Thursday, January 1, 1863
In camp at Lumpkin's Mills, three miles north of Waterford Miss. Am quite unwell with diarrhea. Weather is wet unpleasant. We are on half rations, yet the men forge enough to supply their wants. We also draw meal and graham flour from Lt. Bresee who is Brigade Commissary. The cap is full of rumors and peace speculations. Many profess to think the war is near its close. Have written a letter to Jennie today. I take great pleasure in writhing her.
Friday, January 2, 1863
Weather same as yesterday. There is a great deal of sickness among the men. More than one fourth of men are unfit for duty. Corp Tenney and J. Adams are sick in hospital. No news from the North. Our mail has been very irregular for two weeks owing to our communications be cut of at Holy Springs which is chargeable to Col. Murphy of the 8th Wis. Hs cowardice or treason, whichever it be should be punished with death.
Saturday, January 3, 1863
The weather is very inclement, especially since sunset when a furious rain storm set in. I pity the pickets if the storm continues. There has been but little stir today. Our every move is watched by the enemy whose scouts are seen every day. My tent is damp and uncomfortable. I shiver with the cold. I must to bet.
Sunday, January 4, 1863
Clear today with a bracing air. Have been on duty as Brigade Officer of the Pay. Have visited the pickets three times. Sergt. Foster goes the Grand Rounds with me. Had along chat with Col. Johnson this morning. He is very clever man. "Am glad that our Brig. has so good a commander Sergt. Snow went the rounds with me instead of Foster. My company are all on picket and are having a good time. There have killed a beef.
Monday, January 5, 1863
Weather is clear yet and cool. My labors yesterday were too server. I feel tried and sick. I have a constant longing for the tender care of my loving wife. When I am well I can take care of myself. Such is all humanity at least the male portion, supremely selfish. Were I with her it is a chance if I did not tire of her as soon as I should recover and, kind and good as she is, want to return to the excitement of the Field.
Tuesday, January 6, 1863
Weather is little frosty today. Everything indicates a movement. Our sick are being moved to Holly Springs. Troops have been passing all day in the direction of the Springs. It is humiliating to know that we have been outgeneraled by the enemy and compelled to retreat with seventy thousand men by a band of three or four thousand.
Wednesday, January 7, 1863
Left Lumpkin's Mills to day and marched to within a mile of Holly Springs. Arrived at our cap at 8 P. M. The mud is very deep. I tired out before dark and had to be helped through by Sergt Foster. Just received a letter from My Jennie containing $100 in money and were so much love. Her letters are the oases of my desert lift. They come at intervals and leave spot of gladness on my heart. The presence of their author would make it thrill with heavenly bliss.
Thursday, January 8, 1863
Moved from on mile south of town to the northwest extremity. The town is on fire in a dozen places. It is the work of soldiers. The 12th is suspected of doing the mischief but they are all in camp. We have three roll calls and not a man is absent from the Regt., but one. It looks hard to see fine residences and large public buildings so willfully and uselessly destroyed.
Friday, January 9, 1863
Struck our camp at 8 A. M. and lay at the old camp till dark starting the teams in the morning. We moved eight miles in the direction of Moscow, Tenn. I was obliged to take the ambulance for want of strength to walk. We left the Springs in flames. Many a family is turned out of doors this dreary night. I tremble when reflect that some day a conquering army may pass through my own state. The one man that was from our Regt. last night was with the 33d. Wis. He belongs to Co. "K".
Saturday, January 10, 1863
Marched into Moscow Tenn., a distance of eighteen miles. I have walked a whole way and am very tired. The town consists of a depot and two or three dilapidated houses. The weather has been fine but the roads are bad in consequence of the late heavy rains. We will probably stay here for several days.
Sunday, January 11, 1863
The weather is fine yet. My Co. has gone on picket in charge of Lt. Hoyt. I have pitched my tent anew and built a chimney, a real brick chimney. Nothing of importance has occurred. We are drawing full rations again.
Monday, January 12, 1863
Start for LaFayette which is on the road two ards Memphis, but the orders are countermanded when we are within two miles of the place and we start back for Moscow, go one mile and comp. I have been in the ambulance today. Gave my seat up to Sergt. McVey for an hour. He is quit sick.
Tuesday, January 13, 1863
Push on for Moscow. Has rained all day. The streams have risen so rapidly that teams have had to swim. Iíve waded over my knees several times. We would not cross to two n so camped on the south and west side of Wolf River two miles out. Our blankets are wringing wet tonight. We lay in the water last night. It is dreary for a sick man but I put the best side out. I have a Sibley stove which takes the chill off my tent a good deal.
Wednesday, January 14, 1863
The snow fell tree or four inches deep last night and is yet coming. Lt. Hoyt has built a camp bed-stead today. I have kept my tent and tried to dry our blankets, yet they are very damp as well as our over coats. My boots are all out so that it is impossible for me to step out with out wetting my feet Lt. H. has been advising me to apply for a leave of absence I donít think of doing so. The mud is half ankle deep in my tent.
Thursday, January 15, 1863
Weather has been fair today. Have lain in camp all day. An order came compelling the soldiers to turn on all horses and mules for which they do not draw forage.
Friday, January 16, 1863
In pursuance of orders for Gen. Lawman we started for LaFayette again but fell short a mile. Weather and roads are very bad. Snow in our tent three of four inches deep, but we have been cleaning it our a little. Am pretty tired. My strength fails on the least exertion.
Saturday, January 17, 1863
Struck our camp today to prepare for a march but pitched it again had have remained her and probably will tomorrow. Have been more unwell than usual today. My friends urge me to go home for a short time. I shall not do it. Received a letter from Jennie today containing postage stamps. It is written in the same warm, pure, affectionate terms in which she always addresses me. I would that every man had so good a guardian angle.
Sunday, January 18, 1863
Have lain in camp quietly all day. The weather is far but promises rain. It has been thawing all day. The snow is pretty much all gone.
Monday, January 19, 1863
In camp again today. Weather a little bit misty. Itís one mile and a half to LaFayette. Have received orders to go to Collierville, a station the Memphis and Charleston Road twenty -five miles from the former place.
Tuesday, January 20, 1863
Are within two miles of Collierville. The rain has been falling all day. The water in some of the "wet weather" streams if fifteen feet deep. The teams have had to swim and the wagons, some of them, be drawn across with ropes. Several animals have been drowned. I was fortunate enough to get a ride on Sergt. Maj. Birdís horse and unfortunate enough to have him run into a stream and give me a practical illustration of immersion.
Wednesday, January 21, 1863
Stuck our camp at M. and marched down the R. R. to Collierville which consists of a depot and a deserted house We have camped near the station. We have our tent well arranged; a bed stead, a floor and a stove are all here to contribute to our comfort. It is twenty-five miles for here to Memphis.
Thursday, January 22, 1863
In camp all day and rather poorly too. My food does not digest. My medicine fails to take the desired effect. It sickens me. I cannot keep it on my stomach a minute.
Friday, January 23, 1863
Have been out foraging for straw for the men to sleep on today. I came "clean done out." I shall do no more duty till I am better The weather is lower. I am glomming and out of sorts. I need something I have not and I know not what it is.
Saturday, January 24, 1863
In camp. Weather rainy. Some talk of the paymaster paying us a visit and two month's dues in "greenbacks" shortly. Hope heíll come.
Sunday, January 25, 1863
Nothing new except another rain storm which has been coming for the last twenty hours. Have not left my tent during the day except from necessity. My Men are very kind to me.
Monday, January 26, 1863
In my tent all day today. Weather raining. Lt. Bresee called on me this morning.
Tuesday, January 27, 1863
Paymaster arrived this morning and will pay us for July and August. Received a letter from Jennie in which recalls things which I cannot. They are evidently unpleasant reminiscences I regret that any thing but happiness should attend her in my absence. I hope I am not the cause of her grief, yet from the tenor of the letter, I feel I am. The letter bears date Jan 18.
Wednesday, January 28, 1863
Have been cooped up all day. Received a paper from Jennie. Have been preparing the payrolls, getting the men to sign them [?]. We shall probably get paid tomorrow. The company has been foraging to day in charge of Lt. Hoyt. They have brought in a good supply of sweet potatoes.
Thursday, January 29, 1863
Have received our pay for two months services today. The boys are jubilant. Think they are to have a good time now. The money was paid to me and I received too little by $26.00, just one manís pay. I went to Major Crayne but he fused to rectify the error. I shall have to lose it. It will teach me a lesson well worth the money I think. I have paid the men except where I was unable to make change.
Friday, January 30, 1863
Have finished paying my men. The weather is lowery. There is considerable activity in the cotton trade at this post. Some thirty bales having come in today which are in round numbers to $11,250.00. This gives a faint idea of what treasure passes from us to the enemy daily. I wish more attention were paid to sick men and less to enriching cotton speculators. I have been trying for more than a month to get Jas. Adams discharged but cant. I expect he will discharge
Saturday, January 31, 1863
Have been confined to my tent today by the effects of my most enervating disease. Where it not for the reproach I should be almost sure to meet at home I would try and get a leave of absence. Sent Sergt. Foster to get me a pair of boats today and her brought good serviceable ones. Knee high in the legs. A Co. D. man was shot through the lower part of the leg while on picket last night. The wound is severe butt not fatal. He was stationed one mile south of camp. The wound is of a minnie ball.
Sunday, February 1, 1863
I have applied for a leave of absence but I have a presentment that it will not be accepted or that something will turn up to knock the thing in the head. Well I care but a little I have so little life that I care not what happens or how or when it does. Lt. Hoyt is tireless in his efforts to get my papers through the Division all right. I am duly obliged for his kindness.
Monday, February 2, 1863
Am in Memphis tonight at the Gayoso House. Capt. Maxson took my papers this morning and went up to Div. Hd. Qrd. at Moscow and got them signed. I met him at the depot and took the train for here I have seen nothing of the two on being too weak and tired to look about me while passing through the streets. My board will cost $3.00 per day but I hope to be here but a short time. I shall try and get some on to take my papers to the Medical Director tomorrow. Iím afraid they will have to Grant at Vicksburg
Tuesday, February 3, 1863
Meet Capt. Howell and lady at breakfast. The Capt. volunteers to help my papers through but the day is spent and nothing is accomplished but to know that the starting point is found. I am very lonely when not actively employed. I think very often of Jennie and other friends at home.
Wednesday, February 4, 1863
Went to the Medical Director this morning and got my papers approved. He signed them without a word. The M. D. was on Gen. Mitchellís Staff last summer when we came from Kansas. His name is Campbell. After getting my papers through here Capt. and I took a hack for Gen. McPhersonís Head Quarters to see Maj. Strong but he was out. We rode back, paid the hack man $4.00 for his services and went to dinner. This P. M. we went to Gen. Hamiltonís and got his approval but my papers have to go to Grant. Discouraging.
Thursday, February 5, 1863
Have been lying in my room all day. The weather cold, the ground frozen and covered with snow. Capt. Howell has called on me once or twice today. Col. Bryant and Lt. Linnett are down from the Regt. Qr. Master. Sexton and Sutler Thomas are down from Wis. Dr. Lard of the 13th Wis. is here also. He is in charge of one of the hospitals. I think No. 3. We have had a long chat. Sexton says there are more Secesh in Wis. than in Tenn. Let them beware they will be held accountable for their acts.
Friday, February 6, 1863
Nothing of interest occurred today except the arrival of Lt. Cantwell. He is rooming with me in No. 312. He is quite sick.
Saturday, February 7, 1863
Have been trying to get Lt. Cantwellís papers through today. The medical Director has approved and forwarded them. The weather is stormy, the roads muddy and every one gloomy. I am a little worse than usual. Think I shall get better by being careful about my diet. I eat little but toast and potato.
Sunday, February 8, 1863
We have (i.e. Lt. Cantwell and I) moved from 312 to 384 and now have a room to ourselves before there were four others with us. It was unpleasant. Lt. Bresee called on me this evening. He is just down from Collierville. Reports that the Regt. has moved down the road four miles this way. Itís a little stormy and very muddy hear. I am feeling a little better tonight.
Monday, February 9, 1863
Nothing of interest to day. I have been at Gen. Hamiltonsís Hd. Qrs. to inquire after my leave of absence but hear nothing from it. I presume it has been mislaid and that I shall never hear from it again. Settled for a weekís board today. It is too dear to record. Fires included it amounts to $1900.
Tuesday, February 10, 1863
Weather is wet and gloomy. Corporal Dascey is down from the Regt. He brought me a letter from brother Henry. The prospect is that the 16th Army Corps will go to Vicksburg to assist in its reduction. Walked out a short distance with Corporal Dascey the afternoon to show him where to get some watch repairing done and came back quite tired.
Wednesday, February 11, 1863
Have been at Gen. Hamiltonís again today but hear nothing from my papers. They have been gone eleven days. I shall never hear from them. Think I shall send another application to the Regt. tomorrow, by Dascey.
Thursday, February 12, 1863
Have sent an application to Regt for leave of absence. I can't make it appear that I will be granted but I can thus stave off going back to the Regt. for a day or two longer. Cantwell has also sent another application. By a careful system of dieting I have succeeded in partially checking my diarrhea. Lt. Cantwell has changed boarding places from here to Madison St. He is now with a private family where he gets board for $8.00 per week.
Friday, February 13, 1863
Nothing has transpired today except Lt. Bresee called on me. He is just down from Collierville. Lt. Cantwell was over to see me. Weather is rainy. Shall look for my papers down from the Regt. tomorrow.
Saturday, February 14, 1863
The "papers" have come disapproved. I shall go back tomorrow. If I am taken down again and a leave of absence is not granted me immediately I shall resign. I do not regard it as my duty to sacrifice health and life in such a way. I would a hundred times rather be slain in battle. I have too happy a home, too kind friends, too bright hopes for the future, too angelic a wife to forsake for death in a hospital. It is far different from fallen in the field. Received a letter from Jen., also from Sis. Fran.
Sunday, February 15, 1863
Am with the Regt. to night. Came from Memphis on the 7 A.M. train. Was wet on the depot steps by L. Bresee and Sergt. Gribble, who gave me a cordial welcome at the same time regretting that I failed to get away. Col. Bryant told me that I "had better go home" I hardly think I shall try it again. I stayed with Lt. B. to dinner and then rode his horse down to camp. The Regt. is on the north side of the R. R. four miles for Collierville. My Co. has been foraging today. I received a letter from father and Isaiah on my return.
Monday, February 16, 1863
I have made another application for leave of absence and it is through the Regt. and Brigade Col. Bryant being Brig Comíder. It will go to Moscow (Div Hd. Qtrs.) tomorrow by Sergt. Foster. I have felt a good deal worse to day than usual. The Dr. had made out a strong case for me. Lt. Hoyt has been active getting my papers prepared. The weather is stormy and very unpleasant. Received two letters from Henry. The health of the troops in Camp Randall is very bad. He is down on Copper Heads.
Tuesday, February 17, 1863
Sergt. Foster has returned from Moscow with my papers approved yet my heart sinks within me. I cannot make it appear that I am going to get away. I feel very anxious to, for my health is very poor. I received a good long letter from mother this evening. It is full of material affection. On of Jennieís loveliest letters I just received. It fills me with joy to receive marks of such entire devotion. He her heart is all mine not withstanding my unworthiness.
Wednesday, February 18, 1863
Am in Memphis again typing for a leave of absence. My papers are approved by the Medical Director. Lt. Cantwell took them to the Genís office but the Adfít was not in so I shall have to wait tile tomorrow. I want to the Medical Director myself. He approved without any hesitation. I am stopping with Lt. C. at a Mr. Aldricheís on Madison St. between 3d and 4th. Joel Winters came down to the city today. Carried my baggage from the depot.
