A Letter from Alvin Cook

Alvin Cook was another of the young men who served in the 25th Michigan Infantry who wrote to Anne Dewaters. He calls her letter to him a “partnership” because it went through so many hands all over Dixie until it was delivered to him in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

Cook starts by reporting on the health of several mutual friends, Dave [Coleman?] and Ed [Hill?], who are mentioned in other letters to her. Neither are sick in bed although Dave had been very sick and Ed is seriously jaundiced. He says they have plenty to eat, they have lots of money, they have not seen any action yet and he won’t be disappointed if they never do.

Alvin seems to have a nice sense of humor or maybe he is just flirting with Anna. He teases her that she didn’t make it to his wedding on New Year’s Day, which seems to be an inside joke since he goes on to ask her who he was supposed to have married. [Splice is an old term for a marriage.] He also says he’d like to come back to Oshtemo to get a girl to take to a dance in Bowling Green but wonders if any of them would agree to go with him.

He closes by saying his father [Capt. Hiram Cook?] will be visiting Oshtemo soon and will report on how all of the local soldiers are faring. Alvin would be discharged due to disability on January 4, 1864. Perhaps he was one of the soldiers who were wounded in a small battle at Mossy Creek, Tennessee several days earlier.

                                                Miss Anna Dewaters
                                                Kalamazoo
                                                Michigan

 

                                                                                                                  March 4th 1863
                                                                                                                Bowling Green KY

                                                                                                                Friend Annie

we received that partnership letter 2 or 4 days ago & I ex pect it had been all over “Dixie” is the reason we did not get it sooner but “better late than never” as the old saying is for we were glad to get it did come Jim is out on Picket to day Dave & Ed are both grunting but neither one of them are sick abed Dave has been very sick but is about well.  Ed has got the janders & he looks as yellow as a mulatto the rest of the boys are all well, 3 Companies of our Reg. are on Patroll in the town & the rest of us are doing Picket duty our Co. comes on once in 3 days.  we take all the comfort that is possible for a Soldier to take we have plenty to eat drink & wear & our pockets full of Green backs& what more can a Soldier ask We have not been in any fight yet & I dont believe I shall cry if we never get in one. some of the boys brag awfully about their fighting qualities because they know there is no chance to test them here.

This image of a soldier saying farewell to a loved one, was printed on the envelope of one of the letters sent to Ann DeWaters.

So you got slipped up on going to my wedding New Year did you? Well that was a great disappointment to be sure Well I have come to the conclusion that you have to wait un till the war is over. But Ann who was the lucky girl that I was to be spliced to I have a kind of curiosity to know Now you write and tell me all the particulars, please There is going to be a dance up town Saturday night & lf I could run up to Oshtemo & get me a partner I believe I would go, but I dont know as any of the girls would go with me if I was There. father is going home in the course of a week & you must go & see him He will tell you about all the boys. I cant think of any thing more to write this time & I guess you will have hard work to read what I have written but just bear in mine that I am in an awful hurry

                                                                                write soon to
                                                                                                Your Friend
                                                                                                A.V. Cook

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