A Love Letter from
William Jarrett Goodwin
To His Wife

Dreams of fame and grandeur
End in bitter tears;
TRUE LOVE grows the fonder
by the lapse of years.
Time, and change, and troubles,
Meaner ties unbind;
But the love redoubles
True affection twined.

Your Affectionate Husband,
(signed) Wm J. Goodwin

Hour was
Sad I left my wife.
A ling'ring farewell taking.
Her sighs and tears my steps
Delayed I thought her heart
Was breaking; in hurried words
Her name I blessed, I breathed the
Vows that bind me, and to my hear
In anguish pressed the wife I left behind me.

To the South
We bore away to
Win a name in story,
And there where dawns the
Sun of day, there dawned our
Sun of glory; both blazed in noon
On Freedoms' height, where, in the
Post assigned me, and I shared the
Glory of that fight, sweet wife I left behind me.

Many a
Name our banners
Bore, of former deeds
Of daring; but those were
Days of seventy-six, in which
We had no sharing; but now our
Laurels, freshly won, with the old ones
Shall entwined be, still worthy of our
Sires' each son, dear wife, that I left behind me.

Hope of
Final victory,
Within my boson
Burning, is mingled with
Sweet thoughts of thee, and
Of my fond returning; but should
I ne'er return again, still worth thy
Love thou'lt find me, dishonored breath
Shall never stain the name I leave behind me.

When on thy bosom I recline,
Enraptured still to call the mine
To call the mine for life
I glory in the sacred ties,
Which modern wits and fools despise,
Of husband and wife.

Have I a wish, 'tis all for thee;
Hast thou a wish, 'tis all for me.
So soft our moments move
That angels look, with ardent gaze,
Well pleased to see our happy days,
And bid us live and love.

William's signature

William sent this to his wife while he was away from home during the Civil War.

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