Thursday, February 19, 1863
Lt. Cantwell took my papers to the Gen.ís but could not get them acted on till they come in turn which will be several days. Say five or six. The weather is pleasant and the mud is drying up fast. Went out to get some photographs taken but could not on account of the cloudy weather. Wrote Jennie. Hope I shat have to do so again before I see her. My hope is faint however. The little town Hopefield opposite here was burned today. It was harbored guerillas.
Friday, February 20, 1863
Weather has been warm and very pleasant today. Fell in with Colbert Handchet, of Handchetville. He is Sutler of the 16th Wis. He says the 25th is on there way here. I shall watch carefully and try to see brother Henry. It is now more than a year and a half since I last saw him. We have both passed through many changes since them. Wrote sister Fannie today. The first time for a year. Am not quite so well as I was yesterday. Lieut. Cantwell is improving very fast.
Saturday, February 21, 1863
Weather is raining and very gloomy. Have been watching or the 25th Wis. all day but it has not come have been to the levee five or six times. Am clear tired out. My strength is all gone. Gen. McPhearsonís Army Corps is all embarked at will sail for Vicksburg between now and tomorrow noon. Wrote mother a letter today. I am very lonesome and have a strong desire to return to camp, but I would be worse that useless now. I am not homesick yet. I often thin of home and my Jennie.
Sunday, February 22, 1863
Have been confined to the house today. Am worse than usual. Have watched for the 25th, but it has not come. There was a meeting held in the city today in commenceration of Washington's birthday. It was addressed by several of the military fraternity, among whom was Gen. Hurlburt. I was anxious to attend but did not feel able. Have had another chat with C. Houchett.
Monday, February 23, 1863
Am feeling better today. Weather is very fine but a little cool. Have been watching at the levee all day for the 25th. I conclude it has been ordered up the Tennessee or Cumberland. I hope so. Have given up all hope of getting leave to go home. Shall never try again if I am sick but resign. Shall go to my Regt. in a few days.
Tuesday, February 24, 1863
Weather has been very fine. Am improving in health and strength. Made a visit to the cotton factory at the extreme upper end off town but it was not running. Had an ambrotype taken and sent it to Aunt Mary by letter. I regret not having sent for Jennie a month ago. It would have been very pleasant to enjoy her sweet society now. I look forward with a great deal of anticipation. So the time when we shall be reunited. She is a lovely wife.
Wednesday, February 25, 1863
The rain has fallen incessantly today. Have taken cold and am felling rather poorly but shall go to the Regt. tomorrow for my personal superintendence must be giving to making out my Pay Rolls for Jan. and Feb. It is asking too much of Lt. Hoyt to do the duty he has and then prepare the rolls. Recíd a letter from Henry written at Cairo the 19th. He does not know where they will go. Got a loving letter from my Angel Jennie. Wrote an answer asking her to come to see me. I know she will comply.
Thursday, February 26, 1863
Am with the Regt. again. Am provoked than I had not stay at M. for my leave of absence as sent down by Joel Winters and got there just as I was coming away. I know nothing yet till I got to Collierville. I shall wait till I come back. I must start soon or I shall not get through soon enough to prevent Jennie from starting. I wrote her today to come. I shall start again the 28. It has rained all day. It is very muddy.
Friday, February 27, 1863
Am with the Regt. yet, but am very anxious to get away. Joel have not returned from Memphis yet. I expect he will be up in the morning. I shall start in the evening or the morning of the 1st of March. The weather has been very fine today. There has been nbo train up this P. M., which accounts for Joelís absence.
Saturday, February 28, 1863
Am at Collierville. Have my leave of absence in my pocket. Shall go to Columbus tomorrow. Am very much improved in health but will improve the opportunity to visit my friends.
Sunday, March 1, 1863
At Jackson Tenn. On account of breaks in the road coursed by high water. I have made only half the distance I expected to Am stopping at the Central House. Am very tired . Had to carry my valise merely a quarter of a mile. Have thought constantly of my sweet wife. I am not be sufficiently for so precious to treasure. I cannot comprehend why so priceless a gem has been entrusted to my keeping.
Monday, March 2, 1863
Am at Columbus, Ky. Have net brother Henry. Am overjoyed. He is looking well. Is natural as of old. Tells me many interesting thins of the Potomac and its Army. Shall stay with him tomorrow. Capt. Joslin is a splendid man and will liked. Lt. Roush is quite a gentleman. I am very anxious to get home but must visit Henry.
Tuesday, March 3, 1863
Have had a very pleasant 24 hours with brother henry. We stopped the same house last night at which Jennie and I spent two days last Summer. If I am always as happy at Columbus, I shall want to visit it often. Reached Cairo at ten P. M. Am at the U. S. Formed the acquaintance of a Mrs. Adams of Cincinnati. It is Jennieís birthday. I would that I could spend it with her.
Wednesday, March 4, 1863
Reached Chicago at 10 P. M. Had a long tiresome ride. Left Mrs. Adams eight miles this side of Centralia. Am very anxious to get home to my Jennie. I have been a long time coming but will get through the 6th. Shall not go on tonight but wait till 11:30 tomorrow and try to see Allie.
Thursday, March 5, 1863
Reached Richland center at a late hour. Hunted all over Chicago for Sis. Allie, but could not find her. She was not at her school. Met Lt. Strong at the depot in Madison. He is o the 30 Wis. He has been promoted to a 1st Lt. Rode from the Rock in an open wagon. Am perfectly well but a little weak and tired.
Friday, March 6, 1863
Am home. Have had a six month old kiss from my sweet wife. Have seen all my friends but Drine and Sis. Shall visit them early in the morning. Am glad to find them all so well especially father Loveless. Brother John is just as he was years ago. I am truly sorry to find Sis Phronia deserted. Yet she is better without that with such a tyrant. While I live she shall never want for a friend.
Saturday, March 7, 1863
Visited Sis and Drine. Sis is quite sick. Have enjoyed it very well and shall repeat it frequently. Saw Mrs. Paul and other neighbors. Am at father's where Jennie and I shall stay tonight.
"Look to the light
All will be right.
Morning is ever
The daughter of night."
Sunday, March 8, 1863
Have had a good visit at father Lovelessí. Jennie, John and Sis. Phronia have been singing and Jennie playing on her melodeon. She executed her pieces well. I am agreeably surprised notwithstanding the praises Henry gave her. I thought I was full prepared to expect fully enough but I was not by more than half. Her presence would make the gloomiest home a parades. [Jennie wrote in his diary in response to his statement] I am glad you think so my darling.
Monday, March 9, 1863
Called on the Viola people. Also on H. S. Turnersí family. Spent the evening at Sergt. Rogerís. Am having a splendid good time at home. Am surprised at the resignation with which Sis Phronia bears her misfortunes.
Tuesday, March 10, 1863
Have been at father Bís today. Jennie is with me. She can be found within three steps of me any time. Mr. Cliff and wife have been spending the evening with us at fatherís. Jennie has been complaining with a sore throat this afternoon. I fear she will have the mumps. I hope not.
Wednesday, March 11, 1863
Called at A. M. Deanís Prime and Virginia have been spending the evening with us. Jennie and I visited out little home this A.M. It makes me homesick. Want to keep some one improving my land while I am away.
Thursday, March 12, 1863
Am at father L.ís Nothing except the usual home pleasure always her has met me today.
Friday, March 13, 1863
Spent the day at father Lís except calling at the P. O. and at Mr. Hullís. Mr. M. Powel called and had spent the evening with me. "Received."
Saturday, March 14, 1863
Spent the evening at father Bís. Bro. John, Sis Phronia, bro. Drine, Sis, Jennie, Mrs. Dean, Hickory and L. R. Lawton with their wives spent the evening with us. They all unite in their good wishes to me and all soldiers. It is cheering to feel that one has the praise of all loyal citizens. We have had a pleasant evening but were a little disappointed for we expect some warm sugar. Mr. W. Ogeden who was a member of my Co. till Aug 4, 62 made me an afternoon visit. L. Cliff also.
Sunday, March 15, 1863
Visited Sis. and Drine. Have concluded not to start bake till Thursday the 19th. Bro. John and I called to tell C. D. Turner that I would not go tomorrow. I had engaged a ride with him to the Rock.
Monday, March 16, 1863
Spent the day t father Lís, the evening at Harry Turnerís in company with Jennie, Sis, Phronia and Bro. John have had a good time. Reached home at 11:30. Mud and water ankle deep. Jennie has been suffering with sick headaches for two days, but is quite well of it this eve.
Tuesday, March 17, 1863
Am at Bro. Dimeís. Have had a warm sugar eat. Isaiah has been with us during the afternoon. Jennie is with me. We are having a good time. I shall have to leave them in the morning for no one knows how long.
Wednesday, March 18, 1863
Am at Father Lís. Have bid my own people all good be. Shall start for my Regt. tomorrow morning. I regret very much to leave but duty calls and must be obeyed before inclinations.
Thursday, March 19, 1863
Am at the American in Richland Center. Brother John is with me. We have had an uncomfortable ride but made it as pleasant as possible with chat and story. I never had so hard a parting. Each time I leave my friends it tries me worse. I have not quite a member of my old acquaintances at the Center.
Friday, March 20, 1863
After one of the most tedious rides of four hours that I were had I reached Lone Rock at on P. M. Reached Madison at five. Met Mr. Reynolds, brother to Lt. Chas. of the 12th. We visited the Senate and Assembly Chambers together on search of the Hons. Priest and Walworth. Wound up at a saloon on a couple of oyster stews. I am lonely enough. Believe I shall get homesick unless I meet something exciting. Never had quit so strong, symptoms. Guess Iíll weather it though.
Saturday, March 21, 1863
Called at Maj. Tenneyís office but could get no pay as he is our fun. Called on Hon. P. B. Priest at the Assembly Chamber and had a pleasant chat. Mr. Reynolds called and gave me a letter and a watch to take to his brother Lt. Chas.. Reached Chicago at 5:45. Surprised Sis Allie by dropping in for the evening at her boarding place 46 Carpenter St. Allie and I ran up to the extreme wet edge of two n to see Mrs. Keith. It was my first ride on street cars. Have promised to go to church with Sis. A. at ten tomorrow. Am not favorably impressed with Chicago Streets.
Sunday, March 22, 1863
Have had a pleasant day with Sis Allie going to church and visiting at home. Met several very pleasant ladies and gentlemen at her boarding place. Saw Jennies photograph and looking so good that it brought a deep drawn sigh. It was hard to part from Allie. She seemed to be the last link between home and war. Left the Central Depot at 8:45 and have been knocking along Dixie way for three hours. Donít know were we are. have been asleep all the way. We are watering.
Monday, March 23, 1863
Reached Columbus at 8:30 P. M. After a pretty hard ride of 24 hours. Had several break downs on the R. R. which delayed us for several hours. Spent a pleasant evening with [?] H. Shall stay at the Columbus House tonight. H. met me at the levee. Came on the "Rob Roy". Told me (i. e. H) of a man who stabbed eleven persons in this house but a few days ago before he could be arrested and then not till he was killed. My Regt. is at Memphis. The rumor is that we are to go to Vicksburg.
Tuesday, March 24, 1863
Have spent the day with Bro. H. and other officers of the 25th. Went out to Battalion drill and was introduced to Col. Montgomery and Lt. Col. Nasmylt also Adj. Syms. Went down two n last eve with Capt. Joslin, Lt. Roush and bro. H. where we met Maj. Rusk and Lt. Hunt had a lively hour with them; then went to the theater (?) [sic] where we heard some very good and some very foolish things. We saw some things and come within the runder the part of an inch of seeing some others.
Wednesday, March 25, 1863
Have been with the 25. Had thought of going to my Ret. but want to stay another day. Called at Co. "A" and had a visit with its officers and the Maj. Who came in while I was there. Had a jolly time. [?] the State of Wis. for Dix on . The 25 officers will go for him almost unanimously.
Thursday, March 26, 1863
Started from Columbus at 3:15 P. M. on "Ben Franklin" We are to Memphis $6. It was hard to part from Henry but we've had a good visit and will probably have an opportunity of meeting again soon. Passed Hickman at 4. Reached Island No. 10 at 6:15 and New Madrid at 7. No. 10 is simply and island of five or six hundred acres extent with the usual buildings of a second class planter. Two hundred acres of such a matter cleared. I expected to see more. New Madrid is a two n about as large as Columbus.
Friday, March 27, 1863
Left New Madrid at 2 A .M. and arrived at Memphis at 3 P. M. Had a strong head wind all day. Met Mrs. Mitchell whose husband is Capt. Co. F. 2d Ill. Art. I met her at LaGrange last Dec. and rendered some assistance in getting her passed to Holly Springs. Reached the Regt. just night. The "boys" were right glad to meet me and I then. The Regt. has a beautiful camping ground about a mile and a half from town. I wish I had brought Jennie. There are excellent chances for her to board in sight of Camp.
Saturday, March 28, 1863
Have worked all day on our Payrolls. We will be paid in a few days to the 1st of this month. My Rolls had to be revised owing to our being paid since last muster. I will get six months the rest of the Co. four months pay. They have received one payment since Iíve been gone. Wrote a short note to Jennie today and begun a letter to Henry tonight. Have a mind to send for Jennie if we get our pay soon. My Co. is doing provost duty for the whole Brigade and I have it all to see to.
Sunday, March 29, 1863
Nothing of interest except a real wind storm which blew my tent down at 3 a.m. and continued to blow till 7 p.m. Took dinner at Brigade Hd. Qrs. with Lt. Bresee. Have made a set of discharge papers for S. P. Keyes. He is very low with chronic diarrhea. Fear he will live but a short time. Contributed $1 to purchase a sword to be presented to General Hurlbut by the officers of the 4th Division.
Monday, March 30, 1863
The 12th was ordered to report to Div. Hd. Qrs. at 5 p.m. to parade and perform some evolutions in Battalion drill. The 33rd Wis. was there also. It is the unanimous decision that we beat them badly. I am well pleased with my Co.ís behavior yet they need drilling. Iíll see to that tomorrow. Have written Sis. Fanny today. Weather is fine but cool.
Tuesday, March 31, 1863
Have a little sport each morning at guard mounting. Officers on duty are watched and criticized by all officers of the Regt. The slightest mistake insures an account with the sutler. Someone has to "come down" every morning. Caught a Tartar tonight in the shape of a drunken Irishman who had been trying to shoot one of our (i.e. U.S.) soldiers. After his arrest I found a revolver concealed in his coat sleeve. I think he meant to shoot me if he got a chance. Heís in the guard house.
Wednesday, April 1, 1863
Drilled my Co. an hour or two this morning and took it to Battalion drill besides at 3 p.m. are preparing for Review tomorrow. Went to the theatre with Lts. Cantwell and Reynolds; we were sold by "The American Cousin". If Iíve seen a fair specimen of the tragical tonight Iíll not spoil for want of theater going. I must defer from other people here as in some other points. What others, or what many others, regard as unequalled for beauty and spender I fail to appreciate. No letter from Jennie.
Thursday, April 2, 1863
Had a Grand Review today of the whole 4th Div. The 12th received the respects of Col. Bryant for good appearance. Seven sergeants only of the Div. saluted and they were all of the 12th - two of them of my Co. and they were all I had out. Gen. Lawman sent his respects to the seven sergeants. Snow and McVey are recipients of Col. I.
