Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: George Washington Whitman to Louisa Van Velsor Whitman, 24 February 1865

Date: February 24, 1865

Source: The transcription presented here is derived from George Washington Whitman, Civil War Letters of George Washington Whitman, ed. Jerome M. Loving (Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 1975), 134. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Location: Trent Collection of Whitmaniana, Duke University Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library

Whitman Archive ID: duk.00365

Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Vanessa Steinroetter, Kathryn Kruger, Gillian Price, and April Lambert

Officers Hospital  Annapolis Md.

Feb. 24th 18651

Dear Mother,

I arrived here yesterday from the Hotel De Libby and if ever a poor devil was glad to get in a Christian Country it was me.

I am perfectly well Mother although I am in the Hospital Buildings, and am not under Medical treatment. The reason that I am quartered here is that the Hotels and Boarding Houses in town are cramed full,  I stay here for one dollar and a half a day while the Hotels charge three or four dollars and we are just as comfortable as I want to be. I drew 2 months pay to day and bought a new suit of clothes and now I feel something like a white man.

I made an application this morning for a leave of absence for 30 days and I expect to be home in the course of 3 or 4 days.

We left Danville on the 19th of this Month and stopped in Richmond untill the morning of the 22d. On our arrival at Richmond I found 2 boxes filled with Clothing and grub for me and the way we went into the eatables while we were in Libby was a caution.

Mother I am very anxious indeed to hear from you all and wish you get to write or Telagraph to me (as soon (as you get this) as possibly I may get it if you write before I leave here.

I have lots of yarns to tell you Mother but will wait untill I get home as I cant do justice to the darn Rebs, in a letter.

You cant imagine how I want to see you and Mattie and the children and all the rest.

Good Night Mother
give my love to all
G. W. Whitman

Direct Officers Hospital  Annapolis Md2


1. George Whitman was paroled in a general prisoner exchange on February 22, 1865. [back]

2. Louisa Whitman sent this letter on to Walt Whitman. On the verso she wrote: "Walter i should have sent you this letter from george but thought of course you knew all about his arrival at Anapolis  i saw his name in the times with 500 others arrived)  my not hearing from you we thought you had gone there to see him . . . ." See Jerome M. Loving's Introduction to The Civil War Letters of George Washington Whitman (Durham, North Carolina: Duke State University Press, 1975). [back]


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