John Hough letters - Bridgeport, Alabama, 1864

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Though the letter is not dated, the content contained allows us to place it after the April 12, 1864 letter in sequence of these letters.

The letterhead is printed with an American flag at left and, at right, the following:

Letter #4

Co.  1st Reg’t Michigan
Engineers and Mechanics.
Camp at Bridgeport Alabama, 1864

Dear brother B

            I feel rather tired to write much just now, but have made up my mind to answer your letter this afternoon.  The reason of my being tired is because I took so long a walk this forenoon, for my own pleasure.  I went over the river on to the island, and went up to the head of the island, probably 4 or 5 miles from camp.  I got a few shells to make rings but could not find many good ones.  Saw some specimens of low life in Dixie.  I will not undertake to discribe it but will just say, that it is as low as you have any idea of.  I saw where they had been plowing for some spring crop.  They used a shovel plow & it went in 2 or 3 inches.  We would not think of raising any thing if we did not plow better, but the ground on the flats here is very rich & anything will grow, if it gets a start.  I crossed over the river on a pontoon bridge—first time I have been on one, it is guarded at both ends & the dont let any one go over without a pass except the Eng & Mech’s.  The boats are about 20 ft long, & 5 or 6 wide.  I presume you have read a better description of them than I can give so I will not undertake it.

            Well, B, I suppose about these time you are turning over the ground as fast as you can & prepareing to plant.  I wish I was there with you—still I am having a very good time here at present, but I am always a little anxious, about what is going to be, in the future, of course it isn’t any use to worry about the future & I don’t think I do much.  I can trust providence for that.

            I suppose you ar not going to put in very large spring crops, brobably not much more than you & father can tend.  How is help there this spring—any more scarse than it has been?

            As for war news, I dont hear any lately, but expect to before long, think there will be some hard fighting when they get a good ready.  Well it seems as though it took them a good while but I dont want the job.  I havnt heard any thing from Clara in a good while, begin to think she is worse or they would write.

            The Lapeer boys are all pretty well now except Levi Smith & he is gaining quite fast.  I expect the boys all will be back in camp again in a fiew weeks, then I guess we will have to drill some.

            Well excuse this short letter for I don’t feel like writing.

                        From your Brother
                                    J K Hough

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