Friday, April 3, 1863
Col. Bryant issued a scathing order on the 12th for want of cleanliness which was read to us on dress parade. Lt. Roush of the 25th, called on me and we went to the theater and heard "Our American Cousin." Are now at the Worsham House where we will remain during the night. Lt. R. says Henry is well as ever. Things going on finally in the Regt. Received a letter from my Jennie today. She misses and loves me much as ever. Wrote Sister Allie.
Saturday, April 4, 1863
Stayed with Lt. Roush last night. Went to a picture room and sat for a negative from which Iím going to get a dozen photos printed. Am well pleases with my evenings work. Spilled 8 or 10 gallons of liquor for contraband dealers. The people in the suburbs of the city deal with us inside the lines and with the Rebs outside. They will get tired of it ere long.
Sunday, April 5, 1863
Have been "Officer of the Day." Wrote to Jennie. Col. Bryant has been relieved of the command of the Brigade by Col. A. R. Johnson, "who has returned from Vicksburg" and has assumed command of the Regt. again.
Monday, April 6, 1863
Things pass off pleasantly. Had a dress parade at five p. M. Tomorrow is election day Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Wisconsin.
Tuesday, April 7, 1863
Col. Bryant too us out on the parade this morning at Reveille and made us a speech on election matters. We have voted unanimously for L. S. Dixon. The Regt. cast 30 votes for Cothren, 25 which were cast by Co. H. It is a terrible rebuke on copperheads. A many of the 28th Ill. was killed this evening by some of his fellow soldiers. The trouble begun about a Negro. Called on Lt. Breseeís wife at 7.
Wednesday, April 8, 1863
Came near having trouble with some of the Ill. 28th. They came over to our guard house with the intention of taking Dick Johnson and the two men who helped him commit the murder last evening and hanging them. More than two hundred men gathered for that purpose but I called out my Co. and dispersed them. The murderers are in the Irwin Prison.
Thursday, April 9, 1863
Took a ride with Lt. Bresee around Pickering. Received a letter from my Jennie. Her precious love is more valuable to me than all else of earthly good that could be bestowed. She is my idol, my heart treasure.
Friday, April 10, 1863
Have been on duty today in camp. Gave made out a muster roll from which our strength will be determined. All companies are to be filled to the maximus, a number with conscripts.
Saturday, April 11, 1863
Wrote Jennie a letter today and sent my photograph. Were mustered to ascertain our strength. Mine is one less than the minimum. I expect to have a score or so of conscripts in the course of a couple of months. I believe an army of conscripts can be made more effective than volunteers because they will be better disciplined.
Sunday, April 12, 1863
Called on Lt. Bresee and his wife at their boarding place this evening. Mrs. B. is a pleasant woman. They must be having a good visit. I know Jennie and I would be happy if she were here. I shall send for her in a day oft two.
Monday, April 13, 1863
Received a letter from Jennie today. Itís tone is melancholy enough. Immediately on its receipt I borrowed $40.pp of Billy West. Wrote her an urgent request to visit me and enclosed $20. More tomorrow. She will be here the 1st or 2d of May. I shall receive her with open arms.
Tuesday, April 14, 1863
Have sent another letter to Jennie asking her to come and visit me. She will be here as soon as the 3d of May. The weather is could, stormy and unpleasant. I have had a fire in my tent all day.
Wednesday, April 15, 1863
Have been trying to get track of a gang of robbers who have kept the portion of the city under my charge in a perfect uproar for several weeks but as yet do not succeed. Made application for a commission in a Colored Regt. for Joel Winters.
Thursday, April 16, 1863
Received a letter from father today stating that the Copperheads are cooling off in Wis. We are under marching orders but donít believe we will go. I almost wish we would for I feel that little excitement is really necessary to keep my spirits up till Jennie comes. It will only be a reconnaissance if we go. Have had an inspection of arms and accoutrements today .
Friday, April 17, 1863
Have been officer of the day. We just received orders to march at day tomorrow. The Col. tells me that were are to go to Hernando, Miss. and from there about ten miles below to attack the enemyís position which is said to be a strong one and defended by fifteen hundreds or two thousand cavalry and on batter. The object is to capture them. Co. Bryant will have command of our force which is twenty to twenty-five hundred strong.
Saturday, April 18, 1863
Have reached Hernando and the Cavalry have had a pretty sharp skirmish in which they captured 70 of the enemy among which there are three Capt.s and four Lts. My Co. is detailed to guard them and I have taken possession of the Court house. One of the prisoners, Thomas by name, wished to call on some friends and I went with him to a Mrs. Cook's. Mrs. C., is a genuine lady and resembles by Jennie in features and expression. I feel that we shall be friends.
Sunday, April 19, 1863
Was started for Memphis this morning with the prisoners but had gone less than a mile when the order was countermanded and I overtook the column (which was moving South), five miles from Hernando. Col. B was afraid that I would be attacked and the prisoners would be retaken. It would have been a hard job for I had two Cos. of Infantry and one of Cavalry. We had a brisk skirmish at Cold Water. Are two miles from Hernando.
Monday, April 20, 1863
Marched for Hernando early and remained in the DeSoto Co. Court House till noon when we started north. The town was fired, just as we started on the south side of the Court House Squire. The report is that the greater part of the town was burned the court house included. We are camped ten miles north of Hernando. Will probably move for Memphis in the morning. I have charge of the prisoners yet, with my Co. and Capt. Bodkins.
Tuesday, April 21, 1863
Reached Hd. Qrs. 4th-Div at five P.M. and turned-the prisoners over to Gen. Lauman a Provost-Marshall. Shall join-the Regt tomorrow as early as possible leaving my new Co. in camp. Bryant has promised me a place on his staff. I'm anxious to be with the Col. in his first fight.
Wednesday, April 22, 1863
Left Memphis at nine A.M. and overtook the advancing column at Hernando at three P. M. Moved south four miles and camped for the night. We advanced to the attack of Cold Water once and after skirmishing pretty much all day returned to within ten miles of M. received reinforcements and again struck out for the enemy's position. The better part of the little town of Hernando was burned the 20 after we left. Court house burned.
Thursday, April 23, 1863
Col. Bryant and his Staff rode down to Cold Water river to see if an enemy could be found. I went with them. We all crossed St. Picquet and I went near a quarter of a mile south of the stream and found where the foe and formed line of battle on the 19th when we were trying to cross. They must have had a heavier force then we from the marks on the field. We came back to Hernando. Took dinner one mile north of the town. Camped twelve miles north of H.
Friday, April 24, 1863
Reached camp at noon. Turned mules, horses and c. over to Lt. Budlong. Slept till nearly night. While eating supper I was surprised to see brother Henry walk round. An agreeable surprise too. He is in charge of a transport laded with deserters. We went to the theater and from there to the Worsham where we will stay tonight.
Saturday, April 25, 1863
Spent the day with Brother Henry. He left for his command at five P. M. He will visit me again when Jennie comes. We have had a heavy shower of rain and hail this afternoon. Have signed the Pay Rolls so I think we'll get our money in a few days.
Sunday, April 26, 1863
Mrs. L. L. Cook, a lady whose acquaintance I made at Hernando last week; sent me a note wishing me to call and see her at a friendís I the city. I did so and had a pleasant chat. I did all I could to get a horse restored which had been taken from a friend of hers at H. but did not succeed. Capt. Parker, Lt. Hamilton and Sergt. Major Wagoner of the 2d Wis. Cavalry call on me this afternoon.
Monday, April 27, 1863
Passed a sort of humdrum day. Have done nothing but post up a little company business. Had a hearty fall of rain this afternoon. Mrs. Cook sent me a beautiful banquet from the city with her compliments. I can imagine that in her younger days, Mrs. C. resembled Jennie. I should be partial to her for this if nothing else. But she is a kind hearted, lovable woman, and a lady whose acquaintance, under different circumstances, I should really covet.
Tuesday, April 28, 1863
Nothing of importance has occurred. The weather is fine but very warm.
Wednesday, April 29, 1863
Was summoned to attend court martial as a witness against Dick Johnson who is accused of murder. The case is just called and I have to go again tomorrow.
Thursday, April 30, 1863
Mustered for pay today, for March and April. Religious services were held at Brigade Hd. Qtrs. According to the requirements of the Presidents proclamation good people have observed this as a day of fasting and prayer. I begin to look for my Jennie though it's not time for her to be here. One longs for inevitable happiness. Here presence would prelude the possibility of shade of sorrow visiting me.
Friday, May 1, 1863
Have been at the court martial and given my testimony. Saw a Maj. Day party enjoying themselves finely. One thing I noticed with pain and regret; there was no national banner borne by any of the party. The people of this city are at heart rebels. Went to the different hotels this evening in search of, but no Jennie was to be found.
Saturday, May 2, 1863
We have been paid today. I received six months dues amounting to $756.90. I shall send Jennie $600. in case she does not come to me I have hunted the hotels through in search of her this evening.
Sunday, May 3, 1863
Have looked for Jennie again today, but in vain. I almost despair of her coming. Lt. Hoyt and I visited the catholic cemetery this evening but it had grown so dark that we could see little except the general appearance which is fine. The grounds deserve another visit. No letter from Jennie since Apr. 21. which bears date Apr. 12. Welker and Shaesby log out of camp last night.
Monday, May 4, 1863
Drill my Co. an hour each day yet. Looked for my Jennie again today but she is not here Wrote brother Henry got a letter from him also. Dean bog out of camp last night was absent all day yesterday.
Tuesday, May 5, 1863
Have looked in vain again; after tomorrow shall cease to hope for my Jennieís coming. Weather fine. Cooler than yesterday. J. Welker and J. Shaesby absent from noon roll call.
Wednesday, May 6, 1863
Received a letter from Jennie and one from Sis Phronia today. J. will come to see me in a few days. Their words are full of cheerful encouragement to me, although they are both oppressed with sorrows of their won. Iím in haste to see Jennie that I may correct some of her false impressions. Answered F. letter tonight.
Thursday, May 7, 1863
Wrote Brother Henry today. Nothing of interest going on. Lt. Hoyt and I went to the theater.
Friday, May 8, 1863
Weather fine. Have written Jennie.
Saturday, May 9, 1863
The 4th Div. has received orders to move down the river. The 3d Brig. embarks first. It takes us rather by surprise. I regret it because it society this Summer. I have allotted a great deal -h on a visit with her. If she were here I would try a and persuade her to go along. Got a letter from her today dated Apr. and mailed the 21st. Expressed $550.00 to her today directed to Chicago.
Sunday, May 10, 1863
Have lain in camp all day. Are expecting to embark tomorrow. Peter McHugh was drunk on guard. Jas. Dean witness.
Monday, May 11, 1863
Embarked at five P.M. and sailed at eight. There has been comparatively little excitement attending this move. We are becoming more military and consequently less inquisitive and excitable. I was anxious to hear from Jennie again before but did not. We are aboard the "Continental." Several Co.s lost men by desertion. Mine are all present.
Tuesday, May 12, 1863
Landed on the Ark. shore to wood [sic] soon after sunrise. Ran along quietly till three P.M. when a gun boat hailed us saying the woods were full of guerrillas and that we were to run slowly and she would drop down ahead and shell the rascals out which she did with a vengeance making the rebs scrabble pretty lively.
Wednesday, May 13, 1863
Landed and disembarked early this morning. Marched out three miles and camped almost opposite the city of Vicksburg and in plain sight of it. It is built on the bluffs which are about one hundred feet high.
Thursday, May 14, 1863
Marched about three miles farther down the river and camped for the night sending our teams back after baggage which was left at the upper landing.
Friday, May 15, 1863
Have lain in camp all day. Our baggage train arrived about three this P.M.
Saturday, May 16, 1863
Remain at the same camp yet. Gunboats have been up near the City all day and till now. 8 P. M. Shelling the enemies works. The deep booming of cannon is becoming a familiar sound. Some of my boys were up opposite Warrenton today practicing with their rifles at straggling rebs who were roaming over the destroyed town.
Sunday, May 17, 1863
Think we'll move tomorrow. Take no stock in Richmond reports.
Monday, May 18, 1863
Embarked at four P.M. on the Forest Queen and landed at Grand Gulf at nine P. M. The supposition is that Grant is pushing the enemy from the rear and that he may try to escape by this route and we are placed here to dispute passage of Black river.
Tuesday, May 19, 1863
Have lain in camp all day on the hill back of the landing. Grand gulf is simply a big bend in the river and a landing which needed a name. It is a fine place for making a stand against river forces. The land rises abruptly to the height of sixty or seventy feet and is very broken in the interior for more than a mile. The rebs made a desperate stand. We are prepared to make a more desperate one against them should it be necessary.
Wednesday, May 20, 1863
Have lain about camp and rambled over the adjacent hills and through the hollows. Visited cane brakes. Am surprised to see them on the steep hill sides growing to the height of thirty feet. Went bathing in the Mississippi this eve. Hear good news from Grant.
Thursday, May 21, 1863
Wandered about the surrounding country a little. Have had a refreshing shower this P. M. Things are running smoothly in my Co. Applied for a commission as Capt. in a colored Regt for S. P. Bon.
Friday, May 22, 1863
My boys found a bee tree today. We had a dress parade this P. M.
Saturday, May 23, 1863
There has been heavy cannonading at Vicksburg all day. We are looking anxiously for the result. Nothing occurs here. Visited a picket post on which my men are doing duty. Had a walk with Col. Doral Dowell and gave him the outlines of proposed journeys after the war.
Sunday, May 24, 1863
Heavy cannonading all night and till five P. M. today. Lt. Dunsan tells me that Grant has the rebs completely surrounded, and that it is utterly impossible for them to escape from the City.
Monday, May 25, 1863
Cannonading goes on pretty lively at intervals about Vicksburg today. Am very anxious to hear from the scene of action. The 53d. Ind. has taken its baggage to the Regt.
Tuesday, May 26, 1863
Rumors are generally favorable to our cause. Wrote father and other today. There was a mail received this evening but I got nothing from Jennie I feel very uneasy about here health.
Wednesday, May 27, 1863
Have heard nothing of interest from above. Went out and picked some plums. George Everett was arrested by Corporal Bender, by order of Lt. Reynolds for sleeping on guard.
Thursday, May 28, 1863
Everett reported to me this morning under arrest by order of Lt. Reynolds. I released him but Col. Poole ordered me to sent him to Col. Bryant under arrest with a statement of the charges.
Friday, May 29, 1863
Have written sister Virginia. Everett released and reprimanded by Co. Poole. Heavy thunder storm P. M.
Saturday, May 30, 1863
Received three letters from my Jennie, one from father, one from mother, one from Virginia, on from Henry, and one from Isaiah. They would drive the blues from a lunatic. Jennie's letters are loving, cheering and trusting.
Sunday, May 31, 1863
Wrote Jennie and Henry today. We hear Banks is repulsed at Port Hudson.
Monday, June 1, 1863
The weather is very warm. My boys killed a fine steer this evening. He was captured by some of then, while on pickets he came along without the countersign and on trial was condemned as a spy and according to the law of nations his life was forfeit on the gallows but the boys were merciful and shot him.
Tuesday, June 2, 1863
There is every indication of an approaching struggle at this point. Convalescents, hospital stores, Quarter-Master stores and all other extras are being shipped to Young's Point. The place is also being cleared of everything that will in any way hinder or prove unadvantageous to us. I sent out three boys today and they brought in as many cows for company use.
Wednesday, June 3, 1863
Have written Jeannie. The weather warm but pleasant. Rumors are rife of an early attack on this place.
Thursday, June 4, 1863
Swam in the Miss. with a number of my Co. Am on duty with my whole Co. supporting the 15th Oh. Bat.
