Basil H. Messler Diary, page 16

May 14-17, 1864

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any one that we know we then walked round through the city and amused our selves gaging[sic] at the many scenery's and returned to the Boat at 4 P.M. in good order and some what fatiqued. got our Pay being the first that was paid to us since we had been on the Boat. I got $14.20 amount due me colected some that the boys had borrowed of me and so spent day

Sabath Morning all quiet Church Bells ringing I comenced writing a letter to Sister Mary Stoped writing long enough to put some Blackberries on to Stew comenced writing again and was soon Interupted By My Old Friend William Sparks who just came in from the land force and a good time had we he staid and took [dinner] with me and then I moddified My Pass of Yesterday and went out with Him to find whare his Reg. ware Campt. found then on top of a ruff Blull[sic] in the hot Sun But soon Moved down in the Grove or Bushes and there spent an Hour with Lieut Skant formerly(?) from Bush had a good time returned to the Boat done my Chewers then resumed my writing so spent the evening and just before retiring I signed a Petition Recomending Sergt N.C. Groom's as 2nd Lieutenant of Co.C. 1st Cal M.M.B.

Monday 16th at Yazoo City I wrote a Letter to J.T.McD. in the fore noon in the after noon was reading till 5 P.M. and then the Allarm was given that the City was on fire. Some one had stuck a match in some trash in the Court House and it was soon consumed by fire another house was also burnd I took a walk up town that evening got some more Books so ended the day.

Tuesday 17th Constant firing all around the City (the Boys killing Beeves[sic] Hogs &C.. I read all the fore noon and at 12 noon was call to and told that a friend on the stage wished to see me it was Friend Sparks could not bring him on Board as it was against orders so he and I went out and got a pitcher of water and took a chat Then returned to the Boat got Him 5 lbs of cheas at 20 cts per pound and we parted. I then got a pass and started out to the 72 to see after John Negley and Tom Pool Met them comming to the Boat came