Our readers will be pleased to learn that we have at length received a letter from our venerable and beloved father in Israel, and to be informed that he still lives, and is in the enjoyment of ordinary health. Living in the vicinity of Fairfax C. H., Virginia, the unhappy war between the two sections of our country caused a suspension of mailing facilities, so that from the time the war broke out all correspondence between him and us has been cut off until recently; the Federal Government now occupying that section of Virginia, has re-established a post office at Fairfax C. H.
It is well known that the contending armies have been located during a large part of the time in his immediate vicinity, and the ground has been alternately occupied by both parties, and for several months, in order to be where he could get to and attend the several churches of his pastoral charge, he has been obliged to remain absent from his home, as the pickets of the armies were stationed for a long time between his residence and the churches of his charge.
For the satisfaction of his numerous friends, we extract from his private letter to us, which is dated June 26, 1862, the following:
“Myself and family are in usual health, excepting I have at present a cold, and I find that age is fast weakening my bodily strength, and, probably my mind: though that is a something we are not so apt to discover ourselves, except in regard to memory. Exposed as we have been, in being contiguous to the armies of both sides, we have been remarkably preserved from insults, and from being plundered. I can but be astonished at the goodness of God in thus shielding and protecting us, and admire that we should have been thus favored above others around, when the least deserving it at his hands.
“I have not seen brother Leachman for some months, though I hear from him frequently. Living so nigh Manassas Junction, he has been much annoyed and interrupted. Since the advance of the Federal Army to that place he has had, with his family, to leave his home, and seek a residence in a more retired place. He has not been privileged to preach but little for the last few months.
I have received several numbers of the Signs of the Times from friends in Alexandria and Washington. And from what I learn through them, most of our brethren are still living. It is a favor granted by their heavenly Father, or it would not have been so. Yet there can be but little personal happiness anticipated in living in these times, only as any may hope to live to see the result of what God is bringing about by this war.”
July 1, 1862.
Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 5
Pages 211 - 212