Category Archives: 12th Illinois Infantry


J. Frederick Hammerly

The following diary was kept by J. Frederick Hemmerly of Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry. Frederick was born in Koenigreich, Wirtemberg, Germany. He came to America on 3 October 1852.

Frederick enlisted in August 1861 at Amboy, Illinois, with two of his brothers, Martin and Jacob. Martin was wounded in the fighting before Atlanta in 1864. Jacob drowned on 15 September 1861.

Links to Frederick Hammerly’s Civil War Diaries:

Diary 1—August 1861 through 22 April 1862.

Diary 2—23 April 1862 through 9 October 1862.

Diary 3—10 October 1862 through 1 April 1863.

Diary 4—8 April 1863 through 8 January 1864

Diary 5—1 January 1864 through 6 August 1864

Frederick Hammerly’s Diary measures 5 3/4 x 3.5 inches.
Entries range from January 1, 1864 through August 6, 1864

[Note: This diary is from the personal collection of Greg Herr and was transcribed and published on Spared & Shared by express consent.]


January 1st, 1864. Tunnel Hill, Tennessee. Weather cold. Freezing all day. Capt. Van Solers was here today and swore 20-30 from each company into the Veteran service. Snows.

Saturday, January 2, 1864. Weather cold and windy. Disagreeable.

Sunday, January 3rd. Weather cold and wet. Heard [Augustus Louis] Chetlain’s farewell address. He is made Brigadier [General] over colored troops and has to report to Vicksburg, Mississippi. I went on picket at 3 pm. A portion of Sherman’s trooops passed by here to Pulaski.

Monday, January 4th, 1864. Tunnel Hill, Tenn. It rains, is cold, and very muddy.

Tuesday, January 5th. Weather cold. Snows some, freezes hard. My enlistment papers were brought to me but I changed my mind not reenlist. Did not sign it. Received a letter from George.

Wednesday, January 6th. Weather very cold. Roads froze hard and rough. I am on picket. Citizens say it is a very uncommon cold winter.

Thursday, January 7th 1864. Tunnel Hill, Tenn. Cold severe, snows much. The ground is covered with snow. Snows very hard these eve. Had a bad night on picket.

Friday, January 8th. Weather cold. Received a letter from R. M. B. Syracuse, a 3d from Mother. Sent one to George. Another to Nashville P. O.

Saturday, January 9th 1864. Weather dry and cold. I am on picket.

Sunday, January 10th 1864, Tunnel Hill, Tenn. Weather cold and dry. Went out after shells to Richland Creek.

Monday, January 11th 1864. Weather moderate and clear. Is getting muddy again.

Wednesday, January 13th 1864. Weather cloudy. Moderate. Lieut. Hoffman of the regular army mustered all those who were swore at New Years into the veteran a and out of the 3 first year service. Came off from picket this p.m. Received a letter from Ch. Alfred, Phila.

Friday, January 15th 1864, Tunnel Hill, Tenn. Weather fair. Muddy. Went on picket this p.m. Received a letter from Johnny.

Saturday, January 16th 1864. Weather cold. Some cloudy. Sent a letter to R. M. B. to Alfred.

Sunday, January 17th Moderate weather.

Monday, January 18th. Weather growing cold, rains and snows. Freezes. The Veterans left this morning for Springfield, Illinois. Co. A left only their 2nd Lieutenant behind. I am on picket. Received a package from Rice & Co.

Tuesday, January 19th. Tunnel Hill, Giles County, Tenn. Snowed and blowed hard last night. It was a hard night on picket. Cleared off before daylight. Thawed and getting muddy. Freezing again this evening. Received one dollar regimental fund.

Wednesday, January 20th. Weather moderate. Sergeant Weldon was here. sent a letter to Mother.

Thursday, January 21st. weather moderate and pleasant. The mud seems to dry up some. Guard mounting was changed yesterday.

Friday, January 22nd 1864. Another warm and pleasant [day]. went on picket 9 o’clock this a.m. Sent a letter to John M. H.

Saturday, January 23rd 1864. Another spring like [day]. A few more days will dry up this mud. Nights are splendid & illuminated. Lieut. [Jason J.] Sanborn of Co. G took charge of this post today.

Sunday, January 24th. Weather very fine. sent a letter to Emma. Received on from Cal. and two Amboy Times. Capt. Towner sent out a squad of men, They came in with a rebel lieutenant and two privates.

Monday, January 25, 1864. Weather more than fine. As warm as summer. Have been out door nearly all day in my shirt sleeves. The 9th Illinois had a fight yesterday with Roddy’s men and are reported captured. Received a letter (with photos) from Michigan. Sent one to Cal.

Tuesday, January 26th. Another dry, warm and beautiful [day]. I am on bridge guard. After dinner we had to fall in line of battle about 20 strong. Dispatch after dispatch comes. We sent all mounted men out on the roads. Teams with negro household and negroes somewhat scared are moving by here coming from Prospect. The 9th [Illinois] is said to have fallen back to there. Orders to be ready to move to Pulaski. Another to move to Prospect. Another to stay until further orders. A wounded soldier comes and tells us that the rebs are driven out of Athens [Alabama] and everything is still. Only about 200 of them made a dash. He was wounded on picket at 4 o’clock a.m. Advanced our post and made two extra ones.

Wednesday, January 27th. Weather as yesterday. No orders to move yet. All is as usual. Duty heavier. Three posts instead of two.

Thursday, January 28th. Weather real warm Some misty. I am on picket. Received a letter from Jacob Holle.

Friday, January 29, 1864. Tunnel Hill, Tenn. Weather as yesterday. Some cloudy this eve.

Saturday, January 30th 1864. Commenced to rain this morning early but ceased before noon. I went after fodder about 7 miles out. The teamster upset twice with me going and once coming. Once he lost a [fore ward whet?] The roads are indescribable bad—so many stumps and creeks. I sent a letter to brother Johnny.

Sunday, January 31st 1864. Weather warm. Some cloudy. I am on picket. Sent a letter to Jacob Holle. Another to Adams Express, Memphis.

Monday, February 1st 1864. Commenced to rain last night at 12. Rained hard and continued nearly until daylight. Is clear all day. Brung a grindstone and made several rings on it.

Tuesday, February 2nd. Weather clear and cloudy. Fresh.

Wednesday, February 3rd 1864. Tunnel Hill, Tenn. Weather fair. Rather fresh. I am detailed on picket. A dispatch came in to move up to Richland as soon as relieved. Did not go on picket. 12 M. We are relieved and going. Received a letter from George.

Thursday. February 4th. Weather fair. Some windy. Arrived yesterday some 30 strong at Richland. Moved into E’s quarters. 8 in our shebang. I am on picket.

Friday, February 5th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather clear and cloudy. Chilly and windy. Rained some last night. Some cavalry passed by here south.

Saturday, February 6th. Weather windy, cloudy and cold. Rained some early this morning. Attended roll call the 1st time in a long while. Sent a letter to Nashville Express Office.

Sunday, February 7th 1864. Weather clear but cold and windy. Have roll call mornings and evenings regular. Douglas, a member of Co. K, arrived here from Memphis. He came up on the boat Glendale. They were fired on with cannon and musketry but scattered the rebs afterwards.

Monday, February 8th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather clear. Warmer. I am on fatigue hauling wood for the hospital and pickets. Received two Amboy Times. Sent a letter to George.

Tuesday, February 9th. weather clear, cold and dry. A scouting party left this place after a reb conscripter.

Wednesday, February 10th. Weather as yesterday. Froze ice in our shebang last night. We hear of Co. E’s veterans having a fight with the Copperheads at Paris, Illinois.

Thursday, February 11th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather smoky. Cold and fresh this morning.

Friday, February 12th. Weather as yesterday. I am on picket. The scouts come in with two prisoners. Received a letter from Alfred.

Saturday. February 13th. Weather clear and nice. Have ice most every morning lately.

Sunday, February 14th. Commenced to rain last night and rained all day. Some 30 of this detachment went out on a big scout.

Monday, February 15th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather damp, rainy and cloudy. I am on picket. Arnold arrived.

Tuesday, February 16th. Weather cold and windy. Cleared off last night. I helped get three loads of wood. Received a letter from Holle.

Wednesday, February 17th. Weather very cold. Freezes all day in our cabin. Rather windy, some cloudy.

Thursday, February 18th. Weather clear, cold severe. Another mounted party left here this morn. I am on picket. Great rejoicing over the first train arriving here.

Friday, February 19th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather cold. A few prisoners were brought in by this detachment.

Saturday, February 20th. weather moderate. Pleasant this p.m.

Sunday, February 21st. Weather fair. A few more prisoners and the last scouting party also some contraband arrived here. Received a letter from Memphis Express Agent.

Monday, February 22nd. Weather fine. I am on picket.

Tuesday, February 23d. Richland, Tenn. Weather very fine. Rather windy this p.m. A large train passed by here last night. After bedtime, it made an uncommon noise. It woke me.

Wednesday, February 24th. Weather fine.

Thursday, February 25th. Weather rather windy. Smoky but warm. A squad of our detachment brought in two horse thieves. Sent a letter to M. N. to Michigan.

Friday, February 26th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather warm and pleasant. I am on picket. A third train passed here to Prospect. The Ohio Brigade veterans are mostly all back again.

Saturday, February 27th. Weather smoky. Some windy. Warm. A small scouting party went out again. Two citizens dressed in soldier’s cloth went with them. A train with pontoons passed by here, probably to use them across the Tennessee River. Received a letter from Johnny.

Sunday, February 28th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather cloudy. Had several small showers. A train came down with some troops. The pontoon train returned this a.m. Whiled my time away with phrenology.

Monday, February 29th. Weather rainy, cloudy, and muddy. The creek is fast coming up. Mustered for pay. Received a letter from Mother.

Tuesday, March 1st 1864. Richland, Tenn. It rained all last night and much of today. I am on picket. The last scouts came in but couldn’t bring their horses across on account of high water. Lieut. Sanborn came nearly drowning.

Wednesday, March 2nd. Weather fair. Cleared off last night. The creek is rising yet. A detail went to take away drift wood from the railroad bridge.

Thursday, March 3rd. Weather fair. Received two months pay.

Friday, March 4th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather cloudy. Rains this evening. A train with timber for the pontoon bridge, a company of Negroes, and some others run off two miles above here. Our sutler got his shoulder broke. No one else hurt except slight scratches. Sent a letter to Alfred.

Saturday, March 5th, Weather some cloudy and cold. I am on picket. The [rail]road was fixed and trains are running again this eve. A rebel deserter came to my post. I took him in, found him a pair of shoes and his dinner. He was otherwise well clad.

Sunday, March 6th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather very nice. Went to a meeting. Mr. Graves, the preacher, is very severe on [ ]tism. Though he hinted to the soldiers. There were as many as ten or more. Saw some very fair Southern (Tenn.) belles.

Monday, March 7th. Weather damp and wet. Thundered and rained hard this p.m. and evening. At the creek I worked at the shells. Sent a letter to Cousin Fred.

Wednesday, March 9th. Weather rainy. Trains are coming more frequent. Gen. Dodge moved his headquarters to Athens [Alabama] a few day ago.

Thursday, March 10th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather fair, I am on picket.

Friday, March 11th. Weather chilly. Rained some last night.

Saturday, March 12th. Weather warm this p.m. Windy and cloud this p.m. We hear of our regiment leaving Chicago yesterday. Received a letter from John M.

Sunday, March 13th. Weather fair. Rather windy this p.m. Went to meeting but there was none. Our boys expected tonight or tomorrow.

Monday, March 14th. Richland, Tenn. Weather cold and windy. Our regiment is said to be in Chicago yet. I am on picket. Received a letter from Emma.

Tuesday, March 15th. Weather cold and disagreeable. Snows this p.m. About 18-20 rebels made a dash near this place and Prospect capturing three men within musket shot of their camps. Our scouts recaptured them. They came all in and went out again tonight. Sergt. Mills, Co. H now Lieut. of the 2nd Alabama. They was also captured. They took his money and arms and let him go.

Wednesday, March 16, 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather cold. Snowed some. Received a letter from Clink.

Thursday, March 17th. Weather cold and windy. I am shivering writing his. Our regiment is expected here this eve.

Friday, March 18th. Weather moderate. Some smoky this a.m. Cloudy and windy in p.m.

Saturday, March 19th. Weather clear. Some cold this morn. Warmer this p.m.

Sunday, March 20th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather changeable. I am on picket. Sent a letter to R. R. Landson [and] to brother John M.

Monday, March 21st. weather cloudy, cold, and windy. Went to Mr. Howard’s with Stiver and stayed until late in the eve. Helped cut cornrocks. They are a fine Southern family.

Tuesday, March 22, 1864. Weather very chilly. Have a big fire all day and is none too warm. Received a letter from Alfred.

Wednesday, March 23, 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather clear and windy. Warm this p.m. I am on fatigue hauling timber for a stockade. The 12th [Illinois] arrived at Pulaski. Companies B and I is to guard this place.

Thursday, March 24th. Weather clear and warm. Cloudy this p.m. Co. B and I veterans arrived here last night at 12 o’clock. I stayed over night and breakfasted to Mr. Howard’s.

Friday, March 25th. Weather damp and rainy. Co. B has only 6 new recruits.

Saturday, March 26t 1864. Richland, Tenn., Weather chilly and cloudy this a.m. Clear this p.m. I am not well.

Sunday, March 27th (Easter Day). Weather fine. Some windy this p.m. Took a dose of oil. Sent a letter to E. V. to Mother.

Monday, March 28th. weather chilly and wet.

Tuesday, March 29th. Weather comfortable. Cleared off this a.m. Received letter from Jacob Hoelly.

Wednesday, March 30th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather fair. Received a letter from J. G. Hoff Cal.

Thursday, March 31st. Weather comfortable but smokey. Paducah is burned we hear by Gen. Forrest and Roddy.

Friday, April 1st 1864. Weather chilly. It rained some. Capt. Moore, a famous reb guerrilla, passed here on his way to Nashville. He was captured by a detail of the 12th Illinois with the assistance of some of the 66th Illinois 40 miles from here [on the] 29th March. I was on camp guard last night. Received a letter from Cousin Cinda.

Saturday, April 2nd 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather moderate. Some cold this a.m. Our brigade has marching orders. we expect to leave next week for Decatur. Trains are running more regular since yesterday. The train to Athens passes at 1 p.m., from Athens (or Decatur) 11 a.m.

Sunday, April 3rd. Weather clear and warm. I am on fatigue. A Copperhead riot took place at Char[les]ton, Illinois, lately. 5 of the 54th Illinois are reported killed there. Mr. Owen Lovejoy is reported dead. Sent a letter to New York to Johnny. Received one from George, from Emma.

Monday, April 4th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather wet, damp, rained last night. Blows hard this p.m.

Tuesday, April 5th. Weather cloudy and damp. Moderate this p.m. Our regiment expects to leave Pulaski for Athens or Decatur this week. How we have to run to be in time for a plate, fork, or knife at mealtime.

Wednesday, April 6th 1864. Weather fair. Had company drill. Sergt. Andrews of Co. C stopped here. He helped catch Capt. Moore. He says they killed one and wounded two of his men. All the scouts of this regiment returned to their respective companies.

Thursday, April 7th 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather warm. Smokey this p.m. I am on picket. Received a letter from George, from Michigan.

Friday, April 8th. Weather damp and rainy. Much wind. Rained and blowed considerable last night.

Saturday, April 9th. Weather cloudy. Rains at intervals. The wind blows hard. The chimneys smoke out through the wrong end. Had no fork, cup, knife nor plate but plenty of coffee without bread for dinner.

Sunday, April 10th, 1864. Weather fair. I am on picket (back of Mrs. Wilkerson’s house). Received a letter from Emma.

Monday, April 11th. Weather fair. Had a comfortable night on picket. Sent a letter to George with $40.

Tuesday, April 12th. Weather cloudy. 12 o’clock M. six trains are within sight waiting for the engineers to get this bridge done. Four trains up and two down. 15 trains in all passed here, the most of them on their way to Nashville. The trains from Chattanooga are coming empty this way. Letter to Cal. to Ohio.

Wednesday, April 13th 1864. Weather cold. Four to five trains are waiting here for the Nashville train.

Thursday, April 14th. Weather cool. I am on picket.

Saturday, April 16th. Weather some chilly and windy. Farmers call this a very late spring. I sent letters to Michigan to Cousin Cinda.

Sunday, April 17th. Weather smokey. No trains from the North yesterday. We hear Forrest captured Fort Pillow killing all the negro prisoners and their officers. Also showed no mercy to the white soldiers there. An awful affair. This happened the 12th inst.

Monday, April 18th, 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather cool. Some chilly. Windy this afternoon. We hear cannonading at Pulaski. They had Division Drill. sent a letter to E. N.

Tuesday, April 19th. Weather clear but cool again. We hear artillery practice. Received a letter from Mother.

Wednesday, April 20th. Weather fair. We hear the artillery at Pulaski again.

Thursday, April 21st 1864. Richland, Tenn. Weather warm. I’m on a fatigue. It rains this p.m. This bridge is now completed and the engineers are going down to Elk River. Sent a letter to Michigan to Mother.

Friday, April 22nd. Weather fair. I am on picket guarding the bridge. Received a letter from Alfred.

Saturday, April 23rd. Weather fair. Some cloudy. The division post master of Pulaski was taken under guard to Nashville.

Sunday, April 24th 1864. Richland, Tenn. It rained last night. Is cold and windy. Some cloudy all day.

Monday, April 25th. Weather fair. This is the first day this year I went without a coat. One of our patrols was brought in under guard by two of the 7th Iowa. Capt. Mills kept one of them in retaliation.

Tuesday, April 26th. Weather rather too warm. I am on picket. A negro soldier came in this evening late shot through the shoulder. He reports some rebs a mile from here, A squad from here are now going out to see.

Wednesday, April 29th, 1864. Weather hot. They brought in the ma—a citizen—who shot the negro. He says he shot the negro supposing him to be a thief. I had several severe sick spells. We have orders to march tomorrow.

Thursday, April 28th. Weather cloudy. Rained, thundered and blew terrible last night. 10 a.m. we are ready and waiting for orders to start. Later, the orders are to start tomorrow. Sergt. [John] Myers of the 7th Illinois Infantry was hung at Pulaski between the hours of 9-11 today. He was acquitted once. He shot his captain in self defense over a year ago at Corinth, Mississippi.

Friday, April 29th, 1864. Richland, Tenn. It rained again last night and of course we are ready to march [so] it will rain more. It is cloudy. I am not well enough to march. 9 o’clock a.m., we all have started and are waiting for the regiment on the pike 1.5 miles from our quarters. The regiment came up and Dr. Newel sent five of us to Pulaski to report to Dr. Cady–viz: Bewer, myself, Collison, and Prince and one of Co. H. We met Gen. Sweeney and staff one half mile in the rear of the Division. He passed us with but few questions. It was nearly two o’clock when Cady sent me to the R. Camp with its convalescents to stay.

Saturday, April 30th 1864. Pulaski, Tenn. Weather cloudy. The su comes out hot. Rained much and most all last night. I am thinking of the many soldiers out in this wet. I feel quite rested this morning. Our grub consists of what we pack up around the camp. We are rather poorly provided; every man for himself. I am with Sergt. [Gillispie B.] Welden (Co. G) and am doing as well or better than any of the rest. Slept in Lieut. [John] Hall’s tent. The garrison consists of the convalescents belonging to our Division. the sickest from the hospital were sent to Nashville about one hundred. This eve a company of the 9th Ohio Cavalry came in but without horses. It looks rather bare yet. Left the 12th camp and moved in the 2nd Iowa Barracks.

Sunday, May 1st 1864. Pulaski, Tenn. Weather pleasant. Some cloudy and chilly at intervals. I am on picket guarding the bridge over Richland Creek near the Depot. I went to camp after dinner. No rations. Plenty of hard tack though. They are waiting for an issue. Later 300 rations for convalescents were issued. Another company of the 9th Ohio Cavalry arrived here. An hour and a half fighting was heard near Decatur, o a railroader says. Flies are getting thick and a mosquito can be seen now and then.

Monday, May 2nd 1864. Pulaski, Tenn. Weather chilly, cloudy, and rather windy. I was relieved by the 9th Ohio Cavalry at 8:30 a.m. Many trains are going North. Rations seem to be get scaly. The papers of today have the rebel army concentrate their principal forces near Richmond. A great battle there imminent. Sent a letter to Alf to J. M. Hammerly. The citizens are rejoicing. They dream of our being driven out here. They go around like sneaks only whispering to one another.

Tuesday, May 3rd 1864. Pulaski, Tenn. Weather warm. I slept cold last night and my bunk felt hard. A Capt. came here [looking] for able bodied men to support the Elk [River] Bridge with two pieces of artillery. I am ready to go. 5:30 o’clock p.m., (the train was behind time) we arrived at Prospect, but no res near. The bridge builders are busy to work. We took possession of some old barracks bout 25-30 of us, all convalescents from different regiments. There is two blockhouses here—one not quite completed. Also an old stockade and a fort upon a high hill. Our regiment is near Chattanooga. 75,000 troops passed Huntsville, says one of Co. A who came from there this morning.

Wednesday, May 4th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather fine. Eight of the 12th [Illinois] and one of the 52nd Illinois were sent to guard the sawmill 1 mile north of the bridge. Two of us are to patrol the road up to Tunnel Hill during the day. Three are on guard during the night. Only few trains are running now. I stood 3 hours guard last night. We hear of our division drawing 10 days rations (three days in their haversacks) at or near Chattanooga.

Thursday, May 5th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather rather warm. We have a comfortable place, a fresh water spring and a nice creek close by. Drawed rations. It was high time. I was awful hungry. I only had ration for one mean when I left Pulaski. Perhaps tomorrow we will get soft bread. The citizens below threaten to burn the bridge. Two sneaks were discovered and fired at this morning. A squad of nine took possession of the blockhouse on the opposite side of the river to stay there permanently.

Friday, May 6th 1864. Pulaski, Tenn. Weather hot. Trains are coming thick again. They say the road has been broken near Stevenson which caused the unusual stillness of this road last night and this forenoon.

Saturday, May 7th. weather hot. I am on picket. Stood but two hours last night.

Sunday, May 8th 1864. Prospect, Gile county, Tenn. Weather rather warm. Some windy. A bridge builder was knocked off the bridge by a pulley. He is not expected to live. Mr. Thornton and Shimpock stopped here. Also two other citizens. The former is a fine Union man. The other claims to have married a relation to Dick Ogelsby but his heart is not yet right. An engine with car and engine inside (a new kind of cars) passed by here. I saw two of them at Richland Station running with their own machinery. The train which was fired into the other side of Huntsville also passed here. A fireman was killed, an engineer, and 3-4 others badly wounded.

Monday, May 9th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather comfortable. This morning before breakfast we were ordered to go on picket nearer the bridge. He said (the Lieut.) that Forrest is expected. We are looking for him all day. The 14th Illinois Infantry came to reinforce us last night. Later, the 17th Corps is marching here. Also trans are loaded with troops on their way to Athens, Huntsville, and elsewhere. The biggest part of Gen. [Walter Q.] Gresham’s Division are encamped at or near Prospect. Forrest may come in now! We are relieved by the 14th Illinois after sundown.

Tuesday, May 10th 1864. Prospect, Giles county, Tenn. It rained much last night and until 11 o’clock this a.m. the wind blows a cool, steady breeze. 5 o’clock p.m., rains again and looks as if it is to continue all night. We are relieved just dark. A thousand head of cattle went past here on their way to Huntsville, Alabama. The pontoon bridge broke down with them. One broke its leg and this post has to eat him up (awful). The news is that Grant has whipped Lee at Chancellorsville, Virginia. Gen. Butler is said to be in the rear of Richmond. Gen. Banks is said to be in a bad fix [in Louisiana].

Wednesday, May 11th 1864. Prospect, Giles county, Tenn. It rained most all last night and grew colder. The cold penetrated through two thick blankets and a rubber. The 14th Illinois left here early this morning. A few of the 15th Illinois arrived here. They are expecting their veterans from home today or tomorrow. The news of yesterday is today confirmed. The battle was fought May 6th-7th. Encouraging news was received from Gen. Sherman. He is said to be near Atlanta, Georgia. This has been a cold and windy day. It is awful lonesome without mail and only a paper now and then.

Thursday, May 12th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. I slept very uncomfortable and cold last night and today it is chilly. We have no paper but hear that Grant is gaining a great victory. 10 of us came over to guard the mill again. 3 belong to the 52nd Illinois. The rest to the 12th.

Friday, May 13th. Weather quite comfortable. I am on picket this eve.

Saturday, May 14th. Weather comfortable. The news from most all quarters comes in favorable yet although it is some confounded.

Sunday, May 15th. Weather fair. We hear from unreliable sources that our division has been in a fight. Some of our regiment are said to have been seen on a train of wounded [going] to Nashville.

Monday, May 16th 1864. Weather fine. I am on picket this eve.

Tuesday, May 17th. Weather some rainy. Sent a letter to Martin, to mother, and to George.

Wednesday, May 18th. weather fair. Rather hot this p.m. The trains did not run last night owing to a rebel dash at Madison Station. The road was some damaged. The 13th Illinois driven off and 40 or more are reported captured. The papers say that Sherman fought a big battle at Resaca, Ga. driving the rebs before him. Our loss is reported 3,000, but why do we see all or most all the trains pass by here empty? Grant’s loss is said to be up to the 17th, 34,000 killed, wounded, and missing. The 2nd Corps lost alone 9,900 men.

Thursday, May 19th. Weather hot. Am on guard this evening. The trains can’t cross this bridge. The regular train went back to Nashville again. The bridge builders are laying their track. They worked all last night.

