November 1864

November 1, 1864

Cold & rainy. At saloon. Business dull.

November 2, 1864

Cold & rainy. At saloon. Business dull. Very dull. (Paid $1.50 for gloves for Mary.)

November 3, 1864

At saloon. Rainy and cold. Paid Mrs. Fulton rent ($50.00). She would not take any less than 50 dollars a month.

November 4, 1864

At saloon. Business dull. At Schriefer’s. Say that no private freight come over in two months.

November 5, 1864

At saloon. Business dull. Tried to get permit for Lange. I could not sign it today.

November 6, 1864

Sunday. Wrote letter to [cousin] Lucy Stratton. Up to Vaughn’s Battery. Schriefer (Charley) has been cheating me. Tonight we had a flair up & separated. He is a villain of the blackest dye. He is a thief, I verily believe.

November 7, 1864

Got Lange’s permit. Saw Bernard. evening, went to French restaurant. I spent $10.00.

November 8, 1864

Doing nothing at Schriefer’s. Got a letter from home, one from [cousin] Lucy Fiddis, and one from Delano Dodge.

November 9, 1864

Down street. Got drunk. Got letters from Col. [Nathaniel W.] Davis and [cousin] Ed Stratton.

November 10, 1864

Answered letter to Ed Stratton and Col. Davis. Down street. Nothing new.

November 11, 1864

Down street. Nothing new.

November 12, 1864

Down the street. Got drunk.

November 13, 1864

Sunday. Egan here in the evening. Down the street.

November 14, 1864

Mat Bridges said that a detective told her that she need not pay any more rent. I saw [Capt. Williet] DeKay. He told me to give Mat notice to leave & if she did not [vacate the premises] in 30 days, I could get them out. Down the street. Gave her notice. She was mad & so was [her brother] Julius. He swore considerably and wanted to fight me. He told me that he has as much right to turn me out as I had to turn him. He swore that if any guards came, he would kill them.

November 15, 1864

Down the street. Catharina 20 dollars for rent. Mary quite sick. Nothing new.

November 16, 1864

Down the street. Served notice on Mat Bridges before Schreifer & Mick Egan for her to leave. Nothing new.

November 17, 1864

Answered letter to [Delano] Dodge. Rainy all day. No news.

November 18, 1864

Rainy. Down the street. At Schreifer’s.

November 19, 1864

Rainy & cold. At Schreifer’s. The Bridges had a whore house quarrel today.

November 20, 1864

Sunday. Sick. Egan & I took a walk out toward the Penitentiary.

November 21, 1864

Very cold. Down the street. Nothing new.

November 22, 1864

Cold. Working in kitchen nearly all day. At Wiedemann’s in afternoon. Nothing new.

November 23, 1864

At Wiedemann’s working. Not so cold today. Nothing new. Wrote letter to Epstein yesterday.

November 24, 1864

Big fire downtown last night. The big brick hotel on the levee & nearly the whole block burnt up at it. Worked. Down the street today. Nothing new. Yoest here in the evening.

November 25, 1864

Rainy. Down the street. Nothing new.

November 26, 1864

Rainy. Down the street. Mick Egan here.  Night, reading to him some of my writing.

November 27, 1864

Sunday. Two boats came up [the Arkansas River] today. Rainy.

November 28, 1864

Down the street at Wiedemann’s.

November 29, 1864

Nothing new. Warm & pleasant. Down the street.

November 30, 1864

Down the street. Nothing new. Got a letter from home. I cannot get anything to do. I feel miserable. Oh Lord, help me to find something to do. I am cast down to the ground.


This is Goodrich’s first reference to Mary’s illness, which became progressively worse over the next few weeks.  She does not appear to have recovered until some time in March 1865.

The letter from home was presumably from Goodrich’s mother, but is not among the letters in the Goodrich Collection. Goodrich did receive a letter from Nathaniel W. Davis written on this date, however, describing the death of Davis’s former law partner, Willoughby Babcock. It read:

November 30, 1864  —  Owego, Tioga County, New York

My Dear Sir. Your letter under date of the 11 inst. was received the 23rd. I assure you it was a welcome missive. I was glad to hear from you; but would have been much better pleased to have seen you.

You doubtless thought my letter was ____. If all was true I had said, it was none to much so.  I am now satisfied that you are [a] Loyal Man and love the Union. I had forgotten that you ever wrote to me or that I had written to you. You make a quotation from my letter to you. I am of the same opinion still. Yet that is no excuse or apology for braking up the Union. The South had no reason to complain of the National government. I had always been favor of it. It was the aristocracy of the South and their hate to a republican government and that the majority should rule that induced them to secede and break up the Union .

I have not received but the one letter from you since the rebellion – that of the 11th inst. Colonel [Willoughby] Babcock is no more. He was wounded and died of his wounds. [He] died in October. Died a short time after [he was] wounded. He was a splendid and brave officer. His body was embalmed and sent home. I attended the funeral [in] Homer, Cortland [County, New York]. His wife had a fine baby boy soon after the burial of her husband. She left New Orleans when the Colonel was ordered North.

I saw Johnson a few days since. He had been south [and] was not well. He can never make a lawyer. Charles Parker is a very good lawyer. But at present, nor has there been any law business since the rebellion broke out. My law business is not worth $500 a year. The farmer makes the money now. Butter [sells for] 50 cents, pork $16 a hundred, oats 85 cents, flour $15 a barrel, hay $25 a ton & so on.

It was difficult to get letters south or from the South. I hope that General Sherman will reach Savannah & capture it. I like the idea of laying waste [to] the whole country. Our government has been so kind & tender of the South that they have not done any injury, but have actually helped them. Sherman ought to lay waste [to] the whole country ever which way he passes. The Rebellion will be put down or the people will be annihilated. Every loyal man ought to rise up in the South & overthrow Jeff Davis & his minions.

The Union Party has annihilated the Copperhead Peace Party at the North and the Union will be restored under President Lincoln. All well. Success to you. Good night. Your friend, — Nathaniel W. Davis

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