3

wire and a chain of pickets have recently
been stretched. Prince Salm-Salm
Birth: 1828-12-25 Death: 1870-08-18
of Prussia
Baron Grabow
Birth: 1834
& Count Gurowski
Birth: 1805-09-10 Death: 1866-05-04
, and Sec-
retary Cameron
Birth: 1799-03-08 Death: 1889-06-26
came to dinner. The Prince
is a small, unpretending but military looking
person. He is to have a commission in the
Volunteer service, with probably a German
Brigade. He brought a letter from the Crown
Prince of Prussia
Birth: 1831-10-18 Death: 1888-06-15
to Father, who presented him
to the President
Birth: 1809-02-12 Death: 1865-04-15
and General Scott
Birth: 1824-02-14 Death: 1886-02-09

That night we could distinctly see the smoke
and flames of the three houses, on the
Virginia heights, burned by the Confederates.
Yesterday was a quiet day, except
that some artillery practice in the morning
started a brief alarm. In the afternoon
Anna and I went to Mr Peale’s
Birth: 1799-11-02 Death: 1885-03-13
, who
took several pictures of us, in their garden.
Page 4

Yours which is now finished, is excellent,
except that the one looking down is rather
indistinct. We send you copies by mail.
In the evening we drove down to Alexan-
dria
, which looked grim and desolate.
Sentries patrol the sidewalks and are about
the only men visible. The houses and shops
are many of them closed, and deserted.
Following the road past Fort Ellsworth we
came to the Mozart camp, and then,
finding it would lead us into the Confede-
rate pickets at Bailey’s Cross Roads, we
turned about & came back by moonlight,
reaching home about nine. We found George
Frederick Seward
Birth: 1840-11-08 Death: 1910-11-28
from Florida waiting
for us, who says all are well at Florida,
and an Orange County Regiment is in
progress. He stays two or three days for a
visit.
We suppose you reached home safely last night
and hope to hear so tomorrow. Affectionately your son
Frederick