An Important Letter from Abigail Almira Hawes of Castine, Maine:  Teacher, Historian & Admirer of Capt. Charles Tilden of the 16th Maine – Letter to the Captain October 13th, 1861

There is a great article about Abigail Almira Hawes on the Internet.  It is from the Wilson Museum Bulletin of Fall, 2007.  This letter is from that great lady.   

  • Castine Oct. 13, 1861.  Capt. Tilden, I have so often spoken of writing you that a real letter seems the most natural of things. Yet beyond its naturalness, the only recommendation it could possess would be the lively interest of the writer in your welfare and that of the brave men with whom you are associated. 
  • You can scarcely conceive the feverish watching, listening for the faintest echo from the vast camping ground of the Potomac! 
  • The fear that shrouds our hearts at the reported battle or the shrinking with which we contemplate our young heroes on picket or advanced guard! 
  • Had we at home the goddess gifts of mythology, each of our little Castine band should be clad with the Regis of Pallas and be less vulnerable than famed Achilles, but alas! We can only pray and trust that the champions of our righteous cause will like the ancient martyrs pass through the fire without even the smell of fire upon their garments. 
  • We are often pained at the intelligence of some one’s illness, and my purpose of writing you was precipitated by the request of an anxious mother. Mrs. Sylvester has heard of her son’s [Martin B. Sylvester, Co. F ] illness and presuming him unable to write would deem a line from you a great favor. 
  • Your kindness in receiving him into your own tent is deeply felt, and a statement of his case from your hand will be warmly appreciated. Please transmit to him her tenderest regards and earnest wish that he may be so far improved ere this reaches you as to report his own case favorably. 
  • His family are as well as usual and desire to be kindly remembered. Allow me to add my own best wishes for his recovery. Mrs. Sylvester has just returned from Deer Isle and says that Capt. Tilden is there held in highest esteem. 
  • It would be superfluous for me to record the warm admiration felt here for your able and faithful discharge of duties so new and embarrassing. May your strength be as your need. And trusting that you may be returned to your friends in safety. I remain very sincerely, Your friend, A. A. Hawes

#L10-13-61 ME – Price $125

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