Wednesday, February 1, 2012

February 1, 1862

Qr. Master Sergt. Howe:
From a Letter:
     Camp Stanton, Fort Monroe, Va., February 1, 1862. Dear:
     I will begin my letter by saying I am O. K. My discharge was obtained from the War Department by order of General McClellan, through the intercession of General Butler. I have felt very anxious ever since I landed and am very much pleased to know that everything is satisfactory at last. If I hadn't obtained my rank after working so hard with the regiment, I should have felt like—well, no matter what. I am sitting on a camp stool in Captain Blanchard's quarters. On my left, the Captain's servant is peeling potatoes. Lieutenant Fiske is reclining on a couch, reading Yankee Notions; behind him a drummer boy is writing home, and such is camp life.
     I have to see to the provisions and wood, assisted by Commissary Fay. These are obtained from the Fortress. I wish you to send my equipment, viz., knapsack, haversack and canteen, to Captain Davis. The boys are all pleased to know that I have obtained my discharge and promotion. There has been quite a controversy between Governor Andrew and General Butler through the War Department in regard to which one has the right to commission the officers. I hope the General will come out all right. You must not believe all the statements in the Boston papers in regard to any subject, but the letters which come directly from the soldiers. The paper correspondent does more injury than good.
     Colonel Shepley has been to Washington and received sailing orders. The steamer is taking on supplies. The Maine Regiment goes aboard to-day. I met George Richardson with whom I used to attend school. He is Purser's Clerk on the Pensacola. I went alongside and sent my letter by him to father. The Pensacola is going to the Gulf and is the vessel that ran the blockade on the Potomac. There are a number of vessels in the Roads. I shall send some money in my next letter, which will be when we sail. You can deposit or use it, as you like.
     I will write you my position at night. I have two large cord wood sticks which I place the width of my body apart; on these I pile a sand pillow, then spread my rubber blanket out, put the red blanket over that, roll two others around me and "lay me down to sleep." " Such is life." Tell S. A. B. I haven't forgotten my promise to write her and that I will do so after we arrive at our destination. Tell Nettie W. I don't refuse two pieces of pie, if she will send them to me. Give my regards to every one who may inquire. My next when we sail.


2d Lieut. Elliot:
     February 1-Saturday
     Weather very stormy
     A.A. Gilson sent to the Hospital this morning. Crazy or foolish we know not which. he made an attempt to jump overboard from the Constitution this morn but was prevented by the attendants I guess if they had not have stopped him he would not have jumped out of reach.
     Capt Shipley is Officer of the day.
     Lieut. Claiborne arrived here this morning has been sick. 
     Constitution has hauled up stream and is taking in coal.
     Merrimac is expected down every night to run the blockade she will have a fine time doing it for there are some 3 or 4 Frigates ready for her besides the guns from the fort.
     The Company’s had to pay $3.00 each for a target that comp. B. under the direction of Lieut. Farrons. broke to pieces and stole. they used the boards for a cook house. and we pay for them. this is military justice.

Corpl. B. B. Smith:
     Saturday, February 1
     We are all tired of stopping

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