Middletown, Frederick County, Maryland,
September 15, .
Dear Mother: — I was wounded in the battle yesterday. A musket-ball passed through the centre of the left arm just above the elbow. The arm is of course rendered useless and will be so for some weeks. I am comfortably at home with a very kind and attentive family here named Rudy — not quite Ruddy.
The people here are all, or nearly all, Union people and give up all they have to the wounded. The ladies work night and day.
We are doing well so far in the fighting.
You see I write this myself to show you I am doing well, but it is an awkward business sitting propped up in bed nursing a useless arm. Lucy will find me here if she comes. Or if I go to Frederick, [let her] inquire at provost or military headquarters. If I go to Baltimore, she must have inquiry made at same places there. — Love to all.
R. B. Hayes.
P. S. — Send this to Mother Hayes also. I write you thinking Lucy may leave before this gets there.
SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 353-4