1862-03-16Pope's Plantation
Pope's Plantation

March l6th 1862

Sabbath Evening

Dear Parents

Finds me again writing to you. I am still enjoying good health and hope these few lines may find you enjoying the same blessings. I have not much news of importance to write yet as I have made it a practice of writing to you once a week I thought I would have a little chat with you, if I could not see you. Rather a sad affair took place upon another island last week. It seems that two of our Co's were out on scout, Co H and Co K. They started with the purpose of capturing some Rebels that had been seen occasionally at an old house not far off and agreed to meet or rather that one co should form a line of battle upon one side of the house and the other take the opposite side and to take the Rebels when they should make their appearance. Co H, Capt. Sheflin of Tioga commanding, having reached the point of destination first, according to agreement, drew his men up in battle array. Co K having lost her way came in a different direction and seeing Co H up in line supposed her to be the enemy and sent out two of the best men they had as spies. When they came in halting distance Co H asked who came there and instead of answering Capt Sheflin as they should, they turned and run like cowards when Capt Sheflin ordered his men to fire (thinking they were Rebels of course) and killed Capt. Rambo of Co K and several of his men. I believe they say eleven men fell the first round and the rest run or Co H would have killed more but Col. Bever being present called to the men not to desert their flag and Capt. Sheflin hearing the Col's voice knew him and thus saved the lives of the others. This is indeed a sad affair as Capt. Rambo was an excellent officer but his men were cowards. They have been Col Welsh pet Co. in the Reg. but they can't begin with the Tioga boys. Co H has good rifles but they did not hit but one man in Co K and that one I think they said was hit in the heel. If Co K men that were sent out as spies had done as they should when Capt Shefline challenged them it would have saved the life of their Capt. and several friends and Corporal. I think some of our men are too careless in what they do. They are not careful enough, but my sheet is about full and I must close for this time. Please write as often as you can and I will do the same. The boys from the run are all well I believe. Nothing has been done at Savanna of importance yet. The report came today that Manassas was taken but I do not know how true it is. You will probably know ere this reaches you. I must bid you good by for the present.

This from your Affectionate Son.

J.D. Strait