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Requests From Soldiers

E.S. Calderwood on nine-month enlistment, Baton Rouge, 1863

E.S. Calderwood on nine-month enlistment, Baton Rouge, 1863

Item 65828 info
Maine Historical Society

Pvt. Eben S. Calderwood, who was 39 when he enlisted in Co. H of the 21st Maine Infantry, wrote to his wife Mary in Vinalhaven that the six stamps she sent should be plenty as the regiment would not serve longer than its nine-month enlistment.

He said he would not re-enlist for $13 a month, but would if he could get a commission as a 2nd lieutenant and earn $105 a month. The regiment was formed in October 1862 and Calderwood's enlistment date was Nov. 10, 1862.

Calderwood reported that the colonel told him the regiment would probably stay where it was to guard the area. His company had been removing houses, cutting shade trees, digging pits, and building fortifications.

Calderwood also commented that he had been in the area 18 years previous. He probably was on a ship delivering or loading goods there.

In response to Mary's question about his views on the war, Calderwood wrote, "I hardly know what to say but I think it will not end under this administration. There is men that ware shoulder straps having to good times and making to much money all through this war for it to end yet."

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