OCTOBER 1863 UNION SOLDIER LETTER—BREVET BRIGADIER GENERAL ISAAC DYER, 15TH MAINE INFANTRY

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The letter below is one of a series of 27 letters written by Colonel Dyer to his wife Lydia between August 31, 1862 and August 11, 1865.

A resident of Skowegan, ME, 42 year-old Captain Isaac Dyer was placed in command of the 15th Maine in August 1862 and received his appointment to replace Colonel Worder in September--his appointment to Lt. Colonel (and eventually Colonel) being made official, Dec. 12, 1862. He then commanded the unit through the remainder of the war, and received a Brigadier’s Brevet for meritorious service, March 13, 1865. Resigning from service, Sept. 13, 1865, he returned to Skowegan, lived to age 92 and was buried there in 1913. His 15th Maine served in Louisiana & Florida, participating in the 1864 Bermuda Hundred. During service it lost 5 men killed and 343 by disease for a total of 348.

Isaac Dyer was a well-educated, highly articulate correspondent and a shrewd judge of men and events. In this letter— Dated “Carrollton Oct 24 1863 (on board Steamer Clinton)”, 1 pp. in ink on lined paper, 9.75 x 7.75”. Exhibiting fold-marks, else VG. Dyer writes of their search for horses, and of the disposition of items he left behind in New Orleans. Excerpts as follow:

My Dear Wife  We have started for our expedition and are now up here for a few horses. I think we are going to the Rio Grande or somewhere near there….I have left two trunks at the Brooks House in New Orleans containing great coat two dress coats pair pantaloons some bedding…I have sent a box containing all the letters you have sent me by express to you and some other papers. Much love to you and Albert. I hope I may be spared to see you all again, if not may the good Lord bless you and take care of you…Farewell for the present  Isaac.

Fine collectible. Excellent letter home from the admirable Colonel of the 15th Maine. In protective sleeve. [JP] [ph:L]

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