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[163] officers flocked to St. Joseph like crows to the carrion, and induced about a hundred of my boys to join other regiments.

About two weeks ago I went to St. Joseph, and all these boys applied to come back. The present prospect is that I shall rendezvous here. I have now about five hundred men, and we only commenced recruiting ten days ago.

I am a nondescript animal, which I call a triped, as yet, but I trust in a short time to be on foot once more.

Give my very best thanks for the presents you have sent me to the kind ladies who wrought them. Tell them that these evidences of kindness are intensely felt by those who receive them in the far West. You in Massachusetts, who see your men going off thoroughly equipped and prepared for the service, can hardly conceive the destitution and ragged condition of the Missouri volunteers in past time. If I had a whole pair of breeches in my regiment at Lexington, I don't know it; but I learned there that bravery did not depend on good clothes.

I am sorry I have not written to you before, but I have been so busy I have not thought of it. Best love to all, and believe me,

Yours, as ever.

Army of West Tennessee, 12 miles southwest Savannah, and 18 miles from Corinth, Miss., March 31, 1862.

Dear Frank,—In camp again, with a good regiment and well equipped. We are in General Prentiss's Division (twelve regiments), and I command the leading brigade. As we are the left centre division, we expect rough work. I have a fine brigade; my own regiment at the right, the Twelfth Michigan, Sixteenth Wisconsin, and Eighteenth Missouri forming the balance. We arrived here on the 28th, and have a very pleasant camp,—the boys as lively as crickets, and everything working smoothly. It is funny to be called General; but the boys are all delighted, and I think will do good service at the proper time. The enemy is supposed to be about eighteen miles from us. We have an immense army,—how large we have no means of knowing; they say, however, one hundred and twenty odd regiments, and they are arriving at the rate of two or three a day.

As I wrote you before leaving, I have left my contract with Judge Krum of St. Louis. In case I go under, my old assistants, Kilby and John Severance, can give you all the necessary information

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