Sept 15, 1861
I improve the present opportunity in writing to you. I am well and all the rest of the boys are too except John and King who are a little unwell.
There is not much news to write for things are about the same as they have been.
Three companies from the regiment have to go out on picket every day and they have great times.
Some of the pickets are so near they talk to each other. I was out last Thursday at night. I was on a post where they do not dare keep us in the daytime. We went on the first thing after dark and came off just before daylight.
There are four men on a post. Two of us slept the fore part of the night and two the later part of the night. I had to watch the later part.
Just after they called me in it commenced to rain and I think it must have rained two or three hours. I had my woolen blanket with me and wore it through out the shower so I did not get very wet.
After it stopped raining the enemy pickets commenced firing.
I heard some of the balls pass over as much as 40 feet high so I guess that they did not shoot at anything particular. Some of them had a time getting there guns to fire. One in particular, snapped his gun eight or ten times and had not got his gun to fire by the time we came away. From the time they first commenced firing, until we were relieved by another company they kept shooting but did not hit anyone. Our boys do not shoot unless they have sure target.
From the picket camp we can see the enemy plain with a glass. I had a glass the other day and as near as I could see they have but a few white soldiers there. The rest are Negroes and we could see them on picket and lots of them laying on the ground. Some of the guards on the breast-works were blacks. I don't think they have much of a force.
The boys who have enlisted in the cavalry, I hope will have a good time but I would not trade places with them. There is a company of cavalry camped on part of our campground and there are lots of them who want to get out of it. They have a great deal more to do then we do. When we are on march and it comes night and we stop all we do is get our supper and go to bed. They must first tend to their horses and then tend to their selves In battle they are more danger for they to charge as infantry If the infantry understands it the will cut the Calvary all to pieces.
At Bull run the enemy Calvary could do nothing to our infantry. As near as I can find out the Sixth Regiment is in Baltimore. The seventh Regiment started for the upper Potomac.
If the folks are determined to send a box to us, you may get me some woolen shirts and a pair of thin buck gloves with good long cuffs on. The shirts have them good long ones. The trouble with shirts the Government furnishes they are most to short.
If they do not send a box you need not bother with it for if I want shirts I can get them here but they will cost more than they do there.
We expect to get our pay in two or three days They give us notes On the United States with interest. They can be drawn at any bank in the US. So I think I will take part of my notes.
I want to keep count of all you send me and all the stamps and take your pay out of the money
I send you. I hope to hear Father (and all the rest) are well the next letter I get. Write as soon as you get this.