The Civil War Letters of Henry A. Allen

74 EpisodesProduced by Keith Harris

Brought to you by The Rogue Historian.The Civil War Letters of Henry A. Allen, Captain, Company A, 9th Virginia Regiment. Allen was captured at Gettysburg on July 3rd, 1863. These are the letters written to his wife while held in Union prisons between 1863 and 1865. Allen would survive the war and l… read more

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Final Thoughts on the Letters of Henry A. Allen

April 25th, 2019

2:23

Allen returned home and resumed his work as a brick mason, contractor, and builder and lived out the remainder of his life in Portsmouth. He died on …

May 6, May 16, May 23, May 26 1865

April 24th, 2019

6:59

I hope this is my last letter to you while a prisoner as the news is that the order for our release is at this post how true it is I am not able to say...

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April 25, April 28, May 4 1865

April 23rd, 2019

6:23

...we now have no possible hope for the success of our cause.

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April 13, 1865

January 26th, 2019

2:51

 We have indeed met with sad reverses within the last three weeks but I am not as yet hopeless and still trust something good may turn up...

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April 10, 1865

January 25th, 2019

2:58

Since we have been here we have heard nothing but bad news this morning it is reported that Genl Lee has surrendered with his whole army bad news for …

April 6, 1865

January 24th, 2019

2:42

No doubt you have heard ere this of the evacuation of Richmond. Rather sad news but I am willing and satisfied if our authorities think it best no doubt...

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April 2, 1865

January 23rd, 2019

3:14

Poor little Ida I can almost see her crying now...

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March 22, 1865

January 4th, 2019

3:02

I was much surprised to find Ida so very different from what I expected so soft and easy in her manners when I thought she would be wild and noisy as …

March 14, 1865

January 3rd, 2019

2:33

At any rate I had the pleasure of seeing my dear wife & children and feel very thankful after being separated so long it is time I had but a …

February 14, 1865

January 2nd, 2019

2:50

Since I wrote you last I have been quite sick confined to my bunk for ten or twelve days. I am now getting along pretty well my eyesight gets no better I have given up reading cannot read my bible.

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December 25, 1864

December 31st, 2018

3:14

 I know you will think of the absent me while eating the Christmas dinner I have nothing but dry bread for mine.

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November 27, 1864

December 30th, 2018

2:40

Ah: how I would like to see all of you if but for a few moments 2 ½ years since we parted well do I remember that day. How much longer it will be but …

November 21, 1864

December 11th, 2018

3:24

A good many sick & wounded are being exchanged there is some talk of our following soon doubtful I expect...

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October 25, 1864

October 3rd, 2018

2:40

We are in very comfortable quarters although rather cool at this time for a southern clime...

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October 16, 1864

October 2nd, 2018

3:01

There is a rumor that we will leave here shortly our destination Savannah Georgia merely rumor but do not let it stop you from answering this.

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October 12, 1864

July 19th, 2018

2:15

Sarah Allen's Loyalty Oath...no kidding.

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September 9, 1864

July 18th, 2018

2:58

Six hundred of us left Delaware on the 20th last month and landed at this place...

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August 29, 1864

July 17th, 2018

2:14

I have been quite sick since being here having had another attack of rush of blood to the head but I am better at this time...

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August 20, 1864

July 16th, 2018

1:50

I leave immediately for South Carolina whence ‘tis thought we will be exchanged...

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August 18, 1864

June 29th, 2018

2:36

How are my little darlings tell them I look at them every day and wish I could see them...

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August 12, 1864

June 28th, 2018

2:46

Dear Sarah I expect we are again to change our prison home as we have a rumor here that some of us will leave tomorrow for Charleston SC...

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August 10, 1864

May 1st, 2018

2:21

Dear Sarah try and arrange it with some of my friends so as to send me something I do not care what it is...

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August 4, 1864

April 30th, 2018

2:43

None of my Portsmouth friends answer my letters regularly...

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August 2, 1864

April 27th, 2018

2:38

I have often thought if he has forgotten who buried his poor mother when the yellow fever was there in 55 and he, dutiful son, had left the place...

July 29, 1864

April 26th, 2018

2:32

Would to the Lord it was in my power to assist you how much better could I bear my imprisonment if I could only know you and my dear children could …

July 19, 1864

April 25th, 2018

3:00

Mr. Handy is here with us and has been here for twelve months he looks quite venerable with his hair as long as a lady’s flowing down his back...

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July 8, 1864

April 24th, 2018

2:39

It is not pleasant to be engaged in battle but I would ten times rather take chances charging a battery of artillery than remain here...

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June 26, 1864

April 20th, 2018

2:26

You will form the above see that I am again at my former prison

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June 22, 1864

April 19th, 2018

2:52

It is highly possible we will leave this place when I do not know but it is supposed very soon as they seem to be making preparations to take us somewhere...

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June 20, 1864

April 18th, 2018

2:41

If I only had the material I would have some necklaces made...

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June 14, 1864

April 17th, 2018

3:01

You say you are quite thin and not as large as when I left home. I should judge from the picture that you were larger by thirty pounds...

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June 12, 1864

April 16th, 2018

2:50

The shirts you sent me came in box also, for which I thank you kindly they fit well I have one on at this time...

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June 3, 1864

April 13th, 2018

2:45

It was indeed a pleasure to look upon the faces of the dear loved ones not seen for so long a time... 

