Dec 19 1863 Chattanooga

Chattanooga Dec 19th/.63
Dear Friend’s,
I recd your kind & welcome letter of Dec 10th to day & was glad to hear from you. The stamp’s were all right. Our regt has been doing picket duty about six miles to the front for the past eight days & we were just relieved & returned to camp to day. The weather is cold for this country. I can assure you. It makes a man shiver on a picket outpost without fire. these cold nights but there is one consolation there are no reb’s to pop a man over with an ounce of lead every time
he shows his face. I saw Capt Wright to night. He said there were a good many inquiries about me which he answered to the best of his ability for which I of course thanked him. He said also that you were at his house but he was not at home. I wish you could have seen him. You would have found him a fine, agreeable old fellow. Everything about here runs smoothly as ever. There are no great military movements being made at the present time. The 4th, 11th & 15th Army Corps which have been up toward Knoxville have all returned. There is as yet no positive information as to the results of Burnsides fighting other than that he has
given Longstreet a severe punishing. Well I had to stop & eat my supper. I tell you we had a tiptop one. It consisted of a Johnny Cake baked in a old fashioned bake kettle, coffee & bacon. It was a supper good enough for a king. I am becoming quite an expert in the science of cooking. Especially of the kinds of grub furnished a soldier. You ask what are the prospects of getting a furlough. I think they are poor. There are so many of the old regiments reenlisting in the veteran service & are all having furloughs allowed them that I hardly think we will get any this winter. Well when I get to go home I want to
have this war wound up so that I will not have to come back again. I should like very much to attend some of those tea parties of which you speak. I think if you only had a box of hard tack & side of bacon to display upon a table that the demand for tickets would diminish for I hardly think they would please the fastidious appetites of some of the gay & festive young people which throng such places. Could they only be convinced that they are better than all the cake & pie ever mixed perhaps the draft would be unnecessary. Well I can’t think of anything of interest or importance. Write often as convenient & I will do likewise. Give my best respects to all & C
Your’s truly
F.A. Pettibone
Co. G, 105 OVI