Page:Notes of the Mexican war 1846-47-48.djvu/417

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here on account of colds and rheumatism, but we are all recovering fast, and will leave this city as soon as the next train from Vera Cruz arrives; and as soon as I arrive safe at that immense capital, I will endeavor to write to you again, and give you a description of the Valley of Mexico, and the great halls of Montezumas, where the great Mexican Chieftain, Gen. Santa Anna—besides other officers who were equal in experience, and highly esteemed in the warfare of the times of strength and valor—with over thirty thousand well armed troops, were badly whipped by Gen. Scott's army of from eight to ten thousand men.

I have no doubt the people will say this was a gallant little army, and, as I stated before, and will repeat it again, that history has for more than two thousand years preserved the memory of the ten thousand Greeks who effected their retreat from Persia, without fighting a single battle; let our people not altogether forget the ten thousand American soldiers who landed at Vera Cruz, the victorious and triumphant march to the capital of Mexico, and which never retreated an inch.

I have written a great deal more than I first intended to write, but it seems when I get started, I don't know when to stop; as my candle is getting burned down pretty low and the night late, I will come to a close by saying that I am well, and will ever remain your friend,

J. J. O.

To William Strunk, three locks above Lewistown, Pa.

Sunday, December 12, 1847.—This morning is just one year since I enlisted in Capt. Small's company, and I was going to say I wish my time of enlistment had expired, but I want to go on to the city of Mexico before that time comes around.

This morning about 9 o'clock we were to report ourselves at Gov. Child's headquarters, and from there to be taken to Fort Loretto to be attached to a company made up of stragglers.