“Centerville” Va. –Marching – “Chantilly” battle

 

September,                                          Monday 1,                                                       1862

 

“September came in like a Lion.” Weather very cloudy and cool for the season of the year – though splendid weather for marching – I joined myself to the Regiment just after they had eaten breakfast.   Lieut. H. L. Pentecost was commanding the Co. This was the first and only time he ever gave me a warm or ever pleasant reception – said he thought Lieut. Wilgus and I were in the Rebels hands--prisoners.  I could give him no information concerning Lorenze.  We marched through “Centerville” at about 2 ½ or 3 miles stopping in an old waste field near an orchard – I saw some mills as we passed through “Centerville” though I did not get to [?] by him – We two remained in this old field about two hours when we commenced the march as we believed with search of  Camp guard consequently all had light hunts – in the afternoon and about 7 p.m. (as near as I can – recalled while marching through a field up through a valley went in regular marching order. We were more than astounded by the Enemy opening fire on us – The unexpectedness of the attack would considerable confusion.  Officers became exerted and the “Roundheads” were thrown in battle by rear rank in front and ordered to change where gun skerers [?] ratified things in an understand [?] and ordered fire Companies off the right of the Roundheads for skirmishing I was among the number and the battle commenced immediately.

The Chantilly battle we had one advent of the Enemy by their artillery were in the herds and

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Marching – “Fair Fax” C. H. Bivouacking

 

September,                                          Tuesday 2,                                                       1862

 

Weather clear warm and very pleasant – though the roads were very muddy – I slept on the battlefield expecting that hostilities would be again renewed with the down of morning, but I was mistaken as our Army was falling back on “Washington D. C. “  I was aroused very early about 2 or 3 a.m. as it was remained the Rebel Calvary had possession of the battle field picking up stragglers.  So I immediately made travels for the Regt.  I fell in with troop marching in the road and I followed suit marching about 4 miles we halted where there was a large number of troop but I learned nothing of the Regt. However, I determined to follow the biggest crowd fell in with several “Roundheads” near “Fair Fax” C. H. but they knew nothing of the whereabouts of the Regt. so I took the “Alexandria’s turn pike” and often considered roaming about I found the Regt. about one mile distant from “Fair Fax” just as they were filing in to march.  We marched about 10 miles in the afternoon encamping within two miles of “Alexandria”.  Yesterday’s battle was the most important of the war as the Enemy had our Army surrounded and cut off from Washington.   Several of Co. A. are prisoners of the Rebels hands.

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Marching – I saw Washington D. C.

 

September,                                          Wednesday 3,                                                 1862

 

Weather clear warm and pleasant mild September weather in every respect I never suffered so much from cold in all my life as I did last night laying on the cold ground with little or no cover.  I shook for at least three (“long”) hours as one having the Ague – A requisition for clothes was put in so I like in hopes of a better day coming I felt very much the worse of our exceedingly severe campaign, completely exhausted and worn out, weary and sick and I felt as though I could bear but little more of such severe capers and trials and that my career would be cut short by such duties – I took a stroll up in the heights east of us to get a sight of our nation's capital. I saw for the first time the Capital and “Washington” D. C. All our stragglers not prisoners joined the Company today.   Lorenze was one of the number.

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Bivouacking – Marching – Alexandria – Washington D. C.

 

September,                                          Thursday 4,                                                     1862

 

Weather clear and very warm September like in every respect – Wm. H. Lewis Lorenze D. Wilgus and I went out in search of apples or peaches. We found some superb peaches though they were not quite ripe at or near a very splendid looking house doubtless the property of some wealthy Rebel. We returned to the Regiment remaining there the remainder of the day – Clark and Morris McKeever Father visited them to day I received an introduction to Him about 8 p.m. we commenced the march, marching through “Alexandria” and “Washington D. C” halted about 4 o clock in the morning rather of the morrow about “Washington”.  This was a very fatiguing march on the troop losing.  I pressure only to our appearance--ragged force ranked duty and filing.  The officer commanding were ashamed to march us through the Nation’s Capital in day time. Bill Lewis and I dropped out of ranks about 5 a.m. in the suburbs of the City.     

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Bivouacking near Washington D. C.

