St Augustine Fla Oct 19th 62
Dear Ones At Home
The Gale has continued to blow so the Steamer with Mail has not left & may not leave for several days I just came off Gd at noon today it being Sunday & Inspection the Old Gd was not relieved soon as usual I concluded that it was about an even thing to walk outside & I rode consequently I am sore & lame [ ] today but I have got to get used to it think I shall like it when I can ride & not hurt me. We have Ponies about two thirds as large as common Horses they step short & are very hard on the Back. they are tough & will go all day do not eat much more than a mule. The Saddles are made of wood without covering, regular Cavalry, called the McClelland Saddle. There are no Rebels to be seen in this region the reason we are kept here I suppose is that it is cheaper to keep a regt than two or three Gunboats which they would have to hold the place in case there were no Soldiers stationed here I see no signs of any intention on the part of the Rebels to attack us we shall have to go inland for a fight when we have one.
Everything is a hundred years behind the times here in Slavedom they grind all their Corn in a large sized Coffee Mill how should you fancy grinding meal for Johnnycake for breakfast make the Breakfast little late wouldnt it the niggers get their living here while the Quarter Master issues Rations to White folks that say owing to the war they are Loyal & have no means of getting a living while shut up in the Lines. the fact is the Whites are a Lazy shiftless sett would hardly live in the Garden of Eden, without Niggers to pick their Grub. I am going to board with Adams, of Co. C., for $2.50 per week, washing mending & other fixings will cost me another dollar. I begin tomorrow morning I have boarded at the Florida House 2 weeks, in the Houses here instead of flies they are troubled with red Ants especialy in Sugar I have skim off a dozen from a cup of Coffee that I had put one spoonfull of sugar in; we get used to these things in the Army, & I dont mind it much Sam is well & sitting by me as I write, he got a letter from Mr Sage the other day, of July the 18th, it was a long time coming. You have written several times asking me to get a Furlough that is next to an impossibility unless a man is most dead & to save the trouble of burying him they will sometimes give one. there has been an Order issued from the War-Dept forbidding it there will be no use trying to get one before another summer & I hope by that time we shall be discharged
There is a long narrow Island commencing at St A. running near the mainland, for 18 or 20 miles; on the No end there is a Light House which is about 2 miles from the City; just beyond it on the Bar is the wreck of the Privateer Jeff Davis, which was chased ashore by Gun Boats, I mean to get a Boat & go out there & see the wreck, if I can, as she was notorious in her day; I dont think of anything to write & will say Good Night with love to all Direct to Lieut C. Shedd Co. A. 7th Regt N.H. Vol PS Oct 20th the Mail has not left yet, think it will at high tide about 3PM; I am pretty well, in fact, I am very well, I think my health is better that is has been for any time for six months, I am sore & lame but I do not reckon that in, it was quite cool last night, we felt it as much this morning as a good smart Frosty Morning North; I presume we shall feel the Cold little as it is, very sensibly; we have had about 8 months of Burning hot weather to make us tender; I dont know what we should do if sent home in winter it would be the Death of many of us. I have nothing of interest to write & will go to dinner I went to Adams, this morning. expect to have Oysters for dinner
Goodby with love to all C. Shedd