George Sealy to his Father Richard Sealy on February 10, 1863 from Memphis, Tennessee.

2013.70.71a - front.jpg
2013.70.71a - inside.jpg
2013.70.71a back.jpg


George Sealy to his Father Richard Sealy on February 10, 1863 from Memphis, Tennessee.


George A. Sealy was born in the town Castle Cary, Somersetshire, England, May 11, 1841 to Richard Sealy (born c. 1804 in South Welton, England) and Maria Louisa Champion Sealy (born c. 1803 in Wells, England). His family (including 2 brothers & 1 sister) moved to Rochester, New York around 1843. They later moved to Geneva, NY and final settled in Rockford, IL in 1855. He and his 2 brothers served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. George (along with brother Robert) served in Company G, 45th Illinois Volunteers. He enlisted September 17, 1861 as a private and was later promoted to sergeant by his brother Robert. He was involved in both the siege and the occupation of Vicksburg, and was mustered out July 12, 1865. He married twice. His first wife was Jennie A. Paxson, who died of consumption at age 33 May 4, 1876. His second wife was Fannie E. Zimmerman (died in 1908), whom he married August 5, 1877 in Winnebago County. After the war, George worked for Emerson, Talcott and Co. in Rockford, acting as their superintendent. Upon leaving Talcott Emerson in 1896 he spent a short while working for Henry Sears Cutlery in Chicago before retiring the next year and moving to San Jose, CA. It was there he passed in November 15, 1909 suddenly, while dancing at a social gathering.


George Sealy


February 10, 1863


Midway Village Museum




Memphis Tenn Feb 10 / 186[3]
Dear Father and Mother
We were very much surprised yesterday morning by a Gentleman coming to our Camp and inquiring for Capt Sealy and Serent [sic] Blake saying that there were two Sealys down to the River that wanted to see them of corse [sic] we mistrusted who they were but hardely [sic] known how they could get hear [sic] so soon we wer [sic] all in bed when we hard [sic] of them being hear [sic] the Capts boy was blacking his boots and he stoped [sic] him before he had got half thrugh [sic] and was not going to stop to eat any Breakfast but he soon got over his hury [sic] and stoped [sic] to let the boy finish his boots and for himselfe [sic] eat some breakfast and then went down to meat [sic] them as soon as I got through my Breakfast I got A pass to go down and see them you may be
Page 2
shure [sic] that I was Glad to see Nellie and then wished that I could see you all she unpacked her trunk as soon as I got thare [sic] and gave me the things that you sent me and I was so Glad to get so many good things from home for I had not expected anything as I thought that they would come off in such A hurey [sic] that you would not have time to get any thing redy [sic] for me the Cake and Preserves were very nice the Boys of my squad who shared them with me thought that thare [sic] could not be any thing nicer but I suppose you wonder why I have not spoke about the wine I will tell you Nellie took it out of of her trunk and found that it had leaked a little she handed it to me and I sat it down on the floor and as I did so Crack went the bottle and out came the wine all over the floor we felt vary [sic] bad about it but Nellie felt the worse oar [sic] it but I told her not to feal [sic] so bad as I was the onely [sic] luser [sic] but I felt
Page 3
bad enough for I knew that it must of been so good for it smelt [sic] so nice the Hankerchief and socks that you sent I neaded [sic] very much but I have not worn out the first pair of Gloves that Mother sent me yet so you see that we have not had much cold wether [sic] but I feal [sic] just as thankfull [sic] for them as though they done me as much good and I can sell them to some of the boys or send them back until [sic] next winter but I guess that I had better let some of them have them as they nead [sic] them. I toock [sic] Brads things to him he is in the Hospittal [sic] Nellie gave me Woodards Watch seh [sic] said that he sent it down hear [sic] for one of us to sell and as I nead [sic] one very much now if he will set A price on it I think that I will keep it myself. you see that we have charge of the guard and the releaf [sic] each stand two hours and when we do not have the time with us it is very unpleasant as
Page 4
some think that they stand longer than the others and then they blame the Sargt for it but they cannot do so when he has A watch so I think that I shall keep it and send him the money the next time that we are paid off whictch [sic] will be some time this month I expect before this reaches you that we shall be on the boats to go doan [sic] the River at least that is the rumor hear [sic] now but we may not go quite so soon.
Hear [sic] Nellie and Mrs Blake does [prase] up that Baby O they say it is such A nice one and has four bath all redy [sic] I should think it was borne [sic] with teath [sic] now tell Mate that the first chance that she has I want to have her picture with the Baby in her armes [sic] I do want to see it so bad now I must close with much love and many thanks for the Goodeys [sic] that you sent me I remane [sic] as ever your affectionate Son
P.S. I was Glad that you sent me Charlie's letter and although he owes me A letter I will write to him again

Original Format



George Sealy, “George Sealy to his Father Richard Sealy on February 10, 1863 from Memphis, Tennessee.,” Midway Village Museum - Digital Collections, accessed November 28, 2023,