Bird's Point, Mo., December 22, 1861.
This is a dark, dismal, snowy and confoundedly disagreeable Sunday. Cold, sloppy and nasty! We moved into our cabin last night but it is not finished yet, as a crack along the comb of the roof and sundry other airholes abundantly testify. The half snow half rain comes in when and where it pleases, and renders our mud floor comfortable in about the 40th degree. Don't this sound like grumbling, Well, I don't mean it as such, for I am sure the boys are as cheery as I ever saw them, and I wouldn't think of these little things except when writing home, and then the contrast between its cozy comforts and soldiering in cold, wet weather makes itself so disagreeably conspicuous to my spiritual eyes that I can't pass it unnoticed. Love Hamblin came over here last night and is now standing by the fireplace indulging in an ague shake, which if not pleasant is not to my eyes ungraceful.
No more troops have arrived here, and save the whole gunboat fleet being here there are no new signs of the down-river trip we are all waiting so impatiently for.
SOURCE: Charles Wright Wills, Army Life of an Illinois Soldier, p. 48-9