25 March 1865

Point of Rocks Hospital, Va.
Saturday afternoon, March 25th [1865]

My Dear Nellie,

What do you think of this [illegible] I will tell [illegible]…

…Connecticut men in the hospital who wee able to travel. The order was received yesterday and the names sent in last night. My name was sent in with the others but I did not know it until this morning when my furlough was sent me. I read and took it down to the office and told them I did not want it. All who took them have to report to their regiments. George Meech did not go and there is others that could have gone that did not. George is in the office at headquarters. I want to see you very much and know you was looking for me, but thought you would rather I would remain here than come to see you for a few days and then have to go to the regiment again. But it has worried me and made me so nervous that I can hardly write. But I hope it will be for the best in the end.

I was not looking for another chance to go home so was wholly unprepared. I was not fixed up at all and ad no time to so it as the boat goes from here at 8 o’clock and it was 7½ when I got the furlough.

But we were paid yesterday afternoon so I should have had some money to have gone with but we only got four months pay ($64) and I should have had to have spent some if I had gone but now I can send you the most of it (say fifty) and so if I can stay here by not going, think I took the best course, don’t you?

I have received two letters from you this week. The first written Thursday the 16th and the last Sunday the 19th instant. They were both very interesting as was Aunt’s which I will send back as you request if I do not forget it. I got the bits of calico and think they are quite pretty but you know I am not much of a judge of such things. I am glad [your brother] Christopher has ___ ___ and hope he will find that peace of mind for which he is seeking and without which we are all unhappy, and I also hope he will regain his health and think he will now that he has got where he can get such things as he needs. I got a letter from sister Julia Brown yesterday. Think I will not tell you what she wrote as you can quiz her about it. Tell her I have received the letter and was much pleased with it as it contained all the items of interest about the unmarried, and then it was real sisterly in her to write me and I appreciate such marks of sisterly kindness.

I hope Emma will go up to the Ferry and have a rest and think I would let you go with me if I was going up. But never mind, Nellie. I think the war will be over before the summer is over and then I shall hope to go home to you never more to leave you until death shall part us. I am trying to be a Christian and hope I shall succeed and I am very thankful that you have come to the same conclusion. You write that you are not quite clear in your mind yet. Neither am I but I have a hope and am bound to trust in the Lord Jesus and believe it will all come right by and by. I will pray for you as I do everyday an I would crave yours in return and as all things good are granted by the fervent prayers of Christians, I think we shall gain much by prayer and it will strengthen us. I hope you will see [my brother] Robert and think he will call on you if he has time.

I have made a ring for Julia if it fits her finger but if it does not, you may give it to Emma if it fits hers. And if not, keep it yourself or do what you please with it. I have no more buttons and wish you would send me a few in a paper. Send large thick ones and be sure that they are gutta percha or if I had a piece of gutta percha that was not made into buttons, it would do just as well. I have got silver enough to make several and I want to make one for Emma and one for Esther.

And I will make you another if I get time and you want me to. I rather like to work on such things once in awhile when I feel like it. The one I made for Julia is rather slender but the button was small and so I had to make it so. If it does not get broken in going, it will not be apt to on her finger. I do not send them because I think they are anything nice or valuable, but because I made them and I thought perhaps you would like one that your husband made in army (hospital) and Julia one that her brother Thomas made in the army &c. I have got a little vial to put the lice in for Thomas and will send them as soon as I can get them. They are not as plenty now as they have been.

I have been to meeting several evenings this week and have enjoyed them much. They have some very good speakers here.

The 21st Connecticut Volunteers was at White House the last I heard from them. They are guarding Sheridan’s supplies. I think it would be as well for Aunt Mary to wait until warm weather before starting for home for she is well cared for where she is. I am glad you write to her so often for I know it pleases her. I hope we can go out there and visit sometime. There is much talk about moves being made by the armies but I think Sherman and Sheridan are making the principal moves. I will  leave this to finish tomorrow.

Sunday morning. It is cold and windy this morning. It is like one of our Connecticut March days but we have been having some beautiful weather. It has been so warm some days in the middle of the day that I am glad to get in the shade.

I went to meeting last evening and when I went to bed I read a chapter in the Testament (as I most always do) and I felt quite happy and had a good nights sleep and feel much refreshed this morning. But when I awoke I thought of you and thought if I had taken the furlough that tonight I should have been with you in Williamsburgh but I hope it will all come out right in the end and think it will. I am going to church this morning. It will commence at 10½ o’clock.

General Sheridan and army was on the north bank of the James River opposite City Point yesterday and it is reported here that they are to cross the river and move out on Grant’s left.

You will see that I am not as particular about my writing as I was last winter but the fact is I do not write as much now as I did then. But I want you to send back all words that you find spelled wrong. I will send a $50 note in this and hope it will reach you. I will send Julia’s ring with Thomas’s lice. Give my love to all and accept the same with many kisses for yourself. As ever your find husband, — Thomas L. Bailey

Kiss the children for me. You can dispose of the money as you see fit.

There is to be an inspection of the Hospital this morning at 10 o’clock by. Gen. Ord and staff. We have not had an inspection in some time.