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[28] departure was taken, and Ship Island was announced as our destination.

About 7 o'clock p. m. on the twenty-sixth I was standing in the lee of the pilot house, greatly interested in the tumbling of a ragged sea. Suddenly, through the gloom, I thought I saw ‘white water’ on our starboard bow, and I said to the sergeant who stood near me, ‘We are in the midst of breakers,’ and putting my hands to my mouth, sailor fashion, I shouted, ‘Breakers!’ Looking through the pilot house window, I saw the quartermaster throwing his wheel to starboard. Had he not started his wheel when he did, these lines would not have been written; for it was a moment later that the captain from the fore rigging bawled first, ‘Hard a-port,’ then, ‘Hard astar-board.’ As the ship came about she fell into the trough of the sea, and for a short time, which seemed an age, she was practically on her beam ends. The sergeant vanished as if by magic. ‘Man overboard’ trembled on my lips, but I checked myself, realizing the futility of raising an alarm at that juncture. Wiping the brine from my eyes with my sleeve, I discovered something in the lee scuppers. Edging down carefully I seized it; whereupon a voice called out as well as it could through a Lit of the Atlantic Ocean that had taken refuge in his mouth, ‘That's my hair.’ ‘God bless you, sergeant,’ I said, ‘are you hurt?’ ‘No,’ he said, ‘but I am nearly drowned.’ ‘Well, now go below,’ I said, ‘and be a good boy.’ He went. An hour later we had a full grown gale bellowing after us, and I remained on deck to watch the splendid behavior of the ship and to listen to the full chorus which seemed to be performing for my special benefit. A gale at sea always sends me to the key of G. Finally, chilled to the marrow, I had to yield to the blast and go below. As I stepped down between decks, behold a whole menagerie in full voice. Every conceivable sound proceeded from hundreds of sick and scared soldiers. Hanging my dripping clothes where I hoped they would dry over night, I flung myself into the bunk already occupied by four somewhat demoralized sergeants, thus adding one more specimen to the ‘floating show.’ The motion of the ship soon lulled me into a sixteen-knot sleep, from which

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