Kansas, Allen Co, Humboldt. Jan 12th, 1864.
I am happy to inform you that I am well with the exception of a hard cold. It has been a long time since I heard from you. I received a letter from you and one from Cordelia at the same mail. I answered them both and sent them via St. Louis, Mo., as the Hannibal and St. Joseph R. R. is not running. I do not remember the date of your last letter, and I lost your and Cordelia's letters while out on a scout, but it seems a long time since, and I am very anxious to hear from you. We have had no mail here for three weeks, and I do not know the cause, but I suppose it is in consequence of deep snows north. So far there has been the hardest winter in this country that ever was known. I have suffered more from the cold this winter than I ever have before in my life. The thermometer has stood as low as 20 degrees below zero, and as low as 14 for days at a time. The snow is about 8 inches deep. That is the deepest we have had. Today is quite warm and pleasant.
We have not been paid and the Capt. thinks we will not be paid before Spring; and how you will get along without money I do not know. It troubles me much. But you must do the best you can. I have caused the Co. to be reported to the State Treasurer. The report was sent about two weeks since and you can draw your state money as soon as it arrives, but it may be delayed, as other mails.
It is two years tomorrow that I enlisted, and I hope it may be some consolation for you to know when this reaches you, if it ever does, that I am on my last year's service. But it seems like a mountain to me, as I well know that I cannot endure the hardships that a soldier has to undergo as I once could. But at present I have no duties to perform.
(Off duty awaiting the trial of his case to determine whether he shall be rated and paid as a Sergeant or a private -- $17 or $13 a month. He had been absent from the Company a number of weeks. Several Sergeants were reduced to the ranks for that cause. He had never been so reduced, so far as he or his Captain knew, but a Lieutenant placed him on the pay roll as a private, without the Captain's knowledge, back in August. His absence was strictly upon leave and he specifically says he was never absent an hour without leave. He believes the Capt. will see that justice is done him. - MJM)
I should like to see you all very much. I think of you every day and frequently dream of you. But I wake up and, as the Dutch say, to find it is all a humbug. I hope I may see you before my time is cut, but I fear I shall not... I want you to give my love to Cordelia, Elvira, and Letitia, as well as to Henry, Amos, and all the children -- and Manley if he is there. Tell them all I should be happy at all times to receive letters from them. I hope Manley has been able to come home, as I know you would all have such a good visit with him and Vira. Yet I know by experience there is one thing that mars the peace and pleasure of a soldier while at home on leave of absence, and that is the thoughts of again parting with those and all that he holds most dear in life.
It is said that our Co. are to be permanently located here all next Summer. If so, I do not know as a better place could be chosen. I think it a much better place than Fort Scott.
Kiss Baby and all the little ones for me, and tell them Pa thinks he shall come home, not only to see them but to stay with them. The war news is good and I really do think there is a prospect of peace before the present year expires.
Write as soon and often as you can. God bless and protect you.
Remember me as Your Affectionate Husband,
C. N. Mumford.