Friday, May 20th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather comfortable. We drawed 11 days rations. The trains commenced running this p.m. A train passed which was fired into by guerrillas. The engine and cars showed the effects and engineer and brakeman was killed. The moon shines as bright as day tonight. So it did last night and night before last.

Saturday, May 21st. Weather comfortable. Trains are running thick again. Three cars loaded with prisoners passed here. Two trains with wounded and convalescents too passed. The bridge was finished today.

Sunday, May 22nd 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather very warm. Two negroes and a refugee have been found dead near the corral (Mr. Brown’s plantation) 5 miles from here. A train with rebel prisoners and deserters passed here. Also some rebel and Union wounded. Two damaged locomotives were sent by here, captured we suppose.

Monday, May 23rd. Weather very warm. Had a severe headache most all day. The night guard must have caused it. It was a fine moonlight night. A few more wounded passed here today on trains. [Alonzo P.] Sharp of Co. I has been seen wounded by one of his company yesterday on a train. He says several of the regiment have been killed and quite a number wounded, among the former is [Theodore F.] Denman of Co. A, the latter Co. F’s Lieut. [Charles Farr?].

Tuesday, May 24th 1864. Prospect, Giles Co., Tenn. Rained and thundered some last night. More of our wounded, also a few prisoners, passed here. Our regiment is said to have been in two fights and lost heavy. How anxious I am to hear from Martin. Guerrillas are said to threaten this place. A train run off [the track] near Columbia day before yesterday. Several were killed we hear. We also hear that 34 of our regiment are reported killed and many more wounded, but who they are we cannot learn. The two negroes and a white man reported killed last Sunday are all alive. No such thing has been done. James [B.] Nesbitt is reported to be one of the killed at the railroad accident near Columbia. Wonder whether true; from Herrick, Pa.

Wednesday, May 25th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather cloudy. Thunders and rains at intervals. some cool. I am on picket this eve. Mr. Wilber passed here today going across the river.

Thursday, May 26th. Weather real chilly and windy. Some cloudy. A heavy thunder and hailstorm passed over us yesterday which no doubt causes this cold day. Perhaps a battle has been raging somewhere yesterday or day before. 11 carloads with prisoners passed. Also a train of sick and wounded and Buell’s Battery on their way home, we suppose. One of the 7th Iowa arrived here from the front. He reports our Division at Kingston, Alabama, drawing 20 days rations. Our regiment, the 12th [Illinois] lost but few, he says. They skirmished with the enemy last Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Friday, May 27th, 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather warm but breezy.

Saturday, May 28th. weather warm. Some breezy. I am on guard.

Sunday, May 29th. Weather warm but real chilly last night. Wonder whether up north they did not have a frost. Went up (with Corporal [Jacob] Renner of Co. D) to the corral (Brown’s Plantation). The darkies had religious service in front of the old shattered mansion, afterwards a funeral procession. [Harlan] Brewer is there. Also [James] Nesbitt arrived there from Decatur Junction. No train from Nashville today. Something must be . The train from Chattanooga here this evening. Passed it [ ].

Monday, May 30th 1864. Had been real cold last night again but is pleasant, clear and warm today. The passenger train from Nashville due yesterday 3 p.m., passed here between 8-9 this a.m. The guerrillas tore up the track between Columbia and Nashville. A train with wounded passed this a.m. Also some of Roddy’s men who were captured Friday or Saturday.

Tuesday, May 31st. weather very warm. Hot this p.m. Long trains pass mostly all empty. A few cars of wounded passed this a.m. I am on guard.

Wednesday, June 1st 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather hot. Rains this evening and night. Drawed 10 days rations. They talk strongly about us being relieved here but have no orders to that affect yet, I have not heard from our regiment yet. Can’t hear from nowhere as i do not get any more letters. More of Roddy’s men passed here.

Thursday, June 2nd. Weather cloudy. Rain at intervals. Thunders some. Trains are coming by mostly empty. One had some of our wounded on. Received a few lines from Sergt. [Dan A.] Wilber stating that he received a letter from [William C.] Doan dated Kingston, Ga. May 21st stating that Co. B had been in several skirmishes suffering but little. They were doing provost duty at Kingston at the time.

Friday, June 3rd 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather cloudy. Hot when the sun is out. Considerable many wounded passed here. Also prisoners. I am on guard this evening. A young citizen came here reporting guerrillas two miles up the track. Sent to Capt. He sends us 5 men for reinforcements.

Saturday, June 4th. weather rainy, damp and wet. Rained nearly all last night. Many trains pass by last night. I hear many strange noises whilst on guard but up to this hour, 12 M, no guerrillas has been seen. The train from Nashville due at 3 p.m. has not yet arrived. We heard of guerrillas all day and squads patrolled the road.

Sunday, June 5th, 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather cloudy but hot and sultry. I am not well. Have a head and stomach ache. The yesterday’s and today’s train both passed here this 3 p.m.

Monday, June 6th. weather cloudy. The sun shines hot at times. There were less trains today than common. I am on guard.

Tuesday, June 7th. Weather very hot. It thunders in the far off southwest. Only one train instead of 6 to 8 passed between sun down and sunup.

Wednesday, June 8th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather damp and rainy. Nights warmer than common. Only two trains from the South. Received a line from Sergt. Weldon.

Thursday, June 9th. Weather camp, cloudy but hot. Patrolled the road this morn at 4-5 o’clock. Had all the mulberries I could eat. Also some sour cherries. Sent a letter to M. N. to sister Katie.

Friday. June 10th. Weather hot. Rains at intervals. The trains commenced running again yesterday. The engineers fixed a bridge which caused the lull. A five days fight is expected in front.

Saturday, June 11th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Rained hard last night. My bed got wet. A train loaded with wounded passed here. The day’s paper does not say anything of the fight of the 25th-30th last month.

Sunday, June 12th. Weather cold, damp, and rainy. Rained nearly all day and Jones went up to Brown’s Plantation. Had mulberry, raspberry, and [ ] pie and new potatoes for dinner with Sergt. Wilbur. I am on guard.

Monday, June 13th. Weather cloudy and cool. Is clearing off this eve.

Tuesday, June 14th 1864. Weather pleasant. Slept cold last night.

Wednesday, June 15th. Weather some cloudy. Saw C[lark] Camp of our company standing on the platform of the train this morn. I am on guard. Camp is going to Philadelphia to military school.

Thursday, June 16th. Weather rather hot but breezy. Many discharged soldiers are passing daily. Got a canteen full of sweet milk this eve. to Mr. Johnson’s (got two full ones yesterday). Several carloads of prisoners passed today. Also some of our wounded.

Friday, June 17th. Weather hot. They started this sawmill today. Some more discharged soldiers and some wounded went by here. Went after a transportation to Pulaski. Couldn’t get one.

Saturday, June 18th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather fair. Somewhat hot.

Sunday, June 19th. Weather very hot. Today the trains are running 1:30 p.m. from the north and 7:30 p.m. from the south. The southern train ran off near Huntsville. Consequently no trains tonight. The trains are coming back on the other road (commenced today).

Monday, June 20th. Weather hot. Some cloudy. I went up to Pulaski this morning and came back on the noon train. About 100 convalescents had started to go to the front to join their regiment (16th Corps) but were sent back to their quarters again. The news is encouraging. Grant is seizing Richmond.

Tuesday, June 21st, 1864. Rained today. Drawed 10 days rations. I am on guard. The Pulaski convalescents passed on their way to the front. No doubt we will soon follow. Good news from both our armies. Sent a letter to Michigan. Helped in the sawmill.

Wednesday, June 22nd. Weather cloudy but hot and breezy.

Thursday, June 23rd. Weather very hot. Worked most all day in the sawmill. The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Tennessee Cavalry and 1st Ohio Battery passed here on their way to Decatur.

Friday, June 24th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather very hot. I am to work in the sawmill but do not feel too well. I am on guard.

Saturday, June 25th. Weather hot. Served orders to pack up this morn at 9 o’clock this eve. At 6 o’clock we were ordered to the station.

Sunday, June 26th. Weather immensely hot. Slept in the open air last night. The afternoon trains passed and we are yet waiting for orders or transportation. Sprinkled some this eve.

Monday, June 27th. Weather more than hot. Slept on the ground again in the open air. Came back to the mill again at 10 o’clock this morn. Train from the south 7:30 a.m. from north 1:30 p.m.

Thursday, June 30th 1864. Weather cool. Rained some. Was relieved from guard this eve.

Friday, July 1st, 1864. Weather hot. Had a severe rain. This creek swelled to more unusual height in a few minutes. Our springs are covered with the current. Favorable news from the front. Also from Grant. I have not received a letter for over two months. What causes this delay I am unable to say. It is awful inconvenient.

Saturday, July 2nd. Weather cool and rainy. I am on guard. Ran a race, got beat. Had no milk this eve. The first time in a long while.

Sunday, July 3rd 1864. Weather breezy. Thunders and rains at intervals. I am not well today.

Monday, July 4th. Weather warm. Hot some breezy. Last night some 15-20 guerrillas stopped at one of the neighbors to get a drink of water. They crossed the railroad half mile from here, shot a citizen for refusing to let his horses go. The shot was heard by our guards at 11 o’clock tonight. The citizen (Mr. Carr) died this morn at 5 o’clock. This has been a very dull fourth. Received the 1st letter in ten weeks from Mother.

Tuesday, July 5th. Weather hot, breezy. Sent a letter to Mother, to George.

Wednesday, July 6th. Weather comfortable. At guard at 6 this evening. Helped in the sawmill. There was a number of extra trains last night. Today among them was a hospital train to the front.

Friday, July 8th. Weather hot. Helped in the mill yesterday forenoon. Got sick. Feel much better today. A. A. of this post got our names today for to make out a preliminary payroll for us here. Went on guard this eve.

Saturday, July 9th 1864. Prospect, Tenn. Weather very hot. I had the ague the first time and afterward a hot fever.

Sunday, July 10th. Weather comfortable. Thunder. Rained hard this p.m.

Monday, July 11th. Weather wet. Rains at intervals. Had the ague and afterward a hot fever. Fainting twice. I thought I’d die.

Tuesday, July 12th. Weather hot. Had several little showers, I webt up to Pulaski to Hospital. The doctor had no place for me. Consig, was sent back with my pocket full of powders.

Thursday, July 14th 1864. Weather hot. Came off guard this eve. Went to the bridge and got me more powders. Had the dumb ague this forenoon.

Friday, July 15th. Weather very hot. Went after blackberry sweet and black gum root, persimmon root and peppermint. Had Irish potatoes for dinner. Went on guard this eve again. We expect to leave in a few days.

Sunday, July 17th. Weather hot. Yesterday we got orders to keep a good look out. Roddy had crossed the Tennessee River. Nothing unusual up to this hour. 2 o’clock A citizen was hung (until near dead) for his money by some 8-10 supposed guerrillas. A soldier of this post is suspected for having done it.

Monday, July 18th 1864. Weather hot. Petersburg is reported taken & Atlanta. The rebel raiders are reported out of Maryland. I am on guard. Sent a letter to Ed. Brigham.

Tuesday, July 19th. Weather moderate. Had some ripe peaches and ripe apples up to Mr. Tom Johnson’s.

Thursday, July 21st. Weather hot and sultry. Sprinkled some. Thunders much. Drawed 5 days rations. I am on guard. Clark Camp passed here yesterday on his way to the regiment. Had a chance to talk to him. He says my folks at Herrick, Pa.

Friday, July 22nd. Weather moderate. Cool this eve. Some cloudy. Received marching orders to report to Chattanooga. We are to be at the depot at 11 a.m.

Saturday, July 23rd. Weather fair. Some cloudy. Left the mill at 11 a.m. Left at the bridge at 1 p.m. I am writing on the top of a car. Rode on the second an open car left on account my clothes catching fire, Stopped at Athens awhile. It is a pretty place. Saw the provost marshal, Capt. Backard. A dispatch was received there last night stating that Atlanta, Georgia, was taken. Arrived at Huntsville, Alabama, at 6:30 p.m. It is a pretty town and a fine rolling country from Decatur down to Huntsville.

Sunday, July 24th. Weather rather hot. Left Huntsville this morn at 6:30 o’clock, arrived at Stevenson at 1 p.m. Passed over several trestle works and bridges through Larkensville and another little town. The road was lined with splendid corn and cotton fields. Peaches, apples, and blackberries are enticing—especially the latter as the former are not ripe enough. Left Stevenson at 3:30, arrived at Chattanooga at 8 p.m. General McPherson’s remains passed us between Stevenson and Bridgeport. He was killed near Atlanta the 22nd inst. We lost heavy that day but drove the rebs out of Atlanta so an engineer tells us. Also that the yesterday the rebs tried to retake the place but failed, losing heavy. At Bridgeport were two gunboats and three small steamers, Crossed two rivers at this place.

Monday, July 25th. Chattanooga, Tenn. Weather hot (my head aches). Slept well in the open air near the depot. Are waiting for orders. Later, Capt. Reiniger comes [and] order the nonveterans to stay here. The recruits and veterans are to go in front. At 3 p.m. they are to start. A large hospital train arrived from the front with many wounded. I helped carry. The most of them were minus an arm or leg. They were wounded the 20th inst. near Atlanta. 5 p.m. A train is getting ready for Nashville to take 4-500 prisoners. Among them I saw 6 line and field officers. [Michael B.] Jones of Co. F and myself pitched a tent in the 16th Corps store camp. There was five of our regiment here. Everyone on his own hook.

Tuesday, July 26th. Chattanooga, Tenn. Weather smokey but warm. Looked like rain last night. I stayed in camp all day. Many prisoners and wounded came in last night and this morn. 1,100 prisoners reported on the road. The taking of Atlanta has bit yet ben confirmed. Hard fighting has been done there. Chattanooga is a lively but small place. Lookout Mountain and Mission Ridge are within sight. Our camp is between the town and the Tennessee river. The government is putting up ever so many buildings. Also a depot and track from town to a sawmill on the river in the rear of this camp.

Wednesday, July 27th. Weather damp. Rains this morn. This p.m. I went to town. Saw two trains full of prisoners getting ready to go to Nashville—about 900 of them. Met a few of our regiment from Pulaski. They are to stay with us nonveterans. Saw our Major [James R. Hugunin] just from the front (has resigned). He had a list of the casualties of our regiment. Found brother Martin’s name on it (wounded severely). I expect him here within a few days. Also the nonveterans. Sent a letter to Michigan to Mrs. Clink.

Thursday, July 28th. Weather cloudy. The top of the Lookout Mountain is hid from sight nearly all day. The 9th Illinois arrived from the front. They say ours will soon follow.

Friday, July 29th. Chattanooga, Tenn. Weather very warm and clear. The 9th [Illinois] went home to be mustered out at Springfield. Sent a letter to Herrick, Pa.

Saturday, July 30th. Weather clear and hot. I with 5 more went up on the Lookout Mountain. It was a pleasant but rather tiresome trip. All all the whortleberries we wanted. Visited the artist on the point of Lookout (a few weeks [ago] an artist fell from one of the rocks broke neck). Also Summersville, two miles or 1.5 from the point. Gathered a few apples below the point. There is a large orchard and broken down buildings there. Coming down I blistered my toes.

Sunday, July 31st. Chattanooga, Tenn. Weather very hot. Had a hard thunder and rain shower. Went to town. Saw Gen. [Augustus Louis] Chetlain. He is here to inspect negro troops. Our boys are expected in from the front tomorrow as their time is out.

Friday, 5 August 1864. Weather hot. Had severe hard showers this week. Brother Martin arrived here (wounded) from the front with several more of the regiment. I took him to our camp and wanted him to stay (if not until his time was out) but he wanted to go home as he had a furlough and he left with a hospital train at 5 p.m. He left me about a dozen letters. Sent a letter to Cousin Fred today.

Saturday, August 6th 1864. Weather hot as can be. At intervals had some violent rain showers today. It lightened and thundered hard. The lightning killed a Lieutenant about 80 rods from here and shocked a man with me in this tent and another not far off. Our tent blew over last night and I am glad Martin did not stay else he would of got wet. Hope he will have good luck on his homeward way. Gen. [John] McArthur (our 1st Colonel) was in town. He is going to the front.

Sunday, August 7th. Weather very hot but cloudy.

1862 Diary of J. Frederick Hammerly of Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

This diary was sent to me for transcription under the assumption that it was written by Martin Hammerly of Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry. His name appears on the inside cover and he claimed the book belonged to him. However, once I began to transcribe it, I realized rather quickly that it was actually kept by Martin’s brother, J. Frederick Hammerly who served with Martin in the same company and regiment.

In fact, this diary (Diary 2) turns out to be the segment missing between the two earlier diaries of his I had transcribed last year:

Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois (Diary 1)
Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois (Diary 3)

J. Frederick Hammerly, born 1834 in Koenigreich, Wirtemberg, Germany. Came to America on 3 October 1852. Frederick served with two brothers in the 12th Illinois—Martin, as I mentioned earlier, and Jacob who drowned on 15 September 1861, not long after his enlistment.

Hammerly’s Diary and Keith Rocco’s Painting of the Battle at Corinth featuring the Tishomingo House

[Note: This diary is from the personal collection of Greg Herr and was transcribed and published on Spared & Shared by express consent.]


This book belongs to Martin Hammerly from Amboy, Lee County, Illinois

General Smith died the 18 or 20 of April at Savannah (Tenn). Let Paducah on the 11th. Days march. January 15, 1862 arrived at Paducah again the 25th of January. Left Paducah again for Fort Henry February 5th. Fort Henry was bombarded ad taken February 6th. Left Camp Heiman for Fort Donelson February 12th 1862. the bombardment of Donelson last three days, February 13, 14, and 15th. Sunday morning February [paper torn] they surrendered. Left Fort Donelson February 22 and arrived at Clarksville (Tenn) in the night on board the Memphis. Arrived at Nashville, Tenn. February 27th on board the Woodford. Came back to Clarksville again March 1st, 1862. Left Clarksville March 6th, arrived at Paducah March 7th, 1862. Stayed a few hours and then went up the Tennessee River. Arrived at Savannah March 11th 1862. Arrived at Pittsburgh Landing March 17th. Camped at 18th. Battle of Pittsburg April 6th and 7th.

Continued from Vol. 1, page 89-90.

Wednesday, April 23, 1862. Nice and warm.

Thursday, April 24. Warm, afternoon commences clouding up. Rained towards evening. There was a skirmish out towards Corinth.

Friday, April 15. Rain almost all day. Received marching orders but after some of our tents were struck, the orders was countermanded.

Saturday, April 26. Fresh but clear this morning. It remained clear and proved to be a fine day.

Sunday, April 27th 1862. Weather fine all day. All of Co. B were vaccinated on account of the small pox in and around our camp.

Monday, April 28th. It has been warm all day but this evening it looks again like rain.

Tuesday, April 29th. Rained last night. Have marching orders. 8 o’clock heard heavy cannonading but about an hour after, it could not be heard anymore. 10 o’clock, are ready to march. 1 o’clock p.m. are halting near the breastworks (consisting of logs &c.) where we received a heavy fire from the secesh on Monday, April the 7th. Quite dark. We are now fixing our camp fire, Midnight, are putting up our tents for it commences raining.

Wednesday, April 30th 1862. It is sprinkling yet but seems to be clearing off. We had breakfast early and left camp right after. The cannonading yesterday was Pope shelling out a rebel camp. We marched about 4 miles and camped. A salute was fired in two places, they say in regard to the victory at New Orleans. Weather had been good and nice to march. Cloudy through all day.

Thursday, May 1st 1862. It had been quite cold last night. Had orders to leave at 11 o’clock. 3 o’clock we are again in camp two-three miles in advance. It’s very warm. Our camp is a place of romance. A bed of oysters must have been here.

Friday, May 2nd 1862. Weather very nice. Had to strike tents at 5 o’clock p.m. and left immediately.

Saturday, May 3rd. We marched last night until about 8 o’clock. Camped on an open field near a few houses. they call it Monterey. I am now on picket since 8 or 9 o’clock a.m. About 4 o’clock p.m. we heard heavy firing on our left.

Sunday, May 4th 1862. It commenced raining this morning at 10 o’clock and rained almost steady until the next morning. The cannonading yesterday was the capture of Farmington with 1500 prisoners.

Monday, May 5th. It is clearing off now. The sun is shining. Sent a letter to John Church.

Tuesday, May 6th. Weather fine. Drawed new Enfield Rifles. Received a paper from Penn,

Wednesday, May 7th. Got a letter from John Dykeman from Mo. Had brigade drill.

Thursday. May 8th. Weather good, quite warm. Left camp Monterey at 10 o’clock a.m. advanced about two miles. Camp on an open field. It is a natural prairie. Heard three or more cannon shot towards the river after sundown.

Friday, May 9th. It looks again like rain. At 11 o’clock a.m. heavy cannonading was heard towards Corinth and lasted two-three hours. This evening we hear that Gen. Pope scattered a number of secesh who came out to drive him out of Farmington.

Saturday, May 10th 1862. It has cleared off again and is getting very warm. An attack was expected all through the day.

Sunday, May 11th 1862. Breastworks were built last night a small distance from our right. Everybody is on a look out for the enemy. We heard some cannon fire way off. Some think it near General Mitchell’s Division. It is hot today. We had a little thunder shower.

Monday, May 12th. Weather quite warm. Our Colonel told us on dress parade that Memphis is taken by Commodore Porter and the Monitor sunk the Merrimack for which news three hardy cheers were given. Received two letters—one from Cousin Fred and the other from brother John M.

Tuesday, May 13th 1862. How warm it is. We left camp and advanced two miles further toward Corinth. A letter from S. Reff. Sent a letter to Rushville, Pa.

Wednesday, May14th. Weather very warm. This evening we moved our camp a few hundred rods to our right in order to cover the space between ours and Hurlbut’s Brigade. Considerable firing was done through the day and night by the pickets. three of Hurlbut’s Brigade were brought in wounded.

Thursday, May 15th. Weather a little cooler. The pickets on both sides are keeping up their fire. Water is now a very scarce article and as there is a creek between the two picket lines and both parties are determined to get their water there, it causes them to fight. Had roll call 4 times today.

Friday, May 16, 1862. Weather warm. It looks cloudy. Night cleared off again.

Saturday, May 17th 1862. Weather cooler. Advanced a half mile. Laid in an open field ready for any emergency. Had a little rain in the night. General Hurlbut drove the enemy back towards night and gained a hill.

Sunday, May 18th. We are now throwing up breastworks on a ridge on the edge of a wheat field (the wheat is ready in the milk) 5 o’clock, Martin and I are detailed for pickets.

Monday, May 19th. It is rather too much firing going on here. 10 o’clock, three companies of Sharpshooters have come to our assistance but they do the most of the firing. Secesh bullets though are coming frequently. A sharpshooter got killed by one of them this afternoon.

Tuesday, May 20th 1862. Was relieved today at 6 o’clock p.m. Had quite a rain shower last night and several showers through the day. Some firing to our left, both muskets and cannon. Several distant volleys were heard in front of our pickets. They say this evening that four Irish regiments rebelled against their secesh army and consequently we heard the firing in front.

Wednesday, May 21st 1862. Rain again last night. Left camp and went out to our picket line. The pickets had to be moved with our artillery. They were driven back twice by force before we had our breastworks done, but dared not venture to give the brigadier a call. Our pickets are advancing on them. Before night our breastworks were completed. Numerous times we had to fall in. Sent off two letters—one to Cousin Fred, another to Michigan.

Thursday. May 22nd. it was quite cool last night but today it is again very warm. It seems to be clouding up. We fell in several times but nothing but picket firing at each other was the alarm. Some cannonading was heard again to our left. Isaac Camp shot off his thumb whilst on picket.

Friday, May 23rd. For over a week we are falling in on the color line ready with two days rations and packed for a march. This morning it has been cool and damp. It commenced raining this forenoon and is raining yet (most nights). Much firing has been done today on picket.

Saturday, May 24th 1862. Army before Corinth. It has been pretty cool again last night but is quite warm today. This has been a very still day although our pickets say they heard some cannonading off to our left. For some reason or other we had to leave our supper and put on our accoutrements and stack arms on the color line. I suppose there is an attack expected. The artillery too harnessed their horses. One of our Co. C shot a part of his finger off whilst on picket.

Sunday, May 25th 1862. Cool again last night. Quite a number of the regiment out on the color line on their own hook because of a few musketry by our pickets. They are fixing a signal tree in front of our regiment. Then commenced on it yesterday.

Army before Corinth. May 26th. This has been an unusual still day until three o’clock p.m. when there was cannonading heard 4-5 miles off to our left. Later. I now hear that a brigade in Pope’s Division had advanced and with cannons had to move the enemy’s lines. The lookout tree was mounted by several men this afternoon.

Tuesday, May 27th. I am now on picket a little over half mile from camp. It has been still this forenoon (with the exception of hearing the cars and locomotives and some secesh drums) but now (nearly noon) volleys of musketry are heard a mile or two to our left. Later. Some distant cannonading can be heard way off to our right, probably on the Mississippi river.

Wednesday, May 28th. It was quite still last night. This morning early several large cannons were heard seemingly o Pope’s Division. 9 o’clock a.m. Hurlbut close to our right came out as far as the picket line and shelled out the Rebels close to our picket line. I could not hear any reply. I am now relieved. Coming to camp, orders were given to be ready to march any moment’s warning. Great cannonading now again is heard a few miles distant to our left. 12 o’clock, the cannonading on our left is increasing. A distinctive fire was kept up all the afternoon. Quite a little battle was fought where i was on picket this afternoon. 7 killed and wounded. On our right 420 are reported to be killed and wounded on our side where the great cannonading was today.

Thursday, May 29th. It has been quite warm. Yesterday and last night a few cannons were fired in front of us by Hurlbut at 2’clock last night. Considerable cannonading again since 11 o’clock a.m. Left camp and advanced half mile where some other regiment had thrown up breastworks last night. We relieved them. Instead of 420, there were only 70-80 killed and wounded & some taken prisoners.

