LETTER REGARDING THE DEATH OF THOMAS COOPER, 4TH MISSOURI CAVALRY - ACCOMPANIED BY CDV

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Four page letter in ink on white ruled stationary with embossed "CONGRESS" above White House with "OWEN HORBBUT" below, letter was written by a physician R.W. Oliphant to Dr. John Cooper, Jr. regarding the death of his son Thomas Cooper.

Civilian view of Thomas Cooper seated in a chair with pinstriped pants and jacket with velvet collar, card is marked in gold letters on the front "Brady, New York".

Cooper, Thomas W., 2nd Lieutenant, Co. A/D/C, 4th Missouri Cavalry (First Co., Fremont Hussars), age 25, enrolled 8/15/61 at New York for 3 years service, mustered in (/1/61 at Camp Asboth near St. Louis, MO, listed as absent sick 9/61, transferred as Quartermaster of 2d Battalion 9/28/61, listed as absent on sick leave for 10/61 - 11/61 with typhoid fever for past six weeks, transferred to 1st Lieutenant, Co. A, 11/1/61 but still listed as 2nd Lieutenant, transferred to Co. D 1/1/62, present for duty till 20 days leave of absence granted by Brigadier General Steel upon surgeon's certificate dated 9/26/62, died of disease 10/31/62 at St. Louis, MO, suffered from Febr. Rumit. following which a severe and exhaustive diarrhea.

Text is as follows:

155 Locust Street

Saint Louis. Nov. 14, 1862

Dr. John Cooper Jr.

Dear Sir,

A note from your son Fredk enclosing Draft for $108~ having this day come to hand, allow me to embrace the opportunity of acknowledging his promptness to assure you of my sympathy in your great bereavement in the fatal issue of your son Thomas' sickness. I trust, however you may find some mitigation of your grief in the consolation that he willingly laid that which was dearest to him upon the altar of his stricken country. The more I reflect upon his case, the greater is my conviction that the fatal result was not to be averted, however much it was to be desired. could you yourself have witnessed what a wreck of humanity he presented upon his arrival from Helena (that grave-yard of soldiers) I think you would scarcely have hoped for any different result. still, after about ten days rest and attention the severity of his symptoms did so far yield, as to afford me some hope of ultimate recovery. but for subsequent imprudencies on his part, which perhaps, with his temperment, could have been avoided in no other way than more strict surveillance of home. the chief regret, on my part, there for arises from the fact, that I did not more earnestly impress upon him the advantage of endeavoring to reach home, when he first arrived from camp. as he did not then seem inclined to attempt it, but preferred to wait I endeavored to render him all the aid in my power, and be assured, this was faithfully extended with as much assiduity as I could have afforded a Bro. of my own. I was very glad his Bro. arrived so soon as he did. it was a great relief to my mind, conscious as I was the fatal result was so near at hand. tho such tenacity of life I have rarely witnessed, and it was a great satisfaction to Thomas, who, I believe in full consciousness of his fate, willingly and without a murmur gave up all the hopes of this life for immortality, having received, at the hands of Father Ryan, the offices of the church, a week before he died. Trusting you may be spared during the remainder of your life, any future rendering of family ties by reason of sickness and death.

I remain with condolence, very truly,

Your obd't servt

R.W. Oliphant

 

Accompanied by military records.

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