Qr. Master Sergt. Howe:
From a Letter:
Camp Thompson, Ship Island, February 22,1862.
I have an opportunity to write. I am now in excellent health and live like a king. My mess comes handy, we have a boy to cook. The New London brought in ten sloops which were all oystermen, all loaded, they looked queerly enough, tugging them along. I went out and bought a barrel of them and had a stew, gratis, for dinner. Chaplain Cleaveland has arrived. We are building a large building, fifteen
feet by twenty, for the Quartermaster's stores. We heard of a great victory gained by Burnside, — three thousand prisoners — also of another in Kentucky. A gunboat has captured a steamer loaded with cotton, named the Magnolia. The engineer tried to blow her up and was scalded to death.
Yours until the next,
2d Lieut. Elliot:
Weather in morning very warm and pleasant. Afternoon showery and quite cool.
This is the anniversary of Washingtons birth day. we celebrate by having salute and all 4 Regiments drawn up in Regimintal line music playing Hail Columbia & Star Spangled Banner. Troops marching to their company Quarters while the music is playing Yankee Doodle.
Dr. Cleavland from Lowell, our Chaplain arrived on the Saxon yesterday. I met him today and he is looking hearty.
I went down to the Fort & saw Gen. Skerry and passed an hour very pleasantly. thought I must celebrate so I went into Reeds and bought a little of Champagne Cider.
No drills to day since morning one hour from 8 to 9 company drill. formed in line while firing a salute of 34 Guns from the Fort.
Those steamers prizes were loaded with Oysters. Today we got 2 bags of the oysters and they were indeed a treat. Though it was hard work opening them, with an old knife.
Bill got 2 hachets, an axe, 150 foot of rope and some few other things
Corpl. B. B. Smith:
Washingtons birth day and a fine
Morning good news from our
Army in the west only one drill
Today with a regimental parade
And 33 guns in honor of the day
A large Bark in sight this AM.
Our men all being washing and
Ironing. our captain and a guard
Of men went and got a lot of
Oysters from one of the prizes
And we had quite a good time
With them they tasted better
Than the oysters we have at home.