Rufus Alonzo Civil War Ltr. Dec. 29, 1863
Dear Brother & Sister Elmira
I will write you a few lines tonight to let you know where I am. Circumstances alter cases and so it is with me for I signed my name to some papers in Scio and here I am in the Barracks in Elmira in a full suit of Uncle Sam’s harness. I am a soldier in the army and was mustered into the service yesterday and got twenty five dollars in green backs. I like soldiering first rate only I am so far from home & friends but I have made my bed & I must lie in it. We have lots of fun and plenty to eat and drink all except whiskey and that I don’t want. We have over 3000 men in this camp and not over 25 or 30 belongs to the same regiment. There is not over a dozen that belongs to the regiment that I do and that is the 5th NY Heavy Art and they are stationed in Baltimore and Fortress Monroe.
You must excuse me for not writing much this time for I have several letters to write tonight, and have not got much time to do it in it is getting dark and I shall have to close so good night
Darling Brother & Sister.
May God bless & keep you in his holy care. Kiss the Children for me and tell them Uncle Loney is a brave soldier in the army.
Your loving Brother
Barracks No. 3, NY
But don’t put any R or Rufus to my name