Daniel Peck was just 17 years old when he left his home in Panama, New York, to join the ranks of the Ninth New York Cavalry. His oldest brother David Jr. was already serving with the Union Army when Daniel enlisted Sept. 28, 1861. He was promoted to Corporal on June 24, 1863, and during the Rapidan Campaign on May 8, 1864 was wounded in the left arm. His wound confined him to the hospital at Alexandria, Virginia, until he was honorably discharged by reason of disability on Aug. 31, 1864.
He returned to Harmony, and in 1866 married Martha Hatton. They had two children, a daughter, A. May, and a son, Thaddeus.
Rachel, the sister to whom the letters were written, was a school teacher in the Harmony area. Her beau, Charles, died of fever in March of 1862. He was a member of the 44th NY Regiment. She eventually married Lester Hobart, a Civil War veteran, in 1865.
Daniel often mentioned his other siblings, David, Hattie, Jerome, and Allen, as he tried to keep up with the latest news at home.
Daniel became a successful butter dealer in the Panama area, and at the time of his death on Jan. 21, 1928, he was 84 years old.