Army before Corinth, Friday, May 30th. Two sky rockets waked me up about two o’clock last night (this was considered by all who saw them a signal of something). At daylight some peculiar explosions were heard by all the troops in the direction towards Corinth. The evacuation and the blowing up of their magazines was immediately expressed. A short time after this we heard the assurance of all this news and more, “that Beauregard had left the place in the afternoon of the 29th in a one-horse wagon and his army left in different directions.” It is the opinion of many now (as we have left our camps or position and are marching towards the left wing) that the rebels design to turn our flank right and left. We heard a few cannons this evening. Perhaps Pope and Mitchell are interfering with them.

Farmington, May 31st 1862. Camped in a wheat field on the south side of the town. Had a pretty warm time marching yesterday. Started on a new march this morning at 4 o’clock. We are suffering from heat and thirst a great deal. Water is a very scarce article this 4-4 weeks. This afternoon as we rested, we heard a few cannons and some distant musketry seemingly south of us and either in Pope’s or Mitchell’s Division. We are now south of Corinth.

Sunday, June 1st. I was detailed to help remove the old camp, Went through Corinth twice. Saw many of the evacuated breastworks and burned buildings and other property. Corinth is (or rather was) a nice place. Coming back I saw several families moving back to their old homesteads. Received four months pay. Fifty-two dollars. Martin received a letter from Amboy.

Bear Creek, Mississippi. Monday, June 2nd. Rained a considerable today. Martin and I went over to the 36th Illinois. They and many other regiments went out on a light march. It has been a pretty still day. Heard the cars come in Corinth. Three to four hundred prisoners are reported to have been taken by Pope. Two days rations were ordered to be cooked.

Tuesday, June 3rd. Several showers last night. This morning it is pretty warm. It has been a still day. We heard the news of Memphis being ours.

Wednesday, June 4th 1862. Left camp and marched about 7 miles. Went through Danesville [Danville] , Miss., passed a rebel battery where several of the 7th Illinois Cavalry were killed a few days before. [Abner] H. Jordon, Co. I, Illinois 7th Cavalry is buried there. 1

1 Corp. Abner H. Jordan was indeed in Co. I, 7th Illinois Cavalry. He was killed while on a scout on 30 May 1862 on Tuscumbia Creek. Abner was the son of William W. Jordan (1805-1853) and Philena Harris (1806-1884) of Macon county, Illinois.

Camp south of Danville, Miss., Thursday, June 5th 1862. This morning I picked two cups of ripe blueberries. Saw some wheat cut and shocked. Went on fatigue to build bridge and cut road through the woods.

South of Danville. Friday, June 6th. Weather fair. This has been a remarkable day. 3:30 o’clock orders to pack up and march immediately.

Saturday, June 7th. Left Camp about 4 o’clock yesterday and marched until midnight. Marched through a town called Rienzi. Stayed by side of a main road in thick underbrush a few miles from Booneville.

Sunday, June 8th 1862. Weather fair. Received orders to be ready with three days rations to march early the morrow morning.

Monday, June 9th 1862. Orders to march were countermanded early this morning. 5 o’clock five companies on picket this evening.

Tuesday, June 10th 1862. Weather dry and warm.

Wednesday, June 11th. Many of the troops are passing by on their way back (Very warm).

Thursday, June 12th 1862. Had a hard march today. Has been very dusty and hot. Marched through Rienzi and Danville. Camped in a large open field 4 to 5 miles south of Corinth. Memphis taken June 6th.

Friday, June 13th. Arrived at our old camp (Bear Creek) where we have been paid off. The 1st inst. a little before noon we took our quarters a little nearer toward the railroad. A locomotive and an open car passed by soon after run by our soldiers.

Saturday, June 14th. The fixing up of our quarters indicate that we may stay here for some time.

Sunday, June 15th. Weather very warm. All quiet here and vicinity. No more rebels to be heard of.

Monday, June 16th. In the afternoon we had quite a rain shower.

Tuesday, June 17th 1862. Camp at Bear Creek. Rain again last night mixed with heavy wind.

Wednesday, June 18th. Weather fair. Received a letter from Rushville, Pa. Borrowed 5 dollars of Isaac W. Camp.

Thursday, June 19th. Weather cloudy and cool.

Friday, June 20th, 1862. It has been chilly last night and night before, but today it is real warm.

Saturday, June 21st 1862. Cold last night but warm again today. Sent a letter to Rushville, Pa.

Sunday, June 22nd. It has been cold last night but is hot today. Had brigade dress parade.

Bear Creek Camp near Corinth, Miss. June 23rd 1862. Monday, it has been very warm all day. Received a letter from Chris. Alfred.

Tuesday, June 24th. It is a little cooler.

Wednesday, June 25th. Weather very warm. Later. Oh how hot.

Thursday, June 26th. Hot, hotter, hottest. Oh, how hot.

Friday, June 27th. Had a shower towards evening.

Saturday, June 28th 1862. Rained most all day.

Sunday, June 29th. Weather clear and comfortable. Got some wild cherries and blackberries. Had Brigade dress parade. Four of our sick left at Pittsburg and other places arrived.

Monday, [June] 30th 1862. Weather fair. Were mustered for two months pay. Received a letter from George and a picture of his lady. (Ch. Peterson arrived.)

Tuesday, July 1st 1862. Had several showers.

Wednesday, July 2nd 1862. Warm.

Wednesday, July 3rd 1862. We are going on picket. Had a first rate time. Had a taste of milk. Sent off a letter to George.

Fourth of July. Came back from picket at 10 a.m. Had quite a celebration, a visit and several speeches by our old Col. McArthur and Adj. Dickson and others. Also a dress parade superintended by them. They informed us of the good news of Richmond being most surely in our hands.

Saturday, July 5, 1862. Had been very war all day. Sent a letter to Mr. Brigham. Richmond is not taken yet.

Sunday, July 6th. Weather hot. Had Brigade Dress Parade. Co. B and H received marching orders but Co. E went in their stead.

Monday, July 7th.

Tuesday, July 8th. Move our camp in front.

Wednesday, July 9th. Martin and I had our pictures taken.

Thursday, July 10th. It rained a considerable.

Friday, July 11th. Had a severe rain shower.

Saturday, July 12th. Been quite warm.

Sunday, July 13th 1862. Weather hot. Had Brigade Dress Parade.

Monday, July 14th. Hot. Had several rain showers mixed with heavy showers. Received two letters—one from Conderman and one from Christian.

Tuesday, July 15th. Very warm.

Wednesday, July 16th. Weather cloudy. Had a few showers.

Thursday, July 17th. Rained most all night and had a number of showers today. Sent a letter to Mother.

Friday, July 18th. Quite cool and comfortable.

Saturday, July 19th. Had been quite breezy. Martin sent a letter to C. Church.

Camp near Corinth, Miss., Sunday, July 20th 1862. Weather warm. Had Brigade Dress Parade.

Monday, July 21st, 1862. Pretty warm. Some call it hot.

Tuesday, July 22. We (Co. B, A, and K) are out on picket again. Had been very warm.

Wednesday, July 23. It rained pretty much all last night and had been so dark for the relief to get lost (received a letter from Michigan).

Thursday, July 24th 1862. Weather cool.

Friday, July 25th

Saturday, July 26th. Weather comfortable. Sent a letter to Rushville.

Camp near Corinth, Miss., Sunday, July 27, 1862. Weather comfortable. The few last night had been rather cold. Had Brigade dress parade again.

Monday, July 28th. Weather fine. Our Brigade Drill is changed to five o’clock p.m. Received orders to have 40 rounds of cartridges each. Brigades and Division are changing their positions. Some have left all together. Some trouble is expected.

Tuesday, July 29th. Had a shower towards evening. A number of bridge burners have been caught and two who were recognized taking the oath of allegiance several days since were strung up. Sent a letter to Ed Bridgeman.

Wednesday, July 30th 1862. Had a considerable rain. Went on Brigade guard.

Thursday, July 31. Cloudy but warm. Had Division Review.

Friday, August 1st 1862. Rain fell in torrents last night. Sylvester Church had been here.

Saturday, August 2nd, 1862. Some cloudy. Rained a little. Received two letters—one from Chr. Burch, one from George. I went again on Brigade guard.

Sunday, August 3rd. It has been very warm today. Companies A, B. & C wet on picket. Sent off two letters—one o Cousin Fred and the other to G. G. Evans.

Monday, August 4th. Pickets retuned. It is awful warm.

Tuesday, August 5th. It is very warm today. Received a letter from Mother.

Wednesday, August 6th. Am on Brigade Guard. Weather hot.

Camp near Corinth, Miss. August 7th 1862. Weather more comfortable than it has been the few last days.

Friday, August 8th 1862. Weather is comfortable. Sent a letter to Michigan. Another to Mother. A third to George. Martin sent one to Hattie Conderman.

Saturday, August 9th. It has been hot today. The 13th Missouri left for Corinth. Brigade guard.

Sunday, August 10th. Hot. Martin sent a letter to J. C. Church.

Monday, August 11th. Our whole regiment on picket. Nothing transpired but the cutting of the telegraph by a person dressed in U. S. soldier’s clothing.

Tuesday, August 12th. It was ten o’clock when we came [in] this morning and how we did sweat.

Camp near Corinth, Miss. Wednesday, August 13th 1862. I was detailed to go with the foraging party. We went about 6 miles beyond the picket line. Found lots of peaches, apples, pears. Also a load or two of green corn. Women talked much S—- and too much secesh. It has been a very hot day and we were much fatigued.

Thursday, august 14th. It has been very warm today.

Friday, August 15th. We had a little rain but much wind last night after it growed cool and continued all day. Received two letters—one from Mr. Brigham, another from M. Northway. Many up home fear of being drafted.

Saturday, August 16th 1862. It is comfortable and breezy today. The papers yesterday rather give Rebel Jackson the best hand. Today we hear that he had to run. Received a letter from S. Bridgman.

Camp near Corinth, Miss. Sunday, August 17th 1862. We, the 12th Illinois Regiment, went on picket. Weather cool. Heard from G. G. Evans.

Monday, August 18th. The pickets of the 16th Wisconsin were fired on but no one hurt. The 18th Missouri started after the offenders early this morning. Heard cannonading seemingly towards Grand Junction or Jackson right after sunrise. Had general muster.

Tuesday, August 19th 1862. Weather cool and comfortable. Martin and I went to Corinth and sent off a box. Co. I received marching orders but afterwards countermanded.

Wednesday, August 20th. Weather fair. Sent a letter to M. N—-ay. Received two months pay—$26.00.

Thursday, August 21. Went on picket this morning.

Camp near Corinth, Miss. Friday, August 22d 1862. We came in after 10 o’clock this morning. Received a letter from Christian. Saw the comet for the first time. [See Comet of 1862]

Saturday, August 23d. It is pretty warm today. Sent for watches to Hubbard Brothers.

Sunday, August 24th. Weather comfortable.

Monday, August 25th. Fine weather. Sent a letter to John Dykeman.

Tuesday, August 26th. Fine weather, Came off camp guard this morning. All the guards shot at a target. I made the best shot. Received two letters—one from Mother, another from Ch. Alf from Camp Curtin, Harrisburg, Pa.

Wednesday, August 27th. Went on picket again. Weather fair.

Camp near Corinth, Miss., August 28th 1862. It was 10 o’clock when we came in from picket. The regiment had all been ordered out on the color line last night. Ten years ago today I left home. One year ago today, I joined the 12th [Illinois] at Bird’s Point, Mo. Eight years ago today my folks came to Illinois.

Friday, August 29th. Weather fair. Received a letter from George.

Saturday, August 30th. Went on picket again. Had a new position. Martin received a letter from Ch. Church.

Sunday, August 31. Came in from picket. Soon after were mustered for pay. Had quite a rain shower this afternoon. It is now cloudy and cool. Received a letter from Rushville, Pa.

Camp near Corinth, Miss., Monday, September 1, 1862. Had been quite cool today. Mosquitoes are getting bad. Sent a letter to Uncle Martin.

Tuesday, September 2nd. I am on guard today in camp. There is much excitement about the news of the Battle of Virginia [2nd Bull Run].

Wednesday, September 3rd. Had been quite cold last night. Co. B the most of them went on picket. Were ordered out for a review. 6 regiments were there. A man was said to be shot for shooting his Major but his execution is postponed. Received a letter from M. N.

Thursday, September 4th. Weather fair. Started with the teams to Hamburg, La. Sent a letter to Mr. Brigham (and George).

Friday, September 5th. Arrived at Hamburg 11 o’clock. They are preparing for an attack. Roads are very dusty.

Camp near Corinth, Miss., Saturday, September 6th 1862. Left Hamburg about 2 o’clock yesterday and arrived today at Corinth about noon. At camp at 2 o’clock.

Sunday, the biggest part of our company went on picket. Weather quite breezy. Received letter from Cousin fred.

Monday, September 8th. They came in from picket. The regiments around here received orders at 3 a.m. to be ready for action. Something was expected but as yet nothing has transpired. I went on camp guard. Sent a letter to Camp Curtin, Pa.

Tuesday, September 9th, 1862. Came off camp guard this morning. Made the best shot again. Weather comfortable but is fixing for rain. Received a letter from J. Dykeman.

Wednesday, September 10th 1862. Weather breezy. Received our watches.

Thursday, September 11th Went on picket this morning. Had some milk.

Friday, September 12th. 1862 Came in before 10 o’clock. It looks like rain. Sent a letter to Rushville.

Saturday, September 13th, 1862. Weather fair and comfortable. Rumors are afloat of an attack on this place.

Sunday, September 14th 1862. I went on Division Guard at 7:30 a.m. Had a exceptional little rain.

Monday, September 15th 1862. This morning at 3 o’clock an officer on horseback brought in some reports to Capt. Lovell (Gen. Davies’ Aide-de-Camp). Said officer had been at Iuka and Booneville. He did not see any rebels. Rosecrans’ Division came in a few days ago. They are keeping a strong look out in an easterly direction.

Tuesday, September 16th 1862. Weather cool, cloudy, and windy. I been over to see the 14th Wisconsin with Brewer. Could not hear of the 21st Missouri. 3 o’clock p.m. received ,arching orders and to be ready in 15 minutes. Sent a letter to M. N. W.

Wednesday, September 17th 1862. Got our breakfast before daylight and orders to be ready to march at 6 o’clock but it was nearly 9 o’clock a. m. before we left. Took a south easterly direction. It commenced raining about 11 a.m. and rained nearly till night. Camped at Glendale near the M & Mobile Railroad. Marched about 8 miles . As we crossed the railroad, the cars run over a team, overthrowing the wagon and killing two horses. Was on fatigue.

Thursday, September 18th 1862. Left camp about 8 o’clock and marched southeast again. Camp at Burns or Barnesville. Good news from the East. The rebel army entirely cut off. Several thousand taken prisoners. Harper’s Ferry in Burnside’s possession.

Friday, September 19th. Were ordered to get ready to march early this morning. Had inspection of arms at 6 o’clock. Stacked our arms and are now waiting for two hours to fall in. 5 o’clock p.m., we now are again on a move toward Iuka. Camped at the edge of an open field an hour after sundown.

Saturday, September 20th 1862. Were roused early this morning partly by its being so cold and partly for an early start. Left about 5 o’clock a.m. and marched until 7 when we and all the rest of the regiments formed in line of battle. A quarter of an hour afterwards, several cannons were heard in front of us but now all seems to be still. 9 o’clock all is still yet but now we have orders to advance. We advanced by the right flank on the road to Iuka. Skirmishers on the left and right. The advancing regiments arrived at Iuka about 1 o’clock when we heard of the battle fought two miles from town the day before. I saw the Iuka House full of dying and wounded, both C. S. and U. S. soldiers. They report from 1,000 to 1,200 killed & wounded on both sides and about equal on either side. Left Iuka in the afternoon. After we stayed about an hour or more, arrived at Burnsville after dark and camp a little east from town.

Sunday, September 21st 1862. Left our night quarters and marched through Burnsville. Halted west of the town about an hour when we marched back through the town again. Halted on a hill northeast of Burnsville. We were informed to garrison this place. Later, we were making ourselves comfortable gathering up all the boards and slats scattered around here. Our tents are expected tomorrow. After Peterson, Martin and I had a comfortable shed, we were ordered on picket.

Monday, September 22. It had been quite cool on picket last night. I could hardly keep from sleeping but the dogs kept up a continued fighting yell.

Tuesday, September 23rd. Had a little rain today. This forenoon we piled up scattered lumber at Burnsville. Our tents and part of our mail arrived.

Burnsville, September 24th. Weather fair. Had been quite cool last night. Went on Camp Guard this morning. Received a letter from the 141st P. V. and Martin one from R. Conderman.

Thursday, September 24th 1862. It had been very cool last night standing guard. Was relieved at 9 o’clock. Had dress parade the second time since we came here. Received a letter from brother.

Friday, September 26th 1862. Cleaned our company streets this afternoon. We had a rain shower. After supper we went on dress parade.

Saturday, September 27th 1862. Weather cool and cloudy. Had a speech from Hon. Mr. Washburn after dress parade. Received a letter from George.

Burnsville, September 28th 1862. Commenced raining about noon and rained till night. They had meeting in th Baptist Church today. Also in the evening. I was on camp guard. The 11th Ohio Artillery passed through town on the way to Desoto.

Monday, September 29th. Had been cloudy and sprinkled some. Cleared off this afternoon.

Tuesday, September 30th. Had ben cold last night but it is very warm today. Martin and I went out into the country and got persimmons and our dinner in a secesh house. I spoke to their clock and made it run.

Wednesday, October 1st 1862. 15 of us went out as picket or vedette at three in the morning. At 8 we were relieved.

Thursday, October 2nd 1862. Burnsville, Miss. Had a little rain this afternoon but a heavy wind before. Sent a letter to George and slip to Mr. Brigham.

Friday, October 3rd. Received marching orders this morning at 1 o’clock. Left Burnsville at daybreak on an open train. When we arrived at Corinth, we heard distant cannonading. Were told that the rebels was advancing on to Corinth. After an hour’s halt, we marched about 5 miles on the east side of the Memphis Road and took possession of the rebel’s old breastworks. Had fairly arrived within them when we saw the rebels through some open spaces of the timbers about 300 rods distant, marching by the flank. Our artillery discovered them and threw shell and shot among them, but nothing seemed to affect them.

Hammerly’s handwriting

Soon after about 12 o’clock p. m., they appeared in line of battle marching without faltering seemingly not to notice the deadly volleys which we poured into them. Soon they had a crossfire on our whole division. We consequently were compelled to leave the works. After falling back about two miles, we formed, advanced a few rods. We, the 12th [Illinois] supported a battery. Their men gave out and some of our regiment assisted them. I volunteered for one but had scarcely stepped out when they had to fall back. Afterwards we had a brisk fire of musketry, falling back again. The artillery from the forts finished the day’s work. Grant’s reinforcements were expected the coming morning.

I lost my hat, was run over by a man who fell on my knee with his gun, was struck in the heel of my shoe. All this was done in and within a few steps of the ditch. A few hours after, I was struck in the cartridge box, the bullet lodging in a bunch of cartridges. I was nearly gone from the effects of the hot sun and the shock. About p. m., I hunted for a hat and water. Got a hat of U. S. Artillery. Found the regiment in the morning on the right centre.

Saturday, October 4th 1862. Cannonading commenced early—before daybreak—the rebels throwing shell and shot in town. Several houses were struck. Also the Tishomingo House which was filled with the families of the officers. But soon it was deserted. Stragglers took everything they could lay their hands on. I was separated from the regiment in the evening before and in the morning coming up to headquarters was detailed as a guard over the Tishomingo House between 9-10 o’clock & was relieved and just as I joined the regiment, a terrible battle commenced. The rebels succeeded to get in town in numbers but after a hard contest, they were repulsed. Our forts had a splendid crossfire on them. One of the forts threw shell among them from our rear and as we had the rascals on a fair retreat, had to fall back to let the shells play over us. Three of our own men were killed by our shells. One of Co. A, Co. k, and Co. G. Gen. [Pleasant Adams] Hackelman was killed Friday. Gen. [Richard James] Oglesby dangerously wounded. Our company lost killed—Sergeant Hale and private Ed Jeffs. Wounded—Dewey, Donley, Barnes, Mart. Clink, Lieut. Cook, Ward, John Towner. Prisoners—Clink, Martin Hammerly, Ben West, Peterson, J. Long, Goodrich. Our regiment counts 14-15 killed, 80 wounded, and some taken prisoners.

Sunday, October 5th 1862. A portion of our regiment stood picket last night. As we came in orders were given to fall in. After taking a few rations, we marched and came through a portion of where we fought the first day. The maggots were to work on the dead and could hardly be recognized. After marching about 6 to 7 miles, we were hurried back to Corinth again. Rebels were reported in the rear but turned out to be a few guerrillas.

Monday, October 6th. We are laying a few rods from a new store or freight house filled with prisoners. Weather has been very warm since the 2nd and 3rd inst. Sent off letter to Mother.

Tuesday, October 7th. We struck up a few tents until further orders. Are expecting to move to a camp. Sent a letter to R. M. Brigham and to M.

Wednesday, October 8th. It is very muddy and dusty this morning. Are yet awaiting orders for a camping place. Went on picket.

Thursday, October 9th. Come in from picket. Had been very warm. Squads of Negros passed by on their way to their corral. They say they had the day before finished burying the dead.

1863-64 Diary of Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

Small image of the author discovered pasted on inside cover of Fred’s Vol 4 Diary

[Insert bio (yet to be written)] of J. Frederick Hammerly, born 1834 in Koenigreich, Wirtemberg, Germany. Came to America on 3 October 1852.

This is the third diary of J. F. H. I have transcribed. It is identified as “Vol. 4” but Vol. 2 is missing. The first two transcribed diaries may be found here:

Vol. 1: 1861-62 Diary of Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

Vol. 3: 1862-63 Diary of Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

Frederick’s brother, Jacob Hammerly, enlisted on 25 August 1861 in Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry. He drowned on 15 September 1861. Residence place give: Amboy, Illinois.

[Note: The Hammerly Diaries are from the collection of Greg Herr and are published on Spared & Shared by express consent.]

First page of Fred’s Diary. Bought at Amboy, Lee County, Illinois, April 6, 1863, Vol. 4

Amboy, April 8th 1863. I am home on a short furlough. Have to leave tomorrow night. The following are short sketches of the 12th Regiment and myself from the time I joined it until this present day.

The 12th Regiment was organized August 1, 1861. Jacob, Martin & myself joined the regiment August 28th at Birds Point. Went to Belmont August the 31st. Came back to Birds Point September 2nd. Arrived at Paducah (Ky) September 7th 1861. Left the 15th of January 1862 for the 11 days’s expedition. Came back January 25th.

Left for Fort Henry February 5th 1862. The fort was bombarded and taken the 6th. We left Camp Heiman (opposite Fort Henry) February 12th and arrived at or near Fort Donelson on the 13th. The bombardment of the Fort commenced early in the morning of the 13th. It lasted until the 15th. The 16th they surrendered. Left Fort Donelson February 22nd. Arrived at Clarksville (Tenn.) in the night on board the [steamer] Memphis. Arrived at Nashville February 27th 1862 on board the [steamer] Woodford. Got back to Clarksville March 1, 1862.

Arrived at Paducah (on the Savannah Expedition) March 7th. Stayed a few hours and arrived at Savannah March 11th 1862. Landed and camped at Pittsburg Landing. March 17th and 18th. The battle of that place was fought April 6th & 7th, 1862. General C. Smith died at Savannah of a fever April 20th, 1862. Left Pittsburg Landing April 29th. Corinth was evacuated May 30th. Battle of Iuka September 19th. Battle of Corinth October 3rd-4th 1862.

April 1863

On board the Mary Forsyth on the way to Alton, April 1st 1863. Wednesday. Weather nice and clear today. Arrived at St. Louis at 3:30 o’clock p.m. Donely and myself arrested three passengers who were suspected of having some stolen money and property on their persons; nevertheless nothing was found. Stayed over at the Scofield Barracks. Pretty hard place.

Friday, April 3rd 1863. Arrived here at Alton, Illinois, after dark. The 77th Ohio is doing Provost Duty here. The prisoners we brought up (deserters) were made secure.

Saturday, April 4th, 1863. Arrived here to George’s. Amboy, Lee county, Illinois, this morning early—before sunrise. Left Alton yesterday at 8 a.m. Stayed at Bloomington from 5 p.m. until 10 p.m., then took the Illinois Central to Amboy. Had to pay full fare from Alton to Amboy.

April 10th, 1863. Amboy, Lee county, Illinois. I had started last night but made up my mind to wait for the next train. Left today about noon. Arrived at Bloomington an hour before dark. Stayed over until 4 o’clock the next morning. Had a rather short but a good visit. Wished to stay a few weeks longer.

April 11, 1863. Alton. Saturday. Weather windy and chilly. Left Bloomington at 4 a.m., arrived here about noon. Got through on a soldier ticket. Left Amboy yesterday the 10th about noon. arrived at Bloomington before supper. Stayed at the American House. Saw Mary Carl there as waiter.

Sunday, April 12th 1863. Rather windy and chilly. Have hardly enough clothes with me. We have to wait for a boat until tomorrow. The 77th Ohio Volunteers tell us that three of the prisoners got out one night. Two of them were caught 15 miles out. The other escaped. A rebel female spy is there imprisoned. 1

1 “There are also accounts of Confederate spies in Middle Tennessee. One of the most infamous female spies associated with Nashville was Clara Judd. The Annals reported that she traveled from Nashville to Louisville with the purpose of acquiring quinine and other medicines for the Confederacy, but her true intent was to pass Union Army information to Confederate raider John Hunt Morgan. Judd’s information on Union troop strengths and locations along the Louisville and Nashville Railroad helped Morgan lead successful raids. When the Union Army learned of Judd’s involvement, she was arrested and sent to a military prison in Alton, Illinois.” [See Spying & Smuggling…” by Rob DeHart]

April 13th, Monday. St. Louis. Weather damp and cloudy but changed to a misty warm day. Arrived here at 11 a.m. Took dinner at a saloon. Found Herman Schuh, an old schoolmate, at the drugstore, corner of Chambers and Broadway in St. Louis. Had a short and good visit. He informed me of his two brothers and Jacob Hall’s whereabouts. Left St. Louis at 6 o’clock p.m. on board the Mary Forsyth—the same boat we came up on from Memphis.