Friday, June 5, 1863
Went up on the point near mouth of Black River with Lt. Bresee. Saw some varieties of contrabands.
Saturday, June 6, 1863
Nothing of importance occurred today. Preparations are going on to evacuate.
Sunday, June 7, 1863
Have written my Jennie today. I love her better every hour. Contrabands are being shipped very fast. There thousand were sent up the river this afternoon. The heat has been very oppressive today.
Monday, June 8, 1863
Nothing of uncommon interest has occurred today. Weather has been more comfortable today.
Tuesday, June 9, 1863
Embarked on the transport Chessman at eight P. M. and sail for Warrenton enroute for our Division. Left S. P. Bon and J. Winters at Grand Gulf recruiting for a Colored Regt.
Wednesday, June 10, 1863
Landed at Warrenton at four A.M. Did not disembark till P.M. on account of a raging thunder storm. Are under orders to march at five tomorrow.
Thursday, June 11, 1863
Marched out to our Div. Find it about as close to the rebel works as is safe. There is a continual roar of musketry along the line. Mortar boats are busy sending bombs into the enemies works. Have been watching them sail through the heavens this evening. There is some cannonading along the line during the daytime.
Friday, June 12, 1863
Were sent on picket as a Co. Got shelled pretty lively while getting into the pits.
Saturday, June 13, 1863
Got a letter from Henry dated 9th, written at Hayne's Bluff.
Sunday, June 14, 1863
Lay in camp all day. Shelling has been going on pretty lively, several shells having burst over our camp.
Monday, June 15, 1863
Wrote Jennie today.
Tuesday, June 16, 1863
Received a letter from father. Capt. Jes. Miller of the 11th Wis. made me a visit today. Made the acquaintance of several Wisconsin officers this afternoon. Visited the 20th Wis.
Wednesday, June 17, 1863
Wrote father and mother. Q. M. Treadway of the 23d, and Sergt. Robinson of the 11th. Called on me today.
Thursday, June 18, 1863
Were eight Cos. sent on picket today and advanced our lines forty or fifty rods. Got shelled pretty lively but not driven back. Lt. Bird was wounded in the leg severely.
Friday, June 19, 1863
Had some warm work to hold our position but did it without a man being hurt. Preparation is being made to mount a nine inch gun within eighty rods of the rebs works, they may resist but that will avail nothing.
Saturday, June 20, 1863
Nothing of importance has taken place today though we were ordered to be in line at six A. M. Our artillery opened on the rebs' works and it was expected that they would make a rally to capture our guns but they did not.
Sunday, June 21, 1863
Wrote my Jennie. Sent on picket at 4.30
Monday, June 22, 1863
Rebs made a charge on the pits next on our right about one A. M. but were repulsed. The 33d Wis. drove them off but lost one killed and one wounded. I sprained my ankle pretty badly while running past an exposed point. Think it will be O. K. in a day or two.
Tuesday, June 23, 1863
Have suffered a good deal last night and today with my ankle. My Co. is sent on picket again. Is in charge of Lt. Hoyt.
Wednesday, June 24, 1863
Received a letter from my Jennie, one from sister Phronia, and one from my sister Margaret from whom I have not heard before eight years. I have answered Sis M.ís letter.
Thursday, June 25, 1863
The whole Regt. was in line of battle at 3. P M. out near the enemyís lines. Some of the rebs works were to be blown up out on the right and we were to engage them here. We did our part but I have not heard whether the enterprise met with success or not. I went out with my Co notwithstanding my ankle is very lame.
Friday, June 26, 1863
Wrote Jennie and received a letter from Henry. Begin to feel symptoms of approaching fever.
Saturday, June 27, 1863
Expected to have a good time visiting Henry today but found after riding fifteen miles to find his camp that his regiment is up the Miss. at Cypress Bend. If has been gone since Thursday. Saw Lt. J. Wagoner of Gen. Washbrunís Staff.
Sunday, June 28, 1863
The siege of Vicksburg goes on but slowly. It is my opinion that it will not be reduced for a month at least. Shall rejoice at disappointment.
Monday, June 29, 1863
Received Muster and Pay Rolls for May and June. We keep all branches of our War Department in perfect order notwithstanding our being hourly engaged with the enemy. I see marks of weariness among our officers which are really disgraceful. Such are unworthy the name of man. It is a national and individual disgrace to yield to these villainous rebels.
Tuesday, June 30, 1863
Have been mustered for May and June. Went to division Hd. Qrs. to get mustered out as 1st. Lt. and mustered in as Capt. but did not succeed. Shall next time which will be in a day or two.
Wednesday, July 1, 1863
Received our pay for March and April from R. H. Hunt. Got a letter from my Jennie. She is down hearted.
Thursday, July 2, 1863
Was sent on picket as acting field officer. Capt. Stevens and I were in command of the Regt. had a pretty warm time for a few minutes just before? Dark.
Friday, July 3, 1863
At eight this A. M. hostilities ceased by virtue of a flag of truce sent to Gen. Grant accompanied we since learn, by a proposition to surrender on terms. Grant's answer was "Unconditional Surrender." Firing commenced again but was soon stopped at the terms of capitulation were said to be nearly agreed upon. We will know in a day or two. I'm in doubt yet.
Saturday, July 4, 1863
The city has fallen. Today our forces Logan's divisions, 17th Corps marched in and took possession of the town and 28,000 prisoners. Our corps is under marching orders. Are to go inland. The 17th Corps, except Logan's divisions, is to go to Port Hudson immediately. Some division sailed tonight.
Sunday, July 5, 1863
Wrote Isaiah this morning. We received detailed orders at day light to march for clear creek and Black River at 8 A. M. but did not get started till after 9. We reached Clear Creek at dusk where we went in to camp. My team has not come up nor will it tonight. We shall have to sleep without blankets and my men are without coats. Jo. Johnson is near Jackson. There is a report that he fought Sherman today. He will hardly oppose our whole force.
Monday, July 6, 1863
Have lain in camp at Clear Creek. The boys have been coming down on peaches, apples, green corn, pigs and beefís pluck. Are having a first rate time for soldiers.
Tuesday, July 7, 1863
Marched all day and all night too. During the night a terrible thunder storm raged. Think it is one of the most disagreeable nights I ever spent. Feel very unwell. Have symptoms of fever.
Wednesday, July 8, 1863
Have marched but a sort distance. The men are very much worn. Camped at 1 A. M. with after seven hours marching to go three miles. Hear nothing of the rebs, except as skirmishers.
Thursday, July 9, 1863
Marched six miles and camped at Clinton. Cpt. Jessey Miller called on me this evening. Got a Richland Co. Observer. A letter containing certificate of disability from Corp. Osmer, Regular dodge. Boys are taking meat.
Friday, July 10, 1863
Are within three miles of Jackson. Sharp firing is going on. Expect we shall fight tomorrow.
Saturday, July 11, 1863
Lay in camp till 5 P. M. when we were ordered to the right. Sharp skirmishing all day along the lines. Donít see why we delay making an attack. We would capture a great deal now that we will loose by waiting.
Sunday, July 12, 1863
Have been lying near the train as guard today. Our division has been sharply engaged once or twice. Several Regts. have been badly cut up.
Monday, July 13, 1863
Moved up and joined the Regt. in rear of our brigade. Our Div. has been fused with he 12th of the 13th Corps. Commanded by Gen. Honey. Our Brig. is the 5th. Received a letter from Henry dated Snyderís Bluffs June 16. Got one from west at Benton Barracks July 2d. He is getting better.
Tuesday, July 14, 1863
Have been tearing up track and burning rails of the N. O., J. and G. N. R. R. The 53d Ind. and five Co.s of the 12th destroyed about two miles. At 4 P. M. we were called off and taken to support the 3d (Co. Pughís Wis. 1st) Brig. in advancing its lines. Am nearly sick with a cold.
Wednesday, July 15, 1863
Received a letter from Sis. Allie dated 10th. Have lain in camp sick while the Co. went out and destroyed Railroad again. My boys brought in twenty-five or six head of cattle for beef today. Had a letter from father.
Thursday, July 16, 1863
Moved camp to rear of 2nd Brig. Hope to go to the front soon. We went out to support a battery on picket last night. Wrote my Jennie and father and mother today. The siege is being carried on but how fast is impossible to tell.
Friday, July 17, 1863
The rebs have evacuated and gone - nobody knows where. It was generally hoped that they would give us a good fight here. I am feeling pretty well again. Hope our communications will be opened with the worth again soon. I will hear from Jennie then.
Saturday, July 18, 1863
Have lain in camp all day. The Railroads are being destroyed in every direction from here. I believe we are to evacuate soon. Probably the Gen.s think it is of no importance as a point.
Sunday, July 19, 1863
Hunted for henry but found that his Div. is at Snyderís Bluff yet. Came through Jackson on my way back and find it deserted. Wrote my Jennie.
Monday, July 20, 1863
Swans in Pearl River. Are under orders to march for Vicksburg at 3 A. M. tomorrow.
Tuesday, July 21, 1863
Wednesday, July 22, 1863
Marched to Black River 18 miles. [Hov ?] as need be. Rained like suds. Got wet as rats. Sleep in soaking blankets.
Thursday, July 23, 1863
Came on to Vicksburg. In camp. Washed and put on clean shirt. Got letter from Henry of the 5th.
Friday, July 24, 1863
Marched to Vicksburg. Have a felon coming on my right thumb.
Saturday, July 25, 1863
Tried to visit Henry but his Div. has gone up the river. Got a letter from Jennie.
Sunday, July 26, 1863
Lay in camp. Thumb aches like h--l [sic]. Cut it. Issued clothing.
Monday, July 27, 1863
Are camped at Raymond 18 miles from. Jackson from whence we started at 4 A. M. R. is a county two in but is very shabbily built. Has a good Court House though, which is used at present for rebel hospital. 100 wounded and paroled of the enemy are there. Have been eating morphine for sick thumb till Iím crazy. First finger on same (right) hand is getting same sort of a pet. [sic] Came inside the works today.
Tuesday, July 28, 1863
Nothing but camp cleaning today.
Wednesday, July 29, 1863
Same as yesterday
Thursday, July 30, 1863
Have been paid. Several of the boys missed getting their money by being absent from camp without leave. Thumb pains me all the time. I hear I shall loose it to the first joint.
Friday, July 31, 1863
Got a letter from Sis Allie from Buffalo. Wrote Henry and my Jennie. Leave of absence business moves pretty slowly. Cousin Lester Dolton called on me and mad quit a visit. Gave him Henryís and my photographs to send to Aunt Sally.
Saturday, August 1, 1863
Wrote Henry and Allie. There is a rumor that our Div. is to go down the river soon.
Sunday, August 2, 1863
Lt. Wagoner of Gen. Washbrunís staff called on me today.
Monday, August 3, 1863
The officers of our Regt. tried to get off on leaves of absence today but could not get a boat.
Tuesday, August 4, 1863
Officers got away today. Sergt. Rogers joined us. Got letters from Phronia and my Jennie. Sent Jennie $200 by Lt. Hoyt.
Wednesday, August 5, 1863
Wrote my Jennie. Lt. Allen Co. A died last night of diphtheria. Lt. Simpson stars for Wis. this evening. Has offered to call on Jennie and deliver a letter.
Thursday, August 6, 1863
Lt. Allen was buried at eight this A. M. He is the first officer ever buried when with the Regt.
Friday, August 7, 1863
Dry and dusty.
Saturday, August 8, 1863
Little sprinkle of rain.
Sunday, August 9, 1863
Company Inspection in the morning. Dress parade in the evening.
Monday, August 10, 1863
Wrote Henry, Phronia and my Jennie. Wrote father L. proposing that he go to the seaside and offering to furnish money to send him. Hear by way of Col. Bryant that Henry has gone home on leave of absence.
Tuesday, August 11, 1863
Got a letter from Sis Allie. Am detailed for Brigade Officer of the Day tomorrow.
Wednesday, August 12, 1863
Got a dear, good letter from my darling Jennie. Wrote Allie and Jennie too. Billy Woodruff commences work for me.
Thursday, August 13, 1863
Nothing of interest.
Friday, August 14, 1863
Wrote Isaiah. Am expecting to be ordered off every hour.
Saturday, August 15, 1863
Wrote my Jennie. Embarked on the transport "Rocket" for Natchez
Sunday, August 16, 1863
Arrived at N. [Natchez] at 7 A. M. disembarked and set camp about a mile from the levee. N. is a pretty town but is too much crowded and streets are very narrow.
Monday, August 17, 1863
Wrote my sweet Jennie. Have fruit and vegetables her in pleasant.
Tuesday, August 18, 1863
Wednesday, August 19, 1863
Thursday, August 20, 1863
Rained torrents this P. M. Received a swaggering bullying communication from Col. A. K. Johnson reflecting on me for ordering Sergt. Gribble back to his Co. when the order detailing him was revoked. If the Co. had not "advised me, and all concerned to send no more communications to these Hd. Qrs. relative to the matter", I should answer him pretty sharply too. I lost confidence in the Co. as an officer long ago. This convinces me that he is no gentleman.
Friday, August 21, 1863
Made application for leave of absence for 20 days but am rather doubtful about its being approved.
Saturday, August 22, 1863
Took a ride six or seven miles into the country with Capt. Sylvester. Found pretty strong Secesh. Had a good time and feel better for the exercise.
Sunday, August 23, 1863
Went to church with Capt. Price. The Episcopalians are almost as formal as Catholics. They studiously avoid their prayers for the President of the Government. They are all rebels.
Monday, August 24, 1863
Have been on picket to day. Hundreds of people pass in and out daily. There is a little restraint as there would be in one of our Northern towns in time of peace except there is a trunk or carriage searched occasionally.
Tuesday, August 25, 1863
Wednesday, August 26, 1863
Thursday, August 27, 1863
Friday, August 28, 1863
The applications for leaves of absence sent in by the officers of the Ret. on the 22d have just returned disapproved, mine among the rest.
Saturday, August 29, 1863
This is the fifth anniversary of my wedding day. Five happy years for me too. I have been happier than I deserve. Having for my companion so Angelic a being it would be my own fault if I were not supremely happy. I long for the day when we shall be reunited. Few so regret the necessity of being separated from their loved ones as I. Fifteen months at farthest and I shall be with m angel Jennie. I have written her today.
Sunday, August 30, 1863
Are getting ready for muster.
Monday, August 31, 1863
Have been mustered. Sergt. Rogers has received his commission as 2d Lt. of my Company. Are under orders to march for Harrisonburg, La. I worked on my Pay Rolls till one oíclock at night. Wrote Jennie and Henry.
Tuesday, September 1, 1863
Marched at 6 A. M. Crossed at [?] into La. Camped at sunset on the S. E. bank of Lake Concordia. Brig. Gen. Gresham is in command. Have chickens and ducks in plenty
[Also written on this page: Gresham afterward Secy. of State under Grover Cleveland 1893 -97. Died during the Administration and was succeeded by Henry of Massachusetts.
Wednesday, September 2, 1863
Marched to within four miles of Trinity, a little two n on the west bank of the Washita, and camped for the night. The cavalry had a skirmish at Tr. Captured and burned a steam boat. Had four men wounded but only on badly enough to make him unable to ride. The pilot and several of the steamboat hands were killed. Seven prisoners taken.
Thursday, Sept. 3, 1863
Crossed the Washita and marched out six miles towards Harrisonburg. The rebs are reported to be five to six thousand strong. If they are they ought to skill or capture our whole force for we are not more than twenty five hundred strong, at the outside. We shall probably give them a fight tomorrow.
