A Letter from Francis J. Hosmer
The following was transcribed fromThe Life of Clara Barton Founder of the American Red Cross, Volume 1, pages 313 - 314, written William E. Barton, published by Houghton Mifflin Company, The Riverside Press Cambridge, 1922.
"Greenfield, Mass., Sept. 25, 1911
Miss Clara Barton
My Dear Miss Barton:
Two letters bearing you signature (from Annapolis, Maryland) are in my possession, the pathos of one bearing no tidings, and the glad report of my arrival about the middle of May, 1865.
The thankful heart that received them has long been stilled, but the letters have been preserved as sacred relics.
I also have a very vivid recollection of your earnest appeal to us to notify our friends of our arrival by first mail for their sake.
If to enjoy the gratitude of a single heart be a pleasure, to enjoy the benediction of a greatful world must be sweet to one's declining years. To have earned it makes it sublime.
I have also another tie which makes Oxford seem near to me. An old tent-mate, a member of our regimental quartette, a superb soldier and a very warm friend, lies mouldering there these many years. He survived, I think, more than thirty battles only to die of consumption in January, 1870. Whenever I can I run down from Worcester to lay a flower on George H. Amidon's grave.
I write not to tax you with a reply, but simply to wish for you all manner of blessings.
Did You Know?
Clara Barton is probably the most famous American nurse who was never a real nurse. She cared for wounded soldiers in the Civil War and as President of the American Red Cross she organized over 18 relief efforts, but she was a former school teacher and government clerk.