 

September,                                          Friday 5,                                                          1862

 

Weather clear and warm and pleasant mild September weather in every respect. Wm. H. Lewis and I awoke about 9 a.m. and started immediately in search of the Regiment.  Just as we arrived a guard was being put around Camp. I spent the last red cent I had in the world to day – The Camp was literally swimming with Hucksters so there was a super-abundance of luxuries in Camp but we were minus money notwithstanding we were craving our mouths watering for the rich luxuries. I never wanted money so much in all my life.  I received a letter from R. A. M. and one from D. K. M. Maria and some papers from Bro Jack. This was on an old mail that had been lying at Washington for some time back I have no writing material and no money to buy any.       

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Bivouacking near “Washington” D. C.          

 

September,                                          Saturday 6,                                                      1862

 

Weather clear and warm and pleasant weather – I felt unusual for some time back very much indisposed a severe headache for time past – W. H. Lewis and I visited the city of Washington D. C. (We requested a pass of Capt. Pentecost but he refused to give us one so we nary the guards and went without permission.  We visited the Washington monument – the Capitol Post – office all the public buildings are magnificent structures. We visited the Capitol expecting to be shown through it but oh! imagining our surprise at the entrance being informed that we could not gain admittance (as it was filled with wounded soldiers we were told).  I was thunder struck on receiving such information as the admittance into the national capitol it should be the soldier who was fighting for his nation her institutions – [?] and I was very angry at our disappointment and almost rushed that the Rebels had it in their possession – After all I had suffered and endowed in defense of the Capital  and wearing the National uniform I was not even permitted to see the entrance of one single building of our nations I thought this was the hardest thing I ever had treatment I received in Washington D. C.   I could see nothing very attractive about the city though the creation is very pretty there had but 1$ and we feasted on what it bought us melon [?] – sweet fresh bread. We had roll call.

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Washington D. C. – Marching

 

September,                                          Sunday 7,                                                        1862

 

Weather intensely hot for September reminding me of July or August weather than the mild pleasant September - About 11 a.m. we received marching orders so we immediately pulled up stakes and left though we did not go on our way rejoicing and we were all very loathe to leave our beautiful camp guard and the City of Washington. We marched about 11 miles in a another direction encamping near the “Penna. Reserve Corp” on the left of the turn pike. We drew some clothing before commencing to march I drew a shirt and two pairs of socks I felt very unwell as usual for some time before and consequently marching in the ranks was rather difficult though I kept near by the Regt. I made me a bed of leaves in the woods and slept alone a squad of our Cavalry rode over me tying their horses near by and traveling for the night.

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Bivouacking

 

September,                                          Monday 8,                                                       1862

 

Weather intensely hot in my judgment for September – I awoke very early from my nest of leaves or slumbers and joined the Regt. in time for breakfast as they were very near by.  We remained here all day and drew clothing – I drew a blanket, knapsack, cap, canteen, and shelter tent,   These were the first shelter tents the “Roundheads” ever drew a single piece of tent only allowed for each man--so sad Capt. Pentecost.   W. H. Lewis and I drew in co partnership.  Our Company had an election for officers today.  Lieut. L. H. Pentecost was elected Captain (I voted for him) only because I knew there was no possibility of defeating him and I did not like to throw away my vote).   Serg. James Montford was elected 1st Lieutenant ( I voted for Lieut. Ceher).   The 45th Penna. Regt. were put in our Brigade today and our new General arrived.   Wilcox is his name.

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Marching – “Mechanicsville” – “Brookville”

 

September,                                          Tuesday 9,                                                       1862

 

Weather clear and very warm.  We pulled up stakes in the morning and left marching on the turn pike about 11 miles.   I felt very ill to day unable to march at all – I fell out of ranks and did not overtake the Regt. until evening in Camp near the little village “Brookville” or “Rockville” I don’t know which is correct.  We passed through the finest section of country I have yet seen in a slave state.  Citizens were trudging along the roadside to see the troop and General McClellan.  The fair sex was well represented-- water, milk and refreshments for the weary soldier as we passed through.  I got nothing save water.   Oh! such kind treatment made one’s heart leap with joy even though we were not refreshed of any of the luxuries.  Passed through “Mechanicsville” our Orderly Avery Templeton and Henry Dougan were straggling – diarrhea very severe.

