Montpelier Oct. 6, 1861
I now take my pencil in hand to inform you that I have arrived at Montpelier and I am feeling well. Our company arrived at this place about 2 o'clock in the afternoon. A soon as the cars stopped, we marched out and formed into companies after which we moved into the center of Montpelier village - staid there about an hour then we went into a concert hall (I should judge it was) and waited until supper was ready for us. W took supper at Burnhams' Boarding House after which we, with other companies of the state, started for our encampment which is about 1/2 mile from Burnhams'. We got there at dusk. Ten of our Monkton boys camped in one tent, while we were carrying straw and preparing our tent. We were ordered out to receive our blankets. We have two blankets, one rubber and one heavy coarse blanket.
We had a great deal of fun last night and are enjoying ourselves today. Last night some were singing, some playing on the violin, some were dancing and some travelling around all night.
Two companies came last night between 10 and 11 o'clock. There are now nearly one thousand men in camp. We have not commenced living on pork and beans yet but expect to tomorrow morning. Have not received our uniforms yet, did not organize yesterday. I shall probably have my likeness taken sometime this week and you will, if you can read.
The boys want I should speak of our nightcaps. I wish you could see us, it would make you laugh. Some of us look like old women when we have them on. You will do well if you can read this. I have been writing on a little trunk while the boys are singing and telling stories. It is raining very hard. Tell Frank that Simeon Jay is here.
Write often if you have anything to tell because I shall be gone in a short time if I pass muster and I think I shall.
Address Casper H. Dean, Montpelier Washington D.C. Vt.
Source: Photographs and letters courtesy of Alden Dean, Casper and Martha's great-grandson.