Letter from McAllister, dated 1864-04-21

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Stowe. April 21st 1864.

My Dear Friend:

Your last was duly and thankfully rec'd. I am sorry I was unable to accept your kind invitation to eat a few oysters but you must not feel slighted. The only reason was you were not readily accessible.

You will be pleased to learn that I have gained quite rapidly since I last wrote and am now round considerably for me. I gain strength with exercise. Indeed sometime I am really in hopes I shall recover and be able to wear an artificial limb.

My leg has been a long time in healing and has caused me much suffering. The amputation was proper enough and it seemed to do well till I got the gangrene in it. The chief dfficulty I think was the condition of my system. The old scrofulous humor would not permit it to heal and the impurity of my blood seemed to take up its head quarters in my stump. I am now taking Dr. Foote's medicines and we all think that I owe my life to them. I commencd with him about the middle of Jan. and since then I have constantly improved, tho' at first it was very slow. You would be astonished at the amount of corruption my abscesses have discharged this Winter. The first one was lanced the first of Jan. and was the most corrupt sore I ever saw. It scented so badly that many people could not stay in the room with me and a portion of the time I had to have a smelling bottle at my nose. This continued to discharge for a month when I had another lanced larger than the first but more

[in left margin:]

Give my love to Spofford. Would send some to Hastings if I had any for him.

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healthy in its nature. This discharged three pints when opened but did not continue long. Since then I have had no more but some times my stump has swelled but that is the result of exercise rather than any inclination to gather again. I am now able to exercise somewhat but I have to be very careful. I shall return to Burlington soon.

It has been very sickly here this Winter. Hardly a family has escaped. Very many old people have died besides an unusal number of young and middle aged. I can give you some information of your acquaintances. Uncle Harvey's people are quite well. Gillman is at home. All the girls ditto. Martha, Mary and Hattie intend to teach this Summer. Mary Fuller is sick with Consumption. Ellen is at home. Levi Hodge and [Huldah?] are dead. [Lonny?] Levi is married to Jane Kellogg, and lives where his father did. Chastina is married. George is in Cal. He served in the 9 mos. service. Bill. [Chesny?], Chau. Watts and Henry Warren are in the 11th Regt. Geo Watts was drafted, but [underline]hired[/underline] money and paid his "three hundred." Mr Coor's family are all well I believe. The boys are all in town I think except [Ahira?]. He is at Winooski. They are on good terms with Uncle [It's?] people now.

I havenot written a very long or a very interesting letter. It is very hard for me to sit at the table and write. I see but little worth writing. I hope to see you soon. All send best regards.

With much love,

I remain

Your Friend,

McAllister.

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