Folded letter by US Navy Surgeon David Shelton Edwards
The letter was sent unpaid from Washington, DC to Sing Sing, New York. A red handstamp "5" in the upper right corner indicates the postage due was 5 cents. This was the correct amount for a letter weighing less than 1/2 ounce going a distance less than 300 miles.
In this short note, David Shelton Edwards informs his wife Harriet that he had safely arrived in Washington, DC and plans to come soon to their home in Sing-Sing, New York.
This letter is part of the correspondence of David Shelton Edwards between the years 1835 and 1848. The 48 letters from this period held by the National Postal Museum are primarily addressed to Edward's wife Harriet; in 1830, Edwards married Harriet Eliza Henry and they had two children, William and Harriet. They kept up a frequent correspondence when his naval service kept them separated. Between 1835 and 1848, Edwards served as a Surgeon at the hospital in the Pensacola Navy Yard, Florida; Fleet Surgeon to the West Indies Squadron; and Surgeon aboard many vessels engaged in the Mexican-American War. His naval career spanned from 1818 to 1861 and his last sea cruise ended in October of 1859 after which he retired to his family home in Connecticut except for a brief time spent at New Bedford, Massachusetts recruiting for the Union Navy during the Civil War. He died in Trumbull, Connecticut on March 18, 1874.
Dec.r 11th 1847-
I wrote you on my arrival in N. Orleans - arrived here night before last - & was yest.y at the Department very busy - & hope to be on my way to Sing. Sing. by Wednesday - I am now very well, & I saw Hosea at N. Orleans! who had just rec.d your letter. & was very glad to heare from you - even in that way. he gave the [written above: $] 100. & is very comfortably off there -
I shall go to the Post Office to day & perhaps may receive a line from you. -
love to all at home, yours affect.e husband
If you write me after the receipt of this you had better direct it to me at N. York as I am in hopes I may be there by Thursday —. I shall go to the American - at N. York -