April 14th, Tuesday. On board the Mary Forsyth. Weather cold and rainy. Laid over most all last night. This morning the boat run aground past some island. I thought it would wreck. However, no damage was done. Co. D of the 4th Missouri Cavalry which are on board this boat. their captain arrested three sergeants, one corporal, and one private. They were left under guard at Cape Girardeau.

April 15th 1863. On board Mary Forsyth. Laid over last night at Price’s Landing. Rained a considerable last night. About daylight just as they were getting up steam, one of the steam pipes bursted and created quite a scare. No one was hurt. Had the accident occurred when all the steam was up, many lives might have been lost. Arrived at Cairo at 11:30 a.m. Found Paul G. Shuh. Had ta two hours good stay with him. Weather cloudy and clear, chilly and warm. Arrived at Columbus [Ky] just dark. Like to see Mr. Plummer but have no time. The 128th Illinois and some Marines are doing Provost Duty here.

April 16th 1863. Thursday. On board the Mary Forsyth. Weather more fair than yesterday. Must have went quite a distance last night. Unloaded and loaded lots of freight at Perrickville below New Madrid. The 28th Iowa [Infantry] is at that place. 3:30 o’clock p.m. passed the steamer Hope. She was aground. Later, we are passing an immense sight of boxes, barrels, sacks, &c. They say it is the cargo of the steamer Hope (and so it was).

April 17, 1863. Memphis. Arrived here before daybreak. Were too late for the train to Corinth. Our transportation was not made out in time. It is growing very warm. Went out to see the boys of the 46th Illinois Volunteers. Found them all well. Had a few hours visit with them. Weather is very warm today. Went to the theatre this evening but did not get the worth of my money. Mosquitoes are rather bad this time in the year.

April 18th 1863. Saturday. Corinth, Mississippi. Left Memphis at 7:30 a.m. and arrived at Jackson about 2 o’clock p.m. At Corinth after dark. It is quite warm today. Considerable anxiety is felt in regard to the expedition that left this place a few days ago. The 12th [Illinois] too had been out to reinforce the Glendale troops last Thursday. A few guerrillas made a dash at that place. They however were driven back to their main whole beyond Iuka where quite a number of our men are busying them. Martin had three letters for me—two from Christian, one from Mother, received one from John M., Rushville, [Pa.].

April 19th 1863. Sunday. Corinth, Miss. It is very warm today. We are receiving a variety of news (mostly bad) about our expedition at Bear Creek. Our men have lost heavy and are on retreat to this place. A company of the 9th Illinois [was] taken, several killed including a Captain, and more wounded. The 10th Missouri Cavalry badly cut up and two pieces of artillery taken. 2 Such and other news is current.

2 The 9th Illinois Infantry was ordered to be mounted in March 1863. “They were mounted on mules by 20 March 1863 and by mid April, they were pressed into service as scouts throughout northern Alabama and southern Tennessee. In one of their first cavalry operations, the “Bloody Ninth” of Illinois found themselves in a definite pickle near Chattanooga, as Company D was captured, on 17 April 1863. The regiment suffered 5 wounded and 59 captured; during the skirmish at Lundy’s Lane, Alabama. The Ninth re­engaged the enemy near their previous position on 19 April; and within fifteen minutes of skirmishing, they had driven the enemy off their position.

April 20th 1863, Monday. Corinth, Miss. I am on picket today. The most of the troops are out on an expedition beyond Iuka. Reinforcements were sent out from here and other stations (between here and Jackson) last night and this morning. Troops are coming in constantly. Numerous rumors are afloat in regard to the eminent contest beyond Iuka. Several trains loaded with troops went out to reinforce our men. 4 o’clock p.m. were relieved by the 27th Ioa from Picket Guard. Soon after I was detailed as Provost Guard. Weather warm and comfortable. Two more trains with troops come in this evening.

April 21, 1863. Tuesday. Corinth, Miss. It is warm this morning but is clouding up. Later, it thunders and rains hard. Afternoon, it is raining yet. Today we hear better news from the Bear Creek Expedition. Not much has been done excepting some skirmishing. Capt. Cameron of the 9th [Illinois] was killed and only a few wounded. Our men are checking the rebels at every point. This news needs to be confirmed.

April 22, 1863. Wednesday, Corinth, Miss. Weather warm. Am on fatigue [duty]. Nothing reliable yet from the expedition that left this place. It is rumored and believed that Vicksburg is taken.

[April 23, 1863] Thursday. Weather fair, nice & warm. Nothing more about Vicksburg. Sent a letter to Mother [and] one to George. Martin to Katie Conder.

April 24th 1863. Friday. Today it is nice warm weather. I am on Provost Guard. Can’t hear nothing from Dodge’s forces nor from elsewhere. Am very anxious to hear from Vicksburg.

April 25, 1863. Saturday, Corinth, Miss. Had been warm all day but cloudy this evening. It thunders and will soon rain.

April 26, 1863. Sunday. Got some rain last night. This morning it thunders and rains very hard. Am on Provost Guard. Sent a letter to Mr. Bear Received a letter from Philadelphia.

April 27, 1863. Monday. Had several severe thunder and rain showers last night. Today it is cloudy and raining at intervals.

April 28, 1863. Tuesday. Corinth, Miss. Weather cloudy. Afternoon, clear. Sent a letter to Michigan.

April 29, 1863. Wednesday. Weather comfortable and warm. Am on Provost Guard. About 200 negro women and children arrived here and marched out to the corral. 3

3 The contraband camp (also referred to as the “contraband retreat” and “contraband corral”) was a tent city that was first established in the fall of 1862 on the Philips farm and placed under the supervision of Chaplain James M. Alexander of the 66th Illinois Infantry. by mid-1863, it resembled a small town, complete with a church, commissary, hospital, frame and log houses and gridded streets. [See Contraband Camp at Corinth by National Park Service]

April 30, 1863. Thursday. Weather fair. Had been chilly this morning. The moon shone as bright as day last night. Had monthly inspection (muster for pay) today. Sent a letter to Philadelphia.

May 1863

May 1, 1863. Friday. Corinth, Miss. Am on Camp Guard. Received a letter from Charles Dykeman. It is rumored that a detachment from Grant’s army has been successful in tearing up the railroad below Jackson, Mississippi. Also burning the Iron Works at Jackson.

May 2, 1863. Saturday. Weather warm and fine. Are working hard to get our barracks finished. Afternoon. The Dodge’s Expedition is coming in. The 9th Illinois, Co. D (40 men) taken [prisoners]. Only two or three killed and wounded as far as known, lost one cannon. Scattered the rebels. Had been at Florence.

May 3, 1863. Sunday. Corinth, Miss. Had rained last night but has cleared off again and is comfortable today. Sent a letter to Alfred. On Provost Guard in morning.

May 4, 1863. Monday. Weather hot. The moon shone very bright all last night. Washed off in a creek. Sent a letter to Ch. Dykeman. Another to Mass. A third M. N.

May 5, 1863. Tuesday. Another cloudy and cool this morning. Had a small shower last night. Am on Camp Guard. Sent a letter to Rushville, Pa. One to Clark P. Roff, Marine Hospital, Chicago.

May 6, 1863. Wednesday. Corinth, Miss. It is cold today. Our butter is getting hard. The barracks are going up one after another. Charles Peterson left for home this morning. I sent with him [money] Martin sent 30 dollars. Ten dollars to Mr. Mingle for shoes.

May 7th 1863. Thursday. Weather real cold. A fire feels good.

May 8th 1863. Friday. Cold this morning. Went on Headquarters Guard. Is growing warmer. Afternoon. The rest of the 9th [Illinois] came in with a lot of prisoners belonging to [Brig. Gen. Philip D.] Roddey. Good news from Hooker’s Army. No mail tonight owing to the burning of a mail packet at Island No. 8. Several passengers perished in the flames. Others badly burned. Among them were several on their way to visit their sick and wounded children at Memphis.

May 9th 1863. Saturday. Was quite chilly this morning but turned [out] to be quite a warm day. A few more prisoners arrived this day with some of the 10th Missouri Cavalry. Continued good news arrived here from Hooker’s Army. The same from Vicksburg.

May 10, 1863. Sunday. Weather fair and comfortable. Had weekly inspection and dress parade this evening. There must be good news. The troops are cheering all around here. The Ohio Brigade left for Memphis, perhaps to Vicksburg. A dispatch was read on the color line of Stoneman’s taken Richmond. 75 men from the 12th [Illinois] are detailed after lumber to a mill at Red Sulfa Springs. After reveille. The 70th Illinois are having another great cheering and playing by Gen. Dodge’s Brass Band. An officer read a second dispatch (telegraphic) to the 9th [Illinois] stating and confirming of Stoneman’s entering Richmond [and] also the capture of Lee’s train and a large portion of his army by Gen. Hooker. This news is most too good to believe and as we had such news once or twice before, it is doubted by many. I feel rejoiced. I think it true. We shall son have this rebellion crushed and be on our way to the Prairie State and again in peace. The 7th Illinois is having a great time, They have a splendid fire. It is after ten o’clock p.m. I understand they have marching orders.

May 11th 1863. Monday. Weather warm. Got up this morning at 4 a.m. Got breakfast. Left a little after sunrise. Arrived at the sawmill at 4 p.m., loaded (had about 25 teams) and went back about 3 miles. Then camped on a plantation. Could not sleep on account of flies and wood ticks on some other animals.

May 12, 1863. Tuesday. Had been warm all day. Got up and had breakfast early and left before sunup. Arrived at Corinth about noon. The capture of Richmond is as yet confirmed (must be true). Also the taking of Vicksburg is reported again but the night papers say nothing about it. The boys say the town was illuminated last night. The 7th [Illinois] left. Received a package from Philadelphia.

May 13th 1863. Wednesday, Corinth, Miss. Weather warm. Worked hard cutting timber for another shanty for myself and two or three more. the papers this evening are not saying a word f the capture of Richmond. It is doubted by most everybody now. From Vicksburg we have no reliable news as yet.

May 14th 1863. Thursday. weather warm—yes, hot part of the day. It looks a little like rain this eve. The taking of Richmond has turned out to be a hoax. Nevertheless some important move has been made.

May 1863 – “A Camp Meeting with a Purpose”: At the moment this photograph was taken in the yard of the Verandah House, General Lorenzo Thomas was addressing Corinth’s Union garrison. With arms stacked, the soldiers gathered about an improvised stand sheltered with canvas, listening to a speech “upon a burning question of the hour – the employment of colored troops in the field.” [Page 155, Volume II, Miller’s Photographic History of the Civil War.]

May 15, 1863. Friday. Corinth, Miss. Weather warm. Is very dusty. Adjutant General [Lorenzo] Thomas arrived here yesterday and today he made a speech in front of Gen. Dodge’s Headquarters to all the troops of this place. Afterward he reviewed us. He said in his address that his main object of his coming here was to organize and encourage everyone to sustain the organization of the negro into regiments for the U. S. service for it was the wish of the President and Congress to do so and all loyal men will undoubtedly be in favor of all this. He stated that he oganized ten regiments of this class on the Mississippi and that they make good soldiers—that they are vigilant and ready to apply to every call of their duty; that he had been an eyewitness of it in an engagement on one of the gunboats on the Mississippi. He expressed himself with heart full of wisdom and a man of feeling could not help but say that he spoke in favor of the welfare of this nation, the love of the Constitution, and the establishment of peace and Union forever.

Dr. Florence Cornyn entered the service as a surgeon but preferred fighting and was given command of the 10th Missouri Cavalry to the disappointment of his Lt. Col. William Bowen who thought he should have had the command. Bowen later killed Cornyn. See entry for 11 August 1863.

After he took his seat, Gen. [“Uncle Dick”] Oglesby was called upon. He arose and made a very interesting and important speech. He said he was in for arming the blacks and to use every instrument to hurt the rebels no matter whatever. A year ago he was against the arming of the blacks but now, said he, “I am in favor of not only of the arming them, but of the President’s emancipation proclamation to cripple slavery forever. After this, Gen. [Grenville M.] Dodge and Col. [Florence] Cornyn of the 10th Missouri Cavalry made some short remarks. After they had finished, the band struck up a few patriotic tunes and we were ordered to fall in for review. It was most awful dusty. It looked as like the chariots had come down in a mass of clouds. There [were] quite a few of the soldiers grumbling about the negro organizations. They can not shake off prejudice against the unfortunate blacks which have so long been oppressed by the unfeeling and inhuman whites.

May 16th 1863. Saturday. Felt quite chilly last night on Patrol but is warm again today.

May 17, 1863. Sunday. Corinth, Miss. Weather fair and warm. Sent a letter to cousin Fred. Gen. Grant has no doubt possession of Jackson, Miss. Took it today.

Monday the 18th and Tuesday the 19th, we moved into our new barracks made of our own hands. We have our hands full doing guard, fatigue, and duty and building houses for ourself. Martin and myself have moved into our house 12-12. This evening we have to put in a door and window yet and do some patch work. Then we shall be ready (after we have a table and a few chairs or stools) to receive company. Received a letter from M. North, a paper from cousin Fred. Martin from Katie Conder. Vicksburg is not taken yet but Jackson, Miss is. War news is not very encouraging. Would like to hear from Brother Alfred. A member of our company who was wounded at Fort Donelson and since once or twice been reported dead, arrived here last night.

May 22, 1863. Friday. Weather warm and streets dusty. Yesterday we had a small shower and more water would be acceptable. This night it looks some like rain. Yesterday morning I was relieved from Provost Guard.

May 23, 1863. Saturday. It is most awful warm. It may rain before night. Am on patrol. Ha a small shower. Did not do much good. Received a letter Mass. Another from Maine.

May 24th 1863. Sunday. Weather very warm. Rain is wanted very much. It looked like rain this morning but has cleared off again. Had dress parade. had the new colors (flags) out. Cheering news came in from Vicksburg. Perhaps Grant has possession of it by this time. Received a letter from cousin Lucie. States that Brother Ch. Alfred reported among the missing. In a letter to C. Camp the same is stated. Received another from Brother George. A third from Ch. W. Peterson. A price list from Mingle.

May 25, 1863. Monday. Weather as yesterday. Vicksburg reported again to be ours. Hope so at least. If not taken yet, it soon must fall. Martin sent a letter to Mr. Church.

May 26th 1863. Tuesday. Weather warm, hot and dusty. I am on Camp Guard. An expedition left here today noon consisting of mounted infantry, cavalry, and one battery of artillery—a force maybe some three thousand strong. Their destination is unknown as yet. Received a letter from Brother John. Another from Alfred on his way from Richmond paroled.

May 27, 1863. Wednesday. Corinth, Miss. It is cooler today. It sprinkles some this evening. Received a box of boots and shoes from Amboy. Sent a letter to N.

May 28th 1863. Thursday. Weather warm and cloudy. I am on Headquarters Guard. Received a letter from Mingle. Sent one to Rushville. Enclosed one to Alfred. Nothing reliable has been heard from the expedition that left here the 26th inst.

May 29th 1863. Friday. Weather cool and cloudy. Fixing for rain. 5 o’clock p.m., had quite a storm here. The dust has disappeared. More rain we want. Sent a letter to Michigan. Another to Dubuque. A third to Paul S. A fourth to Herman S.

May 30th 1863. Saturday. Weather comfortable. Some cloudy and airy. I am on Camp Fatigue grubbing and clearing the color line. Today it is a year when this place (Corinth) was evacuated. I remember the mysterious movement we made.

May 31st 1863. Sunday. Weather clear and cloudy, quite warm but airy. The expedition that left this place the 26th inst. has come in with 60-70 prisoners 3-400 mules and horses and maybe one hundred negroes. The rebels followed our men up to the Tennessee River opposite Hamburg Landing. The gunboats shelled the rebels this morning after our men had left Hamburg Landing. Some think they will attempt to cross the river. Our men burned a large amount of property at and around Florence, Alabama. There were about 8 to 10 of our men wounded and killed.

June 1863

June 1, 1863. Monday. Weather cloudy but warm. I am on Forage Guard. It looks some like rain this eve. Received a letter from Michigan. Received Amboy Times.

June 2, 1863. Tuesday. Had quite a rain shower this morning. There is considerable stir here this morning. Some of the forts (Batteries) have been taken up by fresh artillery who arrived here last night and this morning. Some are looking and talking about an attack on this place. Jackson, Tennessee, is being evacuated. This artillery speaking of above is said to be from there. Letters from the North state the firing of cannons all over saluting the taking of Vicksburg on May 28th or 29th. Many refugees came in from Jackson last night. More are expected.

June 3rd 1863. Wednesday. Weather warm and clear. Went on Provost Guard. Two trains arrived from Jackson.

June 4th 1863. Thursday. Weather cool and cloudy. Commenced getting cold early this morning about the same time clouding up. It is now raining hard three o’clock. Quite chilly too. Buel’s Batteries left this morning, destination unknown. It is rumored that our brigade with exception of this regiment is under marching orders. We don’t care and if we had to go. 4 o’clock pm. We are having a very hard shower. Many trees are blowing down, It is very cool.

June 5th, 1863. Friday. Weather cold and overcoat feels comfortable this morning. It is windy and cloudy. Went on Provost Guard. Afternoon. It is now again real warm. The 9th Illinois, 81st Ohio, and Buel’s Battery—also they say the 122nd Illinois—has left for Pocahontas and other stations (between here and Grand Junction). Many think that we soon will follow them. This eve it is real warm. Went to the Corinth Theatre as guard.

June 6th, 1863. Saturday. Weather cloudy but comfortable. Received marching orders. Expect to leave tomorrow morning. It is believed we are going to Grand Junction. We hate to leave our new quarters (shanties) on which we laid out so much work. Afternoon. The 50th Illinois relieved our regiment from Provost Duty. The boys have all come up and we are getting ready for a move tomorrow. Sent a letter to cousin Cinda.

June 7, 1863. Sunday. Got up pretty early this morning. Had roll call. Packed up. Breakfasted and are ready to march. At 8 o’clock a.m. we all fell in and marched down to the depot. About ten we left on board a train and went as far as the Tuscumbia Bridge to where the road was finished. we unloaded and stayed until 4 p.m. when Companies A, B, C, E, & F marched up to Pocahontas on the railroad track, a distance of 2.5 miles. Companies D, H, I, and K were left to guard the Tuscumbia Bridge. A few companies of the 57th Illinois and two pieces of artillery were relieved and went back on the train to Corinth. Our quarters are on a side hill east of the town of Pocahontas near the railroad. A fort on the opposite side is commenced and will within a week be finished.

Bissell’s Engineer Regiment of the West

Six companies of [Josiah] Bissell’s Engineer Corp is encamped here also. The 9th Illinois Infantry (mounted now), the 81st Ohio, and Buel’s Battery, a company of Home Guards (Tennesseans) and some of the 18th Missouri Infantry (now mounted). This place is noted for their loyalty. I went on Camp Guard this evening. It looks some like rain.

June 8th 1863. Monday. It cleared off last night but this morning it is again getting cloudy. Later. We had several small showers all through today. I was relieved at 6 p.m. All the tents we had were pitched yet a number of the boys are sleeping in the open air. Received an Amboy Times.

June 9th 1863. Tuesday. Prospects for much rain. I with a number of others guarded our company trains to get our camp equipments from the Tuscumbia Bridge. Five miles by the wagon road. Commenced to rain at 8 o’clock a.m. and rained nearly all day and came down in great river through the night.

June 10th 1863. Wednesday. Pocahontas, Tennessee. One shower follows another nearly all through the day at intervals. The sun comes out very warm. Our teams made two trips and got mostly all of the equipment. Received a letter from Charles Dykeman.

June 11th 1863. Thursday. Weather cloudy and windy. Had several small showers. I went on picket this morning. A small scouting party went out ad came in again this eve reporting a small force of guerrillas towards Ripley.

June 12th 1863. Friday. Pocahontas, Tenn. It cleared off last night and is very warm this morning. I bound a few bundles of wheat in a field near the picket line belonging to a loyal citizen, Had some dew berries. Got relieved by the 81st Ohio at 9 o’clock a.m. Bathed in the Hatchie River (creek). Afternoon. Three of us went out to help bind wheat in the above mentioned field. A large scouting party with two pieces carried a message for us to come to camp. Companies A and B had marching orders. Packed up and waited at the depot nearly two hours. Went back to camp again with orders to keep myself in readiness until further orders.

June 13th 1863. Saturday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fair and quite warm. Our train from the Memphis yesterday a rebel raid between Memphis and Germantown is reported. Both today’s and yesterday’s train arrived and went through to Corinth for the first time since the evacuation of Corinth. I. W. Camp arrived. Also Corp. Hawk. The Quartermaster’s negro drowned. A negro less and gone to h_ll is the tune of several of Co. C’s and B’s brutes.

June 14th 1863. Sunday. Weather hot. Went on Fatigue to help build an oven. Worked until p.m. when I was ordered to report to my company. They were just falling in. Had no trouble to pack up. Arrived at headquarters. Instructions were given, viz. to Companies A, B. & C to post and guard the Hatchie Bridge 1.5 miles from town. Yesterday’s raid between Memphis and Germantown is counterdicted. Yesterday’s scouting party came in late this evening with 12 prisoners, some contraband and refugees.

June 15th 1863. Monday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fair. Had been quite chilly last night on picket. I relieved at 8 this a.m. Cos. A’s and B’s camp equipments were brought out here. Are fixing up quarters upon a steep hill called Ray’s Hill [Ray’s Bluff]. A fort [see Big Hill Pond Fortification] is laid out and we soon will have our hands full of guard and fatigue duty. More trains than common are running back and forth. Our rations are short right after we left Corinth, Miss.

June 16th, 1863. Tuesday. It is very hot today although an overcoat felt comfortable last night on picket. The fort here is progressing slowly. The ironclad car and engine attached went through a small bridge between Grand Junction and Jackson (on a road lately evacuated) killing two men and wounding one. The latter died this morning. This happened yesterday. Set a letter to Clark C. Puff.

June 17th 1863. Wednesday. Pocahontas. Weather very hot this forenoon. This afternoon it rains much. This evening it rains hard. A prospect to rain all night. Went to work on the fort. Sent a book and letter to Mother.

June 18th 1863. Thursday. Weather hot, clear and cloudy. I went on picket again.

June 19th 1863. Friday. Weather hot. I was relieved at 7 this morning. Six of us went scouting through the country. Went as far as the [Stephen A.] Hurlbut’s Hatchie fight [of last October]. Saw many marks of shell and shot. Had some plums and many dewberries. Blackberries are abundant and soon will be ripe. Received a letter from cousin Fred.

June 20th 1863. Saturday. Weather cloudy and I am on fatigue [duty]. Sent a letter to Ch. W. Peterson.

June 21st 1863. Sunday. Weather fair. Rather hot this afternoon. I went on picket this morning. Received a letter from George Hammerly’s wife and Amboy Times.

June 22, 1863. Monday. Had been real cold last night. My toes were cold. Is cool and airy all day. The 9th Illinois had been out again and came back with a loss of some thirty killed, wounded and taken [prisoner]. They also lost their baggage. Nevertheless they brought in 26 prisoners, among them are three officers. Sent a letter to cousin Fred, another to Jacob Holly, Received one from Joe Kelley.

June 23rd 1863. Tuesday. Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fair and comfortable. I am on picket (bridge guard).

June 24, 1863. Wednesday. Commenced raining early this morning. It rains hard yet. I think it will rain all day. Later. Such violent rain I hardly ever saw, It continues to rain tonight. All of the boys out were sent to camp. Sent a letter to Michigan. Another to George. A third to Charles Dykeman.

June 25, 1863. Thursday. Weather cloudy. Sprinkles at intervals. The Tuscumbia [river] has risen 8 foot and continues to rise. Our cooks will have to move before the water washes them out. I am on picket.

June 26, 1863. Friday. Rained some last night. Is cloudy and hot this forenoon. Nothing has been done on the fort since Tuesday on account of the weather. Our cooks moved this morning. The water is over their fireplaces.

June 27, 1863. Saturday. Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather hot, warm and cloudy. Had some rain.

June 28, 1863. Sunday. Weather very hot and cloudy. It may rain again. This evening and tonight it is raining considerable. I went on picket again. Tonight it rains like the blazes.

June 29, 1863. Monday. Weather windy but warm. Drawed soft bread—the first since we left Corinth.

June 30th 1863. Tuesday. Weather hot. This is the first day it did not rain any since the 23rd. Received a letter from S. Vorthway and an Amboy Times. I am on picket (bridge guard). We done picket duty for the engineers. Had muster for pay.

July 1863

July 1, 1863. Wednesday. Ray’s Hill, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather very hot. Had some rain and thunder this evening. Martin received a letter from S. C.

July 2, 1863. Thursday. Weather very hot. I went to work on Fort Flood (the fort here). Sweat like a teamster. Had a sunshine shower this afternoon. This evening it is raining again. Stirring news arrived here in the Memphis Bulletin. Rosecrans is pressing the rebs. the siege of Vicksburg progressing. The rebs under Lee advancing on Harrisburg, Pa.

July 3d 1863. Friday. Weather not. Sweat runs freely. Rained much this afternoon and is much cooler. I am on picket. The mosquitoes are thick and are much annoying us. The boys not on duty were all summoned and sent with a sergeant of the 18th Missouri to the other side of the river where the said sergeant saw (as he reported ) 15 to 20 rebs surround a house where there were some of our boys. They turned out to be three or four from our boys and a few citizens after pork. The 4 companies below under Maj. [James R.] Hugunin’s command too were arr____ by the rumor. Received a letter from Ch. Dykeman.

