June 1, 1864: Firebaugh
[Today] we came on to Firebaugh’s Ferry, on the San Joaquin, twenty-five miles. Portions of this day’s ride, for miles together, not a vestige of herbage of any kind covered the ground; in other places there was a limited growth of wire grass or alkali grass, but not enough to make it green. Yet cattle live here—we passed numbers during the day, and countless carcasses of dead animals. We camped at Firebaugh’s, where we got hay for our animals and took a grateful bath in the cold San Joaquin. The bad water, dust, alkali, and our change of diet begin to tell on the boys, but all are cheerful.