St. Augustine Feb 21st 63
I have this day recd yours of the 5th & Ada,s of the 2d per Lt. Burnside. it gives me much pain to hear that you are sick. I dont know what to say to give you consolation, keep good courage & I trust ere this reaches you, that you will be better It seems a little singular what you think is the matter should occur at your age, but I dont know much about it; my first Wife was as much as 90 before she found "thats whats the matter"
Beauregard has turned over Cate & his party to the tender mercies of the Gov of Fla to be tried as Insurrectiontists, with the view of hanging them; Gen Hunter has got three citizens of this place, & plenty of Soldiers as Hostages; & sent word to Beauregard that he would hang two for one, it dont seem as if the rebels will proceed to the extremity of hanging prisoners I presume Prescott would swear against Cate if he is in the vicinity, as Cate pulled him up on stealing the Whiskey, if they hang them I should like the priveledge of ranging over this state with full powers I would give every man I met the choice of the Oath of allegience or Death, & three minutes to decide.
I dont know what to say about Heath & the House but it is my impression that it is best to let the thing soak & see what it looks like in the spring, I think it will be quite Safe to follow Mr Huse,s advice at present; he will know whether real Estate is worth enough so that it will pay to redeem the place at any rate Heath will not get any money of me at present, if real estate is low Heath will be loth to forclose perhaps I can get better terms than the documents now allow me. but if he is in a hurry I am perfectly willing to have him go ahead & if the South is coming back into the Union to control it; I dont want any fixed property so but what I can leave for Canada or some other place at short notice. Several of those sent away from here have come back Col. Buffington & family came in the Boat today, others are just outside the lines, they came across the country from Fernandina where they were landed, if nothing happens I am going to write to all the Girls this Mail, Ada writes a better letter than many Soldiers recieve or send, I shall anxiously look for the next Mail hoping to hear that you are well! My health is getting pretty good for me but the Battallion Drills are about as much as I can stand as Put has got on one of his "Double Quick" fits & it gives us fits now it has got to be hot again, I dread the 10 months summer, it is no use to think of a Furlough unless it is a case where the Dr thinks nothing else will save a man but to go North. Mrs Davis arrived today I suppose they will keep Boarders, House & Lane will board with them in the same House with Mrs Riddell Mrs R is much worried for fear Mr. R. will be hung if he is Dr Weems & Son & Mr Uzzina of this place will have to swing take care of yourself for me.