obtained it as a favor, for lumber on the Rio Grande was so scarce in
those days that to possess even the smallest quantity was to indulge
in great luxury. Indeed, about all that reached the post was what
came in the shape of bacon boxes, and the boards from these were
reserved for coffins in which to bury our dead.
In this rude habitation I spent a happy winter, and was more
comfortably off than many of the officers, who had built none, but
lived in tents and took the chances of "Northers." During this period
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