William C. Holbrook to Frederick Holbrook

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His Excellency
Frederick Holbrook


Hd Qrs Depar. 7th Vt. IndtFort SkesaMay 9th 1862Dear Father

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You will notice by the heading of this letter that I have changed stations since I last wrote you. Col. Robert rec. orders had Sat. to send a detachment of first regt. to act in conjunction with the naval forces to take & occupy this fort, persuant with that order die sent me with 2.30 men for a detachment of Capt Duncan battery.

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We found the fort evacuated. the rebels having departed a week before, the guns were all spoked & quite a number of them dismounted & the carriages burned badly. I have succeeded in unspiking 10 or 12 42 & 32 pounds & have had the satisfaction of hauling to several "sesesh" boats with them. the fort was once a right good one & infact would be now, if it was wel repaired

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it is built of brick, casemated & amounts about 30 heavy guns it seems as though the rebels must have evacuated in great hast. they burned the officer quarters & all the building about the fort. the fort is of some importance as it completely commands the [        ] to spake Conchartrain & I am ordered to stop all vessels passing, & to make them give a strict account of themselves. I bet the most of them pass by their taking the oath of alliegance

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I took three "sesesh" flags from one, the poor call in all the towns in this vicinity are on the verge of starvation consequently I allow some to pass as an act humanity. I cant tell now how long I shall remain here. I presume not long, as it can be garrisoned by fewer men as soon as we are firmly establised in the different towns on the coast. The most of the vessels passing here have families leaving N. Orleans & vessels going there for provision.

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It is much more pleasant here than at Ship Island the it is very swampy on the island & the only [        ] to the fort is by shall road, notwithstanding of the land the grass grows profusely & is quite green & thick. The fort is completely surrounded by a moat 50 ft wide & 6 or 8 ft deep. on one side is a water battery mounting

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two 32 pounds & one 13 in morter these guns been on the channel. I anticipate some excellent amusement from practise with these guns if I get ammunition & we stay here any length of time. in the latter case it will be a fine school for the officers & men. as our people understand [         ] little in the use of heavy artillery. We found several head of cattle on the island which

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the rebels in their haste neglected to take with them consequently we have fresh beef which we could not get at Ship Island. We are very much annoyed by mosquietos I save never before saw such quantities I neglected to bring my netting, so I use the "sesesh" colors to sleep under. I have come to the conclusion that this is all they are good for. We have

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great sport fishing & we catch or great many of all kinds. we live exceedingly well he weather is comfortable the days are rather warm but on the whole the climate is excellent. I must close here with a great deal of love to all at home

I am
Your Aff. SonWm. C. Holbrook

P. S. Directions
W. C. Holbrook
Maj. 7th Vt. [    ]
Gen Phelps Brigade
New Orleans