April 15, 1863: Alexander Biddle to Julia Williams Rush Biddle

Alexander Biddle was a member of the prominent Philadelphia Biddle family and was married to Julia Williams Rush,  the granddaughter of Dr. Benjamin Rush.  Biddle served with the 121st Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, beginning in September 1862. Starting out as a major, he would participate in Fredericksburg and Gettysburg, among other engagements, and would leave the service as a lieutenant colonel. (He was commissioned, but never mustered, as colonel)

Rush IV-30-30 p1 A. Biddle ALS to Julia William Rush, April 15 Rush IV-30-30 p2 A. Biddle ALS to Julia William Rush, April 15 Rush IV-30-30 p3 A. Biddle ALS to Julia William Rush, April 15 Rush IV-30-30 p4 A. Biddle ALS to Julia William Rush, April 15

Transcript (excerpt):

Camp near Belleplains Virg

Head Qrs 121 Reg PV.

Wednesday April 15th 1863

Dear Julia

I today got your note and your dear picture of the little one and your sweet self by Lieut Habe who joined us today. The picture is no doubt a perfect likeness of the dear little one but his early expression I think gives him a right to be supposed to have a will of his own – your own sweet face, your bonnet too were inexpressible delights to me and made me long for the happy day when I shall move towards home – I also got this evening a long letter from Uncle for which I have greatly to thank him and read every word of it with great pleasure I think he always judges rightly of others and hope I shall always do just what he thinks ought to be done for I do most heartily concur in every view he expresses, he tells me not to answer his letters and to do so through you On the Review Rush’s lancers were the closing part of the Cavalry pageant – I wrote to you a pretty full description – The Regular Cavalry which came first were most remarkable for their clean dresses and exact lines but the closing part of the review was the formation of the lancers in line of battle facing the President which they did rapidly and with great precision – they looked as well moved with as much facility and in short made a most brilliant appearance They are a fine Corps As fine as any in the Army – as well officered and as well drilled but from some unknown Cause they are always on detached duty at different head Quarters or by themselves and are very much sneered at by those who have been through the rough and tumble of Army life…

Citation: Alexander Biddle (1819-1899), autograph letter signed to Julia Williams Rush Biddle, 15 April 1863. Rush IV:30:30

4 Responses to “April 15, 1863: Alexander Biddle to Julia Williams Rush Biddle”

  1. Joey says:



  2. rick says:


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  4. kent says:


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