November 30th 1962
Mrs. Gray, Dear Mother,
Gray has requested me to write to his Mother for him but the steamer is here ready to take the men ashore and I fear that I’ll not have time. I commenced this to her but upon reflection thought I had better wait till I get shore and take the chances of getting the there.
Gray is very much better and Dr. Hutchins says he is doing as well as he can. He told him that he might write himself but he says he had rather keep quit. [He] is afraid if he sits up he might take cold. He is in good spirits and is as full of fun as usual.
Please ask Mrs. Gray to send him some money. He says she will know how much. I may not have time to write his Mother today as Mason has gone to Yorktown and John Dobbins is sick with a cold. He has not gone ashore with is in two days so you see I have to be with my company. I never was better than I am now. I am growing fat all the time.
I received your letter dated, I think, the 23rd yesterday while ashore. We had the first battalion drill yesterday that we have had since we left Baltimore. We all—both officers and men—enjoyed it very much. Lieutenant Hammond, 2nd Lt. in Co. F, has filed his resignation and will leave for home soon. He will call on Gray’s mother. Please tell her so that she sees him, she will know that he has not come to tell that Gray is very sick.
Wadsworth’s time is up tonight so presume we will see him by tomorrow morning when we will hear all the Buffalo news.
Yesterday three new gunboats arrived here. One—I have forgotten her name—is like the Monitor with the exception of being larger. She lays very near us and I tell you, she is a queer-looking craft. ¹
[rest of letter missing]
¹ The ironclad gunboat was the USS Passaic which was—like the Monitor—a single turreted coastal monitor. It was built by the Continental Iron Works in Greenport, New York, under subcontract from John Ericsson. It joined the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron at Hampton Roads on 29 November 1862, but had to be returned to Washington D. C. for repairs almost immediately. It did not return again to Hampton Roads until 6 December 1862.