Baltimore, May 26th ‘37


My dear Sister,


I had written a letter by George Steinman, but

he went away in so great a hurry that I was unable to send it,

& as things are differently arranged from my expectations when

I left you, I have thought it best to write to you how we are

to get along.  On Monday morning all of us were assembled in the

Anterous at Page's waiting until the board would come together

there were 15 coats among the 45, they were on 15 Midshipmen

& the rest of us were standing by to use them afterwards, I

should have managed to squeeze in No 12, & if the usual mode

of examining had been adapted, would have been called in very

soon, but Commodore Biddle told us that we would be examined

as we entered the service, and I am No 33 on the list, so I will

be detained here a month at least, 9 a week will be the average,

I expect, they have only finished 4 since Tuesday, 3 have

passed, the other who was the first to go in, after trying him

7 hours, they bilged him, the rest were not so long & more

fortunate. I am very sorry I must be here such a length of time

for many reasons, if I had only remained two weeks my board

would have been $12 & I should have had $12 left from my travelling

expenses, been able to borrow a pair of white pants & been a

passed midshipman sooner, my white pants, that is those which

I was to appear in will have gone home long before my turn

comes, I do not know how I will do, its very hot here, &

my old blacks are in a very sad state, & I shall have an

unpleasant time without white pantaloons, but I suppose I

must do without them. Mr Selden paid me the amount of his

bill, but I will want this to bring me home & to pay my

washing, for some stockings &c &c


I have a very pleasant boarding house, Mrs Jenkins in

Lexington iStreet, we live very well, Strawberries & green peas,

& all the luxuries, $11 a week, there are 8 of us, & several

other characters, in a few days 4 of the Mids will be examined

& we will lose them. May & Wainwright, Lewis & Brasher, Adams

& I go in the same day., about the third week in June, our turn

will come. I cannot hope for it sooner.


I left the Witmers quite well in Philadelphia. I told

Cousin Sally I would be there the first week in June, & she

thought we might go to Lancaster together, but as it may be

July before I get there Aunt had better write to her & say so.


Commodore Biddle & Woolsey & Captain Reed of the Board

were on the boat from Philad & Mr Ward the mathematical

Examiner from New York also. I was introduced to them,

Mr Rodriguez came here but is so unwell as to be able to

examine us. I am afraid Ward will give us all low numbers.

With my love to you all & remembrance to the Young Ladies.


I am your affectionate brother

Wm. Reynolds


L.M. Reynolds


Write to me when you get this, direct as usual

W.R. U.S. Navy, Balt & pay the postage