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Colonel Marcus M. Spiegel

Head Quarters left Wing 120 O.V.I. on Board
U.S.S. Key West No. 2 afloat on the Mis. River
between Helena and Gaines Landing
Dec. 21/1862

My dear Brother Moses!

...After I had my people in the boat, I walked along the riverbank and saw a Yehudah and his wife. I remembered the Sabbath and decided to have a kosher lunch. So, as my friend and his wife came closer, I said, “Happy Sabbath, dear people,” frightening the gentleman and probably his wife, being offered “Happy Sabbath” by a man in uniform with sword, spurs, and so forth and so forth. I asked where one could eat a kosher lunch. The gentleman said I could go with him, or to Mr. Levy who was holding a Jewish Boarding house. I went to Levy and found him and about 30 Jews very surprised when I asked if I could have a Chanukah lunch (my friend at the river bank told me Sabbath Chanukah). But when I sat at the table and Levy took a good look at me he said, “I think the face looks familiar” and when I told him my name he said, “Dear God, a son of Rabbi Mosche of Abenheim, a Lieutenant Colonel.” I was surprised and discovered soon that he was a son of Loeb Herrnsheim. Carl Schloss is married to Levy’s niece. We went to visit him and he was very busy and I promised to return in the evening and stay overnight but unfortunately the departure signal was given an hour earlier and I had to miss a pleasure I would have very much enjoyed and I am convinced it would have been very stimulating for both of us.

Just now the Signal of danger sounded. I must go and see what it meant. Supposed Guerillas in the Woods on shore and the whole fleet anchored. It is awful dark and I do not believe we will make any demonstrations to night. The Gunboats are plying up and down and I think they can attend to any thing ordinary for to night.

With this interruption it is getting late and I must bring my long Epistle to a close. Now Moses let me tell you write often and do not wait for me, for many times weeks may pass in a campayne like this that I may not have a chance to write to you, but at any time will it give me undescribable happiness to hear from you, my more than Brother….

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