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Bivouacking near “Brookville” Md.

 

September,                                          Wednesday 10,                                               1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately.   Sol shone with intense heat when he did shine indicating rain – I felt worse to day than ever.   I attempted to eat some breakfast – but it would not lay on my stock I threw it up feeling very sick all day.   I went to the Surgeon and he gave me a large dose of salts which I took as directed feeling never the better.    We remained here all day in Camp Lewis and I put up our shelter tent and I remained in it the greater portion of the day unfit for any duty I had no appetite for any food to be had – I got a few potatoes and Lewis cooked them for me.   Oh! I relished them very much. The Regt. was entirely out of rations and did not draw any until night – The boys helped themselves to the corn and potatoes they could find.

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“Brookville” Marching

 

September,                                          Thursday 11,                                                   1862

 

Weather very cloudy warm sultry and wet threatening rain in the forenoon several showers at intervals in the afternoon. I went to the Surgeons at the Call in the morning got some medicine – was excused – and the Surgeon gave me an order to secure the hauling of my knapsack,  gun and accoutrements.   In the ambivalence I felt very unwell more like a candidate for the hospital than undertaking a long march.  The troops commenced to march in good time.   I was so very weak I could scarcely walk. Before the Regt. started I went to inform Capt. L. H. Pentecost that I was unable to march and in addition to notify him I was excused and consequently could not keep pace with the Regiment but the Captain would not hear my plea but turned me his back and walked off turning me the cold shoulder and deaf ear – This was the hardest shock and coldest treatment I ever received from any man and I shall never forget it and especially under the circumstances as the Captain was spotted not 5 minutes previous to my appearance him he secure one Martin Burke a place in the hospital in the village-- he being unable to march. But it was nothing strange as the Captain was always the most hardest man I ever knew.   Martin Burke afterwards deserted.  Poor me was unfortunate on all hands today on presenting my paper to the ambulance driver he refused to have my trapps saying trudge along best as best I could.  Resigned to my fate, I stepped in a tobacco house on the roadside during the rain spent the time reading my Bible finished Luke – General Burnside passed – I cleaned my gun – I made my bed in the woods on the roadside of leaves, was awakened in the night by rain and arose and went in search of a shelter marching a couple to a tobacco house.

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Marching – Bivouacking

 

September,                                          Friday 12,                                                        1862

 

Weather very cloudy warm and sultry in the forenoon but in the afternoon the clouds disappeared to a great extent, Sol shining hot at intervals.   I arose very late renewing the march at a slow pace as I was able.   I marched about 7 miles I overtook our baggage train as I thought it was very lengthy accompanying the whole road and interfered considerably with my marching.   I was exceedingly weak today. I gathered some elderberries and made my supper of them cooking them in my tin cup – very cloudy, sharp lightning threatening rain.  I slept in a Planters barn on the hay mow – saw quite a number of struggling soldiers – starvation stung me in the face.

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Marching

 

September,                                          Saturday 13,                                                    1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately mild September weather in every respect – I had nothing for breakfast save dry crackers scarcely nutrient enough in it to keep a sick mans soul and body together and I had but little hand lap at that. The only consolation I have is to be content with what I have (as the rat said -) Suffice it to say such food does not afford strength enough to sustain one on a march – much less a sick person.  I lodged all night in a tobacco house near a little town on the B and O. R. R. I had a very poor bed – slept but little rolling about all night I was very hungry entirely out of provisions – and I never was so much tempted to enter a large brick house to ask for something to eat but my heart failed me I never was obliged to beg and it was hard to commence though I suffered from hunger. 

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Marching – “Frederick City” Md.

 

September,                                          Sunday 14,                                                      1862

 

Weather clear at sunrise but became gradually cloudy all day indicating rain at sun set – I felt little or no better very weak and ill – I was at a loss what road to follow as troop had gone both ways on two roads.  I went back trough the village and followed the Railroad about a mile when I took a road to the right on the R. R.  I passed the first slate quarry I ever saw some fine slate for roofing is being taken out – On leaving the R. R. there was a house on the road side and being very hungry I asked the old lady for something to eat.  She gave me nothing replying that the soldiers stole so much from her she had nothing to give to soldiers – but this did not suffice my hunger.    I passed through “Frederick City” quite a place- found the Monacacy River – I picked up some bread or cake to eat in the road near the City.  I have learned the road Burnside took the “Hagerstown” Road marching about two miles from the city. I slept in a farm on the road side. The planter was afraid we would burn his farm.