July 4, 1863. Saturday. Ray’s Hill, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather very hot all day. Salutes of big guns were fired at Pocahontas and Corinth. I have a severe headache nearly all day. Tonight it seems to be increasing. Hear of Rosecrans’ success. Glad of it.

July 5th 1863. Sunday. Weather hot this forenoon. This afternoon rained some and turned cool and windy. Hear of Gen. Foster (the S. C. forces) taking Richmond, Virginia. The rebel Gen. Smith—his forces is rumored to be driven back by the militia. I am on picket (bridge guard).

July 6th, 1863. Monday. Weather hot. Some air is astir though. Considerable rain fell this afternoon and tonight. The river has fell to its almost normal depth. Sent a letter to Mother and Alfred’s mother, to Brother John. Received one from the former.

July 7th, 1863. Tuesday. Weather wet, warm and cloudy. Mosquitoes are driving us out of our tents. I never saw them so thick. I am about half eat up by the barbarians. At 12 o’clock M. a salute was fired of 13 guns in honor of the taking of Vicksburg on the 4th inst. with 25,000 prisoners and a large amount of arms. Sent a letter to Luther D. Wolf.

July 8, 1863. Wednesday. Fort Flood, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather hot. Mosquitoes awful. Had some rain. I am on picket guard. Richmond is invested by Gen. Foster too but not taken as reported. We pray it may soon be.

July 9th 1863. Thursday. Weather very hot. Had only a slight rain today. Helped bury Ed[ward F.] O’Neill [of Dwight, Illinois]—a member of our company. My heart was much suppressed. Had artillery drill for the first time this eve. The surrender of Vicksburg with 31,000 prisoners and any amount of arms is no longer a doubt. Good and encouraging news is received from all quarters. A letter to New York.

July 10th 1863. Friday. Weather exceedingly hot. Was detailed on picket (bridge guard). Done picketing duty for the engineers. They are cutting and hauling timber back of our camp for the [Memphis & Charleston] railroad. Had a small shower. Fighting mosquitoes is all we can do.

July 11th 1863. Saturday. Weather very warm but misty sky. Several of us got a pail-full of blackberries some distance from this camp. Gen. Meade’s forces (late Hooker’s) took—according to rumors—nearly a full 30,000 prisoners. great anxiety is felt in regard to that army. Great and hard fighting was to take place there (in Penn.) yesterday or today. Mosquitoes are playing all night and day.

July 12th 1863. Sunday. Fort Flod [Flood], Ray’s Hill, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather misty. Rather warm. Good news is continuing. We are much rejoiced of it. The news of the capture of Port Hudson is awaited daily. Mosquitoes so thick and bothersome that I am hardly able to write these lines. Martin sent a letter to Ch. Church. Am on guard in the fort.

July 13th 1863. Monday. Weather cool. Sky misty. Attended weekly inspection.

July 14th 1863. Tuesday. Weather cool. Sky misty. Nevertheless the mosquitoes are as thick as usual. I am on picket.

July 15th 1863. Wednesday. Weather comfortable. Some cloudy. The news of port Hudson’s surrender today is confirmed with 5,000 prisoners. Received a miscarried letter from Mother.

July 16th 1863. Thursday. Weather cool and cloudy. Afternoon warmer. I am on picket. The 9th Illinois arrived with about 40 or more prisoners from Jackson, Tennessee.

July 17, 1863. Friday. Weather cloudy. Rather warm. Had been chilly last night. Sent a letter to Mass. to L. Northway. Received one from Mich.

July 18, 1863. Saturday. Fort Flodd [Flood] Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather warm. Some cloudy. The papers today being the news of a desperate riot in New York City, Boston, and one or more other northern cities. In New York over 100 rioters are reported killed and many wounded. Gen. Lee crossed the Potomac and escaped Gen. Meade. We thought so. Am on picket (bridge guard).

July 19, 1863. Sunday. Weather cloudy. Hot and airy. Attended weekly inspection.

July 20, 1863. Monday. Weather clear and cloudy, hot. Some guerrillas burned the Big Muddy Bridge last night. The 9th Illinois went after them. The trains were delayed a few hours. Fort Flodd [Flood] is finished.

July 21, 1863. Tuesday. Weather cloudy. Clear this afternoon. Had a heavy rain early this morning. The news in the paper is that Charleston, S. C. is ours. Received an Amboy Times.

July 22, 1863. Wednesday. Fort Flodd [Flood], Ray’s Hill, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather hot. Partial cloudy. The Memphis Bulletin of today reports Morgan’s forces partly taken. The rest scattered and demoralized. It too gives an estimate of rebel losses during the first week of July thus: Prisoners at Gettysburg 25,000; at Vicksburg 32,000; at Helena 2,000; at Port Hudson 7,000; total 66,000. Artillery pieces 250; small arms 75,000. I inscribed a head board over [Edward] O’Neill’s grave. Received a letter from Rushville.

July 23, 1863. Thursday. Weather warm. Yesterday Co. F came here to assist us; only 10 men instead 16 are drilling artillery. They don’t have any other duty but artillery.

July 24, 1863. Friday. Weather very warm. I am on picket guard (timber g.). An attack on Columbus, Kentucky is talked of. Pitched new tents. Turned the old ones over. Martin and I have one to ourselves. We made a floor, writing desk, stool, and bench.

July 25th 1863. Saturday. Weather clear and cloudy. Sunshine and rain. This evening one of our company who lives in Corinth came here. He told us that last Thursday one of the 1st Tennessee Cavalry (Scouts) 4 was shot by order of the court martial. He had deserted there and was caught lately (acting as spy to the rebel army) near Pocahontas.

Execution of Civil War deserter Alex J. Johnson, soldier in Company D of the 1st Alabama Cavalry in Corinth, Mississippi, circa 1863. (Chicago History Museum)

4 This should be the 1st Alabama Cavalry (not Tennessee). The deserter was Alex J. Johnson who enlisted as a private in the 1st Alabama Cavalry, Co. D on 1 June 1863 at Glendale, Mississippi. Eighteen day later, he deserted while on picket duty.

July 26th 1863. Sunday. Fort Flodd [Flood], Ray’s Hill, Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cloudy. We had a few showers this afternoon. The state of New York threatens disobedience to the government. What will come next? The forces from here went out again. The Corinth and Grand Junction forces are to join them. Their destination is Ripley where there is a rebel brigade whole.

July 27th 1863. Monday. Weather warm. I am on bridge guard. [John] Cook and [William] Fox went home on a furlough. Received a letter from George’s wife.

July 28th 1863. Tuesday. Weather fair. Had been chilly last night. Martin and I started to Corinth but Col. [Augustus L.] Chetlain disapproved our pass. Bad luck to him. Received a delayed letter from George’s wife. One from P. G. Schuh.

July 29th 1863. Wednesday. Weather cloudy and windy. Very comfortable. Thunder p.m. Sent a letter to Michigan. One to P. G. Schuh. Another to Ch. Dykeman.

July 30th 1863. Thursday. Weather warm. Some cloudy. Went on Timber [guard] at bridge. The noon train today was fired on (from Memphis) by some ambush assassins. One soldier was killed, three wounded. The murderers fled after the first volley. The New Orleans Era states the rejoicing of that city over the reopening of the Mississippi. The arrival of the Imperial from St. Louis marks an epoch in the history of our country and is the first fruit of those great victories which have given back to the Nation its most magnificent highway of commerce. Let it be written down not alone on paper, but in the hearts of a grateful people, and let it be told to posterity as one of the memorable events of these memorable weeks that on the 16th day of July 1863, the steamboat Imperial, having without obstructions or annoyance, passed down the Mississippi River and steamed up to the levee at New Orleans.

From the Memphis Bulletin, July 30th, Military execution yesterday. A. H. Johnson paid the dreadful penalty of his crimes. He was the second one of the family who paid this debt during the short space of one week. Last Thursday his brother was executed at Corinth for desertion and yesterday Johnston met his doom for the same offense. He was a citizen of Tippah county, Miss. and had deserted from one side to the other two or three times.

July 31st 1863. Friday. Fort Flodd [Flood], Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool and comfortable. This p.m. we had a very hard shower mixed with hail and heavy winds. Attended monthly inspection. Yesterday’s and today’s papers conforms the capture of Morgan and his whole force on Sunday last by Gen. Shackleford.

August 1863

August 1, 1863. Saturday. Weather cool and cloudy. Rain this afternoon. The canons we heart about noon at Pocahontas were fired to raise a body drowned in the Hatchie. He was a member of Buel’s [Battery I, 1st Missouri Light Artillery] Battery. Today it is just two years since this regiment was organized. The 1st of next August, Uncle Sam will have to discharge us. I received a letter from D. Wolf.

August 2, 1863. Sunday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Cloudy and warm. I am on picket. Our foraging party from this place was fired into by 9 or 10 guerrillas five miles from here while on their way home. No one was injured. This happened yesterday. Send a letter to Rushville, Pa.

August 3, 1863. Monday. Weather hot and some cloudy. Ten of us went out scouting through the country where they were fired into last Saturday. Stopped in many houses. Found them rather poor. Got dinner in one. Found some loyal, some lukewarm, and some hard secesh. The women all use tobacco. We heard three guns and afterwards understood it was the salute over the drowned man’s grave. He was the only child of the nurserer, Mr. Adwards from Lee, Lasalle county, Illinois.

August 4th 1863. Tuesday. Weather hot and cloudy. Rains at intervals. I am on guard (Viadet.)

August 5th 1863. Weather cloudy and warm. Thunders much. The forces have come back with few prisoners.

August 6th 1863. Weather cool, cloudy and rainy. Much wind. Sent a letter to George. One enclosed to Chicago, on to brother Ch. Alfred.

August 7th 1863. Friday. Fort Flood, Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool and windy. Cloud. Some rain. The Memphis Bulletin of today has it (through some sources) that Rosecrans was within fifteen miles of Savannah (Georgia). Received a letter from Ch. Dykeman. Martin one from Charles Church. Signed the pay rolls. The steamer Ruth burned to the water. Over two millions of greenbacks was burned.

August 8th 1863. Saturday. Weather clear and cloudy and comfortable. I am on picket. Tonight about 10 o’clock the pickets at Pocahontas fired 8 to ten shots. Nothing more is heard—a false alarm!

August 9th 1863. Sunday, Weather very warm and sultry. I read two chapters of Life of J. C. Fremont’s [biography]. Mosquitoes are not quite as thick as they have been. Them little gnats are bad in the morning.

August 10th 1863. Monday. Weather clear and cloudy. Calm and breezy. Hear distant thunder. I am on fatigue. This afternoon I finished the Life of J. C. Fremont. It is quite an interesting work—more so that I first anticipated.

August 11th 1863. Tuesday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather very warm—hot but breezy. Much thunder. This afternoon it sprinkled some. It rains hard this evening. Lightening and thunders hard. The body of Col. Cornyn arrived at Pocahontas this p.m. from Corinth on its way home. He has been shot yesterday by the Lieut. Col. [Wm. Bowen] of his own regiment (the 10th Missouri Cavalry) at the court martial office while said Lieut. Colonel was having his trial. We hear that a large portion of his regiment attempted to hang the Lt. Col. but an additional detail of patrols and guards quieted the place. Cornyn had been a very active Colonel. He is much blamed for insulting his Lt. Colonel. He struck him in the face several times when the other shot him thee times. Died soon after. Received a letter from Mother and an Amboy Times.

August 12th 1863. Wednesday. It rained much last night. This morning it is foggy and cool but now it is hot and cloudy. I have a fever today. A small foraging party of the Engineer Corps were fired into yesterday by Salstreet’s Guerrillas. It resulted in the killing of two of Salstreet’s men. None was hurt of the Engineers. Today thy found in going over the grounds another dead rebel. I am on the sick list.

August 13th 1863. Thursday. Weather fair. I had a very restless night last night. This afternoon I feel much better. The doctor gave me some powders.

August 14th 1863. Friday. Weather hot. I had several attacks of fever this afternoon. I could not write this evening. I am not much better. We had general inspection today. Received a letter from Ch. W. Peterson.

August 15th 1863. Saturday. Weather comfortable in the forenoon. Rather hot at p.m. Rained towards evening.

August 16th 1863. Sunday. Weather very hot. I am much better. News is very scarce. Sent a letter to Mother.

August 17th 1863. Monday. Weather very hot. I am almost well. I did not hear of any news at all. Sent a letter to Michigan.

August 18th 1863. Tuesday. Weather very hot. The news is that the 9th Illinois and Inf. A who went out a few days ago with 6 days rations had a fight with a force below Ripley. They have sent in a few prisoners today.

August 19th 1863. Wednesday. Weather cool and comfortable. I am on picket again. Three trains of troops passed by here from Corinth, probably to reinforce the 9th [Illinois] below Ripley. Buel’s Battery practiced target shooting.

August 20, 1863. Thursday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool this a.m. Warm and sultry this p.m. Rained at intervals.

August 21, 1863. Friday. Weather warm and sultry. Rained much this evening. The 9th Illinois Infantry and other forces under Lieut. Col. Phillips destroyed an immense quantity of railroad stock at Grenada, Mississippi. Co. A of the 90th came in today. I went after medicine for Martin late this evening. He has the bilious colic.

August 22, 1863. Saturday. Weather cool this a.m. Rather hot this p.m. The Chicago Tribune states an engagement of the eastern armies but without result. The news though seems to be encouraging.

August 23, 1863. Sunday. Weather hot. Sweat flows freely.

August 24, 1863, Monday. Weather very hot. It thunders hard this evening and looks like rain. The 90th Illinois came in this morning from their Grenada trip They brought about 40 prisoners and 400-500 negroes. The latter are to be sent to Grand Junction to fill up the negro regiment there.

August 25, 1863. Tuesday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. It rained some last night and soon after turned real cold. I was on picket and got cold ties. We were instructed to keep a good look out for something is expected between Corinth and Grand Junction. It was quite cool all day. Aday or two ago the negro vedettes between Farmington and Corinth were attacked but they reported the guerrillas with considerable haste. Sent a letter to cousin Cinda. Another to Philadelphia, Received one from P. G. Schuh.

August 26th 1863. Wednesday. It has been quite cold last night. Under two blankets. I slept rather cold. This forenoon was cool. Afternoon quite warm. Martin and I went to Pocahontas. Got a picture and sent it to P. G. Schuh to have him take it to Germany. He calculated to start before the 5th of September. We went to see Sorall of the 9th Illinois. The 3rd Michigan Cavalry passed through Pocahontas on their way to Corinth. The paymaster is there. The engineers left on two trains for Vicksburg or Natchez. Sent a letter to Ch. Peterson.

August 27th 1863. Thursday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool. I slept cold last night. I am on picket (bridge guard). We had artillery practice at our fort.

August 28th 1863. Friday. It had been chilly but moonlight last night. This a.m. we had a very chilly and uncomfortable rain. It is quite pleasant this evening. A battery of negroes passed here from Corinth on their way to Memphis or elsewhere. Received 52 dollars—4 months pay. Received a letter from Michigan.

August 29th 1863. For Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool. Nine of us went out into the country to get our haversacks filled with apples. They are getting scarce. We went over the battlefield. I saw 17 or 18 graves in one line—headboards over all of them. One of Co. C by the name of [Jacob] Spies of the 46th Illinois Infantry lies buried there. 5 I am on bridge guard tonight in a sick one’s place. Mosquitoes are nearly played out.

5 Pvt. Jacob Spies (1843-1862) , a native of Germany and residing in Freeport, Illinois, when he enlisted on 29 October 1861. He was killed in action near Hatchie, Tennessee on 5 October 1862.

August 30th 1863. Sunday. It had been cold but nice moonlight last night. My toes get very cold. It is chilly all day although the sky is clear. Had weekly inspection. After retreat, orders were given to all in the company to be ready for any emergency at any moment’s warning. Rebel news have Charleston in our possession. Sent a letter to Ch. Dykeman.

August 31st 1863. Monday. Weather warmer but had been chilly again last night. I am on picket. Our chaplain visited us yesterday and gave us quite a good sermon. He has I understand to oversee the cultivation of about 1,500 acres near Grand Junction and has charge of many contraband. We were mustered for two months pay. Sent a letter to Mr. Tickner and another to Mr. Brigham. The engineers got back. They got as far as Memphis. [See The Contraband Camp at Grand Junction, Tennessee]

September 1863

September 1, 1863. Tuesday. Weather has been comfortable. Last night was not as cold as it has been. One of our boys from Corinth has been with us yesterday. He confirms the finding of the Iowa soldiers hanging to trees near Corinth to have been hung by citizens in retaliation for the deserter [Alex. J.] Johnson who has been executed there.

September 2, 1863. Wednesday. Weather comfortable. Last night after 11 o’clock a musket was heard nearby at Pocahontas. The alarm bugle sounded & the discharge of a cannon followed. Not taking time, everyone made a jump into the street to see what’s up. Another big gun and another. Get ready boys! It was all still nothing but the fire of some building. We all retired. This morn. we heard that someone set the negro quarters on fire back of Turner Hotel. Set a letter to George and another to Mr. Brigham. Received one from brother John and another from Emma Way.

September 3, 1863. Thursday. Weather comfortable. I went to town, heard that 200 guerrillas effected an entrance into Corinth and killed 5 soldiers in the Seminary Hospital. How they got in or out, I did not learn. The story is reliable. Sent a letter to Luther D. Wolf. Received one from Schuh.

September 4, 1863. Friday. Weather comfortable. I am on guard. The rebel raid into Corinth is untrue. Only some of the pickets were fired on. Sent a letter to Michigan. Another to New York.

September 5th 1863. Saturday. Weather comfortable through the day. I felt the cold considerably last night. A fleet of ironclads from England for the C. S. A. is reported in the papers on the way. Sent a letter to N. Y. Answered.

September 6th 1863. Sunday. Weather comfortable. Rather hot part of this afternoon. I went to Pocahontas with the company books.

September 7th 1863. Monday. Fort Flood, Pocahontas, Tenn. I am on guard. Two young fellows—residents of this vicinity—enlisted in our company today. Received a letter from Chicago. 6

6 The Company roster indicates the two “young fellows” were probably John and Joseph Kennedy of Pocahontas, Tennessee.

September 8th 1863. Tuesday. It has been warm all day. Last night was warmer than common. Received a letter from Rushville; another from Vicksburg and an Amboy Times. Alva Griswold [of Lee county, Illinois] went home on a furlough. I sent 71 dollars.

September 9th 1863. Wednesday. Weather comfortable. Pawpaws are plenty. I found them good to my taste for the first time. Sent a letter to brother John, Amboy.

September 10, 1863. Thursday. Weather hot. I am on bridge guard. Had a pleasant night.

September 11, 1863. Friday. Weather hot and dry. The papers are containing but little news. Oh how anxious we are to hear the fate of Charleston. Burnside is reported to have taken Knoxville. Two more boys have enlisted in our company. There is much talk here that McArthur is going to have our regiment in his Division. The general belief is that we will leave for Natchez within two weeks. Co. E with our Captain left here after supper on an expedition or scouting. I sent a letter to Tarolott, Amboy.

September 12th 1863, Saturday. Ray’s Hill near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather warm. It looked like rain this p.m. It thundered much. Yesterday’s scouting party came in safe this afternoon not losing or receiving many injuries. Had quarters and ordnance inspection. Received a letter from cousin Fred. Sent to New York.

September 13th 1863. Sunday. Weather hot. I am on bridge guard today. Not a pass is allowed to be issued. They are looking for an attack on Middletown some distance to west of Pocahontas. The 122nd Illinois is there.

September 14, 1863. Monday. Weather hot. I went to Pocahontas. Three companies of the 9th Illinois are out. A dash from Johnston’s cavalry is expected. The trains are running regular. Sent a letter to Philadelphia.

September 15, 1863. Tuesday. Weather very hot. All is quiet. It looks like rain this eve. Received a letter from Mr. Brigham. Another from Philadelphia.

September 16, 1863. Wednesday. Weather rather warm but windy. This afternoon it sprinkled some. This evening it rained. Col. Hess’s men took about 40 of Roddey’s rowdies prisoners yesterday near Dicinto [Desoto, MS?] . Sent a letter to Emma N. W. Another to John W., A third to Chicago.

September 17, 1863, Thursday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cool and breezy. Sprinkled several times. Had general inspection.

September 18, 1863. Friday. It rained after dark. Soon after it changed to a dark, windy and cold night. It has been cold and wind, partial cloudy all day. Had a slight frost this morn. I am on guard. Some of the boys are building fire places already. A large train of negro troops passed here this evening on their way to Corinth.

September 19th 1863. Saturday. It has been cold. Last night we had a fire for the first time this season. The sky is clear but cold. Overcoats are worn all day. Today is a year since the Battle of Iuka.

September 20th 1863. Sunday. Weather cool and clear. This morning the ground was white with frost. The cotton crop is a failure. Much hurt. I sent a letter to Ch. Alfred to Annapolis, Maryland.

September 21, 1863. Monday. Fort Flood near Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather hot and dusty and clear. I sweat much today. Last night I froze nearly. Give companies of the 1st Alabama Colored Regiment passed here on their way to relieve four companies of our regiment at the Tuscumbia Bridge 1.5 miles below ere. This evening they came up on the cars and are going to camp at Pocahontas. We received orders this evening to move up there by tomorrow. I heard a company of negroes are going to relieve Companies A, B, and F. We hate to leave only for such a short distance but a move on a large scale is expected to follow soon.

September 22, 1863. Tuesday. Right after breakfast we packed up, struck tents and an hour afterwards had everything ready for shipment but not until three o’clock p.m. when a train came and relieved us from our anxious waiting. Arrived at Pocahontas at our old camping place. we had but just time before night set in to pitch tents and get supper. Weather had been comfortable. Also nights are some warmer that they have been.

September 23, 1863. Wednesday. Weather clear and comfortable. I am on fatigue [duty and] part of the time helping Martin fixing up in the tent. Received a letter from Philadelphia.

September 24, 1863. Thursday. Pocahontas, Tennessee. Weather clear and warm. The 9th [Illinois] scouts brought in two armed guerrillas. The papers state that Rosecrans is whipped [at Chickamauga].

September 25, 1863. Friday. Weather smoky but cleared nice. Moonshine this evening. I went on Show guard. Had much trouble to keep the rowdies out notwithstanding the 12 guard. Several S___ came in under the tent. The negro guards were fired on last evening at the Tuscumbia [bridge] where four companies of our regiment were relieved last Monday. Rosecrans had a hard fight in George the 19th inst. but is not whipped.

September 26th 1863. Saturday. Weather warm and comfortable. What a nice moonlight night.

September 27, 1863. Sunday. Weather warm—yes, hot and dry. Considerable talk about our leaving here is in progress. Everything indicates a move southeast of here. Three large train with wagons, mules, beef cattle &c. passed by here to Corinth. Everyone talk about the marching orders this evening and many are preparing to go this week. Today we drawed the Springfield rifled musket (brand new). They are a splendid gun but I preferred my old Enfield.

September 28, 1863. Monday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather warm and dry. I am on picket. Found many muscatine’s, pawpaws and some grapes. A negro got run over at the station. He died soon after.

September 29th 1863. Tuesday. Weather some cloudy but warm and very dusty. Three trains with troops, covered wagons, and camp equipage passed by our line last night. This morning we hear the 13th Illinois passed by here. Several extra trains passed by during today loaded with troops, wagons, mules, &c. Some of our sick were sent to Corinth. Received a letter from Chicago and New York. Martin from Katie C.

September 30th 1863, Wednesday. It rained nearly all day and tonight looks much like it.

October 1863

October 1, 1863. Thursday. It rained much last night and the biggest portion of today. Cleared off late this p.m. I am on picket at the railroad. Saw the 13th [Illinois] pass by but did not recognize any on I knew—the train went too swift. Four trains with troops passed during the day and one at night. Gen. [Peter Joseph] Osterhaus was on one of them, It is thought all of Sherman’s forces are to be concentrated at Corinth. The 11th Army Corps is reported to be marching from Louisville to Chattanooga. Another Shiloh is expected there. Received a letter from Philadelphia.

October 2, 1863. Friday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather clear and warm. Large trains of troops passing continually. Four companies of the Engineers are to leave tomorrow eastward.

October 3rd 1863. Saturday. Weather clear and warm but how cold I slept last night. The train from Corinth was four hours behind on account of a bridge being burned (by guerrillas) between here and Corinth. Also the telegraph wire was cut in several places between Grand Junction and Corinth. Three trains passed here from Corinth—the 57th Illinois on one and a Missouri Battery on the other. The first was empty. An orderly from the 57th fell off, got run over and expired on the spot. He belonged to Co. F. 7 We hear 4 more killed of the same regiment between here and LaGrange. Sent a letter to Mr. Brigham.

7 The Orderly who was killed when he fell off and was run over by the train was George W. Tyner (1833-1863) of Tiskilwa, Bureau county, Illinois. The company roster says of him, “1st Sergt. Died from injuries received while in line of duty.” He was a mechanic by trade and mustered into the regiment on 26 December 1861. The details of his death are not stated in the pension records; his wife Mary received $8 per month commencing from the date of his death on 3 October 1863.

October 4, 1863. Sunday. Rather windy and cool, clear and cloudy. I am on Provost Guard (supernumerary). The 9th Illinois came in today with two prisoners. They had a fight yesterday losing one man who belonged to the 109th Illinois. Was much thought of by all who knew him. They threatened to shoot one of the prisoners in retaliation but the guards were informed to keep outsiders away. Three trains with troops went to Corinth. Received a letter from George. Sent a letter to Upham.

