Dec 21st /62
Yesterday we went out on Fatigue1 Duty, but got excused about 9 AM. It was a very cold day, a great deal like winter. To day it is nice & warm. I never saw such changable weather in my life, one day it is very cold & the next it is just as warm.
This morning a part of the Regt were out on Picket. Our Co did not have to go this time. The boys have Just gone over to the Seminary, to bring one of our men John Johnson2. He is Father to that man, that was Discharged, & brought his things home in my Trunk. He was over 60 Years old & has alwasy been Sick.
No more of the boys have come down with the Small Pox yet, though I think some more have been Exposed. Clouse is getting along finely, he has not been very Sick. I should go over & see him, but they would raise a row about it.
Sunday night 7 PM. To night at Dress Parade, our Ambulance corp was read, we have two men in our Co, Their Duty is to pick up the Dead on the Field of Battle & bury them. Not a very Desirable situation,
I think While I am writing this one of the boys Tents are burning up, the boys are getting very careless, three of Co Bs boys Tents burnt up last night. A fire in Camp, causes as much Excitement, as a Fire home does.
We have got not more Picket Duty to do for the Present, we have Fatigue Duty for a while This will be easy for me. The Mail has not come in yet & I am most afraid it will not come in to night.
Monday morning 6,30 AM. We got no mail as usual last night. It is 20 miles from this Camp to Washington, to far for a horse to go every day. They are trying to make arrangements to have the Mail come to Alexandria, if not to go from Alexandria to W, by boat. I do not care how they fix it if we only get the Mail every day. We feel lonesome without the Mail. Fatigue Duty again to day.
Why in the World dont Aleck come, I thought he was to leave home, last wednesday. the boys are getting to see him.
Everything looks now like our making this our Winter Quarters. Of course we hope it is. The QM is doing a little better with the Rations, Yesterday we drew Potatoes [sic]
Hoping to hear from You very Soon
1 What is “fatigue duty”?: Any non military related duty of any kind: cleaning, digging, building, etc..