Samuel Rinker Kennedy
b.8 Sep 1836 Pennsylvania, United States
m. 26 AUG 1833
Facts and Events
1860 census-Samuel; 24; clerk; born PA
1861-Civil War letter 1861-07-14
Camp Washington Easton, Pa. July 14th 1861. My Dear Father Circumstances prevented me from paying you a visit yesterday week, so as to day is Sunday, and I have the time, I take it to write you a letter. I ought to have written sooner I know, but I thought I would wait a while, I tried to get off last week, but couldn’t, I think, and partly have made up my mind, not to go to Philad. till I get payed off. We expect to get paid by next Wednesday, I cannot say when I will come, but will, as soon as I can. We have been furnished with some clothing, a pair of light drillin’ pants, fatigue, also light blue pants, and a blue, dark, blouse, and dark blue cap, they set us off very well, we now, look something like soldiers but that don’t make the soldier, you know. There was a great deal of dissatisfaction here some weeks ago, but now as we have got a little of the blue, they appear to be very well satisfied. I heard yesterday that we were to march in ten days, one report was, that we would be sent to sulfork park, below Phila, another was, to West Chester, another, to Fort Waine, or Camp Waine, and I was told that we may be sent to Florida, and maybe to Missouri or the Western rivers, it is believed to be certain that we will leave here, in ten or twelve days. It is very likely, that I will go to Philada. sometime after next Wednesday. I have’ent much to say just now, but am getting along as well as usual, am in good health &c. I am getting more contented every day. I will write again. I forgot to say that we have our guns, that is old over repaired, they are only for us to practice with, they weigh, I think, 9 ¾ pounds. The new ones will weigh only 7. We had a great time on the 4th. The Capt. of Company I, of our Regiment took his men out, to Easton, without permission, I believe, and after they were out sometime, news came that they were fighting in Easton, so our Company along with another, were ordered down, with our pieces to arrest them, and bring them back, so away we went, we had’nt much trouble with them, but behaved very disorderly along the road, fights occur here frequently, one got stabed in the arm. We had a sham battle the other day. Five of our Companies fought against five. After the battle, I heard that five men were taken to the hospital, some got their bayonets and rammers bent, some broken, and I saw one have his gun bent. I noticed that the men I was fighting with, lost two bayonets, one fell off the muzzle, and the other fell to the ground broken, wether I did it or not, I don’t know, for some of my own men were along side of me, fighting with me, I will close, I expect you will get this on Tuesday, so answer immediately, write so as I will get your letter before next Saturday. Give my love to all, and tell them to write, not to wait for me, give them the direction, Give my respects to George and wife. I remain as ever Your affectionate Son Corpl. Sam’l R. Kennedy
Sergt Saml R. Kennedy Company D. 4th Regt. Penna Reserves 1st Corps D, Arme? Gen’l McCall’s division 2nd Brigade Wash’ton, D. C.
1st pg. upper left shows picture of two soldiers, one on horse, one on foot in battle, picture is in color; upper right corner is printed in blue Fourth Reg’t, Pa. Reserve V. C.
Camp near Alexandria 1862
My Dear Father I rec’d your letter and that of Charley Greenes, also the watch by Fred C. Lutz. I did not expect that he would pay you a visit for we did not expect him back to camp at all. He is now in the hospital here and no doubt will receive his discharge from the service. I am very thankful to you for the watch. Just what I needed. She runs very well. Mr. Lutz did not leave Phila. when you expected he would or I would have rec’d the letter sooner. He returned last Friday 4th. You must excuse me for not writing sooner. I will not, I think, be able to write often and so excuse this short letter for we are under marching orders and may move tomorrow. Some of the Reserv. have gone. Our destination is Manassas or near by. I wrote a letter to Mary since laying here. I suppose she is in Phila. I hope to see her soon for we may be in Penna between this and six weeks. I hope to see you soon my Father once more to feel your warm embrace. Keep up your spirits. The war will not last two months. So I predict. Beaureguard has been defeated and wounded, if he dies, God have mercy on him although I am as bitter against traitors as you for our companion Fred Lutz told me you were very bitter towards them. Excuse all mistakes and pencil. Tell Charly Greene he certainly must excuse me for not writing. I really have not the convenience to write often. Often think of us poor fellows laying out in all kinds of weather, the most of us without any shelter. Some of the men seem angry and un????? But I think of the cause I am fighting for. Determined to perform my duty while in the service. I will write again as soon as I can, I have been promoted to 2nd Sergeant, next to the orderly. My pay now is $17 – Tell Mary and all to write. My love to all. Direct your letters, Sergt. Sam’l R. Kennedy Company D. 4th Regt P.R.V.C. McCall’s Division 2nd Brigade, 1st Corps D. Arme Washington D.C. Direct this way and I will receive them. Your affectionate Son Sam’l R. Kennedy
Civil War letter 1862-06-15
Robt. Kennedy, esqr Navy Yard Phila. Penna.
Camp of the 4th Regt. P. R. C. Near Richmond VA. Sun. June 15th 1862 My Dear Father, I wrote to Mary last Sunday, but forgot to date it. She will wonder when it was written. I wrote in great haste. Write to her soon and let her know. I have very little to say. The weather down here is very warm, so warm that I cannot write much. We are now encamped on a field about 10 or 12 miles from Richmond. The roads down here are in some places very muddy. That the men some times sink up to their waists. You must excuse my short letter. We may be called into action at any moment before Richmond. The regiments Pres & Fred are in the 23rd and 61st have been in Battle, but both I believe are safe. I am tired of soldiering & will be glad when the war is over. We left ????? ????? last Monday on board steamboats. I saw the Eagle that run to Red bank. We may move tomorrow to take our position before Richmond. What part of the line I do not know. Some say we are to take Casey’s place. Think of me, Father, your last child, likely to be in a great Battle. I may never see your Beloved face again, but in Heaven. Do no weep, I beg of you, but pray to our Father above, I pray for you & all at home, for your Health, happiness, & to keep you all out of all danger, and that I may come out safe to see you all once more, but better men than I have been killed in battle. Richmond must fall and that before many days. If I should wish to act the coward, I could do so, desert, & would not be brought back, as I understand that all soldiers desert, will not be troubled, they can go; the government do not wish such men, could I desert, no, I could not bear the name of deserter. Keep up your spirits. I think it is not my lot to be slain. I have not more to say, so write soon. Give my love to all. Write to Mary & let her know where I am. You said the war would be over in a month. A long one ain’t it. I think the fall of Richmond, will close the war. Direct your letter the name, Company D. 4th Regt. Penna. Reserves. McCall’s division 2nd Brigade, Wash’ton D. C. Write more. I wish to hear from you & all at home. Write often, I will not have time to write often, excuse this dirty sheet, I spilt some oil on it. Send me stamps, I cannot procure them down here. Your affectionate Son Sam’l R. Kennedy
1900 census-NJ-Camden-Camden-5 Jun 1900-ED 70-sheet 3A-lines 48-49-1730 Master Street-dwelling 57-family 61-Samuel R Kennedy; born Sep 1836; 63; married 27 yrs; born PA as are his parents; cooper; rents house; Sarah E; born Jul 1840; 59; married 27 yrs; mother of 2 children, 1 living; born PA; father born PA; mother born DE