VII. CAPTAIN ABRAHAM:
THE CIVIL WAR JOURNAL OF
With the professional manner of an officer, Captain Abraham tells Bell of his last visit with Andrew aboard the hospital steamer D. A. January.* During that visit, Captain Abraham observed that while Andrew still imagined the prospect of a furlough to St. Louis, "his manner was indicative of one who...should put off this mortal life and wander the flowery fields of immortality".
At the time of letter #21 on August 26, 1863, Captain Abraham and the 114th Ohio are assigned to Carrollton, Louisiana, about six miles north of New Orleans. Captain Abraham closes by telling Bell, "The Gulf breeze makes it really more pleasant here than August usually is in Ohio".
Nearly thirteen months after Andrew's death, a government form (letter #22) was sent to Bell by the U. S. Treasury Department on July 12, 1864. The correspondence included a check for $120.30 for his bounty and back pay, less the $25.00 that had been paid in advance.
* The U.S. Army Hospital Steamer D. A. January was a side-wheel steamer that served as a floating hospital. Outfitted to allow for the best in patient care, it contained a surgical suite, baths, a kitchen, nurses quarters, hot and cold running water, and an ice water cooler. Windows circulated air through the wards, which held nearly 450 beds. During its four years of service, the D. A. January transported and cared for more than 23,000 wounded men. (Source: U.S. Army Medical Department, Office of Medical History)
Near New Orleans
Aug 26th 1863
Yours of Aug 9th is just recd and contents noted. I will endeavour to answer your inquiries, and am very sorry that I cannot convey to you the information which you no doubt seek most ardently. When I met your husband on the boat he grasp my hand and pressed it while the tears flowed freely down his pale cheeks. He remarked, "Capt, I cant help but weep but they are tears of joy." He seemed indeed overjoyed to meet me; I don't recollect of his saying anything about his family, though I think he spoke to me about the prospect of getting a furlough when he got to St. Louis.
I encouraged him all I could for indeed I thought if his mind could be kept busy- ant he still had a chance perhaps to rally again the vital energies. I did not speak to him concerning his prospects for the future, but I thought at the time his manner was indicative of one who was looking forward with ardent joy to the time perhaps not far in the future when he should put off this mortal and wander the flowery fields of immortality.
His effects should have been and I presume were taken care of by the Surgeon in charge where he died. I know nothing of them. Perhaps you was not aware that when a soldier is separated from his company by sickness, detail or otherwise, his Co. Commander has no more authority over him, than though he had never belonged to his Co. It is the duty of the officer in charge of a soldier at his death to appraise his friends of the event, likewise put his effects in a place of safety, where they can be obtained by his friends. If you are not officially informed ref this I would write to the "Surgeon in Charge Hospital Steamer D. A. January", inclosing postage stamp.
Our regiment is doing better here than in Vicksburg. The Gulf breeze makes it really more pleasant here than August usually is in Ohio. Hoping this letter may in some degree answer your expectations that remain.
Very Truly & ----
I. M. Abraham
SECOND AUDITOR'S OFFICE
July 12, 1864
Enclosed you will receive a certificate, No. 100613, for $120.30 payable to you as Widow of deceased or to your order by any Paymaster of the U. S. Army being for pay due A. J. Nickel a late Private in Captain Abraham Company E, 114 Regiment of Ohio Volunteers for services from the 1 day of March 1863, when last paid to the 16 day of June 1863, time of his death and the $100 Bounty allowed by Act July 22, 1861, less $25 paid in advance.
Your obedient servant,
E. B. French
Isabella J. Nickel
Mt. Sterling, Ohio
I. Andrew Becomes a Soldier... |
II. Headed South... |
III. The First Fights... |
"THE CIVIL WAR JOURNAL OF ANDREW JACKSON NICKELL"
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