Michael S. Doran's Family History Blog

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Letter dated May 21, 1865 from Edward James Doran to parents James and Rebecca Doran

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 Camp Shneman, S.C.
 May 21, 1865

Dear Parents,

 It is useless for me to make excuses for remaining so long from home and not writing to you, but ask for forgiveness for not doing it.  I received a letter from Ella and Aunt last night informing me that you had got home from your visit to the East so I hasten to write to you after so long neglecting to do so.  I did not once forget the happy days that I have spent at home or those that are near and dear to me but have ever hoped and anxiously waited until I could come home as I could wish for I could not bear the thought of going home and commencing to work to recover what I lost in the west with nothing to commence with when I come in from the Rocky Mountains.

 I started for home but the war was just commencing and I enlisted and been in the service nearly four years.  My time will be out in March 1866.  If God spares me until then I will come home for I cannot feel any happiness from my children.  God bless them, they will think they have a cruel father to neglect them so long but I have done what I thought was for the best and I have saved all I could while I have been in the service for them.  It is over five years since I left for the mountains and in all that time I have seldom slept in a house.  I have lived in the open air.  My health has been good nearly all the time.  I got a letter from William a few days ago.  He is well.  I think he will be home this summer.  I will come home next fall if I can get a furlough.

 I have never had one yet since I enlisted.  I have seen some hard times and have often wondered how I escaped with my life when my comrades was falling around me.  On the battlefield I had my horse shot from under me at the battle of Prairie Grove and was taken prisoner.  The rebs had me fifteen days.

 We furnished our own horses in our Regt, the 7th MO. Cav. Vols. 

 I had two shot and more out three while in that Regt.  So I did not make much on horses.  We was allowed $12 per month for our horses.

 Well I will tell you all about myself when I come home.  I have been in nearly every state and territory in the union and Ill. is the state for me.  Forgive me for not writing and write me all the news of your visit.  I hope you enjoyed it and had a pleasant trip.  Give my love to all the folks.  Do not forget Grandmother.

 Tell Frank and Eddie I will come home as soon as I can.  And I will get them a little horse to ride.  O how I would love to see them and my little Ella.  I was in hopes that I was the only one of the boys in the Army for it is a hard place and five years will tell on a man’s constitution being so much exposed.  But for Brother Andrew we will never meet again in this world.

 I sometimes wish I could have taken his place for I have many times went into battle little caring whether I ever came out again or not and often wondered how I escaped.  But I feel happier now since I have heard from home and when my time is out I will settle down in Ill. and try and content myself.  I must close.

 God bless you all.  Remember me and forgive me for past.  Write soon your affectionate but unworthy Son.

E. J. Doran  (Edward)

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Written by Michael S. Doran

September 9, 2010 at 12:03 am

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