Letter from CHARLEY DOYEL to brother Elsa
Source: Weekly Argus News, Aug 6, 1898
The following interesting letter from Charley Doyel was received this morning by his brother, Elsa Doyel. It is written on scraps of paper indicating that writing materials are scarce around Santiago.
Santiago De Cuba, July 15, 1898
Dear Brother - your letter received, was very glad to hear from you. We are having a pretty tough time. We have fought up and down the mountains for 15 miles and captured the heights just out of the city. We have surrounded and are now laying seige to Santiago which is well fortified. For four days beginning July 1st we fought and then the flag of truce went up. It was taken down after several days then we began fighting again and continued for a day and a half when the white flag again went up. It is still up but I don't know what they are parleying about. The heights we took were charged 3 times by the British 70 years ago but they were driven back by the Spaniards. We took them like a top but lost several men. The 6th and 16th regiments are the men that get the credit for capturing the heights. Our regiment, the 16th lost 15 killed, 98 wounded and 24 missing. The Spanish loss was heavy. We are now in hailing distance of their lines. I wrote Al, telling him of the naval battle between Sampson and Cervera. See his letter and save me telling it over. It took place over the mountains to ur left and a partner and self took our rifles and started for the top of the mountain where we could see the hwole show but the Spaniards got on and we were driven back by hot shot. There is plenty of cocanuts (sic), pine apple, lemons, bananas an dother fruit hereabouts but there seems to be no game. I can look down in Santiago and see the bull ring where they have the big bull fights. You will have to pay postage on this as I lost all my stamps and paper during the battle. I didn't get a scratch but men were shot down on all sides of me. I kept as low as possible and crawled part of the time while others, who jumped up to run were stopped by Spanish bullets. I was behind a bush with my rifle and saw the exchange for Lt. Hobson and his crew of the Merrimac. It looked to me as if we gave two for one. Well I have run out of paper and have yet to dig up an envelope so will cose. Regards to everybody and be sure and answer soon. Yours, Charley Doyel, 16th US Infantry =- transcribed by karen bazzani zach