Friday, September 4, 1863
Marched into Harrisonburg and took possession of the two n and fort without a fight. The rebs left during the night blowing up their magazine. The wood work of the fort and the jail were burned by our forces. Several buildings were burned. The fort was one of the strongest I have ever seen but was built for the protection of the Washita river only. Porters whole fleet could never reduce it. Marched back three miles.
Saturday, September 5, 1863
Recorded the Washita and camped on a slew or channel leading from one bayou to another.
Sunday, September 6, 1863
Left Tensas Channel at daylight and marched up to Lake Concordia where we camped the night of the first. Saw an alligator today. Saw a pond lilly leaf thirty inches across. Saw a gar five feet long.
Monday, September 7, 1863
Reached our camp at Natchez at 11 A. M. Found everything O. K. Dascey and Jenness have returned from Wis. C. Ostrader died while at Sun Prairie. That reduces my Co. to 79 enlisted. Saw an orange today three and on half inches in diameter. Received a letter from Jennie and two from Henry.
Tuesday, September 8, 1863
Have the diarrhea pretty badly. Am afraid it will result in serious illness.
Wednesday, September 9, 1863
Had "dress parade" at which Col. Proudfit commanding and Lt. Bresee did his first duty as Adjínt. I fear there is trouble brewing between the Field and some of the line officers, on account of a "good time" indulged in on the party of the latter last evening.
Thursday, September 10, 1863
Weather hot. A monotonous day.
Friday, September 11, 1863
Wrote my Jennie in answer to a dear good, little letter I got this morning. Wrote to John to buy the Jackson farm for me at $800 if it can be had no cheaper.
Saturday, September 12, 1863
The whole Regt was called out at sunrise to take an hours exercise. Marched about a mile and back.
Sunday, September 13, 1863
Am Brig Off. of the day.
Monday, September 14, 1863
Nothing going on.
Tuesday, September 15, 1863
Took a stroll down with Lt. Rogers bought "Rawson the Renegade" Sequel to "Bill Johnson". The Regulators of Arkansas" [?] Also bought "Edmund Dantes" sequel to "Count of Monte Cristo" a book for which I have been looking for two years. Wrote my Jennies long for the time when I shall be reunited to the dear sweet creature.
Wednesday, September 16, 1863
Thursday, September 17, 1863
Got a letter from father, one from Sis Phronia, two from brother Henry, and one from my sweet little wife. Went with Capts. Sylvester and Gallispie and Lts. Bird and Rogers to hear some music.
Friday, September 18, 1863
See by the Wisconsin papers that bro. Henry has been promoted to Capt. Co. "B." 25th Wis. Nothing could give me more pleasure than this intelligence for I feel that it is dew his merit but it could hardly be expected that he would be jumped over the 1st. Lt.
Saturday, September 19, 1863
Wrote my Jennie. Had dress parade at Brigade Hd. Qtrs.
Sunday, September 20, 1863
An order from Brig Hd. Qtrs. kept us all in camp during the day. As near as I can learn it has been done to present excesses to which soldiers are liable to on this day.
Monday, September 21, 1863
Tuesday, September 22, 1863
Wednesday, September 23, 1863
Wrote my Jennie a brief note.
Thursday, September 24, 1863
Regimental Officers of the Day.
Friday, September 25, 1863
Called on Mrs. Henry a widow lady with Lt. Bird and Capt. Sylvester by invitation of the latter. Mrs. H. is a very intelligent and pleasant lady, a teacher by profession.
Saturday, September 26, 1863
Making out Ordnance Returns. Called on Mrs. Harlow and heard some of Jennieís favorite songs.
Sunday, September 27, 1863
Received a letter full of warm, pure love from my sweet, my angel wife. Surely no man was ever noblest with entire devotion of so pure a heart and lofty a mind. O, Jennie, my earnest my constant prayer to the Most High is that He may pour His most choice blessings upon you and that peace and happiness may eve be yours.
Monday, September 28, 1863
Wrote my Jennie. Am busy making Ordnance Returns. Am weary and depressed.
Tuesday, September 29, 1863
Am Brig. Off. of the Day. Has rained all day. Our fair weather is gone for this season, I fear. The Line Officers of the Regt. met today and decided to break up all the private nesses and join all together and have but one mess. Two teams will be allowed us. It will be a first rat thing.
Wednesday, September 30, 1863
I have almost decided to write for my little pet to come and see me. I am worn and dejected and feel that there is no rest for me till my weary head is pillowed on her pure, soft bosom. Would that I were worthy the treasure I possess. Nothing, but my love for her, is so near my heart as the earnest desire to make her happy.
Thursday, October 1, 1863
Have written Jennie and Henry and made application for leave of absence to visit my dear little pet.
Friday, October 2, 1863
Am busy making Quarterly Returns. Have applied for leave of absence. Iím full of hope at the prospect of seeing my sweet wife. My application has been forwarded.
Saturday, October 3, 1863
Got a score of so of letters from Isaiah, Henry, Allie and My dear sweet Angel wife.
Sunday, October 4, 1863
Answered my Jennie's letter. Allies too. Told them I am going to visit them.
Monday, October 5, 1863
Helped Copt. Sylvester with his Ordnance Returns.
Tuesday, October 6, 1863
Things going on gaily
Wednesday, October 7, 1863
Have seen Lt. Col. Strong. Donít like his talk. Itís too yielding and womanish for me, believe he is half whipped now. I can never respect him as a man and shall never cease to despise him as a soldier.
Thursday, October 8, 1863
Were reviewed and inspected by Lt. Co. Strong today and had a grand time of it.
Friday, October 9, 1863
Bender, Sommers and Keppers have received their furloughs and taken advantage of them. Sent my Jennie a letter.
Saturday, October 10, 1863
Ransomís Brig. is under orders to go to Vicksburg. Our Div will be left alone here.
Sunday, October 11, 1863
Attended Episcopal Church with Capt. Price and Lt. Linnell.
Monday, October 12, 1863
"All Quiet" Am Officer of the Day. Rain falls in torrents tonight.
Tuesday, October 13, 1863
Fortifications are being erected, of the best kind, about the city with all possible dispatch.
Wednesday, October 14, 1863
Received three letters from Henry, two from home, but none from my Jennie. I am disappointed.
Thursday, October 15, 1863
Took a ride with Adjís. Bresee and got run away with. Dr. Rodgerís black mare carried me off like the wind but didn't succeed in throwing me or getting out of the road. Wrote Henry.
Friday, October 16, 1863
Wrote my Jennie today telling her of earnest love.
Saturday, October 17, 1863
Called on Mrs. L. A. Henry.
Sunday, October 18, 1863
Attended service at the Presbyterian Church. Army and Navy officers were plenty in the pews. Wrote my little pet.
Monday, October 19, 1863
Am Officer of the Day. Weather fine.
Tuesday, October 20, 1863
Am looking with but little hope for my leave of absence. Have a mind to write my Jennie to come to me and spend the winter.
Wednesday, October 21, 1863
Called on Mrs. Harlow with Lt. Bird this evening and heard some very fine music.
Thursday, October 22, 1863
A cold, driving rain has been falling all day. The men are suffering terribly from its chilling effects. I expect my sick list to be doubled within two days. Nothing in the sphere of my temporary profession so wrings my heart as to see my men falling on after another, victims of malignant fevers. The constituted an invisible and resistless enemy.
Friday, October 23, 1863
Weather still cold and wet. Our rotten old rages of tents are being torn to shreds by this heavy wind and the men are left without the last protection from the storm.
Saturday, October 24, 1863
Our leaves have come at last and seven of the 13th officers are here on the levee waiting for a boat to take us up. My heart beats high with the hope of soon seeing my darling wife and her sweet sisters.
Sunday, October 25, 1863
Am on the steamer "Citizen" sailing away for the north for home, my wife, my heaven. I shall receive a welcome that would stir envy in the most confirmed woman-haterís breast. Surely no man was ever so blessed with the whole heart of an angelic companion.
Monday, October 26, 1863
Reached Vicksburg where we are to remain all night. No chance to get pay. We are making very poor time.
Tuesday, October 27, 1863
Left Vicksburg at 3 P. M. and are crawling up the Miss. at a moderate rate. I took a good look at V., its defenses and approaches through a field glass.
Wednesday, October 28, 1863
Have passed several a gun boats during the day, but nothing worthy of mention. Am exceedingly anxious to make better time.
Thursday, October 29, 1863
Nothing out of the general course of steamboat travel had occurred. I am more and more anxious every hour and reach my home and fold my Angelic wife to my throbbing heart.
Friday, October 30, 1863
Reached Helena at 3 P. M. Went to the camp of the 25th Wis. and saw brother Henry. His is well. He is a noble, generous man. I have promised to spend three or four days with him on my return. At 7:30 P. M. we ran on a snag 20 miles above H. Creating some alarm 15 minutes later we struck another which carried away all the larboard bows.
Saturday, October 31, 1863
Reached Memphis at 3:45 P. M. Most of the officers got their pay but by an unavoidable accident I missed getting mine. Embarked on the "Gen. Anderson" at 5 and are dashing along at a furious rate for the north. I feel that I am approaching a cold climate, but a heart, a warmer and truer than which never beat in human breast.
Sunday, November 1, 1863
Shall not reach Cairo as soon as we were promised by the Captain, and I am afraid we shall fail to get there to take the 1:45 P. M. train tomorrow. Poker and Sledge tables are in full blast again tonight. Money is bet free as beans.
Monday, November 2, 1863
Am in the sleeping car above Cenralia with Capt. Price. Dr. Rodgers and Lt. Blaxton dashing away to my Jennies arms.
Tuesday, November 3, 1863
Am at home and have spent a day of genuine happiness with my little pet. She and her sisters are well happy and charming. Have met Miss Sherman, a very pleasant lady boarding with Sisters. Met Coz., Sol. and Mrs. Keith.
Wednesday, November 4, 1863
Visited Camp Douglas with Jennie, Sis, Phronia, and Capt. Price.
Thursday, November 5, 1863
Am having a glorious time. See "lots of folks".
Friday, November 6, 1863
Went to lecture delivered by Miss Ann S. Dickinson. Sisters Phronia and Allie and Miss Sherman were also in attendance. Divided my time between listening to Miss D. and admiring my sweet little wife.
[No entries during this time.]
Tuesday, November 17, 1863
Have had a glorious visit. So Supremely happy that I can hardly realize that this world is anything but bliss. I return to my Regt. tomorrow that casts a shadow.
Wednesday, November 18, 1863
Am on my way to Dixie in company with Dr. Rogers. Am feeling very much depressed on account of having parted from my Jennie. These partings are trying itn the extreme.
Thursday, November 19, 1863
On board the steamer "Clara Poe." Wrote my Jennie from Cairo. Shall probably reach Memphis the 21 A. M. Have met several officers returning to their Regts. Made a fruitless search for the baggage of Lts. Langworthy and Jones.
Friday, November 20, 1863
Rassed Island. No. 10 at 3 P. M. Shall probably get to Memphis tomorrow. A driving rain has been falling all day. It has been difficult for the pilots to manage the boat today especially in turning after landing.
Saturday, November 21, 1863
Reached Memphis at 7 P. M. Went to theater. Regard it as a one horse concern. Have a pretty good dancing girl however.
Sunday, November 22, 1863
Started for Helena on the 9 A. M. on the Hawk Eye State. Are making poor time. Left Dr. Rogers at M.
Monday, November 23, 1863
Reached Helena at 1 A. M. Found brother Henry well. Have met a good many of officers with whom I have become acquainted. Am having a good time.
Tuesday, November 24, 1863
Left Bro. H. at noon and took passage on the Clara Bell for Vicksburg. Expect to find my Regt. at Natchez but am not sure of it. Found Dr. Rogers aboard. Had a first rate visit with Henry and regret having to leave him so soon.
Wednesday, November 25, 1863
Am driving off toward "Dixieís Land".
Thursday, November 26, 1863
Reached Vicksburg at four P. M. and found my Regt. on the eve of marching of Black River. Men and officers all well. Find letters by the Doz. awaiting me. Some of my little petís sweetest are amongst them.
Friday, November 27, 1863
Marched out to Hebron plantation eight miles east of V. Are camped in a nursery. Have less than half tents enough to shelter my men. Got a branch and chip from the tree under which the capitulation of Vicksburg was concluded.
Saturday, November 28, 1863
Sent a letter to Henry and one to my Jennie by Capt. Maxson who started in company with Col. Bryant and Capts. Botken and Whellock for Wis. on recruiting Service. Sent a letter to father and mother by Dascey who has gone recruiting also. A heavy rain storm has been falling all day.
Sunday, November 29, 1863
Wrote Sis. Phronia. The weather has moderated a good deal and the storm entirely abated.
Monday, November 30, 1863
Have written my Jennie. The day has been spent in cleaning the ground, digging sinks and cesspools and in building chimneys through the Regt. The monthly Return which I struggled so had to meet was made this morning and I "am on praying grounds and interceding terms" with the "powers that be."
Tuesday, December 1, 1863
The usual Reports and Returns have been made. Lt. Rogers and I were in Clear Creek bathing this forenoon. Pretty cold.
Wednesday, December 2, 1863
Wrote brother Isaiah.
Thursday, December 3, 1863
Received letters from father, Sis. Virginia and Jennie besides a host of official scrawls. Wrote Henry. Gathered some curious specimens of rock from Clear Creek and am going to send them to Jennie the first opportunity. Recíd orders to march somewhere in the morning.
Friday, December 4, 1863
Marched from Camp at ten A. M. and reached Vicksburg at three P. M. where we, the right wind, embarked on the "Atlantic" and left wing on the "Shenango" another transport. There is one Brig. composed of Cav., Art. and Inft. and a Marine brig, all under command of Gen. Gresham. We are bound for some point down the river but where it is difficult to tell. Probably less than six men of the expedition know.
Saturday, December 5, 1863
Landed and disembarked at Natchez and marched out o the Washington Road and formed line of battle at the old slave market. Report says the place will certainly be attacked at daylight. It sounds big but there ain't rebs enough within a hundred miles to warrant such a statement.
Sunday, December 6, 1863
Marched from N. on the W. road ten miles then south six miles and S. W. six miles farther where we camped. Are in pursuit of the enemy whom were expect to find at Ellis Cliffs. The men are very tired but complain very little.
Monday, December 7, 1863
Broke camp at day light and marched steadily till nine A. M. when skirmishing began in the front. We fell back a half mile and formed line of battle with the hope that the evening could be drawn into the snare but it did not succeed. The rebs improved the time we were wasting in waiting in making their escape and we have seen nothing of them though weíve been hunting all day. Are on our way to Natchez.
Tuesday, December 8, 1863
Spent a rough night last night. Rain came down in torrents. Moved in to within one mile of Natchez and are in a fair way to put in another rough night.
Wednesday, December 9, 1863
Moved in and quartered in a ware house on the Cor. of Main and Front Strs. Officers have rooms at the city hotel. Called on Mrs. Harlow with Lt. Bird.
Thursday, December 10, 1863
Have written my Jennie. Gen. Gresham has issued orders that no officer or man be allowed from his quarters except on a pass from the Gen. Comdg. or from the Provost Marshall.
Friday, December 11, 1863
The day has passed quietly off. Had a pass and improved it in calling on Mrs. Henry. Wrote father and mother.
Saturday, December 12, 1863
Spent the day in doing nothing.
Sunday, December 13, 1863
Had a pleasant evening with Mrs. H.
Monday, December 14, 1863
Moved out on the Pine Ridge Road a half mile from the city. Have a pleasant camp.
