In this letter, JWD continues to write about his illness that was referenced in the November 28, 1861 letter #3. He was able to write home himself, which is an improvement over the November letter that was written by Franklin Hoch. Clearly, JWD is craving the foods of home and he writes to his father asking that some of his favorites be shipped to him in the field. I find this letters somewhat humorous as he writes an ever growing list of the foods he wants sent...Apples, chestnuts, sausage, pudding (pudding is a type of liver sausage that resembles ring bologna...it is gray in color and about 2 inches in diameter filled in a sausage casing and tied into a ring shape. It is similar to liverwurst), bread and butter were on his list. Do you think the coming of Christmas might have influenced his cravings?
Fort Hatteras December the 22, 1861
My dear father I take my pen in my weak hand to write a few lines to you to let you know that I am better again. I let you know that I was sick 6 weeks and father I let you know that I received you letter this day and was very glad to hear of you and to hear that you got that money with I sent to you. And I let you know that Solomon Eyster wrote home fore a box and if you wish to send me my things along why you can put it in his box. I wish you would send me some sausage and some pudding and sum bread and butter and some chestnuts and some apples and if you have anything else to send to me why do so. And if you must pay the box when you send it of you, take sum of my money and pay my share of it. Write a letter to me and let me know if you sent it or not. Write to me as soon as you can. So much of your dear son.
John W. Derr
Direct your letter Fort Clark Hatteras inlet, Company D 48th regiment Pa. Vol
North Carolina via Fortress Monroe Va.
Sorry for the delay...