1847: William L. Veltman to President James K. Polk

William L. Veltman is not listed among the regular and volunteer officers who served in the Mexican War from 1846 to 1848 so I think it doubtful that he ever received the commission he applied for in this letter to President James K. Polk. Whether he is the same William L. Veltman (b. 1829) who served less than a year as a private with Co. G, 27th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment during the Civil War is unknown. This soldier’s occupation prior to enlistment was a “painter.”

Stampless Letter

Addressed to His Excellency, J. K. Polk, Washington City, D. C.

York, York County, Pennsylvania
September 30th 1847

Hon. James K. Polk
Dear Sir,

Since the commencement of the Mexican War, I have used my utmost endeavors to procure a commission in the different volunteer regiments but for want of means to raise recruits, I was denied.

I was for four years under instructions with Capt. William W. Tompkins who is now in Mexico. From the accounts of the deaths of officers in the battle of Contreras and Churubusco, I think there must be many vacancies. My principal reference is Col. Thomas B. Florence of Philadelphia who gave me an introduction to you during your visit to New York City. Now, Mr. Polk, would you not be so kind as to give me a Lieutenant’s Commission in one of the regiments. I care not whether it be artillery or infantry.

Please answer this by return of mail if convenient to the care of John Demuth.

Yours with the greatest respect, — Wm. L. Veltman


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