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Marching – “Middletown” Md.

 

September,                                          Monday 15,                                                     1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately mild September like in every respect – I felt little or no better to day my foot was worse – very painful and consequently it was with great difficulty I marched at all.   I stopped at a house on the roadside and in the garden I found some cabbage  .A soldier gave me some crackers and I made my dinner on cabbage, pears, plums, and crackers. After resting and reposing I renewed the march and on the way I found an old lady on the road side selling pies. I offered to exchange postage stamp for pies.  She assented and I bought some and traveled on to “Middletown” Md.   To the “Meeting houses” in town were filled with wounded soldiers from the last battlefield and it was impossible to procure nurses so a hospital steward was posted to seize all stragglers compel them to name the wounded.  I kicked against it as I was anxious to join my Regt. but go I must on duty carrying out a dead soldier.           

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Middletown Md.

 

September,                                          Tuesday 16,                                                     1862

 

Weather warm and very cloudy indicating rain in the forenoon – But in the afternoon it became windy and gradually colder all day – my foot was more painful today than ever before and yet I was obliged to wear my foot as I could find no old shoe.   I had a conversation with some “Rebel” prisoners from North Carolina apparently tired of the war.   I asked them what they were fighting for and they replied to prevent Lincoln from taking their niggers, saying that Lincoln wanted to rob them of their slaves. I saw some genuine Confederate money the prisoners had in their possession also postage stamp 5 and 10 cents stamps – They receive 11$ per month for soldiering all in Confederate scripts as nurses we have but two reliefs and I come on the first relief standing from 6 – 12 – Chaplain R. A. Brown called in the hospital to learn the whereabouts of injured “Roundheads” I learned through him that several of our Company were killed and wounded.

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“Middletown” Md.

 

September,                                          Wednesday 17,                                               1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately warm September weather in every respect. We nurses have to stand or do duty twelve hours out of every twenty four – my foot is very sore and painful – We heard very heavy cannonading all day. I never heard heavier field artillery.   There is bloody work going on not very far distant. One of our Generals was brought in wounded and the ambulance was there with Surgeons to render their professional aid voluntarily. I saw a member of the Secesh--a  Lieut. Colonel. He was guarded in the upper appointment of our hospital was very filthy and slovenly in his dress-was wounded in the head.   When off duty I went out in search of some apples to eat.  I found some prime ones.  We have milk in our coffee.

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“Middletown” Md.

 

September,                                          Thursday 18,                                                   1862

 

Weather very cloudy warm and sultry indicating rain drizzling rain at intervals during the day – my foot felt some better today, less painful than for some time. Since the Surgeons amputated three legs in our hospital today and I verily believe all of them could have been saved had their wounds been properly dressed and attended but for want of attention it was necessary to take off the limbs.   I took a stroll through town when off duty – saw several barrels of cider, melons and apples which tempted me not a little but I was minus money and my mouth watered in vain.  During my night watch several of the patients were very restless requiring great attention.   I wrote a note to Mama for money.  We had soup for dinner.  We had a tremendous heavy rain shower in the evening and a beautiful rainbow.

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“Middletown” Md.

 

September,                                          Friday 19,                                                        1862

 

Weather cloudy and clear alternately pleasant after the rain.  I went on duty as usual at 6 a.m.--the patients were exceedingly restless and troublesome keeping me more than busy.   Only two were taken from us today to “Frederick City”.   Poor fellows were very anxious to go and there was many sad and heavy hearts at being disappointed. One of our men a “Buck Fail” died in the afternoon.  In the afternoon I went out in search of apples and found a fine orchard and entered the house to ask for some apples.   The inmates were just eating dinner and nothing would do but I must eat some with them. I did eat and afterwards they took me to the orchard and gave me as many apples as I wanted.  I never received such kind treatment and I appreciated it. May God bless them.

