Dec. 18th. 1862.
Dear Father, Mother, Brother and Sisters:
We left Detroit last Saturday, the 6th and after a pleasant ride we arrived here the next Thursday. We stayed in Baltimore one day.
It is a beautiful place with the most beautiful buildings I have ever seen. They are all brick and very large.
We had dinner and supper here furnished by the soldiers Relief society.
We passed in sight of Harrisburg, the capitol of Pennsylvania, that laying on one side of the Susquehanna river and we passed on the other side.
We arrived here at eleven o'clock, took dinner, and went into camp on Laurel Hill, a mile and a half or two miles from, but in sight of the Capitol.
We passed near it when we went to camp. I did not get a fair view of any part of it except the dome and that is not finished yet.
There are seven or eight Regiments encamped in sight of us. One of the Grand Rapids Regiments arrived last night.
We are in sight of fortifications along the bank of the river. Eight or ten in number and on every height you can see a flag and some you can see the walls of the fort.
It has been the most beautiful weather you ever saw ever since we came here. The nights are rather cool while the days are like the later part of September. Not any wind and the sun shines warm. I have not used my gloves or overcoat since we came except after sundown.
I expect we shall not stay here long. There is talk of our going to Fairfax Court House, but how soon I do not know.
There are a dozen or more hospital buildings near here but are not finished yet. They are as much as a hundred and fifty ft. long and thirty feet wide. They are painting and fixing them in good style so they will have ample room for the sick.
There is a report that there is an engagement going on at Fredericksburg and that the news is favorable and I Judge it is for there is some heavy firing and rejoicing near here. I suppose it gives one an idea of the firing in a battle, some of them fire shells and you can hear the shell burst about 4 or five seconds after the report of the gun and it sounds like another gun.
Our horses are poorly fed for they do not get half the rations that are allowed them.
We do not get as nice living as I have seen before, part of the time nothing but dry bread and salt pork so poor that we could not eat it. · Now we have some potatoes, plenty of coffee, sugar and good pork. What we have is better than it was in Detroit.
I must draw my letter to a close for the want of room.
A. R. Juckett.
I will have to send this without a stamp. Do not forget to write soon as you get this.
Direct it to A. R . J.
First Regt., Mounted Rifles,
CO. K Washington, D. C.