Letter to Gen. Hodsdon from recruiter Hovey Austin, Presque Isle, 1862
Hovey Austin of Presque Isle, who had enlisted as a lieutenant in Co. I of the 7th Maine Infantry and who was serving as a recruiter in Presque Isle, wrote a letter to Maine Adjutant General John L. Hodsdon on June 30, 1862 from Presque Isle requesting funds with which to pay potential recruits.
New recruits were obtained for the Civil War mostly by volunteers, but after January 1863, they could be drafted. Soldiers received bonuses for enlisting. In Presque Isle, the fee paid was $300 - $400. In this rural agricultural area, money was tight and this large fee could save a farm or family.