This letter was written by Charles H. Howland (1828-18xx), a native of Massachusetts, who was a merchant in St. Louis prior to the Civil War, and a member of the Republican Part — or “Radicals” as they called came to be called. Charles served in the States Legislature 1862-1864 and earned a seat in the state senate in 1864. Charles maintained his pro-Union sympathies throughout the war and suffered personal loss for his loyalty in the land of guerillas. [See insert article]
In this letter Charles invites Col. Bernard Gaines Farrar (1831-1916) to share with him in confidence any mistreatment by military officials while in command of colored troops (6th U.S. Colored Heavy Artillery). He was the commander of forces near Vidalia, Louisiana, at the time of this letter in November 1863.
November 23, 1864
Col. B. G. Farrar
Two years ago I was elected Rep. to Legislature from St. Louis County by the “Radicals.” Not content with two years service, the “Radicals” have insisted on a renewal by sending me at the last election to the State Senate.
Col. Kent informs me that you have not been properly treated by certain parties in military command and as it is the bounden duty of the “Radicals” to see that their soldiers are not imposed upon in any manner, I am anxious to know all the facts, and if possible see that you have ample justice done to you. We will have the “radical” influence brought to bear in your favor at Jefferson City if anything can be done for you.
Please communicate freely and confidently with me. Let me know the exact state of affairs. I shall be in Vicksburg for a fortnight to come before my return. Command my services freely & fully.
Truly your friend, — Chas. H. Howland
Address C. H. Howland, Box No 28, Vicksburg