1863: Isaac Daniel Romig to Malinda Romig

Isaac Daniel Romig (1836-1895) was 26 years old when he enlisted as a private in November 1862 in Co. F, 172nd Pennsylvania Infantry—a nine months (drafted militia) unit. He mustered out of the service in August 1863. The regiment moved to Washington D. C. in December 1862, where they were sent to Newport News, Virginia, and shortly afterwards to Yorktown, arriving there on 12 December 1862. They were on garrison duty at Yorktown until April, 1863, which is where Isaac wrote this letter.

Isaac was the orphaned son of Daniel Romig (1803-1845) and Hannah Steller (1805-1850) of Snyder county, Pennsylvania. Sometime in the late 1850’s, Isaac married Malinda Jarrett (1840-1925). Together they had 10 children: Daniel (1859), Irwin (1860), Perry (1862), Isaac M. (1864), Charles (1866), Harvey (1872), Mayme (1876), Blanche (1880), and Cyril (1881) and an infant son buried at Row’s cemetery on 19 Sept 1875.

The first letter was written by Malinda to Isaac in March 1863, and his to her in early May 1863, at the time of the Battle of Chancellorsville.

An obituary notice states that, “On January 29th 1895 a gay party of citizens left in a sleigh to attend the Owl Club sleighing party and dance in Middleburgh. After the dance the party left and at about 2:00 AM as they approched Kreamer crossing the sled was hit by a ‘double header’ freight train. Several of the party goers were injured one requiring the amputation of her arm on site. Isaac and his son, Charles, were killed.”


Addressed to Isaac D. Romig, Co. F, 172nd PA Regt, Yorktown, Va.
In care of Capt. H. Harrison

Our Home
March 11, 1863

Ever true and beloved husband,

I received the newspaper that you did send on the 6th and the package of pictures &c. I received on the 7th, and I looked over them and ransacked them over and over again and again, but not a syllable, not a word wrote. I knowed that it was against the law to send letters under package postage. I enquired for letters but no letters for me. You may think that I got very uneasy about it and thus I enquired day after day, still getting more uneasy, and still no letters. I could not think what was the reason of the neglect or delay.

Yesterday after the mail had went up, I send Henry after to fetch me my letter, but he came back telling me there were none there. My desperation had arrived at a great degree, when last night—the 10th—I received your three letters mailed on the 2d, 4th, and 6th of this present month, which relieved me and showed me that your letters were delayed while the paper and package went on. The reason why some of your letters are delayed so long until they reach me is that they generally reach Kratzerville by way of Longstown, instead of coming up from Selingrove, but which former taken route they are delayed 3 or 4 days at least. But you can not conceive how glad the children were when they heard that good story of the coming Easter. They jumped for joy. Now don’t neglect to send it to them. The pictures that you did send up pleased them all very much.

We are all well at the present time and we hope this will find you all well. My boy Henry wishes to know what he shall call the name of the Smith’s colt. He wishes me to ask you and tells me that you shall write it to him how you would wish to have it called. The Snyder’s cow is so thick and clumsy that she hardly can go through the stable door any more. I never seen another cow thicker and don’t know what is the reason, except that it is that she is big with two or more calves. We have to lift her up every morning, not because she is so poor, but because she is so clumsy that she cannot lift herself up without help.

The neighbors are all well as far as we know, excepting little Bellerophon Diefenbach who is very sick and weak at present with the sequence of Scarletine. We heard that Perry Tarrelt offered you a substitute but he has yet another one to spare to substitute himself. Mary Kratzer got 2 boys on the 28th—twins, 2 fine and heart lads.

The weather continues to be very changeable and sloppy all along as it had been all winter. Last Saturday we had fast snowing all day but the snow fell so wet and heavy that it was not over 4 inches in all, and ever since we have had some snow or rain every night; and although we have had much snowing of late, we never had sleighing above one day at a time all winter.

I think I will close again for this time. My [hired] girl has left me again; she said that she could not stay longer than the 1st of April anyhow, and since I had the boy, I thought she might go now. About Father and Fred App, you need not trouble yourself as we think that App will have no cause in law to complain.

I will now close in earnest, remaining your ever true and loving wife, — Malinda Romig

To Isaac D. Romig

Addressed to Mrs. Malinda Konig, Kratzerville, Snyder county, PA


Yorktown, Virginia
May 1, [1863]

Dear true, sweet, beloved wife and children,

And I will sit down to inform a few lines to you that I am well at the present day and I hope that these few lines will find you and the children in the same state of good heath. And further I let you know that I wrote a letter to you and to Daddy Romig but the mail [has been] late over two days.

The reason was while they are a fighting and the boats was all taken up with soldiers. [There] went 18 boats past here. Four gunboats went along up the York river and it was a great excitement here in the fort at that time when the soldiers went by here and the next morning they brought an officer down here. He got killed the same day at West Point and yesterday he got buried here at the fort. And yesterday 4 or 5 hundred of cavalry came in the fort [See Stoneman’s 1863 Raid]. They was at Richmond on [?] and they destroyed the railroad on some [blast?] for fifty miles so the rebels can’t get their provisions in Richmond and Hooker will take Richmond now if he can although he got Fredericksburg already but had a great loss of men on our side and they got rebels—between 4 and eight hundred prisoners of the rebels at the fight at Fredericksburg. In that fight the loss of our men I cannot tell for I don’t know it.

This I wrote in the office while the regiment was out drilling. I wrote this and they came in and and so I will come to a close for this forenoon. Good day to you.

Yorktown, Va.
May the 9th

And I let you know that I received your letter that you wrote me on the 4th day of May and tonight I got it and I was glad to hear of you and that you got feed enough for the stock to feed and I got a letter of John Romig tonight. They [were] are all well at that time.

We got rain this week and today it was warm all day. This afternoon the boats came back again. I was sitting at the river bank when they went by. And so I will close for the night. I send my best respect to you and write as soon as you get this letter. This from your husband, — Isaac D. Romig

[to] Melinda Romig]  And goodnight to you.

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