George Sealy to his father Richard Sealy written January 24, 1863 from Memphis, Tennessee.

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George Sealy to his father Richard Sealy written January 24, 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


January 24, 1863


Midway Village Museum






Memphis Jan 24/63

Dear Father
Most all of the boys have gone on picket and Bob has gone out and I am alone in his tent so I thought that I would write you A few lines as you say that you have not had any letters from me for A long time but I have written every week or nearly so I have not receaved [sic] but two letters from home since the rade [sic] on the rail rode [sic] one of them I receaved [sic] from Mate at cold water on our way back and the other
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I received from you by George Bradley day before yesterday we arrived hear [sic] on Wednesday and Bob saw him downtown We do not get mail very often now but I do not see what the reason is now that we have got hear [sic] we ought to have one every day but we do not get any more than once A week you say that you soon expect to hear of some promotions in our Regament [sic] I told you what they had done when we was down below Oxford in one of my letters but I suppose you have got it the Officers of the Regament [sic] electted [sic]
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Lut [sic] Col Maltby for Col and Capt Cowen Lut [sic] Col over Major Smith and they have sent for thare [sic] Commissions but thare [sic] is A good deal of doubt hear [sic] wether [sic] the Govener [sic] will give any one [sic] elce [sic] that Commission over the Major but he may and then if he does they think that the Major will resign and then they will put in An other [sic] Major that has been thare [sic] plans as they want to get the Major out of the Regament [sic] Capt [Craven] is A very good man but he is no Milatary [sic] man
Page 4
We expect to get our pay now every day but shall not get but two month [sic] pay this time but they say that we shall soon get the rest I shall not be able to send any home untill [sic] we get all that is due and then I shall be able to send home about fifty dollars but it will take all of my two month pay and A little more to pay the debts that I have Contracted in the past six month [sic] I do not think that I shall owe so much in the next six month [sic] to come as I do now but
[remainder of letter is not extant]

Original Format



George Sealy, “George Sealy to his father Richard Sealy written January 24, 1863 from Memphis, Tennessee.,” Midway Village Museum - Digital Collections, accessed April 18, 2024,