The Civil War Letters of Luke and Charles Ostrye

Transcriptions Donated By Charlotte Smith

Luke and Charles Ostrye (Ostrie, Ostrowicki) sons of Paul Ostrowick and Maryanna Kontna and brother to Peter Ostrye, joined the Union Army shortly after their brother Peter Ostrye was wounded and died in Washington, D.C.

Luke was born 18 October 1845 in Sueha, Bydogszcz, Poland, then part of Prussia, He came to the United States on the ship "Universe" in August 1852 with his parents who were leaving the German empire to find a place secure from future wars and fighting. He was 19 when he joined the Army. He was with the 15th N.Y. Engineers.

Charles Ostrye(Ostrowicki) was born as Adelbert Ostrowicki in Sucha, Bydogszcz, Poland and baptized in Byslaw, Poland. He was born 23 April 1847. He came with his parents on the ship "Universe" from Liverpool to New York City in August 1852. He was a drummer boy in the 15th NY Engineers and the family still have the Drum and rifle that he carried. He was 17 when he enlisted.

Charles and Luke had people write for them and most of the letters are signed from Charles and Luke . They sounded like typical teenagers, asking for money and food from home. But they were also sending money home to help support their family which included other brothers and sisters in New York.

They were discharged and returned to their home in French Creek, New York where they remained for the rest of their lives.

Charles Ostrye. 
Chas. Ostrye was born in Suikas, Prussia, April 28, 1847, and came to America with bis father in August, 1852. His father, Paul Ostrye, born in Milkova Jan. 25, 1811, is now living with his son Charles in usual good health; his mother, Mary (Cautrah) Ostrye, died July 19, 1880. In February, 1876, Mr. Ostrye was married to Miss Mary Sullivan at French Creek, N. Y. Mrs. Ostrye is a daughter of Owen and Ellen (Macher) Sullivan, and was born in Niagara, Eric Co., N. Y., Feb. 4, 1853. Mr. and Mrs. Ostrye arc the ceter of a large and happy family, numbering eleven children, Mary, Joseph, Ellen, Marie, Peter L., Martha, Julia, Gertrude, Theresa, Bertram!, Lawrence, James C. and Florence Lauretta. True to his American citizenship Mr. Ostrye, at the age of 18, enlisted in Co. G, N. Y. Eng., Engineer Corps. The death of a brother, Peter Ostrye, in the battle of Gettysburg, and the faithful service of Luke Ostrye throughout the entire war, prove the family's loyalty to their adopted country. In January and February, 1865, Private Ostrye was specially detailed on picket duty at Petersburg, Va., and he also took part in the great battle of Petersburg. In June, 1865, Comrade Ostrye was honorably Luke Ostrye discharged at Elmira, N. Y., and is now living on a farm in French Creek, N.Y.

Luke Ostrie, 
a native of Germany, was born Oct. 18, 1845, and came to this country in 1852. His parents were Paul and Mary (Cautrah) Ostrye, the father living, the mother deceased. Leaving his quiet farm near French Creek, N. Y., he was enrolled in Co. G, 15th N. Y. Eng., and served faithfully through all the hardships and privations of his gallant regiment. He helped build breastworks before Petersburg, and served in many less important places, receiving his honorable discharge June 13, 1865, at Ft. Barry, Va. On Nov. 25, 1892, Comrade Ostrey was united in the holy bonds of matrimony to Francis Wisenwoska, a daughter of John and Leskei Wisenwoska. Mrs. Ostrye was bom April 4,1860, in Germany.

-- Charlotte Smith

The letters are here.