October 5th 1863. Monday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather clear and cool. Had a gig frost last night. No person is allowed to go outside of the lines. From 3 to 4 trains of troops passed to Corinth. The 59th Indiana and 18th Wisconsin were some of them. Gen. Blair passed by here on his way to Corinth. Received a letter from Mother.

October 6th 1863. Tuesday. Weather cool and rain at intervals. Is warmer this evening. I am on provost guard. Two trains with troops passed by this eve. The 9th Illinois went out.

October 7th, 1863. Wednesday. Weather cool and partial cloudy. Two trains passed with troops this p.m.

October 8th, 1863. Thursday. Weather warm and fair but real cold last night. I am on provost guard. Sent a letter to cousin Fred. Martin to H. C.

October 9th 1863. Friday. Weather clear and warm. I am not well. Took a dose of oil. The train from the West is 4 hours behind owing to the retreat of the 9th [Illinois] They have twenty killed and wounded. 9 wounded came in on the train. Our arms stood on the color line all day. Tonight we expect to fall out. Alva Griswold has come back from a furlough. Brought me two watch and chains.

October 10, 1863. Saturday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fair. This morning before daylight we fell in. Our arms were stacked all day. The 9th [Illinois] are fighting yet and falling back. Troops from LaGrange are reinforcing them. Four trains with troops went to Corinth today. Went on the sick report and sent a letter to R. R. Landon.

October 11th 1863. Sunday. Another partial cloudy day. I went to the hospital. The trains are behind time but arrived safe. the fight at Salem (on the east of LaGrange) is reported as a sharp one. Cannons and small arms could be heard at LaGrange. Gen. Sherman and the train he was on is reported captured. Late this evening our regiment received marching orders to be ready in a half hour. Over two hundred teams (wagons) belonging to Sherman’s Corps arrived here this eve. Also a brigade to guard them. They camp opposite our hospital. Our regiment is not to march until tomorrow morning at 6 o’clock.

October 12th 1863. Monday. Weather cool, cloudy and windy. Rains at intervals. The regiment will not go at all. Gn. Sherman is not a prisoner but come very near to it. The 13th Regulars with the aid of a few volunteer companies in the 60th Indiana whipped and drove the rebels about 8,000 strong. Sherman took advantage of the Fort at Collierville. Col. [Jesse L.] Phillips [9th Illinois Cavalry] is reported killed in a fight at LaGrange. The new brigade are doing picket today.

October 13th 1863. Tuesday. Weather rather damp, cloudy and rainy. I am getting better. Sherman passed by on his way to Corinth. The news near Collierville is contraband.

October 14, 1863. Wednesday. Weather cold and chilly. Rains much. I shall be able to leave the hospital tomorrow. Col. Phillips is not killed but had many close calls. Received a letter from Mr. Tichner. Tells of cousin Fred’s being drafted.

October 15th 1863. Thursday. Weather cool this a.m. Rained some. This p.m. it cleared off. It is warm.Nearly a whole division came in this eve. Chicago Battery is in camp close to our hospital. Lieut. Whaley and Sergt. Parker came to see me. They look hearty.

October 16, 1863. Friday. Weather clear and warm. I left the hospital this morning.

October 17, 1863. Saturday. Weather misty and cloudy but warm. The 9th [Illinois] sent in a few more of their wounded. They have been fighting last near Tallahatchie. [John] Brough is elected Governor of Ohio. Has over one hundred thousand majority over Vallandigham (the arch traitor). Three trains with troops passed to Corinth. Sent a letter to George and to Clark Roff.

October 18, 1863. Sunday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fresh clear and cloudy. The 9th Illinois came in today with a few prisoners. Sent a letter to Mother. Gov. Curtin is again elected by 20-30,000 majority [in Pennsylvania].

October 19, 1863. Monday. Weather warm and clear but had been awful cold last night. I am on the sick report yet. Took emolsion three times today. Guerrillas have again disappeared on the road—for awhile at any rate. Received a letter from Michigan.

October 20th 1863. Tuesday. Weather cloudy and windy. The moon shines nice tonight. Sent a letter to Cal.

October 21st 1863. Wednesday. It rained hard last night after bed time. Damp and rainy all day. Sent a letter to Emma N. W.

October 22, 1863. Thursday. Weather cloudy and windy. Partly warm. Received two months pay. Clothing bill settled. 23 dollars were coming to me. The Ohio Brigade came in foot. Sent a letter to Philadelphia. To New York. To J. L.

October 23rd 1863. Friday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather cold and uncomfortable. I feel miserable today. The Ohio Brigade left for Corinth on the noon train. Sent (bilder) Mich. Received one from Chicago.

October 24th 1863. Saturday. Weather cold. Had a very cold night. Froze ice and my toes. Is some warmer this eve. and moon shines brighter. Sent a letter to Nashville.

October 25th 1863. Sunday. Clear and fair this p.m. Cloudy and growing cold. Warm again towards night. The moon shines bright.

October 26th 1863. Monday. Rather cold this morning. This p.m it is clear and warm. I am on picket. Received the unexpected news of Rosecrans’ removal.

October 27th 1863. Tuesday. Rather warm. Had battalion drill. Received marching orders this evening. Expect to leave within two days. Commenced making a chimney but quit it.

October 28, 1863. Wednesday. Pocahontas, Tenn. Weather fair. It is quite still about the marching orders. This eve the 9th [Illinois] got orders to beard at 10 o’clock tomorrow.

October 29, 1863. Thursday. Rather windy. Rained some this evening. I am on provost guard. Received orders to be ready early this morning. Sent home $50. martin $40. For express $1.50.

October 30, 1863. Friday, Rained much last night and blowed big guns. Is growing colder. We are getting ready. Expect to leave every minute. The regiment started about 1 o’clock p.m. amidst a heavy and cold rain. It rained hard all day. I with many of the guards left for Corinth on the freight train. Helped water the train and wood up. We arrived at Corinth about 5 o’clock whilst raining. This evening it’s growing colder.

October 31st 1863. Saturday. I and two more of the company stayed overnight with Will Doan. Slept with them or Co. C. I was a very cold night. I most awfully hate this cold weather. How I longed and wished for termination. Groswold and I went out to our old quarters. They are in some places worse and in some we left them. I am now seated in the Engineer’s Quarters writing these lines. it is cold and the fireplace feels good. Our regiment and the 81st are camped outside the picket line. The passenger train did not leave for Iuka. They say that a battle is in progress. My watches have not come yet.

November 1863

November 1, 1863. Sunday. Weather some cold. Grew warmer this evening. The regiment is outside the picket yet. The Engineers have marching orders too. Bissell’s Engineers came in from Iuka last night and think to stay at Corinth. They will be the only white troops there. The rest are colored. Stevens’ Division is expected there today.

November 2nd 1863. Monday. Near Burnsville. I and two others stayed in our old barracks last night. Kept a large fire in one of the fireplaces. The regiment came in this morning. Had no time for breakfast before we joined it. Marched on the east side of Corinth where we halted about two hours. Started about ten and marched by Glendale about 4 p.m., halted nearly an hour, got some coffee, when we marched within 2.5 miles of Burnsville. I went on picket. Had been a comfortable day to march. Rather warm though.

November 3rd 1863. Weather cloudy but warm. Had been warm last night. It looks some like rain. Co. B and two other companies went as rear guard. Stopped every few minutes of account of the teams. Our knapsacks were hauled. Arrived at Iuka before dark. Saw the front of a store inscribed J. G. Hammerly, brother. I do not know why I do not get more letters.

November 4th 1863. Wednesday. Weather warm. Stayed at Iuka all day. Washed some clothes and bathed. Iuka is a much prettier place than I thought last year. Has great water privileges.

November 5th 1863. Thursday. This morning it commenced to rain after breakfast. Last night when we went to rest, it was clear. It rained all day and part of the night at intervals. We left Iuka about 8, marched outside and laid over until noon. Arrived as tired mud hens at Eastport before dark and camped in the valley leading to Iuka. Gen. Dodge’s whole Division is coming. He and his staff already arrived. This evening late we received orders to keep in readiness for a march at any moment’s warning. A heavy detail of fatigue went to the landing. Left a shirt and a vest at Iuka and yet my knapsack is heavy.

November 6th 1863. Friday. Eastport, Alabama. We crossed the Tennessee this morning and are now rested on a plantation a few rods from the river. Camped about three miles out. The 111th Illinois put in our brigade. The 122nd [Illinois] stayed at Eastport. ([William] Calwell shot himself).

November 7th 1863. Saturday. Weather warm. The roads are getting nice. Guerrillas captured some of our advance teams. We marched about 15 miles today, keeping the river valley. I am on picket this evening. The 9th Illinois mounted infantry came though our lines with 15 mules and horses. The 66th Illinois Birge’s [Western] Sharpshooters joined us at Burnsville marched through Waterloo.

November 8th 1863. Sunday. Marched about 15 miles today. Roads are middling good. My knapsack was nearly bushing me. Was a rather warm day. Camped on a large plantation. The planter has three sons in our army. His name is Townsley. Have plenty to eat.

November 9th 1863. Monday. Camp Comfort, Alabama. Weather fair. The night was colder than common. Marched from seven to eight miles. Went through Lauderdale—a town with a large cotton factory on Shoal Creek. The bridge was burned, Crossed on footboards. Have plenty of everything. There is plenty of forage. Our brigade marched in the rear of the division.

November 10, 1863. Tuesday. Camp near Lexington, Alabama. The ground and the water in our canteens was frozen. We burned many rails. Marched about 18 miles. Had splendid roads. Good and plenty of water. Passed some nice farms. Saw the cotton factory or fire at Lauderdale before we left.

November 11th 1863. Wednesday. Camp in the woods (Tenn.) Weather fair today, The ground was heavy frost. Today we went about 20 miles, passed a town on Sugar Creek named Tin hook, marched left in front, expected an attack from Roddey. We have a big fire of logs and sticks. My bed consists of two rubbers, an overcoat, and all my wearing apparel.

November 12th 1863. Thursday. Camp at Pulaski [Tenn.] It is warm. The roads are in splendid traveling condition. Marched through a splendid valley. Passed many nice plantations. Arrived at Pulaski, Tenn. this a.m. at 11 o’clock. Marched through town in style. Is a very nice and large town. It resembles Clarksville much. Maybe as large or larger. Marched 6 miles. Our brigade talks of staying here. A rumor has Corinth taken. This evening we hear of starting with a wagon train to Columbia to get provision for this place.

November 13th 1863. Friday. Weather fair and warm. Our regiment, the 2nd Iowa, and some mounted guards left for Columbia in about 200 wagons from 4 to 6 men in each wagon. Many a hog, goose, and chicken were slain on the road. We are passing through a beautiful country—the heart of the South. Passed through Lynnville. The 50th Illinois is there camped on a rich plantation. The rails, hay and fodder of all kind suffered much. The people are mostly rank sesesh. Have six miles to Columbia yet. Our front was fired on but no damage done.

November 14th 1863. Saturday. Commenced raining before daylight. I am on picket. Our breakfast was soaked with rain. Passed through Columbia—a fine Southern city. The road is macadamized all along from Pulaski to as far as we went (as far as Nashville). The citizens are losing turkeys general all kinds of eatables yet. We are now camped 2.5 miles from Smith’s Station where we are to wait for supplies from Nashville. It is cloudy yet but warm. We got a mail tonight. I got two letters. One from R. M. Brigham, one from New York, Got news of Meade hipping the rebs on the Rappahannock.

November 15th 1863. Sunday. Weather cloudy, clear and warm. Commenced loading teams today. Have plenty of fresh meat, potatoes—sweet and Irish. Received a letter from Mother. Another from George. A third from M. N. Way.

November 16th, 1863. Monday. Camp near Columbia. Weather cloudy but warm. I am on fatigue. The wagons are all loaded and tomorrow we will leave for Pulaski. This is the third night we are here. Our camp is within a few rods of the Weatherford Creek. Columbia is on the Duck River. The news of the last fight in Virginia is encouraging.

November 17, 1863. Tuesday. Left our boys early this morning. The teams had all forded the Duck River before 11 o’clock. Camped about 12 miles from Columbia and 18 to 20 miles from Pulaski.

November 18th 1863. Wednesday. Camp between Columbia and Pulaski. Weather clear and warm. Left camp early and arrived at Pulaski before sundown. I am foot sore and tired. Got three more letters. One from Johnny. Clark Roff, Katie C.

November 19th 1863. Thursday. Camp this morning on a hill overlooking Pulaski from the east. Have no tents and are not allowed to take but a few rails. We will wish ourself away from here.

November 20th 1863. Friday. It commenced raining early this morning. Our stall containing 7 of us has 9 rubber on its roof. It does shed water but the whole front is open. Sent a letter to George and to Mother.

November 21st 1863. Saturday. Weather foggy. Rain at intervals this a.m. Cloudy this p.m.

November 22nd, 1863. Sunday. Weather fair. Some windy. I am on picket northwest of the town. Got instructions not to go in any house now. Not allowing privates to enter any residences. Sent a letter to Parker. Express Pocahontas to Adams.

November 23rd 1863. Weather windy and cloudy. Got relieved at guard this morning. The 9th Illinois brought in some fifteen rebs yesterday and today 15-20 more arrived. Received marching orders this pm. to be ready to go to Richland, 7 miles from here.

November 24th 1863. Tuesday, Pulaski, Tenn. It commenced raining last night. Left camp this a.m. about 9 o’clock. Marched 6 to 7 miles. Rained hard all the time. Every time we pull up sticks, i rains. How sick I am if such living (and more of having two pair of pants soiled in the mud and I am in it. A fight with the bullies, ha.ha.

November 25th 1863. Wednesday. It cleared off yesterday afternoon and today it is nice and clear weather. Saw the eclipse of the moon las night. Pulled up sticks and are now viz. Company’s A, B, C, & F, 11 miles south of Pulaski guarding both a bridge and a tunnel. Our houses are as at Pulaski, [made] of rails.

November 26, 1863. Thursday. Tunnel bridge 13 miles south of Pulaski. Weather fair. Had been very cold last night on picket. Expect to be relieved at 3 this p.m. Later. I am relieved and this evening we are to work by candlelight at our board shanty.

November 27th 1863. Friday. Weather fair. Slept warm and sound in our half-finished shanty last night. Had much straw. The news from Gen. Dodge’s headquarters is that Bragg’s army is defeated by Sherman, Hooker and Grant [at Chattanooga].

November 28th 1863. Saturday. It thundered and lightened and rained hard last night and rained nearly all day. I am on fatigue. Our shanty is waterproof. Slept with my clothes off—the first time since we left Pocahontas (Tenn) and a sound sleep it was. Sherman’s dispatch to Dodge dated November 26th is: “We defeated Bragg completely on the Missionary Ridge. Our troops are pressing closely.” A Rebel spy has been hung by Gen.Dodge at Pulaski a day or two ago.

November 29th 1863. Sunday. Camp 9 miles south of Pulaski. It rained at intervals last night and grew cold. Slept very cold and uncomfortably. This morning early it snowed a little and afterwards cleared off. Cold and chilly all day. Our mess got a load of brick and built a chimney. Passed by Brown’s place. the out houses are all torn up and some destroyed. have commenced at the dwelling. Two sewing machines and any amount of fine furniture are laying around in pieces. Brown 8 is said to be in the C. S. A. His overseer and family with a few tenants are yet living there. How I hate to see property destroyed. Our officers have forbidden to pass any more lumber through the lines. Our chimney is done. I am on picket, detailed at 3 p.m.

8 This was probably the plantation of Thomas Brown on the west side of Richland Creek, about two miles southwest of Midbridge and near where Sanders Road us today. The Tunnel Hill contraband camp was sited on the Thomas Brown plantation less than a mile east of Tunnel Hill.

November 30th 1863. Monday. Weather clear but cold. Last night was a severe one. Had a large fire on the reserve. Laid down to sleep. Woke up half frozen. We only get mail twice a week. Grant took 10,000 prisoners, 40 pieces of artillery, and a large amount of small arms at Chattanooga.

December 1863

December 1st 1863. Tuesday. Tunnel bridge 9 miles south of Pulaski. Weather clear and cold. Brown’s houses are now fast growing into shanties at this and two or three other detachments, His dwelling will be out of sight within a few more days. Brown is according to what citizens say, a son-in-law to Gen. Pillow.

December 2nd 1863. Weather clear, cool and dry. ([James B.] Nesbitt left the company on a detail). I am on picket at three p.m. Sent a letter to R. M. Brigham.

December 3rd 1863. Thursday. Weather fair and warm. Had been a moderate night on picket. Three o’clock p.m. I am relieved. Weather warm. A detail from this place who went out this morning come in with negroes and horses to work on the bridge. The 9th Illinois stopped here with a Major and 41 other secesh prisoners which they took west of here. The major was on his way to inspect Roddey’s men.

December 4th 1863. Friday. Camp Tunnel bridge. Weather fair and warm. Three o’clock p.m. I am on picket again. Sent a letter to E. N. Way.

December 5th 1863. Saturday. Had a pleasant post. The night was cold. The sun rose with the clouds. Rained some this a.m. Is clear this p.m. Not enough men in camp for all the picket posts. A detail went after more horses. They took 2 days rations with them and then went out foraging. Some are helping the engineers. Heard of John Morgan’s escape.

December 6th 1863. Sunday. Weather springlike. A mail come in. Nothing for me. No news at all.

December 7th 1863. Monday. Weather fair and warm. Air damp this p.m. Hear of Gen. Burnside capturing Gen. Wheeler with eight thousand prisoners and 40 pieces of artillery. At 3 o’clock p.m. I am on picket. The boys who left Saturday came in with a number of horses, mules and negroes.

December 8th 1863. Camp Tunnel Hill. Tuesday. Weather wet and damp. Commenced raining before daybreak and rained all day. Was relieved at 3 p.m. Received a letter from Michigan.

Wednesday 9th 1863. Weather cloudy and damp.

December 10th 1863. Thursday. Weather clear and cloudy. Was detailed to go mule back scouting. A false report of some 4-500 rebs within 4 miles of here caused the whole camp to stay up last night. This morning, nothing can be heard. All is quiet. Gen. Dodge with staff and body guard passed here going to Athens.

December 11th 1863. Friday Tunnel Hill. Weather cloudy but warm. Cleaned up in front of our quarters. Graveled our doorsteps.

December 12th 1863. Saturday. Cloudy and rain at intervals.

December 13th 1863. Sunday. Rained all day. Thundered much—a sign for cold weather. The mule squad came in tonight.

December 14th 1863. Monday. Weather wet, camp and rainy. Growing cold. Received 2 months pay late this p.m. A Company d’ Afrique was mustered in at Camp Richland. Sergeant [Norton W.] Campbell of Co. G is Captain.

December 15th 1863. Tuesday. Weather warm. Partial cloudy. I went to Richland (Camp Chetlain). Went on picket.

December 16th 1863. Wednesday. Weather rainy.

December 17th 1863. Thursday. Weather wet and damp.

December 18th 1863. Friday. Weather cold and clear. Froze hard. Sent a letter to Syracuse to Rice & Co., Received one from Alfred. The engineers commenced putting up [ ] for the bridge.

December 19th 1863. Saturday. Tunnel Hill. Weather cold and clear. The ground is froze hard. I am on picket this p.m. Co. F drawed mules to be mounted. Hope they won’t mount us. Sent a letter to Alfred, Philadelphia, Pa.

December 20th 1863. Sunday. Weather clear but very cold. Thaws some this p.m. Was relieved at 3 p.m.

December 21st 1863. Monday. Weather clear and cold. Sent a letter to cousin Fred. Another to Michigan. A large ring around the moon tonight.

December 22nd 1863. Tuesday. Today it is warm like summer. Went on picket at 3 p.m.

December 23rd 1863. Wednesday. Tunnel Hill. Had been warm all night until 4 a.m. when in a moment the heavens were covered with clouds. Looks like snow this p.m. [Martin] Clink is going to start for home in the morning. Received a letter from Pocahontas and Amboy Times.

December 24th 1863. Thursday. Weather fair, warm and nice. Much talk about reorganizing this regiment. Clink left for home. so did [Joseph] Cullison. I sent $20. Martin [sent] $50.

December 25th 1863. Friday. Today it is Christmas. Biscuits and pies are plenty. Many went to hear Col. Chetlain’s speech at Richland. Tomorrow he will address us and tell all about the reenlistment. I am on picket this p.m. Weather cloudy.

December 26th 1863. Saturday. Tunnel Hill. It commenced to rain early this morn. Rained nearly all day.

December 27th 1863. Sunday. Weather wet, muddy and rainy. Captain [Henry] Van Seller is appointed recruiting officer of veteran troops. Is scouting now and made a short address here in regard to it. No doubt those that reenlist will go to Springfield next week.

December 28th 1863. Monday. Weather rainy, damp and muddy. Was out to help hunt a rebel mail but did not find it. Col. Chetlain was here and explained the reenlistment, &c. to us.

December 29th 1863. Tuesday. Tunnel Hill. Weather clear. Freezing cold. Received a letter from Emma.

December 30th 1863. Wednesday. Weather clear this a.m. Cloudy this p.m. Went on picket this p.m. Drawed clothing.

December 31st 1863. Thursday. Rained considerable last night. Had a good fire. Rained nearly all day. This evening it snows and blows big guns. Is growing awful cold. Col. Chetlain had been here explaining the reenlisting again. He thinks the regiment will get ready to go to Springfield next Sunday or Monday.

January 1864

New Years Day. Tunnel Hill, Tennessee. Weather cold all day. Captain [Henry] Van Sellar swore a number of Veterans into the service. Snows.

January 2nd 1864. Saturday. Weather cold and windy.

[January 3rd] Sunday. Weather very cold. Rains and snows at intervals. Col. Chetlain’s farewell address was read here by Lieut. Vanhorn. I went on picket. Promised to join the veterans. A portion of Sherman’s troops passed by here (92nd Illinois Regiment mounted).

January 4th 1864. Monday. Tunnel Hill. It rains much. Is cold. Muddy too.

January 5th 1864. Tuesday. Weather cold. Snows some. Freezes hard. My enlisting papers were brought in. Took a notion not to sign them. Received a letter from George.

January 6th 1864. Wednesday. Weather very cold. Roads rough and hard. I am on picket.

January 7th 1864. Thursday. Weather severe. Sows much. The ground is covered with snow. Snows hard this eve. Had a hard night on picket.

January 8th 1864. Friday. Weather cold. Received a letter from R. M. Brigham. Syracuse. Three from Mother. Sent one to George to Nashville.


1861-62: Norton William Campbell to Sarah Ann Rinehart

Norton William Campbell (Library of Congress)

These letters were written by Norton William Campbell (1835-1868), a carpenter from Duquoin, Perry county, Illinois, who entered the service as a sergeant on 20 April 1861 at DuQuoin, Illinois, to serve three month in Co. G, 12th Illinois Infantry. After this brief stint, he reenlisted on 1 August 1861 to serve three years in the same company and regiment (the “1st Scotch Regiment”). At the time of his enlistment, he was described as 26 years old, standing 5 feet 7 inches tall, with brown hair, blue eyes, and a dark complexion—a native of New York State. In the 1850 US Census, 16 year-old Norton was enumerated in the farm household of William Campbell (1806-1874) and Catharine Wilson (1808-1886) of Pinckney, Lewis county, New York. I can’t find a biographical sketch or obituary for Norton to confirm if these were his parents or not; his war letters mention only his mother and state that she was living in Sauk county, Wisconsin, in 1861. By the time of the 1860 US Census, Norton had relocated to Perry county, Illinois, where he was enumerated in a boarding house and working as a carpenter.

Of Norton’s service in the 12th Illinois, I have been unable to find very little information save what we learn from the letters themselves. The Chicago Daily Tribune of 17 April 1862 lists Sergt. Norton Campbell as one of fifteen members of Co. G being wounded in the Battle of Shiloh. In that same newspaper article, Joel Grant (1816-1873), the chaplain of the 12th Illinois reported that, “Most of the losses [to the regiment] occurred the first day. The first attack upon us was made by a large force of rebels, whom, as we viewed them through the timber, we thought might be our own troops. While we were endeavoring to satisfy ourselves on this point, they poured a deadly volley upon us, that dispelled our delusion, and brought us at once into the realities of war.”

Indeed, Norton’s Letter 16 informs us that he was wounded wounded at Shiloh but it must have been a mere flesh wound: “The wound I got at Pittsburg has got well but it leaves a nice scar.” He also informs us in that same letters that following the Battle of Shiloh, he was in command of his company because all of the commissioned officers were either wounded or sick.

Norton wrote the letters to his friend, Sarah Ann Rinehart (1843-1879), the daughter of Samuel Rinehart (1820-1899) and Harriet Eunice Reed (1823-1849) of Louisville, Clay county, Illinois. We learn from Norton’s letters that four years previous to the war, he and Sarah—who would have only been about 14 at the time—had a relationship but that it grew distant when he moved away. Clearly he was attempting to rekindle that relationship when he began to write her while in the service. We don’t have any of Sarah’s letter to Norton so we can only surmise from the content of Norton’s letters that she doubted his sincerity from the beginning of their war-time correspondence and only grew more and more convinced that he was either not the love of her life, or that she was unwilling to wait longer for the war to end before taking a husband. Though subsequent letters were probably exchanged between them, Sarah Ann chose to marry John Wesley Young (1845-1879) in Clay county, Illinois, on 22 February 1863. The Youngs lived in Clay County, Illinois, where John labored as a farmer until 1870 when they moved to Independence county, Arkansas. They had several children all of whom (at least five) died as infants. Sarah died on 16 February 1879 giving birth to her sixth child, Thomas Jefferson Young (1879-1946). Two days later, Sarah’s husband died and the orphaned child was raised by his uncle Joseph Henry Young. I could not find an account of Thomas’s death but the timing suggests he died of a broken heart or suicide.

