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Title: Abraham Irvine, USA, to Joseph J Irvine, Keadymore, Co Armagh
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileIrvine, Abraham/11
SenderIrvine, Abraham
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationarmy officer
Sender Religionunknown
DestinationKeadymore, Co. Armagh, N.Ireland
RecipientIrvine, Joseph
Recipient Gendermale
SourceT 2135: Copied by Permission of T.G. Irvine, Esq., Keadymore, Mountnorris, Co. Armagh. #TYPE EMG Abraham Irvine [Virginia, U.S.A.] to Joseph James Irvine, Keadymore, Mount Norris, Co Armagh, 4 June 1864. Writer was to Take Part in the Battle of the Wilder
ArchivePublic Record Office, N. Ireland
Doc. No.8905056
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
Log22:06:1989 LT created 05:11:1990 CD input 05:11:19
Word Count1198
TranscriptLetter property of Thomas G. Irvine, Keadymore.

Letter from Abraham Irvine
to his brother Jos. [Joseph?] James Irvine
Keadymore, Mountuous [Mountnorris?], Armagh
Written 4/6/1864, presumably the
impending battle was the "Wilderness" Virginia
between Lee and Grant. General grant
had huge losses as did the Confederates
The writer was never heard from again
by his relatives in Ireland, so presumed killed
in this battle which lasted nearly a full month.

Head Qrs [Quarters?] In The Field
June 4th 1864
Mr J J Irvin [Irvine?]

Dear Brother
After an absence
& a silence of long weary Years, I am seated upon my
"camp Stool"; pen in hand, on purpose of informing
you, that I still, through the mercy of a kind providence
enjoy a place amongst the inhabitants of
earth; Through all those years of silence past I have
not forgotten for a single moment the land, the friends,
the companions & associates, of my childhood & early
Youth nor has ought of my affection for or interest
in, those absent friends been lost, the while;
A detail of my Sorrows, my desasters [disasters?], my perils & defeats
or my Subsequent Successes, Victories & triumphs; form
no part of my present purpose in this writing revelations, & explinations
[explanations?] must remain reserved, for a long hoped for, & Still much
desired occasion in the future of my history;
The many sad changes, that time may have affected
Since I stood for the last time upon the hill overlooking the
old house at home, I cannot realize, As in fancy or in
dream I Join my-self to the group by the fireside, no one
is missing and yet reason teaches me, as does experience
also, that these f[anc?]ies, these fondly cherished hopes, these intense
desires of my hearts fond fancy, may all be unwarranted &
false the loved, the cherished, may have fallen
Father may have fallen, Mothers heart may have seaced [ceased?]
to beat, no anxious sigh heave again her bosom or prayer
the dictate of a mothers fond affection any more ascend for
the protaction [protection?], safty [safety?] or return, of her long, lone,
wandering boy, Mothers memory, Oh! how precious, when the heart
all bruised & mangled, when expitations [expectations?] crossed & hope
lies bleeding prostrate, dead, how precious is the memory of a good
a faithful Mother, as it comes all its hallowd influences
& powers over the tried & tempted Soul, it encourages every good
purpose, every virtious [virtuous?] resolve is strengthened & promoted until
in the Strength that Jesus lends, faith claims a heritage in God
which the heart exclaims "Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him"
The enclosed Photographs, will reveal to you that I am
some way connected with the Army, Though a stranger in
a strange land, I have ever since the [inogesation?] of our
present duel war held a commission of respectable Rank, amongst the
defenders of freedom, the champions of Liberty, I have mingled
in the Strife of twenty two hard contested battle fields
my Sword has drunk the blood of those enemies of human[ity?]
of Liberty, & God, who would tare [tear?] to attoms, [atoms?] the free, the
glorious institutions of this great land, In turn my blood
has stained the Sabre of the foe, no desire have I now
had I the ability to give you a conseption [conception?] of my toils my
cares or the numerous dangers to which I have been exposed since
I have had a Command in the Army (my men with few
exceptions are Americans) In retrospect of the mysterious
providence through which I have been led my heart exclaims hither
to hath the Lord [exal?]ted me, his right hand hath sustained
me; And in all future time, thoug [though?] professed friends prove
false, though earthly hopes fail, though the desires of any
heart remain unrealized, to God, through the merits of his
Son, Shall I ever look, as the strength of my heart, & my portion
I would love to give You an outline of my history
since I last wrote you, but this must be reserved for another
occasion, this much I will say, as it is due you from me
that however I may blush over with pride, which drove me into
adventure, & prompted a cesation [cessation?] of correspondence between
us for so long a time, When you understand all, You, nor
my other surviving kinsman will have cause to blush for
my conduct in view of the relationship subsisting between
us, As before indicated I cannot realize the many changes
which time must have worked in the relationship, as well as
in the personal appearances of my old friends & acquaintances
of Keadymore [Con?] Cragens & of my relations Uncle
Aunts, Nephew, Cousin and mother &c: of Tuly allen [Tullyallen?], many of
whom it may be, have gone to Their reward, beyond the river, or become
so changed by the work of time, as to be no longer recognisable by me
did I enjoy the privilige of a meeting with them; [?] My heart
crouds [crowds?] innumerable questions upon my brain, questions which
it longs to have answered, but I remember, that while this brief
epistle carries the knowledge of my present safty [safety?], to the home
of early-fond recollections, & to the friends who are still precious to
memory. no cheering responce [response?] however anxious I may be to
hear from you, can reach me, now, though the time may not be
far distant, when I will be permitted to look out upon the beauteous
landscape whare [where?] first the light of heaven beamed upon my eye
and my voice [?] vibrates [?] the hills of my
native Island; But while I write thus, I have not wholy [wholly?]
forgotten, the circumstances preclude a mistake, that sanguinary
work is before me, tomorrow we meet the enemy again skermishing
[skirmishing?] is now going on, an effort on our part to feel the enemies
position that our asault [assault?] tomorrow may be the more
successfully conducted
Your interest & sympathies so far as you have any in the present
struggle, & crisis of American afairs [affairs?]; Are all with us
I am proswaded [persuaded?], And I am astonished that any
european Should from any mean Synester [sinister?] motive become
an [abetter?] of the highest crime against the best Government
that the world ever new [knew?], I am sorry, that the
Government under which I was born, Should act so [biased?]
a part, in her efforts to destroy the principle of self Government
those principles, will live on, despite the efforts of [love?]
Oligarchy & the envy of European [despots?], Yes live on
when rotten despositions [despotisms?] are falling and crumbling to atoms
Yet this proud [?ow?] waving by my [?ot] door, be restored
to those [domes?] & [fired?] [from?] which [be a?] [?] has [?]
& wickedly draged [dragged?] it, then let th[at?] nation tremble whose
heart has devised mischief against the Land of the free
& the home of the [brave?] with her million brave dauntless
and discipled [disciplined?] Army & her Strong Navy let despotism
every whare [where?] tremble, & they who would be free rejoice
But I cann[ot?] [dwell?] on this subject now my sheet is nearly
filled, & I wish to say in conclusion, that should I live to the
end of the Rebellion, you will hear from me again
Should I fail in this hope, I wish to be thought of as a friend
to humanity & [liberty?] an uncompromising enemy of
despotism & opressin [oppression?] [?] [?] desired for your
[?] [?] [?] [?] [?] [?] [?]
& affectionate feelings for all
Most sincearly [sincerely?]
Your Affectionate Bro [Brother?]
Abram Irvine
Mr Jos. Jas. Irvine Esq. [Joseph James Irvine, Esquire?]