1862 January 29 Centreville, Va.

Centreville Jan. 29th 1862.
My Dear Father,
Your letter
enclosing the recently is-
sued order of the War
Department in relation
to reenlistments was receiv-
ed this evening, and I
find, as anticipated no-
thing in the circular
at all contrary to the
plan by which I propose
to raise a company. I
am therefore still if pressed
by influential friends
the Company offered
in my yesterday’s letter to
you, will yet be accep-
ted to serve in the Ca-

[page 2]
pacity desired. The account
of the recent interview
between Assistant Secretary
[Albert T.] Bledsoe & yourself encourages me
in the belief. If the
Militia are to be ordered
out and officers authorized
to raise Companies of
Artillery from that class
of soldiers, why should
not they be commissioned
to form them from troops
now in the field? It
appears to me but just
that Volunteers who have
undergone the hardships
of a years Campaign
should be at least invol-
ved to select their corps
(If possible) for future
service, and as the Artil-

(page 3)
lery is the most desirable
arm, they should have
preference in being as-
signed to it, rather than
the Militia who are constrain-
ed by force alone to
enter the field. Allow-
ing recruits to fill up
the choice places of
the army, to the exclu-
sion of Veterans whose
patriotism & Courage have
been tested is an unjust
discrimination which
I cannot believe will
be countenanced.
Should it however prove
impracticable for me
to muster the Company
which now have into ser-
vice, and it is decided

[page 4]
to bring out the Militia
force, I think it would be
well to apply for the
necessary detail to raise
a Light Artillery Company
at home, or that being
unadvisable to raise a
Company of Zouaves from
the Infantry arm in service.
My preference rather
inclines to the latter plan.
I see in yesterdays
Republican that Congress
has passed an act instruct-
ting the President to au-
thorize Officers to raise Com-
panies, and battalions, and
this is quite favorable
to my design.
You are accessi-
ble to the department

[page 5]
Department, and I doubt not
will be able to obtain re-
liable, and complete infor-
mation on the subject.
Tomorrow morning the
wing of the battalion in
which our Company is
goes on picket, and will
return on Monday mor-
ning next. At that time
I hope to find a letter
at Camp from you, awaiting me,
with full information
and advice. I hope howev-
er that you will not
permit yourself to be in-
convenience by in at-
tempting to learn the
present status of affairs
and will only do so
when at leisure.

[page 6]
The “Army of the Potomac”
is still “resting on its oars”
and like Mr. Micawber
only waiting for some thing
“to turn up”, at which
time it expects to do
something brilliant. The
troops do nothing now
but live, lay about camp
and go on picket, and
one day is but the counter-
part of another.
I continue to enjoy
fine health, and all of
your acquaintances in
this part of the Army I
believe are well.
Stuart Cabell speaks of
you frequently and is
himself as hearty as

[page 7]
Abram remains at Leesburg
with his troop; and at
last accounts was well.
With much love
I remain
Most affectionately,
Your Son,

Jno. W.Daniel

John Warwick Daniel, 1842-1910, University of Virginia law school, noted orator, and U.S. Senator

[transcription by Mary Roy Dawson Edwards]

MSS 158

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