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Pugh Family Letters

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Document Type: Autograph Letter Signed

Author: John Pugh
Date: July 10, 1862
Place: Key West, Florida
To: Sister

Physical Description: ink on paper; 4 pages (21 x 17 cm) on 1 folded sheet

Number: MSN/CW 5009-2

Transcribed by: Brandy Hutton and George Rugg, 2001

(Please click on our Technical Details button at left
for more information on transcription conventions,
image scanning conventions, etc.)

Page 1      Images: 150 DPI100 DPI72 DPI

Key West, Florida
July 10th 1862.

Dear Sister

     The four letters, two from you, and two from father, (also one from Cecelia) [i.e., the author's sister, Cecilia Pugh (b. c1847)] in two envelopes, Came to hand last night about 10 o'clock, brought aboard by the Captain. Date June 23rd & 24th. I was in my Hammock, and asleep at the time, but I heard the Boatswains Mate Sing out, all you that expects expect letters. lay aft on the quarter deck & get them. I haven't very much time to write. as I am busy making out Quarterly return of expenditures in Gunners Department. which has to gon to the flag Officer before we leave for sea. We got orders about an hour ago, to get ready for sea, as soon as possible.

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Although the fires are hauled, (and Brinker tells me there are five patches to be put on two of the boilers,) it may be two or more days before we can leave, but cant say. Therefore I thought I would take time and write a little, as I suppose you are at all times glad to hear from me, for I am shure, Iam from you. I recd a good letter from friend McCord, June 24th (Date, May 23rd.) I wrote him since that, and toled him to tell our folks not to direct any more to this place, for I thought (when we left, June 29th) we were not comeing back very soon, if ever. But so it is, we are back again. Got in last evening about 5 1/2 o'clock. I'll tell you what brought us back (or rather, what we brought back,) an iron clad, English steamer [i.e., the British steamer Adela]. Supposed to be a prize. We sighted her, 4 o'clock, on the morning of the 7th close under the land, off Abaco Isle. (or hole in the wall.) We suppose she

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bound to Nasau. We steamed up as hard as we dare to, with three boilers, (one being on the sick list.) and made after her. She being at this time about four miles off our starboard quarter, two points forward our beam. And she can run about as fast as any of them. She would have left us far in her wake, if it hadn't have been for a reaf at the point of the Island that runs out about two miles. I will make a rough sketch so that you can see the posich. Well, when she made out to clear the reef, we got within two miles of her, and brought the pivot gun in action. & fired six shell. Two forward, two aft, one over her. But she still kept on. Lieutenant sung out to fire into her. A young Officer we call perpendicular, took sight and fired, and put a shell, (one that happ- not to be loaded, and it was well for her it was so,) right into her cabin. The breakfast table was set, & every thing ready to eat. it was all nocked to pieces. The shell went

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through a bulk head, about six inches from the chronometer that cost $400.00. and stopped against the main shaft. The reason why we towed her in, was because she didn't have enough coal aboard to steam in herself.
The last time we left this, for sea was, (June 29th) The next day we boarded a Brig [i.e., the Model] off Providence loaded with coal, bound to Nasau. We took her as a prize, towed her within sight of Key West, Put a prize crew aboard and sent her in. and we went out to sea, again. July 3rd we boarded a Barque [i.e., the British brig Lilla], cargo, Saltpeter, Copper, rugs, Cordage &c. Put a prize crew aboard her and sent her to Boston. she was formerly owned in Boston that place, and was taken some time ago by the Sumpter, and soled in N. Orleans. We have had very fine and calm weather the last cruise. Some days very hot. The needles are about the right size. I will try a goose quill pen as soon as I can borrow a knife to make one. I lost my knife overboard some time ago, when in Porto Spear. I have made me two pairs of pants, and two frocks. Tell Aunt Lydia I like to sew, and think I can stitch about as well as the next one. If I should happen to get a wife that is not very good with the needle, I could lend her a hand, dont you see the pint? How long does Grandmother expect to remain in Brighton.

From your Brother
John Pugh

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I think you might run the risk of writing another letter here. If you write soon after the receival of this. I wrote father a very lengthy letter just before we left for sea the last time. did he get it?

Do you ever hear from Geo Townsend. And how is his health.

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Has Elma got home yet. or how long does she expect to stay.

Transcription last modified: 06 Mar 2007 at 03:06 PM EST

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