Tuesday, December 15, 1863
Chimney building has been the rage today. Every man in the Regt. ahs on and some of them have two.
Wednesday, December 16, 1863
Am Officer of the Day. It has rained all day and a good part of last night. Wrote Sister Virginia and Jennie.
Thursday, December 17, 1863
On duty again today. The weather is cold as a Wis. Christmas. Have got "fixed" up pretty well for soldiering. Should not wonder if we move before long. Wrote Bro. John and Billy West.
Friday, December 18, 1863
Weather is extremely fine. Have our camp nicely cleaned.
Saturday, December 19, 1863
Was down town today. Had a good time in the evening. Wrote Lt. Tinker.
Sunday, December 20, 1863
Attended Catholic Church with Lt. Reynolds and Cantwell. The day has passed off very quietly. Wrote my Jennies. Have just Recíd an order detailing me on General Court Martial to convene in the City tomorrow.
[The Court Marshal of Private John Feltis. Click Here.]
Monday, December 21, 1863
The Regt. was ordered off on a scout and started at two P. M. We marched in an easterly direction on the Washington Road. Enroute for Fayette, 26 miles from N. 16 miles of which we have accomplished. I left the G. C. M. to its fate with the hope of seeing a fight.
Tuesday, December 22, 1863
Went on to within tree miles of Fayette but finding the rebs had fled started for home and got within sixteen miles of M. at nine P. M.
Wednesday, December 23, 1863
Came to camp at two P. M. Fifty mules and twenty houses have been turned over to the Post Q. M.
Thursday, December 24, 1863
Gay old time in town at a dance. I didnít attend. The 6th Miss. officers tried to kick up a row and I guess they succeeded pretty well. Court martial convened and remained in session five hours and adjourned till the 26th.
Friday, December 25, 1863
Had a tip-top dinner in camp. Lt. Rogers deserves credit.
Saturday, December 26, 1863
Was on duty at the Courtroom till two P. M. Played a game of Billiards the first in my live.
[The Court Marshal of Private John Feltis. Click Here.]
[Last entry of 1863]
Friday, January 1, 1864
In camp at Natchez Miss. where Journal of 1863 leaves us. The reenlisting goes on rapidly with a fair prospect of getting fully three fourths of the Regt. Was at dinner at Hd. Qrs. 2d is AH. A. A. d. and had a glorious time such as it as. Of its kind it can't be beaten. Called on Mrs. H. Very cold.
Saturday, January 2, 1864
Court convened as usual hour and disposed of usual amount of fun no business today, to cold, no coal, guard with Post Q. M.
[The Court Marshal of Private John Feltis. Click Here.]
Sunday, January 3, 1864
Attended divine service at Presbyterian church.
Monday, January 4, 1864
Court Marshal resumes acting operations.
Tuesday, January 5, 1864
The Regt. was reenlisting till ten P. M. and we have passed the 3/4 point. Had a military "thanksgiving" at Regimental Hd Qrs. where a great majority were drunk.
Wednesday, January 6, 1864
The whole Regt has been on a general drunken spree today. "Every company commander except myself provided a barrel of ale for his men besides a barrel of ale and several gallons of whisky at Hd. Qr. Every one indulged to the full extent of his desires. A majority of the men and officers too, were pretty well steamed up. One man in Co "K" while lying on his bunk, was possessed with a strong desire to shoot the ridgepole of his ten but after trying several times in vain with his own gun he flew into a rage, broke it and piled the pieces on the fire then took his comrades, but meeting with no better success at the same sport, consigned it fragment to the flames. Being more enraged by each act of his own he put his shoes, blankets and tent on with the guns and pulled the little chimney down upon the whole himself included. He then mounted a stump near by and began to scream "hurrah for h--l [sic], whoís afraid of fire?" He was at the same time a subject to excite sadness and mirth. His hair was streaming in the wind, his cloths torn to shreds and covered with froth from his mouth and blood from his brick - bruised head. A Co. "F" man awoke sometime during the night and feeling himself called upon to answer the demands of nature, dressed himself properly and with due deliberation, stood before the fire till his productive imagination carried him to the sink where, in his opinion, he was surely relieved, rose dressed again and after warming his chilled body, divested himself of his surplus garments and crawled into bed. His amazement was unbounded when next morning he found the result of his nocturnal evacuating lying up on the hearth. I furnished my Co. $21 worth of apples and other eatables so at home we had no excitement except the prank of one or two tipsy fun makers.
Thursday, January 7, 1864
Gen. Ct. Mar. is in full blast yet we do but little except till stories and listen to the extensive and varied experiences of Capt. Rogers. I think I have never met a man so devoid of a sense of the obligations attending the conjugal stage as he. His whole being is inflated with pride of his own infidelity. He acknowledges that his wife knows of, without objecting to his criminal indulgences! Were my wife to signify her willingness to the pursuance of such a course on my part my mind would soon be disturbed by jealousy suspicions. Purity in a wife is exacting of a husband.
[1/8/64 - 1/9/64 Not Written]
Sunday, January 10, 1864
Attended the Presbyterian Church again today. Called on Mrs. Henry in the evening and heard her version of the survile insurrection of 1861. The outrages committed on the poor unfortunate Negroes who were suspected of evil designs surpass anything I ever heard or read of. The cruelty of the chivalrous gentry of Natchez would put to blush the warmest advocates of the Spanish Inquisition as practiced in the dark ages of Popery. Mrs. H. is a native of this town so the usual cry of "educational prejudice" has no force who turn we can never know half the evil.
[1/11/64 - 1/22/64 Not Written]
Saturday, January 23, 1864
Whole Brig. Embarked on Govt. transports early in [the] morning. Went to Johnnie Davies and took a solitary oyster stew. Fleet sailed at 4. P. M. of Vicksburg.
Sunday, January 24, 1864
Arrive at destination at dark but remain on board all night. Met N. C. Fuller. [Tve ?] as refugee. (Turns out to be deserter).
Monday, January 25, 1864
Embarked at light and marched to Camp Lewis at Hebron on Clear Creek eight miles in rear of Vicksburg and pitched our tents on the same ground we left Dec 4th or 5th. Every thing square at 2 P. M.
[No entries 1/26/64 - 1/2/64]
Wednesday February 3, 1864
Marched at 8 A. M. on expedition to - somewhere - crossed Black River 10.30 at same point as last summer when operating against Jackson. Gens. Sherman and McPherson make a very close informal inspection as we pass. Camp at sun set five miles from river south of R. R.
Thursday, February 4, 1864
Stared early and snowed steadily on till noon when the column is checked by heavy skirmishing in the front. The 12th is ordered to relieve the 14th and 15th Ill. Regts a wing taking the place of each. "Our" wing (the Right) moves of to the south of the road by the flank then to the east the left Co. 'C" resting on the road. Our progress in time of battle is soon interfered with by the rebs pitching twelve pound shell at us in a very careless manner. After on or two shots the men become steady and move off in fine style. An instant later a shell comes hissing through the air and explodes about the center of the 2d platoon, killing Eugene Baldwin and Wm. H. Murry instantly, wounding Ove Lind so badly as to cause his death in tree hours and slightly wounding J. A. Thorp, L. Neal and J. W. Hean. Immediately following is an abundance of canister shot one of which struck my sword near the hilt while sheathing it and carried it away. We now charge the enemy driving him two miles and across Bakers Creek. We hold the bridge till morning when we are relieved by the 3d Div.
Friday, February 5, 1864
3d Div. Drive the [enemy] to Jackson capturing one piece of artillery but loose seventeen or eighteen men in doing it. 4th Div. Camps four miles from the city at 10 P. M.
Saturday, February 6, 1864
Arrive at Jackson at 9 A. M. See Gen.. Hurlbut Comdg. 16th A. C. who is tight and makes a speech. March across Pearl River on rebel pontoon after dark and camp one mile east of the stream. Very cold night. Men suffer for bedding. 16th A. C. just coming up.
Sunday, February 7, 1864
Broke camp early and after marching thirteen miles camped on mile east of Brandon. The men foraged large quantities of tobacco on the way and are making merry over their hot coffee, wit the help of having first rate time on this expedition.
Monday, February 8, 1864
Some skirmishing today in the extreme advance but so distant as to be out to or hearing. One woman was killed in her own door by one of our carbine balls while urging the rebel Cavalry officer, who had formed his men in front of his house, to leave her premises before making a stand. Several small children were crying over the corpses we passed. Our men disturbed nothing but on the contrary divided their rations wit the little ones. Camped at sunset four miles west of Morton.
Tuesday, February 9, 1864
March from 10 A. M. to 2 P. M. when we camped at Morton where the 16th A. C. passed us between three and six P. M. I walked back a couple of miles to look for the 25th and brother Henry and found them all in good spirits and first rate trim. Any amount of rich jokes were cracked in rapid succession. Henry was carrying a knapsack containing his blankets, poncho and under cloths, his great thrown across his arm and a heavy revolver at his belt. Such a load would kill me in a single day. He took supper with me and I went on seven miles and stayed the night with him and was introduced to the mode of campaign living as practiced in his Regt. He masses with his field officers and their entire "kit" is carried on the back of a singe "darky". During the preparation of their meals each on lends poor Negro a hand, some boiling coffee, some roasting potatoes and some broiling bits of meat on splinters sharpened for the purpose. The 25th marched at 4 A. M. of the 10th but I remained waiting for my Regt. to come up.
Wednesday, February 10, 1864
Regt. overtook me about two P. M. Passed through Hillsbourough about dark and camped two miles southeast from the town. Our advance guard met with foul play near the village and completely destroyed it in retaliation. Corporal Bon with a squad of men foraged two days rations of very nice ham for my Company.
Thursday, February 11, 1864
Started at 8 A. M. Marched till 8 P. M. and made but ten miles. Roads are good but the enormous loads carried by the 16th Corps are enough to completely "use up" any set of men even at ten miles per day.
Friday, February 12, 1864
Borrowed Bill Woodruff's horse and rode ahead to the 16th A. C. which I overtook near Decatur and had a first rate time with Bro. Henry, Maj. Joslin and other officers of the 25th. Just after passing Decatur two or three shots were fired at the 25th Regt while passing a corn field; the buck shot rattled pretty lively among the dry stalks but did no farther damage. Henry and I were walking together beside the fence and saw the warlike "graybacks" just as they dashed off into the woods. Soon after we passed an attack was made on the rain; two teamsters and twenty five or thirty mules were killed but no wagons destroyed. The 25th was ordered back and covered that point till the train had passed. The train guard had rallied and driven the enemy away before we reached the spot. We camped about nine o'clock, Henry was detailed for picket with his whole company. I slept with the Maj. and bade them good by at the "Little Chimkee" next morning. A Co. "I" man shot himself by accident just as the were falling into start. L. E. Murry was severely wounded while foraging. He was shot three times and finally knocked down by a big Reb with an old horse pistol. One ball struck his cartridge box belt and rebounded, one entered below the right shoulder blade near the back bone stopping about an inch and a half under the skin, the third entered higher and to the left of the spinal column passing clear through the body. He was robbed and left for dead but walked half a mile to the road after the rebels left him. His appearance was anything but pleasing when he arrived at the road; his face and garments were covered with blood from the wound caused by the blow on his head. The 12th camped at Decatur.
Saturday, February 13, 1864
Regt. started at 8 A. M. and I net it at ten. Marched fifteen miles and camped at nine o'clock in the evening.
Sunday, February 14, 1864
Broke camp early and camped within four miles of Meridian at six in the afternoon.
Monday, February 15, 1864
Reached M. [Meridian] at nine o'clock in a heavy rainstorm and were quartered in a rebel Govt. Store House where I was soon heartily greeted by Henry and Maj. Joslin who reached the place yesterday. There were two large gun factories here, one of which the enemy burned before evacuating, the other is still standing and occupied by the Hd. Qrs. of the 25th Wis. Rebel barracks, hospitals and store houses are promiscuously scattered in every direction. I fear their ashes will be scattered before the "Yanks" are all gone. Spent the night with Bro. Henry at Hd. Qrs. 25th.
Tuesday, February 16, 1864
Moved at seven A. M. for Enterprise which we reached at dark. The 4th Div, 17th Corps is the only force brought to this place. Al other troops are in the vicinity and north and east of Meridian destroying Railroad many miles will we completely demolished before we get back.
Wednesday, February 17, 1864
Our Brig. Started at seven o'clock for Quitman leaving the Calance of the Div. At Enterprise, tearing up and burning Railroad. Reached Q. at one o'clock P. M. after a hard march and burned a large bridge a mile and a half below town, destroyed several hundred feet of trestle work, several "Confed." Hospital buildings and marched seven miles back toward Enterprise camping at nine o'clock beside the railroad. We were all very tiered.
Thursday, February 18, 1864
Was without blankets last night but crawled in with some of the boys and slept well. Have been quite sick all day but managed to keep along. We destroyed a long piece of road and trestle work. The track we burned. During the time the boys got on a sort of spree and took many of the rails and wound them around trees while they were yet hot. Camped at Enterprise at tree P. M.
Friday, February 19, 1864
Marched moderately today and camped at five o'clock five miles east of Meridian beside the road on which we marched into the place, the 15th. Gen. Sherman has issued an order congratulating and complimenting the troops for their good conduct during the expedition which he says is completed except the getting home part. It will be necessary for as to make good time on our way to Vicksburg as our rations are getting short.
[No diaries present between February 20th and October 2nd 1864. Later he mentions the fact that he lost that diary. Other than the March to and Battle of Atlanta, the other news of importance his the death of his brother William "Henry" Bennett". The Wisconsin Civil War Regimental records list him as: William H. Bennett of Viola Wis. Enlisted in Co. B of the 25th Wisconsin Infantry Volunteers. Henry was from Co. H, 5th Wis. Inf.; 2nd Lieut., July 28, '62; wounded and in prison July 22, '64, Decatur, Ga.; leg amputated three times; died Aug. 10, '64, Macon, G., from his wounds.]
Monday, October, 3 1864
Have been busy making and forwarding returns for September. My Return for C. C. and G. Equipage lacks only the Inspectors report, which will be ready this evening. Received orders today to store all baggage in Atlanta and be ready to move at an early hour tomorrow morning. The whole Army of the Tenn. Is under orders and more then that for ought I know. It seems the enemy as crossed the Chattahoochee and is making demonstrations in the direction of Rome and Kingston. This can not e permitted because it endangers our communications. The move is about one on the part of the rebels and they need more strategic skill and determined during the past six months to insure their escaping our old Chief Sherman. Wrote my Jennie.
Tuesday, October, 4 1864
Sent my C. C. and G. Equipage Return last night. Was awakened very suddenly at 3 A. M. by the infernal rattle of those discordant drums. Ordered first to march at 5.30 then 5.15 and finally at 4.40 while eating the last "square" meal for -nobody knows - how long the order rings "fall in, fall in" and I hastily drop my toast, cast a wistful look at my bit of broiled ham and instinctively repeat "fall in Co. 'I' " and in five minutes we are wallowing through mud ankle deep caused by the heavy rain which fell during the early part of the night. First hour was rather dark. Men tumbled down and rolled over each other in the ruts and mud but bore at with commendable cheerfulness and good humor. Marched twenty two miles and encamped in the work thrown up by the enemy for the defense of the Chattahoochee in July last. The 15th A. C. is behind the 14th A. C. (Army of the Cumberland) has gone onto Marietta. No news of the enemy. Just two years ago today the "Marching Twelfth" left Humbolt, Tenn. For Bolivar to take part in the fruitless but despoiling campaign of the following fall and winter. Our active effective operations date no farther back than them though we considered ourselves " old soldiers." Many of the " weak kneed " have hopes that his retrograde movement will give us a few months rest i. e. garrison duty.