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June 1, 1864

April 12th, 2018

3:08

Dear Sarah the pleasure it gives me to hear from you all and to know you are all enjoying the blessing of health...

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May 22, 1864

April 11th, 2018

2:49

As you say many a loving heart has been made sad many a fond wife will wait anxiously for the dear one who will never return, many the dear little ones who will be left father[le]ss by this civil war... 

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May 21, 1864

April 10th, 2018

3:15

Brother has been transferred to another Battery, and I am sorry to say has been badly wounded and had to have his leg taken off...

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May 12, 1864

April 9th, 2018

2:43

 I am truly glad to hear that Aunt Mary is getting better and trust she will regain her former good health...

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May 5, 1864

April 6th, 2018

3:23

Do you suppose I would much rather have the pleasure of looking at the faces of my dear wife & children than to have money when so many chances …

April 15, 1864

April 5th, 2018

2:19

Almost every letter conveys to me the intelligence of the death of some of our Portsmouth folks. it pains me much to hear of so much sickness there.

April 10, 1864

April 4th, 2018

2:54

I was again pained to learn that the hand of death had visited Mollie’s family they have indeed been sorely afflicted Mother and Brother taken from …

April 2, 1864

April 3rd, 2018

2:29

Would that I could come to you all never to be parted again, but rather than come as some have I would sooner die and I know you feel as I do on that …

March 29, 1864

April 2nd, 2018

2:26

If I should be so fortunate as to be exchanged I hardly think I would be allowed time to send for you as it is very likely I should have to go to the …

March 25, 1864

March 30th, 2018

2:14

We moved last Tuesday evening and had a heavy snow storm that night which was not very comfortable. it is now raining and will end with quite a storm I think...

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March 19, 1864

March 29th, 2018

2:35

Three lots of officers and men have left here to be exchanged the last left on Thursday. I hope to be among the next...

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March 8, 1864

March 28th, 2018

2:58

I was very sorry to hear of the imprisonment of Mr. Bain & Uncle Joe...

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March 1, 1864

March 27th, 2018

2:52

May God in his infinite mercy bless my dear ones at home and spare us all to meet again...

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February 23, 1864

March 26th, 2018

2:30

I have been waiting very patiently for an answer to my letter and I assure you it was a source of much pleasure to me to get a letter from you...

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February 14, 1864

March 23rd, 2018

2:28

You will no doubt as this reaches you have heard of the removal of some officers from Johnsons Island to this place...

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February 3, 1864

March 22nd, 2018

2:07

I am sorry to learn that the small pox is in Portsmouth you must be careful with the children and do not let them run out...

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January 27, 1864

March 21st, 2018

2:43

I was truly sorry to hear of the death of Jordan. Many more will meet with the same fate. It is a hard life in any prison...

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January 9, 1864

March 20th, 2018

2:41

It has been rumored here that we would be sent to Pt. Lookout...

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January 5, 1864

March 19th, 2018

2:41

It was a sad christmas to us all dear Sarah but I trust the next will be better...

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December 30, 1863

March 16th, 2018

2:50

Would that I was in Richmond I would certainly send for you and my dear children and place you in some place more pleasant than where you are now...

December 24, 1863

March 15th, 2018

2:27

Tomorrow is Christmas Day no doubt you will spend a lonely one...

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December 15, 1863

March 14th, 2018

2:55

Thanks to the good Lord I am enjoying good health and trust it may continue so...

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December 5, 1863

March 13th, 2018

2:18

I do not wish you to put yourself to any trouble...

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December 2, 1863

March 12th, 2018

2:14

I thought it best to pen you a few lines...

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November 19, 1863

March 9th, 2018

3:03

Thanks to the good Lord I am up again although not well...

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October 27, 1863

March 8th, 2018

2:07

I am much better than when I last wrote and will I trust soon be hearty again...

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October 25, 1863

March 7th, 2018

3:21

Yes to be with you and know that this cruel war is over...

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October 23, 1863

March 6th, 2018

3:06

I am at this time quite sick - suffering with sore throat, fever, and head ache...

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October 14, 1863

March 5th, 2018

2:51

I was indeed sorry to hear of your sickness...

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September 29, 1863

March 2nd, 2018

2:56

No doubt dear Sallie, you think my letters are cold and formal...

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September 23, 1863

March 1st, 2018

2:52

I could not think eleven days had rolled around since I wrote you...

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September 16, 1863

February 28th, 2018

2:29

You will not be able to remain in Richmond, I do not think...

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September 9, 1863

February 27th, 2018

3:20

You speak of passing through many trials...

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September 1, 1863

February 26th, 2018

3:05

Would that I could meet you there...

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August 29, 1863

February 23rd, 2018

2:58

It is indeed a dull and monotonous life we spend here.

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August 20, 1863

February 22nd, 2018

2:54

Money does not last long here...

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August 14, 1863

February 21st, 2018

3:11

We would all rather be in Dixie

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August 11, 1863

February 20th, 2018

2:36

A discussion of letters and money.

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August 4, 1863

February 19th, 2018

3:28

The very first in the collection...discussing money.

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Introducing Henry A. Allen

February 18th, 2018

3:04

Let's get to know a little about the soldier and begin to think about what this set of letters can tell us about the war and the people of the Civil …

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