Hi Chuck, I believe I have found something that will answer your question about how Amanda and Joseph met. From the quoted passage below, it appears that Joseph served for awhile as a postmaster in Lacey Springs, Virginia, where he surely met Amanda Carrier. There are a number of Carriers buried at the cemetery there. The following passage provides quite a lot of information.
all the best,
____________________________ Anonymous, The History of McLean County, Illinois . . ., Chicago: W. LeGaron Jr. & Co., 1879. Bloomington Township, p. 825 "J. Thompson, grocer, of the firm of Thompson & Jameson, Bloomington: was born in Montgomery Co., Ohio, Oct. 19, 1842, where he spent his early life; he has received a good business eduction. During the late war, he enlisted with the 2d Ohio V.I., entering the service in August, 1861; he participated in many of the most severe battles of the war--such as Perryville, Murfreesboro, Chattanooga and Mission Ridge, and the march of Sherman to Atlanta; he escaped without a scratch, and was mustered out after a service of thirty-seven months. He then attended commercial college at Dayton, Ohio, for a time, and afterward re-entered the army in the Quartermaster's Department at Little Rock, Ark., as shipping-clerk, which position he held for six months; he then went to Galveston, Tex., where he was appointed collector for the G.H&H.R.R Co.; after remaining here awhile, he went to Lacey, Va., where he acted as assistant Postmaster for two years. He has held a number of prominent and responsible positions. He is doing business at 701 North Main street, where he keeps a well-assorted stock of goods, sold at bottom figures. He married Miss Amanda C. Carrier, July 31, 1868."