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A letter from Henry Dobson to his mother about the rough sea conditions.
Spanish-American War (1898), Military life
Str. Catania oﬀ Santiago de Cuba, July 9, 98,
Tomorrow AM, we land – the order reads “at early daylight”. Santiago has not yet fallen. Rather a rough trip part of the time. [drawing] something like that. I have not been sea-sick though, am now writing on ballast barrell – the vessel rolling and pitching, all lights out but my little candle in corner, out of sight. Every once in a while, one of the cruisers passes on its silent patrol.
Visible as a dim shadow – for a moment only, yesterday was Dot’s birthday, and the brother’s way oﬀ in China. I thought much of both. Don’t worry about me because I’m O.K. – never felt physically better.
While day lights lasted, we could see war vessels all around. The boys begin to realize now, well dear folks I’m losing sleep, that I’ll need tomorrow, so for my own good, I must say.
I guess those lunch tablets may prove quite valuable, at present I’m eating as much as anyone in the company, will write at ﬁrst chance.
Your loving son, Henry A. Dobson.
All the stuff in this box belongs to me. I would rather it be not disturbed much just the clothes aired until I get home. Dot’s button is in there but I’d like to pick it out for her. There are quite a number of Mauser shells and our bullet that I’ll tell you about when I get home. Keep a record of the cost of these boxes. By the way, I don’t get sufficiently nourishing food here and as my diarrehea keeps me just as weak they are going to send me to the hospital today to get strong. Will brace up quickly there.
Your loving son, Henry A. Dobson
Love to all.
Dobson, Henry A., "Letter, Henry Dobson to Mamma and Papa, July 9, 1898" (1898). Henry A. Dobson Papers. 19.