A month after his previous letter, Cock writes to his brother disappointed that he has not yet heard from him. Charles says he will write a quick letter because he has been busy and he will shortly have to participate in a dress parade. He appears anxious to learn if William has received the $30 he has mailed home and asks for an immediate acknowledgement.
Charles is less than thrilled that the 8th Michigan will soon be going out on advance picket, that is, guard duty for two weeks. He takes consolation in the fact that the entire eight mile march will be on the so-called Shell Road, a local road paved with oyster shells. He also thinks he may have an opportunity to get a shot at a Confederate soldier.
As he was in his last letter, Cock is still hopeful that the war will end within a few months but he seems to feel that the Army of the Potomac under George McClellan could be moving faster, a sentiment with which the Lincoln Administration would have sympathized.
Beaufort S C Feb 23
Head quarters 8thRegtMich
The mail came in last night but brought no letters for me & I dont feel very well over it but if you have written any the must [be] some somewhere for I have got but one since I got here & that was the same day. I arrived I have written several times I sent $30.00 to Father by Express the other day. Which I hope you will get & want you to write back as soon as you get it.
We are going out on the advance post to do picket But tomorrow we shall be gone two weeks the 79thN Y are out there now the four Regts of this Brigade take turns at it it is about 8 miles out there & I rather dread the job of carrying my knapsack & gun with 40 rounds of Cartridges
but it is all the way on the Shell road & will be good walking & a Chance of getting a shot at a rebal after we get there I have got my revolver loaded with slugs for some of them if they want them We had a General Inspection this fore noon by Gen Stevans. There is not a great deal of news Except about the Burnsides Expedition & I suppose you have heard more about that than I have if I have written this in a hurry for I have been buissy today & Dress Parade will be in five minutes & I must close this hopeing the next mail will bring something from home I am well & feeling first rate & will be home before many months roll round if the Union men keep on the way they are going on now though I think they might move a little faster on the Potomac without hurting themselves good by far this time
from you brother
Charles F. Cock
Co F 8th Regt Mich Vol
Port Royal S C via N Y