This CDV was found in the Library of Congress (what a stroke of luck!). It shows Norton wearing the Tam o’Shanter style cap of the 12th Illinois Infantry. He has signed the verso indicating his rank as Captain in the 110th USCT. He was discharged from the 12th Illinois to accept a commission as Captain of Co. F, 110th USCT (formerly the 2nd Alabama Colored Infantry) late in 1863. 

Spared & Shared readers are also encouraged to reference the 1861-62 Diary of Frederick Hammerly of Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry while reading these letters published earlier this year.

Readers may also enjoy, “The Dying Request: An Irish Soldier Seeks to Secure his Daughter’s Future at Shiloh, 1862.”

Letter 1

Addressed to Miss Sarah Reinhart, Indianapolis, Indiana

Camp Defiance,
Cairo, Illinois
June 20, 1861

My Dear Friend Sarah,

I received your welcome letter. I was glad to hear from you yet i did not know whether you would write to me or not as I had neglected writing to you for so long. But Sarah I am well and hope this will find you the same. I am one of Uncle Sam’s boys now and we see some rough times in camp life and some pleasant times but the time will be soon when we will be called into battle and we are all ready and anxious to get at the traitors that have dishonored our country and caused all this trouble and many of us no doubt will die on the battlefield. But if it should be my lot, I know it will be in a good cause. I love the stars and stripes and I will help to protect it. I love Liberty and Union and I want it just as our forefathers handed it down to us and we will have it so. And Sarah, if this war last three years or 10 years, I will be in it all the time if I am alive and able for I love my country.

But Sarah, I should love to see you but I cannot get away now. If I could see you but one hour, it would be some satisfaction to me. I could explain all the reasons that I have not seen you for nearly four years. It was not because I did not want to see you nor because I had forgotten you but I have not. No, Sarah, if I am not with you my heart is, and I shall live in hopes of seeing you yet once more. We was happy in each others company, for we loved each other. It is so still. I can say my heart in not changed. The beautiful face I love so stand up on it and will ever be my guiding start in the hours of peril and danger.

And Sarah, if I should never be permitted to see you again, may God bless you is my prayer. But I know you have plenty of friends to keep you like a lady as you are and had I thought that I could [have] taken care of you as I ought, I should’ve been with you long ago. But I have done well in the last two years and may yet live to see peace and enjoy it once more.

We are under marching orders now but we don’t know where we will go to and we will probably stay here six or seven days yet. We think we will be sent to Missouri near St. Louis. When I wrote to you, I was in Camp Bissell, Caseyville, Illinois, but we left the next day. After I wrote you, we went down to the Missouri River on the steamer Louisiana to Cairo where we are now. Cairo is well fortified & the whole southern Confederacy could not hardly take it. But I must close.

I will get my likeness taken and I will send it to you soon. I will write often and hope to hear from you often and let me be where I may, I shall always remember you with kindness. I remember all the past. They are as yesterday to me. God bless you. My respects to your friends. Write soon. From your long absent lover or friend, — Norton W. Cambell

Camp Defiance, Cairo, Illinois, 12th Regiment, Company G, In care of Capt. Brookings

Letter 2

Camp Defiance
Cairo, Illinois
June 28, 1861

Dear Sarah,

I am pleased to hear from you and that you was well. I am well and hope this will find you the same. I was of a company of three hundred that was out on a pleasure excursion yesterday up the Mississippi River and at Birds Point. There are two thousand of our troops at Birds Point in Missouri opposite of Cairo. We had a pleasant trip and enjoyed our ride very much.

Col. John McArthur, 12th Illinois Infantry—“as fine a man as lives.”

We expect an attack on Cairo soon now from the traitors. I am in the 12th Regiment under Colonel John McArthur—as fine a man as lives. This regiment will son be sworn in for the war or three years and then we will get a furlough home for a week or ten days and I shall try and come to Indianapolis if possible and go to Clinton too if possible. I shall be in Cairo till after the Fourth of July. There will be a Grand Ball here on the Fourth and we expect to have a good time in general on that day.

Sarah, I will send you my likeness in this letter and you will please keep it in remembrance of me for if I do not see you in the next three weeks to come, I may never see you. My likeness looks black but it is because I am sunburnt and tanned very bad but it is part of a soldier’s life. You must excuse this letter for I have to sit down on the ground and any way to get down to write and it is blotted up so that I am ashamed of it but you can read it maybe. If you can’t—if I ever see you down here—I will read it for you.

Sarah, you appear to think that since we parted in Clinton, I have found someone that I loved and had forgotten you. You say you have a god chance to marry. Now I say, if you love anyone and want to marry them, do so. I could not blame you and I would love to know that you was happy with someone. There is no knowing where I will be when this war is over but God bless you. My best wishes are with you. I hope to hear from you often. We will not have much fighting to do till after Congress on the Fourth of July.

I will close. Hoping to hear from you soon and Sarah, let me go where I may, I shall always remember you with pleasure and I hope I can see you before we start South. But no more. Give my respects to your friends and please write soon.

This from your long absent, — Nort

— Norton W. Campbell, Camp Defiance, Cairo, Illinois, 12th Regiment, Company G in care of Capt. C. H. Brookings.


Letter 3

Camp Defiance
Cairo, Illinois
July 6, 1861

My Dear Sarah,

I received your ever welcome letter and was glad to hear from you. I am well and hope you are enjoying the same blessing. The 12th Regiment has not been sworn in for three years yet but I think we will be tomorrow. The Fourth passed off very pleasantly here and general good order through the whole camp and the celebration of the Fourth will long be remembered in Cairo. In the morning at sunrise they fired a salute of 36 guns from the six different batteries and noon and at sunset the same. In the afternoon, there was a brigade review of all the troops.

We marched through the main streets of the city and then took to the parade ground in the evening. They had some splendid fireworks and speeches and everything went off quiet and nice. And if we had of been in Virginia and had the chance, we could of done some of the best fighting on that day that was ever done. The troops here are anxious to get a chance at the traitors and if we ever do get at them, we will conquer or die. And Sarah, every time I put a cartridge in my gun, I will think of you for if you are making cartridges, make them of good powder and lead and we will make good use of them if we ever get the chance—and I hope we wll.

I read the President’s Message this morning and I suppose you have saw it before this and it suits me to a hair and I think he will soon put us where we will have some work to do. But I think Jeff Davis is trembling in his boots now and would give all he ever had if he never had spoke of secession. But that do us. We want to torture him to death before we quit. we want to show them that breaking up this government is not as easy as they imagined it would be. The stars and stripes shall be my banner as long as I live and I will help to maintain it.

And Sarah, God bless you. You are a lady and cannot fight but I am glad to hear that you love the Union enough to make cartridges for the soldiers and while you are doing so, remember that there is none in the army that loves you whose heart is with you and his country, and I would love to see you now but whether I shall ever have that pleasure or not, I cannot say now. But if I live to see this war settled, and peace once more, then I will see you. I can only say God bless you wherever you are and if I ever done wrong by you, I hope to live to make all right with you again.

My mother lives in Wisconsin, Sauk county, in White Mound. She was well the last I heard from her. She seemed proud to know she had a son that loved his country and was not afraid to fight for his rights. She bid me go and do my duty like a man. God bless my mother. I will fight for my liberty and hers and do my duty.

Sarah, I am sitting in the woods in a beautiful shade and writing this letter on a log. I got out of the camp so that I could be all alone for awhile to write to you and while I am sitting here, the past hours that I have passed with you years ago are fresh in my mind. Not a word has been forgotten by me and if I have not wrote to you as often as I should nor have not come to see you as I said I would, still I have not forgotten you. I have always thought of you and remembered you. You have been near my heart and I have always been in hopes that [I could someday] take care of one so worthy as you are of a good and kind husband. I have tried hard to lay up something to take care of you with so that I might be worthy of you but I have had a good deal of bad luck in the last four years. But still I am now pretty well to do in this work. I have laid up about two thousand dollars and when I volunteered, I had me a nice house about half finished and everything comfortable and was in hopes that I should see better days. But I shall have no pleasure till we have peace once more. Only in serving my country to put down this rebellion and that I will do with pleasure. And I will take pleasure in writing to you often as I can and hope that I shall still live to see you again.

If you think I care nothing for you, I can’t help it now. I can only speak for myself and you can judge for yourself. If I should fall on the battlefield, you shall know it. If I live, you shall see me. I am prepared for whatever my fate may be. God will protect the right. The star spangled banner—long may it wave o’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

But I must close and hope you will excuse this pencil writing. It is better than none. You say you got my likeness. Keep it in remembrance of me. I have yours yet but it is at home locked up in my trunk. You will please give my best wishes to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble 1 and I hope to hear from you soon.

The health of the men here is generally good. There has been but very little sickness in the camp yet the weather is very warm here. But no more. May God bless you is all that I can say. Whether I can come and see you when I get a furlough home or not, I cannot promise now but if possible, I will. So goodbye. I remain yours truly, — Norton Wm. Campbell

Camp Defiance, Cairo, Illinois. 12th Regiment, Company G

1 In the 1860 US Census, 16 year-old Sarah Ann Reinhart (1843-1879) was enumerated as a servant in the household of John W. Hebble (1823-1871) and Hannah Hagan (1829-1911) who were innkeepers in Indianapolis. The Hebbles were married in 1846 and came to Indianapolis from Pennsylvania in 1855 and engaged in the hotel business near the Union Station Depot. They later were the proprietors of the Germania Hotel (still standing today and called the Slippery Noodle Inn) at South and Meridian Streets. The Hebble’s had two boys, Benjamin Mursa Hebble (1854-1902) and George M. Hebble (1860-1932)—the latter known as the “blind musician.”

The Germania Hotel (later called the Tremont House), and now called the Slippery Noodle Inn in Indianapolis. The Hebbles were once proprietors of the Germania Hotel.

Letter 4

Camp Defiance
Cairo, Illinois
July 29, 1861

Dear Sarah R.,

I arrived in camp the 26th and everything was exciting for they look every day for an attack on Cairo and Birds Point. There is fifteen thousand secessionists within 15 miles of Birds Point and there is only five thousand troops in Cairo at this time but we are ready and willing to try them. They may not make the attack just now but we have good reason to believe they will soon. There will be more troops here in a few days.

We had quite an accident on the Illinois Central Railroad the day I came to Cairo. Two passenger trains run off the track. One tipped over and was torn all to pieces. The other was not broke up so bad. There was about 60 of our men in the one that was broke up the worst. I had just stepped out of the car on the platform of the other car not more than a minute before the car upset but there was no one killed but some badly bruised. It was the greatest wonder in the world that half of them was not killed. It was about 60 miles from Cairo.

Sarah, I received your letter and your likeness and I thank you a thousand times for it. I have it on my bosom and will wear it there for your sake. Whether we shall ever see each other again or not, I cannot tell. When I was there with you, I could not think of half I wanted to say to you and I was sorry that I could not stay longer with you but I was happy while I was there but I can’t say that I am now. But I will try and enjoy myself the nest I can and if I am spared till this war is over, I will see you again and make a longer visit.

Please give my respects to Mr. & Mrs. Hebble and those other folks—I forget their names, and try to enjoy yourself the best you can. You have got such a good place to stay at that you can’t help but be contented. I think Mrs. Hebble is such a good, pleasant woman. It seemed like home to me. You must be good to her for I know she is good to you.

But I must close for this time. I can’t hardly write here, the boys make so much fuss in the camp. But I will write soon again and hope to hear from you soon. So God bless you. No more this time. From your own, — Norti W. Campbell

Camp Defiance, Cairo, Ill., 12th Regt., Company G, in care of Capt, C. H. Brookings

Letter 5

Camp McArthur
Cairo, Illinois
August 11th 1861

Dear Sarah R.,

I received your letter this morning and was very sorry to hear that you was sick but I hope by the time this reaches you, by the help of the kind hand of Providence, that you will be restored to health again. I would be glad to be with you and comfort you in your hours of trouble and afflictions but if I cannot be with you, my whole heart is and my best wishes are for your good and God bless you, Sarah. I wish I could say that I was well but I cannot. I have been sick with the typhoid fever for two days and it is all that I can do to sit up to write to you. I thought I would not tell you that I was sick, I could not help but write to you, The doctor thinks I am better today and I hope I shall soon be up again and in fighting order.

A few days ago we were ordered to go to Cape Girardeau in Missouri as soon as possible. We heard that the town was attacked and was in danger and we started with one thousand men and got there that evening at 4 o’clock and was all disappointed for everything was quiet, There is three thousand of our troops stationed at that place now and it is considered safe. We stayed till the next day at 11 o’clock when we got on the boat and returned to Cairo again. We all enjoyed our trip very much and would of felt better if we had of had chance of a fight, but I think we will have one before long and I hope I shall be able to be with them.

Cairo is safe now and we have no fears of an attack now. With the fortifications and breastworks that we have now, we can hold the place against forty thousand rebels.

But I must close. Give my respects to all of the friends. I know Mrs. Hebble will take good care of you while you are sick. Please write soon ad may God bless you, Sarah, and protect you and restore you to health. No more. Write soon. This from your ever affectionate, — Nort

Norton W. Campbell, Camp McArthur, Cairo, Ill 12th Regiment, Company G. in care of Capt. Guy C. Ward

Letter 6

When Grant took occupancy of Paducah, Kentucky in September, he placed the 12th Illinois in garrison of the Marine Hospital (depicted above) and commenced the construction of earthen fortifications around it.

[Note: This letter was written by Pvt. William J. Dingle of Sullivan, Moultrie county, Illinois, who enlisted at the age of 28 at Decatur on 6 August 1861 to serve three years in Co. B, 41st Illinois Infantry. He was described as a a 5′ 8″ tall, dark haired, blue-eyed carpenter.]

Paducah, Kentucky
September 30, 1861

Miss Reinhart,

Yours of a recent date is received. Norton W. Campbell is stationed at Smithland in this state. I saw him some eight days since in this place. He was quite well.

Yours respectfully, — W[illiam] J. Dingle

Letter 7

Addressed to Miss Sarah Reinhart, Indianapolis, Indiana; forwarded to Martinsville

Camp Smith 1
Smithland, Kentucky
October 27, 1861

Dear Sarah R.,

I received your letter of the 14th and was glad to hear from you and I answer it with pleasure. I am well and hope this will find you enjoying the same good blessing and hope you will excuse this pencil writing for I had no pen handy.

Sarah, the last time I wrote to you I was sick at Birds Point. I was pretty sick for a short time and I got a furlough to go home. I went home and stayed till I got well and then returned to Birds Point. Since that time I have been moved around considerably though I have never been in any battle yet. I am now in Smithland, Kentucky. We have a beautiful camp, are getting the place well fortified, and we are in hopes that we may yet have a chance at the rebels.

We are getting tired of this kind of soldiering. There was a small fight 25 miles above here on the Cumberland River at a place called Eddyville day before yesterday. The gunboat Conestoga and three company of infantry went up from Paducah and surrounded the rebels, killed 15, and took about 50 prisoners and captured many horses and mules and quite a number of guns and routed them without the loss of one man. [See Federal Expedition to Eddyville and skirmish at Saratoga, Kentucky]

But Sarah, it will come our turn to have a battle some of these days and then you shall hear from us. But Sarah, I have no reason for not writing to you—only my own carelessness and shiftlessness. I have not wrote to anyone for a long time and I am ashamed of it for it was not because I did not want to hear from you or because I do not love you for Sarah, you are the idol of my heart. I wear your likeness on my bosom everyday and wherever I go, it shall go. And if I fall on the battlefield, your likeness shall be with me to the last moment.

Mr. J. B. Clintner was here yesterday from Clinton. His folks were well. He saw your likeness on my breast and said you looked as natural as life and I would like to see you this day to tell you all, but I have to wait and hoe for the best. We are all pretty hearty here now and I feel better than I have for several years. We have plenty to eat and plenty to wear and plenty of money and when mine gives out, I have got more to home and hope to live through this war and be permitted to see you again.

Sarah, please give my love to all the Hebble family. I often think of them. If I ever come across any of your Indiana friends, I shall be glad to make their acquaintance. I hope to hear from you son. May God bless you, Sarah, and watch over you for my sake. Mr. [William J.] Dingle is here in Smithland in the 41st Regt. Illinois. He is well and sends his love to you. No more. Please write soon. This from your affectionate, — Nort

Norton W. Campbell

Direct to Camp Smith, Smithland, Kentucky, 12th Regt. of Illinois Volunteers, Company G, in care of Capt. Guy C. Ward

1 Camp Smith was located at Smithland, twelve miles above Paducah at the junction of the Cumberland and Ohio Rivers.

Letter 8

Camp Smith 1
Smithland, Kentucky
November 19, 1861

Dear Sarah,

I have just received your welcome letter and I hasten to answer it and I am glad to hear that you are well and I am glad that I can say that I am enjoying good health and we have everything to make us comfortable for this time of the year. We have got a beautiful place for a camp and the best fortifications in the West. The troops here are very healthy and look as well as any that I have ever seen.

We have never been in a battle yet but don’t know how soon we will have to try our courage for there is fifteen hundred rebels only fifteen miles from here and we look for an attack now every hour. We have only seven hundred troops here but we can whip ten times our number with the fortifications we have got here and I would be glad to see them come for we have got some Yankee pills here that don’t set will on a secessionist’s stomach and we will give them such a dose that they will be sorry they ever rebelled.

But Sarah, though I am in the army where everything is exciting and hundreds of friends around me, yet I have never forgot you nor the happy hours and months that we passed so sweet and lovingly together. I often think how happy I should be if I could be with you and our country in peace once more but as long as there is rebellion, I must be separated from you though I love you and your very name is sweet to me.

But I also love my country and can you blame me for if we can’t have peace, how can we be happy? But things will not always be so. I look forward for better and happier days. God bless you Sarah. I would love to see you but it is impossible to get a furlough now. If I could, I would come and see you if I could not stay more than one hour. If I can, I will come and see you at Christmas but I will not make any promises for I don’t know where we may be by that time. But let me be where I may, I will always love you and I believe I shall be spared through this war to return to my friends and see many happy days with those I love.

Please give my respects to Mrs. Hebble and all of the family and I will be glad to hear from you often. And may God’s best blessing and kind hand watch over you and protect and comfort you in all your hours of trouble through life and may He yet make you happy with the one you love. So God bless you. No more. Write soon. This from your affectionate — Nort

Norton W. Campbell

To Miss Sarah Reinhart

1 Camp Smith was named after Union General Charles F. Smith under whom the earthworks were built at Paducah.

Letter 9

Addressed to Miss Sarah Reinhart, Martinsville, Morgan county, Indiana

Camp Chetlain 1
Paducah, Kentucky
December 6, 1861

Dear Sarah R.,

I am well at present and hope you are enjoying the same God’s blessing. I am in Paducah now where I shall probably stay till the fleet is ready to go down the Mississippi River. Then I hope I shall be able to go with them and make them such a visit as they deserve in Dixie land and let them know that the stars and stripes cannot be trampled upon as easy as they imagine nor this government broken up as easily as they thought for our boys here are in good health, and when they get among the secessiers they will make them think that so many tigers have been let loose among them to do the will of God and slaughter and rid the world of those black-hearted rebels that have and are still trying to break up the best government that the world ever knew.

Uncle Sam has got the boys to do the work and before they quit, the stars and stripes will wave over all these United States as they have in days gone by and no man will dare to pull it down or molest it. But Sarah, I may not live to see this war ended, nor live to see you again. But I can trust in God and hope for the best and if I fall on the field of battle, it will be an honorable death and you can say that Nort lost his life like a soldier in defense of American liberties and rights.

I would love to come and see you now but I cannot. The commander of the Western Division has given orders that no more furloughs nor leave of absence be given to neither soldiers nor officers so you see that it is impossible for me to get away but if I cannot see you, I can write to you and hear from you and let me be where I may, I will always remember you as one that I love and respect and as one that I have passed many happy days with and hope to be happy with you again. But if we never meet again on earth, I hope we may meet in heaven where parting is no more. I would love to be with you at Christmas. You say you are going to have a party. If I could be there to dance with you, I know we would enjoy ourselves. But as I can’t be, I hope you will enjoy yourself and whilst you are dancing, think how many hours we have enjoyed ourselves in the same way and with such company as Mrs. Hebble, you can’t help but be happy for she is such a good woman. And please give my respects to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and all of the family. I hope to hear from you soon.

I have not seen your friend in the Indiana 11th yet but will go and see him in a few days. Everything is quiet around here at present. But i must close. The weather is rather cold here just now but we are pretty well prepared for it. Please write soon.

— Norton W. Campbell

To Miss Sarah Reinhart

Direct to Paducah, Kentucky. Camp Chetlain, Co. G, in care of Capt. G. C. Ward

1 Camp Chetlain was named after Augustus L. Chetlain, the Lt. Colonel of the 12th Illinois.

Letter 10

Camp Payne
Paducah, Kentucky
December 15, 1861

Dear Sarah,

I received your letter and was truly glad to hear from you and that you was well. I am well at present and hope this will find you the same. You said you had not heard from me yet. I am rather surprised at that for I have written you two letters before this and you say you have not received none from me yet. I am sorry for that this has been so, but I hope you will get this. You need not think that I do not write for I will write as often as I can. I love to write to you and I love to hear from you and I would love to see you but I am deprived of that pleasure and probably shall be for a long tome yet.

You said if we was here next spring, you would come down and see me. Sarah, I would be glad to see you at any time and you shall find me a gentleman wherever you meet me. I will not write much this time for I don’t know whether you will get this or not, but if you do, I will write more next time.

Please gibe my respects to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and all of the family.

We expect a fight here within 48 hours. Our pickets were run in last night but we are ready and will give them the best we have got in the shop. I will send you the Union Picket Guard every week with pleasure and hope you will get this. So, hoping that I shall live to see you again, I will close. Please write soon. No more. This from your own, — Nort

Norton W. Campbell

to Miss Sarah Reinhart

Camp Payne, Paducah, Kentucky
Co. G, 12th Illinois Vols.
in care of Capt. Guy C. Ward

Letter 11

Camp Payne
Paducah, Kentucky
December 23, 1861

Dear Sarah,

I received your letter and was glad to hear from you and that you was well. I am well and hope this will find you enjoying the same good blessing.

The troops here are all pretty healthy and feel pretty well and are all anxious to move on Columbus [Kentucky]. We all feel confident that we can give them a good thrashing. When I wrote last, I thought we would soon have a fight but the rebels got word and left their camp where they were resting so quietly and it was well for them they did. But everything is quiet here now. Our troops were reviewed here last week and made a fine appearance. They are pretty well drilled and will fight like tigers if they ever get a chance.

Sarah, I should love to spend New Years with you for I know I should enjoy myself, but as I can’t be with you, I hope you will enjoy yourself. I shall not have much of a New Years here. I don’t think there will be anything doing here more than any other day but I live in hopes of seeing better days after the war is over. But till then, I shall be obliged to put up with whatever may happen me and do my duty as a soldier,

There is nothing new to write. Please give my respects to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and to your friend Miss Ellen. As it is late, I will close hoping to hear from you soon. And may God bless you and protect you for my sake. This from your soldier boy, — Norton W. Campbell

Letter 12

Paducah, Kentucky
January 9, 1862

Dear Sarah,

We have just received orders to march at three o’clock this day and I think we are going to Columbus [Kentucky] but I don’t know for certain. I received your letters from Indianapolis and Germantown. I am well and ready for the fight. How it will turn out, we can’t say but hoping all for the best, I will close for I am in a hurry.

My love to all. I will write as soon as I can again. So God bless you. No more from — Nort

Letter 13

Addressed to Miss Sarah Reinhart, Martinsville, Morgan county, Indiana

Camp Payne
Paducah, Kentucky
February 3, 1862

Dear Sarah,

The last time I wrote to you I told you we was expecting to fight. We started from Paducah on the 15th of last month—six regiments of infantry and two batteries of light artillery, and nearly one thousand cavalry. The whole force was about eight thousand commanded by General Smith. Our expedition, I think, was to keep reinforcements from Columbus [Kentucky] going to help Zollicoffer at Mill Springs.

We marched 30 miles to Mayfield and then nearly last through Murray and Farmington and to the Tennessee River, 14 miles from Fort McHenry where the rebels have an army of about twelve thousand and well fortified and we all thought that we was a going to attack that fort, but we was disappointed. Nearly every house that we passed was deserted for they were all secesh through that part of the country and as soon as they heard we was coming, they left as fast as possible.

We was seven days in marching to the Tennessee River and on the 8th day we started back towards Paducah and when we found we was not a going to get a fight, you could of heard the boys curse and swear for two miles. But we could not help it and we came back. We marched 125 miles and worse roads and a muddier time, I never saw. We had to march in mud ankle deep for two days and waded a great many places in mud and water up to our waist, In fact, it was as hard a march as has been made in this war. We was gone just eleven days and we rested two days of the time. We had to burn some wagons and a good many tents. The roads was so bad they could haul them and had some horses and mules drowned.

I stood the march well till the last two days when I got so lame that I could not walk. I sprained my ankles and then by marching, they swelled and pained me very bad. They are not hardly well yet, I am well excepting that we have to start on another expedition tomorrow and there will be a large force start this time. There has nine regiments came here today and there is still more coming. There is 8 gunboats here going with the expedition and this time we will get a fight.

Look out for good news soon. We will start tomorrow morning, I think certain. The river has been very high here and our camp has been nearly under water for a week which makes it very disagreeable. The water is falling now.

But I must close for this time. I can only say God bless you, Sarah, till I see you and I hope to live to see you again. Please give my love to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and all of the family and write soon, Send to Paducah.

I got a letter from Mother. She is well and sends her love to you. I would of wrote sooner but we have been so busy that I could not. But no more. I will write again as soon as I can. Do God bless you, Sarah. No more this time. Write soon. Pleasant dreams to you from N. W. Campbell

To Susan Reinhart

Letter 14

Nashville, Tennessee
February 28, 1862

My dear friend Sarah,

I received your letter yesterday and was pleased o hear from you. I am well and still amongst the living. Our regiment has been kept moving for the last two weeks. We left Paducah on the 5th of this month and took Fort Henry and Fort Heiman on the 6th, and on the 12th day we started for Fort Donelson where we arrived at 12 o’clock that night.

