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Mud Island. Sept. 17th 1864

Little Honey.
My own darling sweet Little Wife: what can I say to you to express my happiness and delight. It is impossible for me to put my feeling in words. I received Nat's two letters of the 3rd and 8th last night, and learned that we had another little daughter. I am satisfied that I shall never express another wish for a son; I feel already that I love our baby girl ten times more than if it had been a boy. You must not expect me to write connectedly, Little Darling; my head is, and has been ever since I received the letters, in such a tumultuous whirl, that I have no connected ideas about anything. My sleep last night was very broken; I think I must have went to sleep, at least, a hundred different times, and never remained so more than five minutes at a time. I am satisfied, also, that I had a dream every time I went to sleep, and Little Honey, if every any body was dreamed about in the world, it was you and our baby. I wonder if it will always be that way; that is, will I, when we have five or six children, feel as much excited, transported and delighted as I do now. I rather expect, Little Honey, that one cause of the great happiness which I feel, the prise feeling of content and delight without alloy, is that I did not know of your sickness, suffering and danger until it was over, or nearly so; for Nat's letter of the 8th says that you are relieved from suffering and out of danger. But then every time I think of the great suffering my own darling has had to endure, the great danger she has passed through, it somehow frightens me. Although I know it is past, still I can't reflect upon it without a shudder. Suppose I had lost you, Little Honey. It seems to me that I love our children as much and as tenderly as any father ever did, but then what are they, in my feelings, compared to you? I don't think it exactly right for me to say; but I am satisfied that I could bear the loss of a child with fortitude if not with submission; as to how how I could bear your loss I dare not even think. But out child is born and you are safe, are you not, Little Darling? How earnestly and anxiously shall I wait for a letter from you. I wish to know all the details and the particulars: when it was born, what it looks like, the color of its eyes and hair, whether it has large or small hands and feet, and whether or not it is as well and beautifully formed as Callie. Bye the bye, what does Callie think of your place in your lap being taken possession of and monopolized by a little stranger? Does she submit quietly, and seem to think that it is all right? or has she been disposed to contest the matter in her usual vigorous, and heretofore successful, mode? I would very much like to be present when she was standing by, looking at you with the baby in your lap, not exactly comprehending how it was the she had become dispossessed of what she had always considered her lawful rights, but knowing, at the same time, knowing that it was so and that all her efforts to remedy it would be poweless. Her face at such a time would be a curious puzzle. Isn't it tremendous, Little Honey; to think that I have a little daughter and have never seen her. I have in my life, seen several persons in the same situation; but have never before had the least idea or appreciation of their feelings. Nat writes that she is like Callie; so much so that the old Dr. calls her no.2. I am satisfied that, if such is the case, I should know her any where, among a hundred other babies. When shall I be able to come home is the question, not only now, but which I have caught myself asking numberless times lately. I am sorry now that I went home when I did, in June; had it not been for that I could get a leave of absence now; but I had the chance then and could not help it. I know too, that I would have preferred being at home at this time, but I was afraid that if I did not take advantage of the opportunity which then presented itself, we might be ordered to La, or somewhere else, and I would be deprived of the chance altogether. You may be perfectly assured of one thing however, Little Darling, that is if management can accomplish it I will be at home before the year is out. But my thoughts will revert to that baby which I have never seen; what are you going to name it, Little Honey? or what have you named her; or what would you like to name her? I named Callie, you know; you must name this one. I have no preference, particularly, and will love it just as well one name or another. I wish you to understand positively Little Honey that I insist upon your naming her; and you must let me know in your next letter what her name is. I will ask, however, that you do not name her after, or for, any of my (that is the Bradley) family. How happy you have made me, Little Darling. How truly can I say, with some author I have read but whose name I have forgotten, "my domestic enjoyments have been, and are perhaps, as perfect as the human condition admits: she (that is my wife) makes my home the pleasantest spot, to me, on earth." If this war was over, I think I could use the word "perfect" without the perhaps". You wont forget to write to me, Little Darling, as I have asked you above. Give my love to Nat, and express my thanks for her kindness in writing to me when you were unable. Kiss bobolinks and No. 2 for me. Tell the Dr. that he spoke rather too late for any of the Dutchman's tobacco; it is all gone; but that in case of another "sail" I will remember him.