By Stephen Berry, Angela Elder
These letters chronicle the wartime courtship of a accomplice soldier and the girl he loved―a sister-in-law of Abraham Lincoln. it's a relative rarity for the correspondence of either writers in Civil battle letter collections to outlive, as they've got right here. Rarer nonetheless is how often and faithfully the 2 wrote, given how little they really knew one another at the beginning in their alternate. As a romantic pair, Nathaniel Dawson and Elodie Todd had no past background; that they had slightly met whilst separated by way of the conflict. Letters have been their sole lifeline to one another and their sole technique of sharing their hopes and fears for a dating (and a Confederacy) that they had rashly embraced within the heady, early days of secession.
The letters date from April 1861, whilst Nathaniel left for struggle as a captain within the Fourth Alabama Infantry, via April 1862, while the couple married. in the course of their courtship via correspondence, Nathaniel narrowly escaped dying in conflict, confronted suspicions of cowardice, and at last grew warfare weary. Elodie had brothers die whereas in accomplice provider and felt the whole emotional weight of belonging to the war’s most famed divided kin. Her sister Mary not just sided with the Union (as did 5 different Todd siblings) yet used to be additionally married to its commander in chief.
Here is an engrossing tale of the Civil battle, of Abraham Lincoln’s shattered kinfolk, of 2 humans falling in love, of squaddies and brothers loss of life nobly at the fallacious part of historical past. the whole Dawson–Todd correspondence contains greater than 300 letters. it's been edited for this quantity to concentration tightly on their courtship. the full, annotated textual content of the entire letters, with extra aiding fabric, can be made to be had online.
Read Online or Download Practical Strangers: The Courtship Correspondence of Nathaniel Dawson and Elodie Todd, Sister of Mary Todd Lincoln (New Perspectives on the Civil War Era Ser.) PDF
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