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Mud Island July 27th 1864


My own Little Darling.
I have commenced to write you another letter, not because I have any news of sufficient interest to communicate, but for the reason that I am rather apprehensive that if I should fail in keeping up my part of our regular correspondence, you also might become negligent as to yours; which sort of conduct on your part, I can assure you, I would regard, not only, as very grievous, under present circumstances, but actually a misfortune. You will perceive, by the address above, that since my last letter we have moved our quarters, and are now on a little island, two miles wide & three long, known and designated by the euphonious name & title as above set forth, & separated from Galveston island by what is termed San Luis Pass, which is about ½ or ¾ of a mile wide. There are two or three other little islands in sight, but this is the one on which our fortifications are built & it is, by all odds, the most desolate and out of the way place it has ever been my misfortune to be located in. There is not, nor ever has been, any house, or settlement of any kind, on it; not a tree, or even a bush as high as your head; nothing but sand and, for music, the continual roar of the surf, the whistling of the winds, & the melancholy cry, or rather croak, of the sea gulls, as they float lazily by, viewing with apparent, and, I think, just wonder our unusual presence. It seems to me as if we were entirely out of the world, & to confirm the appearance we have been here now about a week, & have not yet received a single mail; though, speaking of mails, we have now established a courier line to Galveston, so that we will, hereafter, receive our letters &c regularly from that place. We are stationed here, it seems, because this is regarded as one of the points on the coast necessary to be defended, & for the further reason that blockade runners sometimes come in at this Pass & require protection from, or against, the blockaders. There is a large Blockade Steamer just outside the pass now, nearly in range of our guns, &, as we have nothing else to do, we keep a detachment always ready at the guns, to open fire on her provided she should come any closer. Our fortifications, so far as I am able to judge, are very good, & we have barracks sufficient for the accomodation of a portion of the Regt. &, tents & plank shelters, or sheds, for the balance. Notwithstanding the loneliness of the place, I am rather disposed to like it better than Galveston, for the reason that we are not troubled with mosquitoes, the breeze being so continual, & sometimes so hard that it completely clears the island of them. I find, also, that there is another thing which influences me as to my stay at different places, which is, what might be termed, indifference; if I can't be at home, it seems to me, that I have no preference whatever as to other places. I am satisfied that there is no such thing as becoming accustomed to staying away from home, at least, where one has such a home as I have, that is, a darling little wife of whose sincere love & affection I am assured, and for whom, such is my love and devotion, I would, at any time, willingly lay down my life. Little Honey I wonder frequently whether it is possible for you to love and devotion, I would, at any time, willingly lay down my life. Little Honey I wonder frequently whether it is possible for you to love me as much, as wholly, singly and devotedly, as I do you. And I would be satisfied if you did not, quite as much; for I am fully aware of your affectionate disposition, and that you have brothers and sisters whom you cannot help loving, whereas I have no one to care for, or who cares for me, but you and Callie. Does not the thought of my love for you, and the desolation & utter misery which any misfortune to you would bring upon my future life, make my Little Darling more careful of herself? Ought not the same thought enable her better to endure her trials and sufferings. I hope so, Little Honey, and I am satisfied it is so. I know that, so far as I am concerned, nothing could make me so despondent as to be indifferent to life, so long as I thought my living was essential to your happiness. But you must not think, Little Honey, that I feel at all gloomy about you, from my writing in this way; I am only somewhat uneasy, as is very naturally the case, on account of your present situation, which feeling is rendered more acute, I suppose, by my absence. If I could only be with you all the time, I am satisfied that I should'nt feel a particle of it. We are all in very good health, & likely, I think, to continue so; as our present location seems to be a very healthy one. Jim arrived safely, & I've received your letter sent by him. I have already written to you about having sent the Castor Oil & flannel; please to let me know about receiving them. Little Darling, please mam write to me somewhat oftener than once a week. You have no idea with what anxiety I look for you letters. Kiss Bobolinks for me, & tell her Papa will come home as soon as he can and bring her a heap of nice things.


De