Transcribed and Submitted by
Great Great Granddaughter of Charles Hennrich, Company D.
Fort Morgan, Alabama
March 27, 1865
I must write you a few lines to let you know that we have left New Orleans and are now lying on a boat at anchor in Mobile Harbor.
I hope that these few lines will find you in good health, as I, thank God, also am as yet.
We left New Orleans the 18th of March, going on the boat "James Battle", a lake steamer, and traveled through Lake Pontchatrain and arrived the 19th at Dauphin Island before Mobile Bay. Our brigade left New Orleans the 7th on a gulf boat. We stayed behind with the brigade headquarters wagon and did not leave New Orleans until the 18th.
From Fort Gaines, which is on Dauphin Island, we traveled across to Fort Morgan and landed. When we were landed the troops received orders to march with five days rations in their haversacks. We went into camp near Fort Morgan and the troops were taken up Mobile Bay by boat and landed near Fish River from where they went by foot to Mobile.
Our war boats had bombarded the batteries several days from the Fish River and finally silenced them so that our troops could land.
Today we went on a boat in order to follow our brigade. I am having a good time here now. There are six men and a corporal and we have nothing further to do than to guard the things belonging to brigade headquarters. Our camp was on the beach of the Gulf of Mexico. The oysters are cheap here, we buy them for fifty cents a bushel.
I saw Fritz in New Orleans before they left. They are in the 3rd Division in our army corps and our army corps is on the march against Mobile. They cannot be far from there by now for one can hear the cannon plainly every day. The news came today that General Smith, with the 16th Army Corps, had had a skirmish with the enemy and that Smith had lost 75 dead and wounded.
NOTES: The rest of this letter was not preserved. The 27th of Iowa Infantry left Eastport, Mississippi the 9th of February 1865 aboard the steamer "Torrascon". Going down the Tennessee and Ohio they reached Cairo, Illinois February 11th. Sailing down the Mississippi they passed Vicksburg on the 14th February and arrived at New Orleans the 21st. Here they encamped near Chalmette. They departed New Orleans March 7th aboard the steamship "Empire City" and arrived at Dauphin Island the 8th. One the 20th of March the regiment left Dauphin Island on the steamer "Star Light" and debarked at Donnelly's Landing the same day. From there they marched, on March 25th, for Sibley's Mills where they arrived on the 27th of March.