Frederick Douglass Gerrit Smith, April 14, 1863
FREDERICK DOUGLASS TO GERRIT SMITH
Rochester[, N.Y.] 14 Ap[ril] 1863.
HON GERRIT SMITH:
MY DEAR SIR.
I send you herewith an acc.t, of my Stewardship. I have recruited and sent
forward to camp at Readville Mass. more than one hundred men for the
54th regiment. Lewis and Charles, my two sons, are a part of that regi-
ment, Lewis a sargeant major—and Charles an orderly.1Muster rolls list Charles R. Douglass as a private in Company F in the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Infantry Regiment. Lewis H. Douglass initially enlisted as a private in Company F and was promoted to the regiment’s sergeant major effective 23 April 1863. Massachusetts Soldiers, 4:658, 686. Upon the earnest
request of Mr Stearns,2George Luther Stearns. I am endeavouring to raise another company. The
two hundred dollars you gave me and the five hundred you donated in
Boston3Reports indicate Smith sent a check for $500 to Massachusetts governor John A. Andrew in early 1863. There is no record of funds sent directly to Douglass, but the $200 might have been the sum mentioned in Douglass’ Monthly as an additional pledge that Smith made to recruit 100 New York free blacks for the Fifty-fourth. Lib., 6 March 1863; DM, 5:804 (March 1863). will about cover the cost of raising the company raised by me—While I venture to say that no other company has been raised for less
than twice that sum. You will see per acc.t, that I have given you credit to
Mr Stearns for two hundred Dolls—I feel that the work to be done now
is to fill up this Massachusetts regiment without delay—and I am leaving
home to day to add its numbers.
With neverfailing love for you and yours,
ALS: Grenville H. Norcross Manuscripts, MHiS.