Staff Person: Lynette Lundin
This letter is from the papers of the Banks, Sadtler, and Stacey families of Pennsylvania and Maryland, and of Houston B. Hiatt of North Carolina, who married a descendant of the Banks-Sadtler families. The collection also contains information about slaves, Indian uprisings, and news about the Whig party, disasters, medicine and social life. It covers the time period of 1794 to 1951. More information about this collection is available at: http://digital.lib.ecu.edu/special/ead/findingaids/0025/
The letter below is from Judge Thaddeus Banks to his wife (1864). It tells of what he went through to get his only son discharged from the army. He went all the way to the top, President Lincoln. We don’t have information regarding his regiment or why his father wanted Cecil discharged.
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The transcription of the letter is below.
March 3rd 1864
My Dear Wife,
After much trouble and annoyance I have had Cecil released and had to go to the very highest authority! The President.
When I got to Harrisburg I found Cecil had gone to West Chester and there enlisted and went to Phila [delphia]. The Col. went with me to the Gov and he gave me letters to Phila [delphia]. I there got Mr. [Groff?] we set out to [explore?], there are three barracks for soldiers there at the second of which we found him. I then to the commander in charge, General [Gilham?], but he informed he had no authority to release him, [had?] [wired?] me to come here, which I did last night. I got [Mc Allen?][in?] this morning and we set off to the war office, and saw the Pro. Vo. Marshall Gen[era]l. and Sec[re]t[a]ry at War neither of whom would interfere at the insistence of Judge Hale we went with him to the “Pres.” We found “Old Abe” and after hearing an anecdote or two from him, he approved the order “let the boy be discharged”.
I made my best bow of course, Judge Hale told him I would have to vote for him & we left.
I expect to leave to night for Phila [delphia] and expect to be home with him on Saturday. I am well and glad. Love to all.