In the morning at daylight a tremendous racket was heard, the tramping of feet, the rattling of. the chains, and the skipper brawling through his speaking trumpet indicating that something was wrong. Of course I must know what the racket was about; so I crawled up on deck and found the ship at anchor near some shore and among dangerous rocks. I am not much of a sailor, but it looked to me to be not a very desirable condition of affairs, but fortunately the ship was not on the rocks and the wind was still, but how the ship came there and how it was to be got away I was willing to leave to those whose concern it was. The island we were near was called the Indian Key, among the Florida reefs. Next morning a breeze sprang up, the anchor was hoisted, the sails spread, and the vessel was on its way to Ship Island again. Meanwhile some of the officers went ashore while we were at anchor and brought aboard some cocoanuts and shells, with some branches of tropical trees. The sight of them after seeing so much water was refreshing indeed. At sundown we were off Key West. A pilot boat came out to us and all hands sent letters ashore Edward Murphy of Company B died today and was buried in the ocean off Key West.
SOURCE: George G. Smith, Leaves from a Soldier's Diary, p. 6-7