April 11, 1863
—On this date, having just returned from his inspection tour of Hooker’s army, Pres. Lincoln calls a meeting with secretaries Welles, Stanton, Chase, and Seward, plus Asst. Sec. of the Navy Gustavus Fox and Gen. Halleck. to discuss the military situation. Later in the evening, the White House holds a dinner for all members of the President’s party that had gone on the tour.
---Young Edwin Eldridge Mason, having just enlisted at the tender age of 16, sends home a letter to his family:
Erie, PA, April 11, 1863
Dear Mother, I improve the first opportunity to write to you. I am well this morning and hope this finds you enjoying the same blessing. the morning after I cam here, I enlisted in the 12th Pa. Calvary, 1st Lieut Hammer and Sergeant Boardman. They are detailed on detachment duty. I am on duty with them, that is arresting deserters and taking them to Harrisburg for trial. I also have as my special duty, the charge of the enlisting office, which is fun. I am writing in the office now.
Our arms consist of 1 saber, 2 Colt revolvers, 1 carbine. Cloths: 1 coat-(short), 1 vest, Overcoat 1 pair of pants 2 pair drawers 2 shirts, wool. (also cap and shoes.)
The Lieut's name is G.B. Hammer. One of his papers was on the desk, the other day with his name on it. I wrote instead of GB, Great Big Hammer. He came along and seeing this said: "Humph! who wrote that"? I told him "Some of the boys, I guess." I had a deal of fun with the boys after his Lordship went out. Write -- so I will get the letter Monday. Send it to the station by Charley, Sunday. How is Charley, Ellen, Sis, Pa, Ma, in short, all of ya
Your Loving Son
Direct your letter to Erie Post office