Hopedale History  
    December 1, 2017
    No. 337
    Lt. Draper, 1861   

    Hopedale in November   

    Baby Boom  - The change in the number of births from pre-war to post-war years show the baby boom in Hopedale.

    Characters of Community Days - Thanks to Jack Hayes for these pages written by Helen (Nellie) Kent in 1950.

    Thanks to Mike Cyr for these photos of the Hopedale Troop 1 Eagle Court of Honor held in December 1967.

    Christmas in Early Hopedale by Edward Spann,  Anna Thwing Spaulding,  Charles Merrill, Abby Hills Price, and Frank Dutcher.

    During the past two weeks, additions have been made to the following pages on hope1842.com: World War II Honor Roll (A higher
    resolution, easier-to-read copy of the picture of the honor roll has replaced the previous one.)     Deaths   


    Twenty-five years ago - December 1992 - U.S. military forces land in Somalia.

    The last blast is fired at the Falun Mine in Falun, Sweden, after a millennium of continuous operation.

    The Prince and Princess of Wales publicly announce their separation.

    Fifty years ago - December 1967 - The RMS Queen Mary is retired. Her place is taken by the RMS Queen Elizabeth 2

    Christiaan Barnard carries out the world's first heart transplant at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa.

    In New York City, Benjamin Spock and Allen Ginsberg are arrested for protesting against the Vietnam War.

    Supersonic airliner Concorde is unveiled in Toulouse, France

    Professor John Archibald Wheeler coined the astronomical term black hole.


           Lt. William F. Draper, 1861

    Thanks to John Robertson of Upton who gave me copies of the letter below, and about a dozen others, written by William F. Draper during
    his first months in the Army. I'll send more in the mid-December ezine.

                                                                                                                                                             Camp Lincoln
                                                                                                                                                             October 5, 1861

    Dear Mother:

        As it is rainy to-day we have no drill, so I have an opportunity to write.

         We shall probably be mustered into the U.S. service to-day. I saw Captain McDonald last night. He has raised a company and has
    gone into camp at Camp Cameron. A dispatch came here last night ordering us to report as soon as possible to Washington. We shall
    probably be here till the week after next.

         I expect to come home Tuesday night. Did father take my fork and spoon yesterday to get them marked? If not, someone else has. So if
    he has not taken them, he can buy me some and have them marked. While I was out drilling someone took them. I get some more I will
    lock them up after every meal. When I come Home have them ready for me, and also some towels and stockings. I shall get a furlough for
    forty-eight hours, if possible.

                                                                                                                                Yours truly,

                                                                                                                                  W.F. Draper

    P.S. Direct to Lieut W.F. Draper, Company B, Camp Lincoln, Worcester, Mass.


     Reading a few paragraphs from the general's autobiography, Recollections of a Varied Career, may be helpful in understanding some of
    the things mentioned in his letter. Here is part of Chapter IV - War.

     After the election of officers we were sworn in to the United States service, and spent a week more at home in drilling and in marching to
    the neighboring towns, to practise our legs. On the 25th orders having been received, we went to Worcester and camped on the
    Agricultural grounds with a number of other companies which formed the nucleus of the 25th Massachusetts Regiment. This regiment
    was one of the most famous that Massachusetts sent out, made so not only by its general gallant conduct, but by its phenomenal charge
    at Cold Harbor, June 3, 1864, in which, according to Fox, it sustained the fourth heaviest regimental loss in killed and wounded of the
    entire war, -- or seventy per cent, of the men engaged. In the proportion of number killed or mortally wounded in a single engagement, it
    stands second only to the 1st Minnesota at Gettysburg.

     We remained at Worcester a little more than a month, being organized, armed, equipped, and drilled. Our company was given the
    regimental colors, and our line officers make third in rank, the regiment consisting of ten companies. Edwin Upton, of Fitchburg, who had
    had a long experience in the militia, was commissioned as our colonel, and Lieutenant-colonel Sprague and several of the captains had
    had three months of experience in the field. We were armed with Enfield rifles, and splendidly equipped, being furnished even with a
    regimental band, which was one of the luxuries cut off after a year or so of service.

     The 31st of October we left for Annapolis, via New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore. During the month before leaving we devoted
    ourselves to drill and the detail of guard duty, with such a result that Governor Andrew's compliment [in a paragraph that I've skipped] was
    not entirely undeserved. Colonel Sprague, Adjutant Harkness, and several of our captains had served during the three months' campaign
    at Fort McHenry, a company with regular troops, and we profited by their experience and instruction. Nothing notable occurred t me during
    the month, except the theft of a silver knife, fork and spoon, which my mother had given me. I also remember that a large part of the line
    officers, including the writer, had their swords ground to a cutting edge, though I doubt if any of them was ever stained with human blood, --
    an officer's sword then and now being an emblem of authority, rather than a weapon for use.

     As before stated, we broke camp at Worcester October 31st, a collation provided by the ladies of Worcester being served before our
    departure. Line was formed at three P.M., and we marched through Highland and Main Streets to the Common, where at four, cars were
    taken for New York, via the Norwich Line. The Worcester Spy the next morning gave us a special editorial, of which I quote a part.

     "This regiment, in which our good City of Worcester has so large and so precious an investment of its sons, brothers, and husbands, left
    us with colors flying, and "merry as a marriage bell," yesterday afternoon at four o'clock. It is of the same good stock, we need scarcely say,
    as the Fifteenth, of whose achievements we are all so justly proud; and we know it will be equally worthy to represent the valor and the love
    of liberty of this county of Worcester. It was too plain for concealment, and it is no reflection upon any other Regiment, that the heart of our
    city was more deeply touched by its departure than by that of any previous one. Our whole community watched its gathering and its
    organization with the deepest interest, and it was present in unprecedented numbers to cheer it off. We have good reason for believing
    that there is not a man in the Twenty-fifth who does not know how warmly his regiment is cherished here; and we know there is not a
    class, or sect, or party, or nationality, which has not representatives in it, of which each can say, 'By them we will be judged.'  ... As a living
    power in defence of a good cause, this regiment will be known widely hereafter. May the God of justice be its helper! for with Him is victory,
    and out of victory must come peace, its blessed fruit."

    My parents and many kind friends were there to bid me farewell. I wrote, "The parting was sad for many, but I, looking only on the bright
    side, was less affected than the friends I left behind. William F. Draper, Recollections of a Varied Career, pp. 36 - 41.

                                                                                                                         Ezine Menu


    Here's a question from one of my regular correspondents. It refers to the letter signed H.B. Hastings that was in No. 335.

    Dan, has it occurred to you that there is no Hastings? Could the letter have been written by Mr. Draper to himself? Or
    maybe Hastings is a 'she' with a crush on Draper.

    The question that followed was, Does anyone have any other theories about what was the intent of that letter? If you do,
    send it to me, and I'll pass it on, and include it with the next ezine.

Hopedale News - December 1992

Hopedale News - December 1997

Hopedale News - December 1917

    Boy Scout Eagle Court of Honor, December 9, 1967.
    Click here to see more pictures of it.