Wednesday, October, 5 1864
Started from camp a 6.30 A. M. Marched seven or eight miles and took position on the Marietta and Sand Town Pike in the old trenches left by the enemy months ago. They are much more formable works than we ever build. Ditches are six feet wide, parapets are from eight to ten feet thick and surmounted by a heavy head log. An impenetrable [abbattis ?] formed of small trees runs along the front of the entire line. It is evident that even at that remote day when they affected to despise our skill, strength and courage the "rebs" had a mortal dread for Yankee bayonets when thrust by Yankee muscle. We lay here all day expecting orders and listening to the thousand rumors ever a float in bivouac. 2d Brig. has gone to the front for picket. 4th Div. has taken position on our left.
Thursday, October, 6 1864
Have lain here in the rain all day, sometimes listening to the rich jokes of witty soldiers who are doubly witty when very uncomfortable or vary tired, and sometimes dozing an hour away only half protected from the annoying rain drops by my poncho. Occasionally a rumor of fighting reaches us but nothing reliable has been received today except that the enemy has been compelled to abandon the railroad is far as Acworth. Altoona was in our possession yet [or got] at five o'clock P. M. and the Gen. Comd'g. signals that he can hold it against any odds a reasonable length of time. Men have been very uncomfortable today still they have had some rare fun chasing rabbits, dogs and each other; alternating this with boring papers, unmercifully they have managed to live till night without the blues.
Friday, October, 7 1864
Again we have lain all day on the same ground with preparations completed to move at a minutes notice. "Seven up" played on a poncho with Dr. Rogers, Capt. Price and Lts. Reynolds and Blakister has helped to pass the dull hours. The enemy made an assault on the works at Altoona today but were repulsed with heavy loss leaving 300 dead on the field among them one Gen., two Cols., and one Lt. Col. They lost several thousand prisoners and a number of pieces of artillery. Our loss is six hundred killed, wounded and missing. Such is the substance of the report received at Div. Hd. Qrs. The supposition that the rebels were going to try and break our communications in the neighborhood of Kingston is rapidly fading. The are as far north it appears as they have any desire to go. John Henthorn died yesterday in hospital at Marietta of Chronic Diarrhea. His death is wholly chargeable to the "Medical faculty" of the Reg. It has been perfectly plain for months that he must be sent north or die, still he has been kept. Such brutality is so common that it has ceased to elicit more than a passing remark. Dr. Rogers will have this and scores of similar murders to answer for. Poor Seth McClury is following rapidly in the same path. It is discouraging to see good soldiers and estimable men dying almost daily and yet be powerless to help them. I suppose I must be looked upon as on of the evils inseparable from war. It is certainly insufficient to wean one, even for a moment, from the glorious and righteous cause in which we are engaged. God will surly bless our efforts to restore peace. The 4th Div. marched in the direction of Campbell's Springs at 9 o'clock A. M. to learn something of the position of the enemy in that locality and his probable operations at other points. If a force is found there it will indicate that "ye rebs" will be recrossing the Chattahochee very soon, if not they will probably turn up in the vicinity of Kingston about the 10th. Gen. Thomas will meet them at that point if not sooner.
Saturday, October, 8 1864
Were under arms at daylight but remained in bivouac all day without receiving orders. At 11 A. M. the 4th Div. returned and reported to have been out fifteen miles without seeing any rebs. The 15th A. c. marched in the direction of Marietta. It is supposed it will take position between Kenesaw and Lost Mts. Will have to travel fast or late as the Corps moved at 5 P. M. The day has been cold and raw. Drew two days rations at six P. M. and received orders to move at seven tomorrow morning. Lt. Thayer died in hospital at Marietta yesterday. He was wounded Aug 13th in front of Atlanta. The ball entered the right side about the forth rib a little back of the middle of the side and was found in the vicinity of the lover extremity of the spinal column. An abscess had formed back of his kidneys which contained a gallon of puss when he died.
Sunday, October, 9 1864
Broke bivouac three miles southeast of Marietta at 8 A. M. and marched moderately to M. where I saw Edgar Eno and H. F. Strong; the former is quite low the latter has but a left hand with which to greet his old comrades. Met Capts. McClennen and Berry and Q. M. Phelps all of the 23d Ill. Inft'y. Capt. M. has resigned and is only waiting for the Railroad to be repaired before going home. He is jubilant over his "success". Were I in his circumstances I would not leave the service but as I am situated. I envy him, his freedom. The day ahs been beautiful, the sun bright, the air clear and comfortably cool and the roads in the best condition imaginable. Autumn weather is this latitude is glorious. Surpasses anything I ever saw except our Wis. Indian Summer. It lasts so much longer, however that it makes up in part for the dreary contentedness of our "Smoky Season." I do not wonder that the Southerners are so devotedly attached to their native land. It is a great pity they should not possess innate goodness enough to induce them to live peaceably under so good a government as ours. After leaving Marietta we marched much faster that before camping near Big Shanty about an hour before sun set. While passing the work we built in June last when advancing cautiously on Kenesaw many old memories both pleasant and unpleasant come rapidly to mind. Recollections of the many brave, noble fellows who have gone since then cause a deep shadow to rest on my spirits. Nearly thirty men of my own Company have peen placed hose de campat within the three past months. Our animals are very much reduced. We have passed fully thirty today that were dead or dying of exhaustion.
Monday, October, 10 1864
The whole Army of the Tennessee has lain in camp today with heavy fatigue detail was repairing the railroad. The track is being laid at a rate of a mile and a half a day, Assuming that the progress is equally as rapid at the other end of the break trains will be running in three days. It is to be earnestly hoped they will for the men are suffering for rations. Received orders at sunset to be ready to move at a moments notice. I have been preparing a diary for 1864 from Lt. Hoyt's in place of my own lost. It is difficult because his is so brief; it only tells where we were at certain dates, what hours of certain days we started on certain marches and where, and at what hour we camped. All else must be furnished by one's memory. Received orders at sunset to move at six tomorrow morning, and hour later the time was changed to 4.45 and at ten o'clock we were roused from sleep by the cry "pack up and be ready do move immediately." At 10.30 we started off and marched till four next morning when we camped at Acworth. The night was pretty chilly and as we marched very slow, the men suffered a great deal from cold and fatigue. I fell asleep several times while walking along; and several times when halted I slept and thinking the column had moved onward on till I ran against men upset some other unfortunate somnambulist. A great many houses and mules from the batteries and trains gave out and were left where they dropped, guns, caissons and baggage wagons were drawn over the poor animals neck and limbs. I saw a number that were till living with their legs cut completely off. The road was lined on both sides by sleeping men. Had become too much worn to go farther.
Tuesday, October, 11 1864
As soon as the teams came up, which was about fifteen minutes after we stacked arms, I spread my blankets and - myself but had only just commenced to sleep when I was called to breakfast. I tried it again after eating but our fellows, that is , members of our mess, being together I had to bid slumber good bye till a better opportunity should present itself. At seven o'clock we fell in and started up the read at a rapid pace which was kept up till 11.30 when we were halted in an open field on the left of the pike in sight of Altoona to make coffee. At one P. M. we started again passing through Altoona Gap. We saw at the station a member of rebs wounded the 7th; among them is a woman who received three gun shot wounds during the assault of that day, one of which, received in the knee, rendered the amputation of - not a leg - but a lower limb necessary. I never before appreciated the beauties of the Medical profession. It is well for the peace of mind of a certain dear, good, little woman "up north" that I was not a member of the amputation board at Altoona the 6th. It is currently reported that the lady's sympathy with the rebel cause is rapidly oozing our - may be from the palms of her hands, may be from under her arms, maybe. We crossed the Etowa on a bridge built since we crossed on our way south the 7th of June last. It is about one hundred and fifty yards below the point where the canvass pontoon bridge were anchored. The 3d Div. bivouacked about five miles north of the river at 8 P. M. Nearly one half of the command was left by the road side from on to three miles back. Got supper consisting of hard bread, fried bacon and coffee at nine. There are conflicting rumors concerning the state of our affairs in the east. One is that Gen. Grant has Lee's army shut up in Richmond without a hope of escape except they give battle. If this be true the demoralization, if not the annihilation, of the rebel army of Va. Is certain. The other is that Lee is evacuating the Capital he has so long and so successfully defended and is bringing his army into East Tenn. By way of Knoxville Ky. Such a move would compel Gen. Sherman to leave this section of Ga. and probably the whole state to defend Tennessee but I would be greatly advantageous to the interests of our Government because it would get the rebel armies together and our strength could be concentrated and we shall crush them wherever they dared to make a stand. I have no faith that either rumor is true. They are both too good. The 6th Wis. Bat. Is stationed at Etowa Bridge.
Wednesday, October, 12 1864
Awoke at five o'clock and in a few minutes was dressed and washed. At 5. 30 Col. Bryant Comd'g. Brig. came to the Regt. and said we should have moved a quarter of an hour before to comply with orders but as the leading Brigs. were not yet moving we could eat our breakfast. All hands immediately fell to but had not filled our plates for an order came to move at once. I started off to my Co. without eating anything but was in the worst possible humor. We drove on till within six miles of Rome where we camped for the night at eight P. M. There was slow but heavy firing in the vicinity of Rome during the afternoon. The men were very tired and without rations, but received on day's supply of hard bread and beef [?] their due which supplied their wants for the time being. Slept with McVey and Billy Woodruff on account of the "powers that be" having pressed our mess team to bring rations and forage from Kingston. Our baggage was sent to Rome by railroad. The boys woke me up twice during the night to eat. Clever fellows. Think I'll hire to one of them after the war. Received a large mail which gladdened the boys hearts amazingly. It is the first they have had this month. I received a letter from my Jennie, on from father and mother and a score from other parties among them one from G. L. Laws, Richland Center. Received official notice that E. Sandord had been paid for the month of July and August 1864 by Maj. D. D. S. Brown, also that Chas. H. Tiemor was discharged from Harvy U. S. A., Gen. Hospital Madison Wis. In the 12th day of Aug 1864 because of Surgeon's certificate of disability. Any amount of Union State tickets and other election papers came to hand by mail. We're ready to vote 'em. Charges came against E. B. Sommers, J. B. Sommers, H. A. Shaffer and J. Berm for transportation furnished by Q. M. Deps. from Chicago to Loane Rock to the amount of $4.61 each. Allen McVey sends surgeon's certificate extending sick furlough twenty days. Am suffering a good deal with lameness of my ankle. I needs all my determination to keep along on these hard marches. I hoe to have done with this ere long.
Thursday, October, 13 1864
Lay in bivouac till dark reading letters and papers received last night and playing poker for parched corn. There was heavy firing up the river from Rome at intervals during the whole day. As it is more distant at each renewal it is evident our forces are driving the enemy. It was reported just dark that the rebs captured Resaca last night and still hold the place. There is a possibility of the report being true but it is not generally credited. Wrote my Jennie but had no opportunity to mail the letter. Just after dark we fell in and marched off north east leaving Kingston to the right calculating to strike the C. and A. R. R. at Adairsville. Our progress was slow but steady all night. The Div. was very much worn when it was halted for breakfast and rest at sunrise the 14th.
Friday, October, 14 1864
After eating and sleeping till ten o'clock we fell in and marched to Adairsville which we reached at two P. M. The surface of the country is undulating and literally covered with irregularly shaped fragment of rocks which have the appearance of having been spilled during the process of transportation. Slate, lime, fling, and rotten sand stone make up the weight of the rock in this neighborhood. The forest trees are mostly chestnut which are loaded with very nice nuts. The 12th was detailed to guard, the supply train of the 17th A. C. with orders to wait at A. [Adairsville] till it should come up which was not till after dark so we remained during the night. The 56th Ill. Infty. Are doing garrison duty at the place and are quartered in a large brick, foundry building capable of holding twice their numbers. The walls are perched for musketry above three parallel stagings and the whole building surrounded by a heavy rifle pit, the dirt thrown back against the base of the wall. All these improvements together make this building a formidable fort as will as a comfortable barrack. Several of the 56th have married ladies of this place since the Regt. has been stationed here which is about three months. The threatening of Resaca by the rebels occasioned their being called up the road yesterday but the danger being past they were sent back on the train and arrived while we were bivouacked near the foundry. Their young wives "flew to arise" in the most approved style and with as much alacrity as the most devoted brides of the north.
Saturday, October, 15 1864
Marched at 7 o'clock for Calhoun a small town on the railroad ten miles north. The soil is less rock than yesterday though blue lime abounds. Water plenty but inferior. We reached Calhoun Station at 11. 30 A. M. Soon after noon six trains of cars went down the road empty. This seems to indicated the speedy evacuation of the country below here or a necessity for troops above. One train at least went for troops because it returned heavily loaded at sunset. It is reported that the rebs have taken, and still hold, Snake creek Gap where Gen. McPherson fought so hard with the 15th and 16th Corps last May. They were driven away then and will be again. Resaca was not captured though its surrender was demanded by Gen. Hood himself. At dark we pulled out or Resaca which we reached at 10.30. The train being very large and the few left.
Sunday, October, 16 1864
After bolting a half raw breakfast at 4.30 we marched off to the north across the Ostanoola and through town. Co.s "D" and "I" marching in rear of the 1st Div. train which was the 2d in order. At the supply depot on the northern border of the town our empty wagons were filled with hard bread delaying u till ten o'clock. We saw about fifty Johnnies in a guard building near the depot who were captured yesterday in a fight in Snake Creek Gap which we took. There was also a member of some I'll Regt. confined for murdering a negro last night while his command (23d A. C.) was passing through Resaca. The black fellow was sleeping beside the road and the soldier being tired and warn out was of course out of humor. He was so in raged at the poor innocent fellow for taking comfort that he shot him remarking "Take that you d---d [Black Slang] and see if you'll sleep again when I have to march." This chap was a member of Price's Army in Missouri, but deserted the rebs and enlisted in our service two years ago. He has the hardest countenance I ever saw. Sharp short features, restive, half-closed eyes, sharp turn-up nose, sandy hair, long straight and coarse and thin read whiskers. We left Resaca at ten marching north were through Snake Creek Gap a deep, straight pass through the mountain from the Ostanoola to Sugar Valley. This pass is so gradual in its accent and so uniform and regular in from that one might easily imagine that I is a work of art. The decent is more abrupt and irregular as well as much more picturesque. Several of my boys, who half straggled ahead, packed up a stray ox from a drove belonging to the 23d A. C. and had him killed and his hind quarters skinned when we came along. Each man cut off a strung on his bayonet a good big chunk so we had a fine fresh beef treat when we camped at midnight without overtaking the Regt. or even knowing where it was but allowing the train to pass along without guard. Had I been in command I would not have taken the responsibility to halt for the night without orders but Capt. Price was willing to rest the consequences and I made no objections for my men were completely worn out. If reports from citizens are true, the rebel army has got into a bad way. We know that Hood must fight or run immediately. The inhabitants say the Reb "rank and file" have had noting to eat for four days but parched corn and sugar cane. Of course, this is an exaggeration to say the least. Saw Lt. Hunt of the 25th Wis. And had a long talk of old friends and associations. Was very tired when we halted. My ankle gets worse every time I march any distance. Shall have to quit it.