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Middletown” Md. – Marching

 

September,                                          Saturday 20,                                                    1862

 

Weather warm and cloudy--September like in every respect.   I went on duty as usual about noon.   The Steward come around and asked me if I wished to remain any longer as Nurse together with two others to attend to all.  But oweing to the mean treatment of the wounded, I prefer to join my Regt. rather than be connected with this concern. The wounded soldiers in the hospital were not treated with as much sympathy by the Surgeons, as I would treat a sick dog.    All were lousy and all with amputated limbs were fly blown--skippers crawling over their wounds all for want of attention.  Only the Surgeon, he would only dress amputated limbs once in 48 hours.  Tthe doctors assembled in a little room in the house and drank the wines sent the wounded and sick. So I determined to leave this hole trap together and left. The Surgeon would not give me a mouthful if provisions to take with me which I thought rather hard – I lodged in a barn over night in the next town on the way.  Going up South Mountain,  a citizen gave me a half peach pie.  I thought it was the best thing I ever ate.

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Marching – “Sharpsburg” Md.

 

September,                                          Sunday 21,                                                      1862

 

Weather clear and warm and pleasant--mild September weather in every respect.   I know not the name of the village I remained over night at. I marched from the town on the “Hagerstown” around to “Sharpsburg” took the wrong road at “Sharpsburg”.   I could learn nothing of the route traveled or whereabouts of the 9th Corp. and I was delighted while endeavoring to learn the whereabouts of our Corp.  I fell in with a couple of “Hilanders” who were also lost – however on returning to “Sharpsburg” after night I learned from a citizen where the Corp was encamped.  I for the first time in my life begged to eat in “Sharpsburg”.  Hunger drove me to this unpleasant task.   I received sweet meal of bread and tomato jam from a young female.   I saw innumerable fresh signs of the last battle today over in “Sharpsburg” were leveled through with shells and grape.  I slept in a stable in Sharpsburg.

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Sharpsburg – Marching

 

September,                                          Monday 22,                                                     1862

 

Weather clear warm and pleasant Sept. weather though very foggy in the morning.  I awoke early hearing Marshall music towards “Harpers Ferry” the road and wanted to travel.  I fell in the rear of a Regt. and marched along with them about two miles.   I found the “Roundheads” on picket and I learned from them that our Regt. was trying a little to the left of the road; I had no difficulty in finding the Regt. and was but a short time in Camp until I was put on fatigue duty policing camp.   I received a letter from Jonathan dated September 8th – I had some corn for dinner – I gave Capt. Pentecost the paper or pass the Surgeon gave me stating why he detained me.  Capt. said nothing save to inquire if me the whereabouts of Lorenze Wilgus but I was entirely ignorant.  Pickets returned to Camp about 4 p.m.

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Encamped at Burnside’s headquarters near “Sharpsburg”

 

September,                                          Tuesday 23,                                                     1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately and very warm and pleasant – I was idle all day lying around camp. We received orders early in the morning to pack up everything but our tents but not further orders or more was made.   Wm. H. Lewis Inc. Stevenson and I went in search of roasting ears and corn hard enough to shell.   All most out the boys were making corn meal and baking corn cakes.   Made the meal by splitting their canteens and punching holes with their bayonets thus making a grater on which they ground their cornmeal. I was invited to help eat several dishes of the extra luxury.   My foot still troubled me was very painful.   I fear I shall not be able to stand marching oweing to my foot. It was rumoured that Gen Sigel whipped Jackson at Bull Run while Jackson was returning.

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Encamped at Burnside’s headquarters near “Sharpsburg”

 

September,                                          Wednesday 24,                                               1862

 

Weather very cloudy wet and disagreeable showers of rain falling at intervals all day.   I was on guard at General A. E. Burnside’s headquarters.   I saluted the hero several times though the boys at guard headquarters said the General informed them that he did not want to be saluted (This is something extraordinary in a General).   I was on the 1st relief standing from 9-11 and from 3-5. This was very disagreeable weather to be on guard – General Geo B. McClellan (commanding Potomac army) paid General Burnside a visit in the afternoon while I was on post I never saw “Mac” before consequently did not know Him or recognize a General and one the escort of Cavalry, consequently I did not salute him.   I felt very bad about it and I feared I would be arrested and punished severely for my neglect of duty. I had a fine chance to see the General after he dismounted – his form did not fill the description.  I always had  “Mac” as a larger man – moustache not black [?] I received a letter from Elizabeth and David – a strip of paper from my sister.

