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Camp near Monterey Mexico
November 2 d 1847
My dear Dr
I wrote you by the last mail which left here a week since, in reply to your several letters of the j d & 6 th ult as well as I recollect the dates which I hope will reach you in safety & in due season since when we have had no mail from the U. States, their arrival having been quite uncertain & far between for some time past. I am now busily preparing to leave for Matamoros & expect to do so on the 8th ins t which place I hope to reach should nothing occur to prevent it, by the i8 th or 2O th where I intend remaining until I hear the result of my application made some four weeks since to the proper department in Washington for permission to leave the country, which if acted on promtly I ought at any to receive an answer by the 25th & if favorable, I will turn over the command of this line to Gen Wool, who is now here, & will accompany me to Camargo, & perhaps to Brazos, & after doing so will leave there in the first good vessel for N. Orleans, where I hope to be by the first of December or soon after A report has reached here that President Polk was dead, which, I do not credit, while I regret to hear of the death of any one, I would as soon have heard of his death if true, as that of any other individual in the whole Union, evun should it have the effect of producing great changes in measures as well as men, so far as the management of national affairs are concerned ; as they may be bettered & cannot possibly be worsted ; but it may have the effect of producing some chang & confusion at Washington, which may have the effect of causing my application to be laid over for a short time ; but whether he is dead or alive, I apprehend there will be no difficulty about said leave, other than delay for want of attention, as those in power of said party be they whom they may, will be very much pleased to get me out of Mexico, if not out of the world
We have heard nothing as yet directly from Gen Scott since he took possession of the City of Mexico ; we learn indirectly from Mexicans, he is in quiet possession of the same, & that Santa Anna had been removed from the command of the Mexican army, which had been dispersed, or as they express it, had been thrown out of the combat ; whether there is anything like a peace even in prospect, I am unable to say ; the best informed Mexicans in this section of the country, with whom I have con versed, say there will be no peace ; that eleven of the states of Mexico had united to carry on the war in the best way they could; if so & Mr Trist negotiates a treaty it will be on the Schemerhorn plan, with an irresponsible faction or party
I sincerely hope the dreadful fever has passed away & that the city & vicinity has become once more healthy, & has left you in the enjoyment of the same health as when you last wrote ; when I can know this is the case, I will be greatly relieved on your account
I also flatter myself that Mr s Taylor Ann &c have been able to return home without experiencing any inconvenience from doing, as they must by the time they left Pascagoula been heartily tired of the place if not before
The robbers are still infesting the road between this & Rio Grande ; L r Campbell coming here from Cerralvo with 20 men of the 2 d Dragoons & a few Texan Rangers was attacked this morning about fifteen miles from here by about 150 of that description of people, & after a very sharp contest he was barely able to force his way through them, with the loss of four men killed & several wounded; & alth a large command was on the ground in a few hours after the attack was made there was a reenforcement on the ground of 100 Dragoons yet dispersing through a country unknown to us and were able to effect their escape, or to keep out of our way This is the description of warfare which will be carried on for the time to come in Mexico
My love to Ann & the girls as well as kindest regards to the boys when you write them, & wishing you & yours continued health & pros perity I remain
Truly & Sincerely
Your Friend Z. TAYLOR
SURGEON R. C. WOOD
U. S. A. N. Orleans Barracks
I had but a few moments to write you, as I waited till the last moment hoping a mail would arrive, but have done so to no purpose.
- Zachary Taylor