Monday, October, 17 1864
Arose from my poncho shivering with cold at four o'clock roused up my men and set them to making coffee. At five, started off at a rapid pace which we maintained for two miles when we overtook the Regt. in as small valley where we halted and slept till ten A. M. The Lt. Col. having received orders for us to join the Brig. we moved two or three miles to the sought west and took position at the right of the Division on the summit of a sharp, rocky ridge. Drew two day's rations, had bread full, sugar and coffee half and received notice that together with on days now on had they must be mad to last five days. Gen. Ransom Comd'g. the Corps issued a heavy antistraggling order which prohibits any officers or soldiers leaving his place on the march except when it is actually necessary. Seven finalities are attached to disobedience. Marched from nine till twelve P. M. when the Div. bivouacked for the night. I was sent in pickets with my company but considered I no hardship as the weather was fine and we stopped early. We saw some pretty steep road while passing over a spur of the mountains. About half way own on this (the south) side a team had run off the road and gone tumbling down the mountain as far as on could see the deeply clouded moonlight. The wagon stood posed on the very verge of the hill and looked as thought it must be overthrown by the first breath of air.
Tuesday, October, 18 1864
Was believed at 7.30 and ordered to report to my Regt. which I found about three miles south of the place at which we spent the high. Halted near LaFayette at eleven o'clock to make coffee. This is a very pretty village of five or six hundred inhabitants and is surrounded by the most lovely scenery I ever beheld. The imagination can picture nothing more pleasing than a meat village snuggled among wood clad mountains. Georgia ought to be a land of poets. If ever it produces one his home will be at LaFayette. Camped at sunset on the north bank of Chattooga Creek. Our mess team failed to come up so I slept, or rather spent the night, with my orderly sergeant.
Wednesday, October, 19 1864
Marched at seven A. M. passing the 15th A. C. near the Creek. Sent out a foraging party which brought loads of meat and deposited it beside the road to await the Div. train. Our course changed from south to south of west. Made fifteen miles passing from Ga. into Ala. And camping near Alpine. The 12th was sent on picket about a mile west of the Div. camp. The boys found plenty of pork, sweet potatoes, mutton and molasses and had a first class soldier's feast. Mess team missing yet. The column of rebs we are following has passed over the mountains enroute for middle Tennessee. It is doubtful about our following because our teams are too much reduced to move supplies.
Thursday, October, 20 1864
Marched at eight A. M. keeping a steady pace till sunset camping about a mile before reaching Galesville. The country through which we passed is rich and beautiful. The pass through a spur of the mountain which we passed is so deep, so straight and the sides so precipitous that it reminds one of some huge tunnel. This is a rich field for geological labor. Lime, sand, flint and serpentine are among the rocks. The water is good and abundant. Beautiful springs boil up by the road side almost every mile. Capt. Sylvester was ordered under arrest this morning, by Gen. Leggett, for allowing his foraging party to fire yesterday. He was to deliver his naked sword at Div. Hd. Qrs. and march in rear of the Regt. wearing his belt and empty scabbard. The Capt. Has the sympathy of the whole Commission of the Regt.
Friday, October, 21 1864
Moved at 10 A. M. three miles south of Galesville and went into camp on a grassy lawn. There is some prospect of the army lying here for some time. I judge from the fact that there is a bridge being built across the Chattooga at the village. The boys have made graters of parts of canteens and are grating corn and making pudding of the meal. Although not sifted this meal makes very nice pudding.
Saturday, October, 22 1864
Officers were disturbed this morning by Co. Bryant who notified us that the non-veterans portion of the Regt. would start for Chattanooga sometime during the day to be mustered out. I considered to go along and muster out too in case I could get a part of my pay. All non-veterans of the Army of the Tenn. Were gathered at Hd Qrs. 17th A. C. and started at four P. M. for Chattanooga with a train of thirty five wagons on half of which is loaded with refugees. About 25 prisoners are with us. I was assigned to command of the guns.
Sunday, October, 23 1864
Marched at daylight making twenty five miles and camping at sunset. The boys foraged port, potatoes and chickens and we had a supper which I shall not soon forget. Mr. Walker, Chaplain, is sleeping with me on this trip. He is on Leave of Absence.
Monday, October, 24 1864
Daylight found us ready to march and dark but just camped after walking twenty-four miles. I preceded in gathering a good supply of apples today some of which I "baked in the ashes" for my supper. We passed or rather met a wing of the 14th A. C. on its way to the front. Passed LaFeyette about noon. On a close inspection the town is anything but as charming as I thought it when we were passing town. Mandatory occupation have played the mischief with it. Here is where Gen. Pillow demanded Maj. commanding a Battalion of Cav. to surrender "to prevent the useless diffusion of blood", but the Maj. failed to suit and Pillow passed on without making a fight.
Tuesday, October, 25 1864
Reached Chattanooga, Ga. at one P. M. Bivouac near the town of Lookout. Expected to find Lt. Rogers here but he has been gone three or four days. Is in search of the Regt. 2nd Lt. Silsly Bat "C" first I had 1st Wis. H. Q. He tells us the first I had heard of his son, Amadeus. Death which was caused by wounds in the left arm and left hip and which took place Aug 31st. Professor S. is looking well but borne down by grief, a little boy of his died a few weeks ago. I am in a bad row of stumps not a cent of money and a very poor prospect of being paid even when mustered out.
Wednesday, October, 26 1864
Procured Provost Marshall's pass so I can go any where within the limits the town. Hunted faithfully for hours for some sort of shelter and finally got permission to sleep in an old rag of a tent for two or three nights. Lt. Cantwell and Clark just came up from Atlanta. They saw nothing of Rogers. Cantwell is without blankets and I have taken him into my bed.
Thursday, October, 27 1864
Borrowed a tent from Lt. Kennedy and set it up at the bivouac. Learned that men will be mustered out on the expiration of their time regardless of the date of organization of the Regt. and have the papers nearly completed to muster out those whose time expires tomorrow. I shall be thankful to get away from Chattanooga for it is the most filthy and forsaken place (except by the military) I ever saw.
Friday, October, 28 1864
Got Brewer, Foster, Fetterly, Jenness, Kellogg, L. D. and Masterson mustered out today "by reason of expiration of term of service." They and four of Co. "C" men went north on the 5.30 train. I begin to feel anxious to be off myself but must be guided by circumstances and let reason point my course for a few months to come. I am tired of the service, however and shall stay but a short time at longest. I have completed the muster out papers of those men who enlisted in Co. "A" and were transferred to Co. "I". Their time expires tomorrow.
Saturday, October, 29 1864
Brisbine, Balcom, Dale, Rider and Wells are mustered out and gone home. I am lonesome enough to bet the blues. Think I shall follow them in a few days. Took dinner with Lt. Silsby and had a long talk about old times, memories and associates. Many of the latter have been taken hence during this war. Poor brother Henry is among them. Lt. S. appreciates Henry's many noble traits of character and sympathies deeply with those who mourn for him. He is himself suffering from a similar affliction and can enter fully into our feelings. Wrote my Jennie, sending the letter by Balcom to Fetterly who will take it home.
Sunday, October, 30 1864
Was surprised this morning by the appearance in camp of Allen McVey and L. C. Stiles both came with the expectation of being mustered out and without their descriptive rolls. McVey is from his home in Ohio where he has been wounded and on furlough and Stiles from Atlanta hospital. Walked up town with Lt. Cantwell and, while lying around the office at the Crutchfield House saw Lt. Jim Simpson through the officers of Co. "A".
Monday, October, 31 1864
Went to the C. M.'s office at 7. A. M. and stayed till 3 P. M. but no Falvy came so we returned to camp. About five o'clock I was most agreeable surprised by L. Rogers walking into my tent. Never was much more pleased to meet a man. He replenished my starved purse t the tune of $20. In green backs. His summer's sickness has been enough to discourage the most hardy. Lt. Cantwell came in late in the evening pretty well "slewed" and made merry over having got Lt. Falvy C. M. so drunk that he could not get to his office. Capt. Stevens and Lt. Blackman are offended.
Tuesday, November, 1 1864
Lt. Rogers mustered out today also McVey and Stiles and are at the depot awaiting an up-country train. Capt. Stevens, Lts. Blackman and Clark are there too and waiting too. Salma is in a particular hurry to get home. Have spent the day in straightening my papers relating to C. C. and G. Eqt. For Oct. and the find settlement of my business preparatory to leaving the service.
Wednesday, November, 2 1864
On account of the R. R. being taxed beyond its capacity those who were mustered out yesterday are still detained. Lt. Clark is the only one who has got off. Salma and Capt. Stevens took supper with us at the "Gibs House." The day has been rainy and disagreeable. Have made out Ordinance Invoices and Receipts for Lt. Hoyt to sign.
Thursday, November, 3 1864
Lt. Bouton started for the Regt. at 6.30 this evening or rather he was to. Steve LaMarr and Ed. Grey went with him. I sent a lot of Cap letters to Lt. Hoyt and a clothes brush and shoe brush to Sergt. McVey by the latter. By Lt. B. I sent Invoices and Receipts for Ordnance and Ordnance Stores and for Clothing Camp and Garrison Equipage to Lt. Hoyt. Troops are being crowded to the wet as rapidly as possible. The 23d A. C. has been going to Decatur today. An immerse drove of cattle came in on the military road around the base of Lookout Mnt. This P. M. The rain has fallen almost incessantly. Have heard of Hood's attack and repulse three separate time from Decatur Oct 30th, 31st and Nov1st. I am heartily glad of it but care not say that I rejoice because my thoughts do not just a moment on the place without bringing poor brother Henry's sad fate freshly to my mind. It is probably on account of his having been engaged there in April last. Except my Jennie he was dearer to me than any other person. I cannot but feel that my affliction is too heavy.
Friday, November, 4 1864
Rained all day and weather cold. Salma got off on the 1.30 train. I book the baggage belonging to Balcom, Brewer and others from McVey and gave it to Goddard of Co. F to take to Louisville where Balcom is waiting. Stiles is sick and McVey unable to look after him and the baggage too while the road is so much crowded.
Saturday, November, 5 1864
A beautiful day this has been. Made my muster out Rolls and got the Col's signature to them. Met Lt. Chase Q. M. 24th Wis. At dinner. Think him a pleasant fellow. Went up town with Lt. Cantwell. Met Prof. Silsly on the street. Capt. Stevens is still in town chasing like a caged lion.
Sunday, November, 6 1864
Col. Bryant tried to muster out but could not find Lt. Faley. Our tents were taken from us and turned over to the Post Q. M. this morning. Commenced raining at ten A. M. and kept it up all day. Called on Prof. Silsly and took supper. Am going to sleep at Q. M. Sam Chase's 24th Wis.
Monday, November, 7 1864
Mustered out today and shall start for home the first opportunity. Think I shall feel like a free man when I get north of the Ohio river. Col. Bryant got off today. Lt. Cantwell's papers are made out and he will go with me. I regret the necessity which compels me to leave the service because many associations are very pleasant. Some of my warmest and most esteemed friends are in the "old twelfth." The desire to enjoy the comforts of home and the society of my sweet little wife out balance and for those considerations.
Tuesday, November, 8 1864
Saw nothing of Lt. Cantwell but have reason to believe he went to Atlanta last night. Stared for Nashville on the 1.30 train which has reached the foot of the mountain where we shall have to lie all night for something unknown cause. Today has been fought the great battle of the war. Ere this the people have be decided the fate of our nation. If they have voted of McClellan, which I very much doubt, we are dead as a nation, as individuals we are deeply disgraced.
[Also from his Sergeant's Roll Call book on this date: Learned from Mr. Gibbs. Co. G. 12 Wis. That there is excellent land to be had for from $1.25 to $1.50 per acre from fifty to on hundred and fifty miles directly west from McGregor Iowa. Is an unexceptionable locality for grazing. Blue joint grass and pea vies compose the feed and grow to the height of a man's head. Timber rather scarce except along the streams which are plenty and filled with trout. Plums, crab apples and other wild fruit are abundance. Building stone can be quarried in some localities. Wm. N. Gibbs, Grand Rapids, Wood Co. Wis.]
Wednesday, November, 9 1864
Came across the Mt. At seven A. M. through a long tunnel. Reached Nashville at eight P. M. Met Sergt. J. C. Bender at N. He was sent from Atlanta on the hospital train to go into Gen. Hospital here. Looks much better than when I last saw him in Marietta last Sept. but is far from well yet. Seems to regret having lost his vote. It will make no difference in the result. Mr. Lincoln is reelected.
Thursday, November, 10 1864
Had regular "run" over the whole city of Nashville to get my pay, in which I failed and to get transportation to Louisville, Ky. In which I succeeded and got off on the 2.30 train in the afternoon. Nashville is a very pretty City or was before military spoiled it as it has all southern cities. Business is brisk and the streets are crowded with fruit and pastry hawkers. Reached Louisville at three o'clock on following morning.
Friday, November, 11 1864
Received six months pay from Maj. A. Dinen including the time from Jan 1st, 1864 to June 30th 1864 and amounting to Seven Hundred and Thirty Three Dollars and Seventy five Cents. Saw Capt. Howell while crossing the Ohio to the train cars for Columbus Ind. from Jeffersonville from where we rattled of at 2.30 P. M. Reached C. at seven in the evening and started immediately in search of Sis. Margaret whom I found as per directions she gave me last Aug. More than nine years have passed since we last parted yet I see but little change in her appearance except that she has grown old. Her husband is a fine looking man and has provided her with a neat and comfortable cottage home. Her worth is more nearly appreciated that of old. Spent the evening in pleasant old-time chat.
Saturday, November, 12 1864.
Spent the day in visiting with Sis M. and family. Telegraphed last night to Indianapolis to have my truck sent back. It arrived "O. K." at 10.30. It's being carried past is chargeable to the carelessness of the baggage master.
Sunday, November, 13 1864
Have not been outside of the door yard today. Chat, chat, has been the order of the day. Wrote Capt. Howell and Sergt. Gribble. Net Miss Stinson, Sis. M.'s Sister-in-law.
Monday, November, 14 1864
Visited the town early and bought a little present for each of Sis. M.'s children, three in number. Mr. S. has been trying all day making improvements in his yard which is already very pretty for a new one. He and Alexander (M.'s little boy fourteen rears old) set out a very nice little forest tree in front of their cottage which greatly improves the appearance of the "establishment." If Sis and her husband were blessed with good health for a year or two they will have make their home an Eden. They strive each to outdo the other in beautify their home. There has been a grand ratification meeting here tonight. Fireworks, speeches and general whooping and cheering indicated the general satisfaction of that portion of Hoosierdom here assembled.
Tuesday, November, 15 1864
Left Sis. And her family very reluctantly and took the cars for Chicago. Reached Indianapolis at M. and left at one o'clock train for C. by way of Lafayette and Michigan city. While siting in the cars waiting for them to leave Indianapolis the Provost Guard from the V. R. C. came in to examine papers and other authority on which soldiers were traveling. One fellow from the 20th A. C. who is on furlough was pretty near drunk and used very abusive language to the Sergt. Of the Guard who arrested and sent him to the guard rooms where he will be confined till he is sober. There was quite a feeling about it in the car but in this case, right ruled and the fellow was marched off to prison.
Wednesday, November, 16 1864
Reached home at seven this morning and was met at the door by Sis. Allie who, to judge from appearances had not been up a great while. Was very much surprised to meet my Jennie here and very much pleased to see her looking so well and happy. I feel that the time has merely arrived when I can enter upon life's joys again. Sisters Phronia and Allie are teaching. Went to the business part of town, but visited no Chart or Book firm. Wrote to Sis. Margaret.
*** End of Captain Van Bennet's Diary. ***
From the Wisconsin Historical Society.
AUTHOR Bennett, Van S.
TITLE Civil War papers, 1861-1864.
: MAD 4 /16/C3
CALL NO. Wis Mss 48S