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Camp at Marin 25 Miles from Monterey
Sept 16th 1846 My dear Dr
I wrote you from Surralvo which place we left on the 13th & reached here yesterday with Gen Twiggs command, Gen Worths will be here to-day & Gen Butlers I hope tomorrow, as well as the Texan Mounted Volunteers under Gov r Henderson should they not disband, a portion of them I apprehend at least will do so The Gov r as I informed you had been ordered to move up the San Juan to China to cross that river there, & unite with me at this place ; he informed me by the return of an individual who I sent said communication with, that he would leave China on the 14th if so, he ought to be here tomorrow at furtherest ; but whether he does so or not I shall move day after to-morrow towards Monterey & reach there the next day say the the 2o th it being only two days easy march, unless something which I do not calculate on should occur to prevent it Whether we shall meet with any opposition on our arrival at Monterey, or between here & that place is quite uncertain, but it would appear somewhat strange if they do not risk a battle for so important a place as Monterey, which they have been fortifying for sev eral months, and where report says, they have six or seven thousand men, half of theMregulars. For the last two days several hundred variously reported by the inhabitants, from two hundred to a thousand have kept in our front, but have uniformly fallen back before our advance or spies consisting of fifty men ; they were only near enough on one occasion to exchange shots, & that almost out of reach of their balls taking effect, wounding slightly on our side one horse, & perhaps one or two individuals on theirs, as one of them dropped his gun and lance, which was picked up by our people But let matters terminate as they may, the story will be told in a few days
A man with the mail got here last night from Camargo, by which I rec d your esteemed favor of the y th ins 1 for which you have my sincere thanks, & I regret you did not hear from Detroit, but truly hope all are well there. I am also very much concerned to learn there is so much indisposition or sickness which has in so many instances resulted fatally among the volunteers where ever they are located ; but had hoped those encamped at or near the mouth of the Rio Grande where they could get good water, or the best in the country, as well as plenty of wood & shade in addition to plenty of sea air as well as the regulars at Fort Polk, would have proved comparitively healthy ; but in this it seems I have been mistaken
I rec d by the mail in question several letters public & private, but the information they contained was but of little importance ; the private ones I may say nothing. I did not hear from my family or from my manager I did not get the proceedings alth rec d in camp, by others of the court in case of Gen Gaines, judging from which & the presi dents remarks thereon I consider his conduct has been tolerated, but not approved, nor can it be said it amounts to an acquital, but barely tolerates his conduct
I stated in my last letter to you, that that portion of the 2 d Inf which had reached New York & New Port Kentucky, had by an order from Washington been halted at those places until further orders, this report must have originated in some mistake, or if true it was only for a very brief period, as I rec d by the last nights mail an order from the Adj c Genl 8 office dated Washington the 24 ult ordering Cap Masons Company of the new Rifles which had been completed to the establish ment to join me, & to accompany the 2 d Infy or if it had left for Fort Polk, to follow it without delay, so that you may expect Riley daily if he has not already arrived
I regret to hear of Ogdens & Dawsons indisposition but as they were on the mend, I trust they will be very soon restored to their usual health. I was quite pleased to learn that Col Baker 1 of the Illinois volunteers was in a fair way to recover from the injury he rec d at the hands of the Georgia Volunteers, & am sorry you did not carry out your intention of visiting him
Wishing you & yours continued health & prosperity I remain truly
Z. TAYLOR SURG N R. C. WOOD
U. S. Army
Fort Polk Texas
P. S. I got no n. papers nor have I heard of one being rec d in camp.
- Zachary Taylor