October - December 1863 Letters
(No letters in November)
The Regiment has many soldiers out for sickness, the 112th is down to around 300 men.
Camp on Folly Island S.C. Oct 16 (1863)
Dear Friends at home;
Having got back to Folly I thought that I would drop you a few lines to let you know that I am still in the land of the living. This day finds your son in good health & spirits & do hope this will find you the same. Yesterday we were relieved on Block Island & came to camp The boys of your acquaintance are generally well Jim is all right There is some sickness in the regt at present. One boy from our co died this week the disease was ague & bloody flux; he died very suddenly. To commence with I will tell you that there is not much news to write you. There has been but very little firing on either side for the past week the least of any week since I came here. I recd 2 letters from you the 8th of this month & was much pleased to hear from you & also to learn that you were feeling as well. I was some surprised to hear that Dick had gone to be “soldier boy” you said that he wrote back & said he “didn’t know where in the divil they would send him” but by the time he gets back he will know where in the divil they sent him & where in the divil he has been. I do not think we shall get any conscripts here for they will all be used to fill up the Potomac Army although we have a capt, lieut, & some privates at Elmira now but what they are staying for I don’t know, probably it is military. Yesterday we signed the pay roll & probably will be payed to day or to-morrow money will come very acceptable to us now for most of us have been without it some time we expected to get payed off 2 months ago. About 30 from Hampton arrived yesterday & joined the regt 4 of our co came 2 sergeants & 2 privates they are looking well; they have come to where they are needed. I tell you the 112 is getting to be a small regt: before these came yesterday there was about 300 men doing duty: this company had only 26 men on Block Island so you can form some idea what a regt it is. Our regt when we arrived at Suffolk one year ago had more men than the whole brigade now can muster for duty.
Merts has gone to the general hospital at Hilton Head. I hear that Thomas Yoton is dead he ought to have had his discharge sooner but that is the way things are carried on in the army some get discharged that are perfectly well others they will keep till they are the same as dead then discharge.
Father you spoke about getting clothing here we can draw any amount of clothing; as to boots I have not had any since I left Suffolk & do not want any if I had a pair here I should not use them, shoes are much better. About my weight I weigh about the same that I did at home but as to strength I hardly know what to say but I guess I would have to try trlle before I gave up. It is not much of a place here to get strength. Though as a general thing the boys feel much better now than they did a month ago.
I shall be under the necessity of bringing this to a close on account of something to write. You must excuse this & next time I will try & write a better letter & more of it. Hoping this will find my parents, sister & friends at home well I close. My best respects to all. Good bye.
A loving son
Robt L. Coe
I recd a letter from Emma which I will answer soon. We have recd our pay and I recd 59.26 I sent you a check of 26 dollars in this & I will send 20 in the next.
Christmas Dec 25th 1863
Dear My Beloved Parents,
I have the pleasure of conversing with you by the way of pen, ink, paper & c. Your kind letter bearing date of Dec 13th is just recd by me and with eagerness read.
Your son Robert L. finds himself all right this Christmas day. You say in yours last that you have heard that I was & had not been well since I joined my regt. well to tell you the truth I have not been the boy that I was when at home for the diarrhea has had hold of me the great share of the time until about 2 weeks past understand that I done duty nearly all the time. I can proudly say now that I am feeling the best that I have since Feb. 13th the day that the 2nd growth of measles took hold of me.
Now dear parents you know how I have been & am at the present time believe me when I say that I am well & all right. Well to day is christmas but a dull one to me that is what they generally have been although it is pleasant & agreeable weather yet there is not that stir which characterizes any other Christmas of my rememberance. Col Drake has gone to Hilton Head as has also others of his grade & higher to spend Christmas. I understand that Gen Gilmore was married the other day & he was to be at Hilton Head to day. I hope they will have a big time; which no doubt they will. We have not heard from the Cumberland army & in fact from no army for about 2 weeks; I wish I knew what Grant was at. I suppose there is some excitement by this time up there about the draft. I have not heard the full particulars about it yet.
I came near forgetting to tell you how Christmas commenced This morning before daybreak heavy cannonading was heard at the front & continued until near 9am. the report is that the rebs came out & under took to capture a schooner loaded with sutlers goods but when discovered by our gun boats who opened on them. took 300 prisoners. The schooner was sunk but whether by the rebs or by our guns I have not heard probably the latter. Jim & I have got us a stove & Jim sits here whistling as ever we are alone in the tent so we can eat drink & be merry all by ourselves.
I must bring this to a close by asking you to excuse the writing & c. Give my love to all inquiring friends Hoping to hear from you soon & that this will find you all well. I bid you good bye.
Robt L. Coe
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