2 May 1861

Ithaca [New York]
May 2, 1861

Dear Father,

You will doubtless be surprised to learn that we are in Ithaca yet. We have been waiting for Mr. Burton. He arrived there last night. There has been a misunderstanding about his being captain of this company.  Gen. Baker is trying to get up a company of horse men—all of the men to be returned [to] California & accustomed to riding & the life of rangers in general & Burton is one of his aides. He (Burton) explained the reason why he is not to be the captain & the rest of the matters very satisfactorily. He said he would not advise this company to join the California Regiment neither would he not to. When he said this, we were all drawn up in line like soldiers & he said that he had seen about 25,000 men within the last few weeks & he had not among them all seen a better company.

The inspector was here today & they (Burton) were talking together when Burton said, “if you would take the uniforms off from the 7th Regiment & put on to this company, they would look as well as they.” We were inspected today. I was the 58th one inspected when the inspector said, “You have 58 as good men as I ever saw together.” Burton told one of our officers that the California Regiment was composed of hard fellows—so we shall not join them.

Our papers will probably start for Albany tomorrow. We have 62 members on the inspector’s roll & there are some who were not present. I have a good place to board. We all board at P. Jones’. He lives upon the hill so we have a fine view. We drill 2 or 3 hours fore & afternoons of each day & are allowed to rest once, but must not leave the ranks. Our place of drill is on Owego Street at one of the Hall’s. Most all complain of a pain in their back—I with the rest—but it leaves me when they let us march or soon after we are through. The muscles on the front part of my leg from my knee to my feet were sore the first day or two, but are all well now.

We have different ones to drill us but most of the time we are drilled by a graduate from West Point. There is a fund here in town for boarding the volunteers & so it does not cost us anything for board. We expect to go to Elmira or New York in a few days. I think we have got a good company & good officers.

Seymour’s mother is dead. She died this morning, May 3. We are all through now. One of our companies starts for Albany this afternoon. The first company goes to New York this afternoon. We escort them to the depot. We expect to go Monday, but do not know for certain. Our company voted to go to Elmira—all but one & he was Wm. Beers from Danby. We think we shall have better quarters than at New York. The captain of the first Co. told some of our men that we would not be accepted & afterwards told our Cap that there would be no trouble about our being accepted. Our company is full (77). Hod is raising a lusty pair of whiskers. We have lots of fun with him about Miss Beers (all at home). We went up to the tunnel & paper mill this morning. We are all well & feel fine. Give our love to all. — C. E. Bradley