“Varmints.” — According to the following
extract of a letter, written by a friend – an officer of the army at
Corpus Christi – the post occupied by Gen. Taylor’s “Army of Occupation”
cannot be particularly desirable. But to the extract, which is dated
7th Infantry Camp,
Corpus Christi, Texas, Sept. 3, 1845.
Florida may be the “land of promise,” but
Texas is the land of “varmints.” In clearing the ground to pitch my
tent, I killed a water moccasin; about 3 o’clock in the morning I was
wakened up by the barking of a dog; he had just run a rattlesnake out of
my neighbor’s tent, when the rattling and barking aroused me – 9 rattles
– captured. I again lay down, and when day broke, a yellow-necked
lizard was cocking his eye cunningly at me from the ridge pole of my
tent. I sprang up, seized my boot to despatch him, when lo! Out the
boot dropped a tarantula! Exhausted from fright and fatigue, I sunk
back in a chair; but no sooner down than I was compelled rapidly to
abandon the position, having been stung in the rear by a scorpion!
Our friend was certainly very
unfortunate. Because the above mishaps, he lost a valuable dog by a
shark. The dog had jumped overboard from a boat, to follow his master
to the shore, when the voracious monster caught him.
Source: The Daily
Picayune, October 7, 1845, p. 2, col. 5.