Mount Olive, Mills County, Iowa
September 2nd 1863
You will think strange when you recieve this, but I hope you will pardon me for this intrusion. It has been a long time since I have seen or heard from you, but I still remember you and this morning your name was mentioned at the breakfast table, and I — not having much to do today — determined to write to you. Although I was but a little girl when I knew you, my mind wanders back to the dear old home, kind friends, and the many happy hours I have spent there. It seems but a day, and yet it has been more than five long years. I have spent many happy hours here, and many lonely ones — sadness, mingled with mirth. There is little left to make one happy now, when we think of the condition of our country & of the suffering and blood that has been spilled in this great strife. Oh, we have a cause to mourn when so many of our brave soldiers are falling on the battlefield daily. Dear friends who have given up home & its comforts, [and] sacrificed all for love of country, while many of us sit with folded hands at home can do nothing. I would willingly go upon the battlefield or in some hospital & minister to the wants of our sick & wounded soldiers if I had an opportunity. O! I feel that I could do a great deal for my country. I do all that I can at home, but that is not much.
I have many friends who have fallen on the battlefield who are sleeping their last long sleep in the sunny south — some who were very dear. They died in a strange land, & almost among strangers — no loved ones were there to see them die, no mother or sister near, but among strangers. It seems cruel to have to die so, but how many have breathed their last under such circumstances. Would that this cruel war were over, & our friends were permitted to return to their homes, and peace were again restored to our now distracted land and nation. O when will that time come? Will it be sooner or later, or will it ever be? Will the time ever come when war & rumors of war with all its horrors will be heard of no more. But I have forgotten myself. I am talking too long.
Asa sometimes speaks of you when he writes to me. I recieved a letter from him written the day he left home for St. Louis. Pa has gone to Chicago. When he returns, we all expect to go back to Mt. Pleasant on a visit. [My sister] Thankful and her husband [John Henry Keezee] will accompany us. They are staying with us while Pa is away. I have been wanting to go back for a long time. I hope we will not be disappointed this time. I do not enjoy myself very well here now. It seems so lonely. I presume it is so every place now. Please remember me to my soldier friends, if I have any there, and excuse me for being so hasty. From your friend,
Prissie [Priscilla] E. Andrews ¹
Mount Olive, Mills County, Iowa
¹ Priscilla E. Andrews (1844-1924) was the 19 year-old daughter of Chester Newell Andrews (1816-1886) and Ann Sophia Ramsey (1815-1888) of Rawles, Mills County, Iowa. Priscilla married Nov. 20, 1867, at Hillsdale, Iowa, to Warren W. Davis, who was born March 6, 1844, at Quincy, Ill., and died Sept. 30, 1919, at Portland, Ore. Priscilla died Feb. 20, 1924, at Glendale, California.