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Encamped near Burnside’s headquarters near Sharpsburg

 

September,                                          Thursday 25,                                                   1862

 

Weather clear warm and pleasant delightful weather guards were relieved at 9 a.m. I had nothing else to do today. We had salt beef or (“salt horse”) as the boys generally call it and bean soup.   This was something rather rare or extra with us of late.  “Dick” Baily paid me a visit to day (45th Regt. encamped by our side) I had an interesting and pleasant time chatting with him .Lewis and Inc. Stevenson were both on guard.  We received orders in the forenoon to have everything in readiness to move at 1 p.m. so we prepared and awaited all afternoon for the command “forward march” but after tiring our patience we were ordered to pitch tents again.  We had Dress Parade to night.

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Marching

 

September,                                          Friday 26,                                                        1862

 

Weather clear and cloudy alternately and very warm mild September weather in every respect – We received marching orders about 10 ½ a.m. fell in line called the roll reported the absentees – We had a good dinner of bean soup cooked and was obliged to throw it out by the Captain’s orders to fall in immediately. We were all afternoon marching about two miles very slow and perplexing march in this style. We encamped in wheat stubbles about Ύ of a mile south of Antietam Furnace – Mill and Creek tiff to the left of the “Harper’s Ferry” road layed out our camp in regular order in streets as if we were going to remain for some time.

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Encamped near Antietam Furnace

 

September,                                          Saturday 27,                                                    1862

 

Weather very foggy in the morning though pleasant September weather – About 9 a.m.  I went in search of water.  I found some apples in my travels.   John Stevenson and me (on my return to Camp) went out in search of some light bread and butter.  We got some bread but searched in vain for butter – We separated I went after pumpkins and found some very good ones I was so hungry for vegetables that I thought it no harm to take what I wanted to eat as I was a private in the U. S. A. – Also got some corn and we made soup – I remained all the rest of the day in Camp idle – Lewis and Inc. were out in the afternoon but brought nothing with them to Camp – Dress Parade – orders for inspection tomorrow very paper issued.

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Encamped near Antietam Furnace

 

September,                                          Sunday 28,                                                      1862

 

Weather very cloudy in the morning indicating rain but in the afternoon the clouds disappeared warm and pleasant.  Chaplain R. A. Browne had religious services in the morning.  Gen. Wilcox ordered that the Division be assembled together with their respective Chaplains to give thanks to Almighty God for the sweep of our arms in the late battles, our protection preservation. We were assembled in front of Gen. Wilcox head quarters Chaplain of the Hilanders – 46th N. Y. – 36th Mass and the “Roundheads” Chaplains officiated. Chaplain also had services at 7 p.m. in our Regt. I attended religious services three times today.   General Wilcox headquarters are near by our Camp.   I wrote to sister Elizabeth.

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Encamped near Antietam Furnace

 

September,                                          Monday 29,                                                     1862

 

Weather clear and exceedingly warm in the forenoon but cloudy in the afternoon indicating rain.  A few drops fell and thus the shower passed over us.  Wm. H. Lewis was visiting some of the new Regiments today to see his old friends.   I was very unwell during the night and forenoon--the moldy crackers we were obliged to eat I thought was the cause.   I was idle all day and being unwell I remained in my tent.  I received a letter containing 5$ from Jonathan.   I got the 46th N. Y. Sutler to break it and had soft bread for supper.   I attended Prayer meeting in the evening a Chaplain from some other new Regt. officiated.

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Encamped near Antietam Furnace Md.

 

September,                                          Tuesday 30,                                                     1862

 

“September went out like a Lion” .  Weather very cloudy--I was idle all day lying in my tent.  I went down to the mill to take a wash visited the Canal and then visited Potomac River.   I saw PawPaws? growing in the bank of the Potomac but found none of them ripe. I washed my body thoroughly – got a short and sack washed.   During my absence from Camp, Gen. Wilcox reviewed the Brigade.   I returned too late to join the Regt. but fortunately for me the roll was not called.  We had Dress Parade in the evening , Prayer Meeting about the usual time--I attended.

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