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[37] hearty cheers from the shore, and we returned the greeting with interest, but we had no further communication with them for three days. We had another practical illustration of the fact that doubtful things are very uncertain. A northerly gale kicked up such an ugly surf that we couldn't land till late in the afternoon of the twenty-second, when we literally staggered ashore. An officer of a Maine battery captured me and took me to his quarters and gave me a square meal and a good bed, and for twelve solid hours I forgot that I was a soldier. After an 8 o'clock substantial breakfast I reported for duty with my company; and on the whole I was glad that I was alive.

Before I left the ship the captain said to, me that he never before saw so fine a body of men. ‘Why,’ said he, ‘they have a right to mutiny. I would consider it a religious duty to lead a mutiny on far less provocation than they have. They have been in a starving condition for days, and yet not one breach of discipline has come to my knowledge.’

Ship Island—chiefly barren sand—is about six miles long, and perhaps half a mile wide at its widest part, and rises only a few feet above the sea. The troops were encamped at the western end of the island. The extreme eastern end is somewhat more elevated, and at the time of our arrival a growth of pines served for both fuel and timber. During heavy gales the larger part of the island was actually under water. On this nearly submerged sand bank the Thirteenth Maine drew for consolation for more than three months. But there was no lack of employment. To our military duties was added excessive fatigue duty day and night, for all transports discharged their cargo at this rendezvous.

(To be continued.)

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