Bird's Point, Mo., December 11, 1861.
Our cavalry brought in 16 prisoners to-night, about 10 last night; a band of Thompson's men took a couple of boys from our regiment prisoners, out 10 miles from here at the water tank on the railroad. The owner of the house happened to be outside when they surrounded the house and he scooted down here with the news, and by 2 o'clock we had a lot of cavalry and infantry en route for the scene of action. The cavalry started them out of the brush and captured this 16. The Rebels killed one of Colonel Oglesby's men. They did not recover our men but started up and lost another gang that probably has them.
We will be in our quarters next week although we don't need them. It is rather pleasant here now. I took a swim yesterday. ’Twas confounded cold, but I wanted to bathe so I took the river for it. We haven't had a man complaining in the company for a week. We buried one poor fellow last week, but he would have died at home. When I was home last I weighed 142, now I weigh 160. Can you imagine me.
SOURCE: Charles Wright Wills, Army Life of an Illinois Soldier, p. 48