On the morning of the 13th, the battle commenced and lasted till the morning of the 16th when the rebels surrendered unconditionally and we marched into the fort at 10 o’clock a.m. I need not write all the particulars of the fight for you no doubt have had it through the papers before now. Our regiment was in the hottest of the battle on Saturday, the 15th, and 31 of our brave men of the 12th Regiment were killed and one hundred wounded. I did not get hurt at all but my comrades were shot by my side. But God bless them—they fought like men though they were nearly worn our for sleep and food.

February 15th. This is the day I long shall remember. This morning at day break, a high discharge of musketry was heard. For a moment it ceased. When it again was heard, it was heavier and still heavier it growed as we formed in line. It was a steady crackling when we marched as reserve back of the Illinois 9th and 41st. As the 41st gave way, we—or a part of our regiment—had to take their places. Companies A and B were thrown out as skirmishers to the extreme right to receive the fire and to test the strength of the enemy. We soon found the enemy as thick as Juniper berries concealed in the bushes, and in the act to growl upon us. We then opened the fire on them but soon their fire proved to be too heavy for us (for as we now hear, there were two regiments concealed there) and a retreat was ordered by Capt. Fisher of Co. A. A little before, our captain [Hale] said, “Boys, let us show the cowards that we are 9 months in service.” A few seconds after, he fell motionless to the ground. Seven more of Co. B followed him, I could hear Capt. Fisher’s command and consequently retreated with them. The next on my left was shot in the leg (since amputated), the second was shot in the arm, the third was killed. The three next to my right escaped as I—unhurt.From the Diary of Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

We were four nights without sleep or tents, and two days and nights without anything to eat and part of the time the ground was covered with snow and it was very cold and we were not allowed to have a bit of fire so you may know that we suffered some but we would of stood it for weeks, or whipped them out of Donelson.

We took 17 thousand prisoners and their arms, and two generals—Buckner and Johnson. Pillows and Floyd was there but they got away and took away several regiments of rebels. They went through Clarksville running for life and telling the people to burn their houses and property and run for the damn Yankees were coming and they run in every direction. But we will give them a bigger scare than that before long.

On the 20th and 21st, there was a great many people at Donelson to see the battleground. Governor [Oliver P.] Morton was there and Governor Yates of Illinois was there. On the 22nd, we went to Clarksville, the town nearly deserted. The rebels had built a nice fort there but it done them no good. Clarksville is a beautiful place. On the 27th we started for Nashville and got here at 12 o’clock at night and we are still on the boat. I don’t know whether we will get off today here or not. The rebels are about thirty-five miles from here fortifying and they are said to have one hundred thousand troops and more coming from Columbus [Kentucky]. They have evacuated Columbus.

I got off from the boat today and went round and took a look at the city of Nashville and it is a beautiful place. I was at the State House—it is a beautiful building—and I was at President James Polk’s house—or his widow’s house. I was at his grave—it is a beautiful place—but still Nashville [is] dead. Every building nearly is shut up and it seems like Sunday. The railroad bridge and the suspension bridge are both burnt and destroyed by the rebels. Coffee is worth one dollar and fifty cents a pound here, and flour twelve dollars a barrel, and boots 18 to 20 dollars a pair, and everything else according. So you can judge whether the southern people have long faces or not. But I tell them they are the ones that caused it and they must stand it and I wish they would all starve and if they don’t, we’ll run them into some corner and shove them into the Gulf. And they begin to wish too that they had not got up this row. The people around here think that the war will be over in less than eight weeks and I think a few more Fort Donelson battles and it will soon be over too.

“Just tell that gal that don’t want to wait for a soldier that she should not be in a hurry—that soldiers will be in good demand after this war [even] if they are crippled.”

Sgt. Norton W. Campbell, Co. G, 12th Illinois Infantry, 28 February 1862

You said you drank a glass of beer and made a speech for me when you heard we had taken Fort Henry and I think Donelson is worth two glasses. And if I could be with you, I would make you a speech but I still think I shall live till this mess is over and then I will have a good time. And you just tell that gal that don’t want to wait for a soldier that she should not be in a hurry—that soldiers will be in good demand after this war [even] if they are crippled. But that is all right, Sarah. I hope you will excuse me for not writing sooner for we have been moving so I could not write. I shall be glad to hear from you soon and often.

“I have wore your likeness on my breast all the time and shall wear it till this war is over, if I live…”

Please give my love to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and to all. You said you let the printer have my letter to publish but I don’t know what I wrote that he wanted to print. I got no relics that I can send you but a sprig of cedar that I got on the spot where our company fought. I sent a piece of it home and a piece o my brother. I got a nice sword from a secesh captain and I shall keep it to recollect Fort Donelson.

You spoke of a ring you wanted to send me to wear in honor of Fort Henry. I have wore your likeness on my breast all the time and shall wear it till this war is over, if I live, but if you wish to send a ring in a letter, it will be safe. And if I live, I will bring it to you again. But I must close. We have just received orders to start back down the river again. Please write soon. Direct to Paducah. I will write again as soon as I can. So no more. God bless you. Write soon. Yours now and forever. From your soldier boy, — Nort W. Campbell

Letter 15

Addressed to Miss Sarah Reinhart, Martinsville, Morgan county, Indiana
Postmarked Cairo, Illinois on 5 April 1862

Pittsburg [Landing], Tennessee
March 30th 186

My dear Sarah R.,

I am well and hope this may find you the same. Sarah, I wrote you a short time ago that we would leave here in two days and that I would not get a chance to write to you for some time again but for some reason unknown to me, we are here yet and I understand that we will not leave here for some 8 or 10 days and I hope to hear from you before I leave here. 1

The weather is very pleasant and warm here and the troops begin to feel like going into another battle and I think our next battle will be at Corinth, Mississippi—only twenty-five miles from here. I hear that the rebels has over eighty thousand troops at Corinth now but such little squads as that had better leave before we get there and I think they will for they are about played out in this country and our troops have got Island No. 10 on the Mississippi River and I think that the war is nearly on its last legs and we will soon be home.

Everything is quiet around here and Sarah, I would love to be with you now. It seems like an age since I saw you. But whilst I have been away from you, I have been doing my country service. But often have I thought of you and I often think of the happy hours we passed in Clinton. Nothing has clipped my memory from the first hour that I saw you till now, but circumstances known only to myself has kept us from being happily connected together. But hoping there will yet be time to make amends for the past, I will still live in hopes and hope our last days may be our happiest and that we may forget the past and look only to the future.

So God bless you, Sarah. I hope to hear from you soon. Please give my move to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and all the family. I will close by saying God protect you. Please write soon. Direct to Paducah. No more. Yours with respect. Your soldier boy, — Nort Wm. Campbell

to Miss Sarah Reinhart

1 According to Lt. Col. Augustus L. Chetlain, “During the three weeks we were in camp [at Pittsburgh Landing prior to the Battle of Shiloh], our men suffered from diarrhea and dysentery, caused by having to use surface water taken from shallow wells.” Chetlain himself was taken with dysentery and sent to Paducah on 5 April 1862—the day before the battle—leaving senior Captain J. R. Hugunin in command of the 12th Illinois (Major Ducat already sick in Paducah). Upon hearing of the battle, Lt. Col. Chetlain attempted to return to the battlefield only to have his horse shot out from under him and then left on foot to lead the regiment for four hours. See “The Recollections of Seventy Years.”

Letter 16

Monterey, Tennessee
May 7, 1862

[Dear Sarah,]

I just received your letter of the 22nd and was glad to hear from you and your friend, Mrs. Hebble.

We are 8 miles from Corinth now. The whole army here is moving on to Corinth and Beauregard has a large force there and making preparations to receive us but it will be a death stroke to the rebels. We go to conquer certain. We move slow but sure. General Halleck is here in command and the troops have confidence in him. And Sarah, before this reaches you, we will probably have another hard and bloody battle and be in possession of Corinth.

We have had several skirmishes with the rebels since we started but we drive them wherever we find them. Part of our force is within five miles of Corinth now.

The late Battle of Pittsburg [Landing] was a hard battle and such sights as I saw on the field I never want to see again. But I take things as they come in this war. I run a narrow escape myself for my life but it is alright. I shall be in this fight at Corinth though I am not well nor have not been since the first of April. I am pretty weak but I am better than I was and hope I shall feel well when the battle comes off.

Our company has not got a commissioned officer with it. They are wounded and sick and I shall have to lead the company in the fight. Whether I shall fall or not, I do not know but think I shall come out safe. This will not be as hard a fight as the Pittsburg [Landing] fight for the infantry. It will be more of an artillery fight. The woods and roads are completely strewn with rebel knapsacks and tents and clothing and a great many other things that the rebels threw away on their retreat from Pittsburg showing that they were in a hurry and we will soon give them another big scare.

Fear not for me, Sarah. God will protect me in the fight. The wound I got at Pittsburg has got well but it leaves a nice scar. But that is alright. I would love to see you and talk to you now. God bless you. It seems an age since I saw you. But Sarah, I often think of you and in the hour of battle, you are not forgotten, but were consolation to me. I think that Yorktown and Corinth will soon be in our hands and then I think the war will soon close and then I will come and see you and till then, God bless you and your friends.

My love and best regards to Mr. and Mrs. Hebble and all of the family. I will write as soon after the battle as possible. It is almost impossible to get a letter here for some reason. This is the first letter from you since the battle. But I must close and Sarah, if I never meet you on earth, I hope to meet you in heaven. God bless you. Fear not for me. Write soon. I suppose you will soon be in Indianapolis. That is a beautiful place. No more from your soldier boy, — Norton W. Campbell

Letter 17

Camp near Corinth, Mississippi
June 21, 1862

Dear Friend Sarah R.,

I received your letter and was glad to hear from you. Well, I will say that Corinth was evacuated on the 29th of May and we followed the rebels till we could see nor hear nothing more of them. We returned to Corinth where we are now and from all appearances we will stay here for two or three months.

We had a hard march through Mississippi and suffered considerable for water. The roads were awful dusty and the weather very warm but our men kept up good spirits and done well. we will probably not have any more trouble in this part of the country with the rebels.

We have a very pretty place for our camp and the troops are in good health and glad to have a chance to have a little rest.

You say I do not write often. Well I wrote to you the 27th of May and again after the evacuation of Corinth but I suppose you did not get them. Sometimes I don’t get your letters till they are nearly a month on the way. But I suppose it was because we was moving around so much. You don’t think the war will be over soon but I guess you are getting downhearted. You must cheer up; hope for the best. I don’t think it will last much longer and God knows I wish it would not. But if the war lasts two years longer, I shall stay if I am alive and needed. I love to fight these butternuts. I want revenge. They have killed some of my best friends and came near getting me. And whenever I get a chance to fight them, here’s at them as long as I live if needed.

But still I would love to see you and many others. I would love to be with you the Fourth of July but it is not so that I can. But my heart is with you if I am not and God bless. Keep up good spirits and if McClellan does a good job at Richmond, I think the war is about done. Give my love and best respects to Mrs. Hebble and all the family and please write soon. God bless you all. No more.

From your friend, — Norton W. Campbell, command of Co. G

1861-62 Diary of Frederick Hammerly, Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry

A sixth plate tintype of an unidentified member of the 12th Illinois Infantry, famously known as the 1st Scotch Regiment. He’s wearing the early-war state-issued tunic cut from gray fabric with blue cuff facings, six button front, and the Scotish tam or bonnet widely worn by the regiment. (This image was sold on WorthPoint)

[Insert bio] of J. Frederick Hammerly, born 1834 in Koenigreich, Wirtemberg, Germany. Came to America on 3 October 1852.

Jacob Hammerly. Enlisted 25 August 1861 in Co. B, 12th Illinois Infantry. Drowned 15 September 1861 Residence place give: Amboy, Illinois.

Frederick Hammerly’s pocket diary measures 3 x 5 inches and contains 90 pages of diary entries and an additional ten or more of pages with miscellaneous notes. The diary entries range from August 1861 to 22 April 1862.

This diary is from the private collection of Greg Herr and has been transcribed and published on Spared & Shared by express consent.

Diary of Frederick Hammerly

Enlisted for the United States Army the 26th of August 1861.
Arrived at Bird’s Point (Mo) August 28th.
Camped at Belmont, September 4th.
Came back to Bird’s Point, September 6th.
Landed at Paducah, Ky. September 7, 1861.
Brother Jacob Hammerly drowned the 14th day of September. Was found and buried the 16th of September near the Kentucky shore.

Paducah, October 2nd. We are expecting an attack. The advance guard was attacked last night. One was killed, two wounded, one or two taken prisoners. Later the 9th Illinois Cavalry came in last night from the Cumberland river with about thirty prisoners, 2 mules, 2 horses.

November 1861

Paducah, November 5, 1861. Dress parade. Orders to be ready at any hours warning to march.
November 6th. 1:30 o’clock p.m. Ready to start, destination unknown.
November 7th. Moving towards Columbus. We heard great cannonading.
November 8th. Paducah news come in, Our gunboats silenced two batteries.
November 9th. Heard bad news. several regiments from Bird’s Point and Cairo badly cut up. Were ordered back to Paducah and arrived at two o’clock p.m. One of Co. B badly wounded in the breast through an accidental discharge of a musket and left with R[obert] Hale and [Bradford K.] Harrington in the country.
November 10th. Weather fair.
November 11th. It is cloudy and cold. Hale & Ackertt [Eckert] came back.
November 12th. Weather fair and warm. Harrington taken prisoner.
November 13th. Quite warm.
November 14th. Warm. John Ackert died.
November 15th 1861. Quite fresh this morning but clear and pleasant.
November 16th. Weather fair but air chilly. 41st Regt. went away.
November 17th. Cloudy and cold.
November 18th. 41st came back again.
November 19th. Moderate but windy.
November 20th. Quite warm.
November 21st. Quite warm.
November 22nd. Very stormy. A real time over the three flag presentation from the citizens of Chicago.
November 23. Cold and cloudy. Froze.
November 24. Cold and cloudy.
November 25. More moderate. The 11th Indiana hoisted a flag over a secesh house against the orders of General Smith.
November 26. A little warmer.
November 27. Cold rain.
November 28. Rain and cold. Warmer in the evening. Three companies of our boys from Smith land again are going to stay with us.
November 29th, 1861. Paducah. Very rainy and mingled with snow.
November 30. The ground covered with snow. Froze hard.

December 1861

December 1, 1861. Paducah. Cold and cloudy.
December 2. Very cold and snowing hard.
December 3. Cold and stormy.
December 4. Cloudy but moderate.
December 5. Weather fine.
December 6. Weather excellent. Martin and I went up in town.
December 7. Weather fine. Col. McArthur received [ ].
December 8. Raining in the morning. The remaining day fine.
December 9. Warm
December 10. Warm and fine. Rain in the evening.
December 11. Clear and cold.
December 12. Clear and warmer.
December 13. Warm. Heard cannonading in a southern direction.
December 14. Weather fine.
December 15. Sunday. Weather very fine. Went to meeting to Paducah.
December 16. Warm and dry.
December 17. Weather excellent. Martin went to the hospital.
December 18. Weather fine and warm.
December 19. Weather fine. Receive a letter from Elias Conderman.
December 20. A change in the weather this morning cold and cloudy all day. H. Harrington back again.
December 21. Growing colder. Snow in the evening.
December 22. Sunday. Rain all this a.m. Rain and snow p.m. Martin very sick.
December 23. This morning is very cold, ground frozen hard. Cold all day.
December 24. A little warmer this morning remaining day clear. One of Company A shot in the hand by another while on guard. Martin is better.
[December 25] Christmas. Weather foggy. Rain toward night. One of Co. H shot himself through the hand whilst on picket. Received an Amboy Times from R. M. Birgham
December 26. Weather very wet and disagreeable. Hard rain.
December 27. Clear, but very cold. Frozen hard. Received a letter from brother George H. was detailed to pump water on the coal barges. Went on the island on the steamer Wilson after lumber belonging to the pontoon bridge. We had a general and prize inspection. Fo. F was the best company. Received the 25 dollar prize. Co. B’s officers offered 3 [ ] for the three best guns in their company. The disinterested inspectors were Co. G’s officers and awarded the prizes to A[ndrew] B. Warner, J. B. Vesbitt [?] and J. F. Hammerly. Christmas was the day of inspection.
December 28. Weather fair. Received a paper from christian and letter from cousinWilliam.
December 29. Weather fair. Two letters, one from Christian. Another from John M. Hammerly with two dollars.
December 30. Weather fine. Sent off two letters. One to Christian H. and [ ].
December 31. Weather fine. At one o’clock, company B was ordered to guard the breastworks south of Paducah.

January 1862

New Year’s Day. Spent the forenoon in guarding the breastworks. The Indiana 11th, Iowa 9th, a company of artillery, a few companies of cavalry, came back from their expedition to Mayfield. Weather excellent.
January 2, 1862. Weather fair in the forenoon. Cold in the afternoon. Some rain mixed with snow.
January 3. Weather disagreeable. Very wet and chilly. Thunder toward evening. Sent a letter to St. Louis/
January 4th. Very wet.
January 5th. Very disagreeable. On guard in the stable.
January 6th. Dry and cold. Sent a letter to Earlville.
January 7th, 1862. Pretty sunshine.
January 8th. Rain
January 9th. Wet and muddy. Heavy marching orders at 3 o’clock p.m.
January 10th 1862. Paducah. Foggy and most awful muddy. Instead of marching yesterday 3 o’clock p.m., we started today at 7 o’clock a.m. All the troops of Paducah were on a move except the 40th Illinois and a company of Pioneers. Standing in the streets of Paducah in the mud (one half of a foot deep) waiting for the teams to clear our track but instead of “forward march,” heard the command, “Right, about face,” when we countermarched to our encampments with the order of starting anew at 8 o’clock a.m. the coming day.
January 11th. Weather very unpleasant. Air very damp. We are still under marching orders. Time unknown. These were the orders last night and after the 8 o’clock orders.
Sunday, December 12. On guard. Quite warm last night but is now growing cold (evening). Golly how cold it is.
January 13th. Very cold and stormy. Freezing hard and snowing fast. Orders to march the next morning. Orders countermanded.
January 14th 1862. Freeze hard. Snowing.
January 15th. Left Paducah, destination unknown. Went about 12 miles. Snow one inch deep. Snowing in the afternoon. Co. B stood picket.
January 16th. Froze hard. Got some muddy towards evening. Camped one mile north of Mayfield. Marched 15 miles.
January 17th. Passed the Second Brigade at Mayfield. From Mayfield we took and eastern direction (before we were marching toward the south). Got a little muddy towards evening. Camped in a swamp. Commenced raining right after we camped (and marched through a little town called Farmington).
January 18th. Rained pretty much all last night. I was on picket. We started late in the morning, went about 5 or 6 miles through water and mud knee deep. Camped 5 miles west of Murray.
Sunday, January 19th. Stayed over. Quite warm all day. Washed my feet in a rivulet and changed some of my clothes.
January 20th
. Looked like rain all day and kep a growing colder. Marched through Murray—a small town. Did not see but a few citizens. Marched about ten miles. Weather looked rather unpleasant but had fair marching. The Second Brigade passed us at camp.
January 21. Arrived at William Ferry where we camped and stayed two days. The steamer Wilson and gunboat Lexington brought the news of the defeat of Zollicoffer. Drawed rations for to march back again (cold).
January 23. Started back the same road, got about 2 miles when we took a new road. The sun appeared in full glory for the first time in a long while. Marched about 15 or 16 miles.

January 24. we had a very nice day and excluding the low places, pretty fair marching, although very hard for teams. Went about 22 miles. Marched through Bryantsburg. Had a little rain last night.
January 25th. Weather like spring. Marched about 15 miles. When we arrived at our old home of Paducah again, found the 55th Illinois Regiment encamped here [and] our camp surrounded with water. Camped near the 41st. Company I arrived from Smithland. Two regiments passed by in a big steamer bound for Smithland. Received 3 letters.
Sunday, January 26th. Quite cold and winter-like again. Made a bridge of the old pontoon bridge timber across the slough and moved out things in the old place. Quite cold and cloudy.
January 27th. Considerable rain last night. river keeps rising. I was on fatigue duty.
January 28th. Cloudy but warm. Hard wind. Sent off two letters—one to Ansel Brigham, the other to cousin Lucinda. received pay. 52 dollars for four months.
January 29th. Hard rain last night. River still keeps rising. It snows and rains together. The patrol guard shot one of the Indiana 23rd for running away from them.
January 30th. Cold and wet. Was up in town. Trading going on brisk.
January 31st. Weather the same as yesterday.

February 1862

February 1, 1862. Air damp. Growing warmer.
February 2nd. Rather wet. Afternoon a little sunshine. 6 or 7 gunboats came up last night, among them the St. Louis and S-X. Sent off two [letters], one to John Dykeman, the other to St. Louis.
February 3d. Weather disagreeable. Received marching orders. Sent off another to Herrick.
February 4. Growing warmer. Most awful muddy. We are all ready to march.
February 5. Weather foggy and damp. Waiting for marching. 5 companies have left this evening. Later the balance of the regiment went on board the Minehaha. The 41st [Illinois] were with us.
February 6th. Arrived about 5 miles from Fort Henry this morning at 10 o’clock. General Smith’s forces were landed on the Kentucky side, General Grant on the Tennessee side. Smith’s consisting of the 9th, 12th, 28th, 41st Illinois, 8th Missouri, 11th & 23rd Indiana. Smith’s & Buell’s Batteries, the 2d & 4th Illinois Cavalry. Grant’s [forces] I cannot describe. I think his forces were more than Smith’s. As we came within 3 miles of the fort, we were halted when one cannon was heard. We were at once ordered forward. Pretty soon we heard whole broadsides and for an hour the fire was kept steady. This was about 1 o’clock p.m. We all were eager to see the fight and marched nearly double quick when we were halted again soon after the bombarding stopped. After we had started again, we heard that the enemy had left Fort Henry and the encampment on the opposite side. It was night when we arrived in the enemy’s encampment. Found many of their tents and other things but the 11th Indiana were guarding everything and did not allow spectators. Camp Heiman.
February 7th. This morning I went all over the enemy’s quarters to see their breastworks and in tents, fort, their barracks, and headquarters. It is evident that they intended to stay here. Their fort is called Fort Heiman.
February 8th. We are here yet. It is cold and wet. We are getting our things over from the steamer but with much difficulty on account the river being so high and the low places overflowed with water. It seems we may stay here awhile. The Minehaha has brought up our things.
Sunday, February 9th. It looks like spring this morning but is rather fresh. Co. B went on picket. Rations very short.
February 10th. We are on picket yet. Te sun shines pretty fair but is cold. We have nice fires. We are gathering up everything for to make a meal. One of the 9th was killed by a tree falling on him.
February 11th. Had a little rain last night mixed with snow. Have plenty of rations. The clouds have disappeared and the sun shines fine. We are intending to leave this place tomorrow at 8 o’clock a.m. Have our rations ready for 3 days.
February 12th. Left Camp Heiman this morning, landed at Fort Henry, marched through it, saw the busted cannon and five graves, marched through a large piece of pine. The country is quite hilly and stony. Camped in a valley in the woods. had first rate roads to march and the sun shone warm.
February 13th. We were roused last night to fill our canteens, left our camp at one o’clock, and marched about two or three miles by moonshine. The cannons are playing towards Fort Donelson at intervals. They are throwing shells in some of our camps. There is ever so may troops with us, Yesterday our cavalry had a skirmish with the secesh scouts and several killed on both sides. Saw two cavalry horses laying in the woods—the killed and the other wounded. 10 o’clock, now the cannon are playing on both sides and the infantry dropping in their fire. What a horrid noise. 6 o’clock p.m., pretty hard fighting has been done today. The number of killed and wounded uncertain. Our brigade has done nothing yet but had several shells thrown at us. Two bursted some distance above our heads.
February 14th. Commenced raining last night after sundown but later in the night turned into a snow storm. I went on fatigue all night throwing up entrenchments for our artillery. Had a hard time of it. Not much fighting this forenoon [but in] p.m. cannonading and musketry is now heard again. 5 o’clock were ordered to the right wing. Was quite dark when we camped. Snow over one inch deep.

February 15th. This is the day I long shall remember. This morning at day break, a high discharge of musketry was heard. For a moment it ceased. When it again was heard, it was heavier and still heavier it growed as we formed in line. It was a steady crackling when we marched as reserve back of the Illinois 9th and 41st. As the 41st gave way, we—or a part of our regiment—had to take their places. Companies A and B were thrown out as skirmishers to the extreme right to receive the fire and to test the strength of the enemy. We soon found the enemy as thick as Juniper berries concealed in the bushes, and in the act to growl upon us. We then opened the fire on them but soon their fire proved to be too heavy for us (for as we now hear, there were two regiments concealed there) and a retreat was ordered by Capt. Fisher of Co. A. A little before, our captain [Hale] said, “Boys, let us show the cowards that we are 9 months in service.” A few seconds after, he fell motionless to the ground. Seven more of Co. B followed him, I could hear Capt. Fisher’s command and consequently retreated with them. The next on my left was shot in the leg (since amputated), the second was shot in the arm, the third was killed. The three next to my right escaped as I—unhurt. These are the names of our company killed and wounded. Killed, Sergeant [Joseph] Lee (Mendota), Corporal [Charles] Irving (Penn.), [William] Atwood (Mendota), [Henry] Doyle (Decatur), [William H.] Cumpston (Iowa), [William] Culver (west of Amboy), [John] Willsey (Troy Grove), Captain [I. Tyler] Hale (from Troy Grove). Wounded, [Allen] Buffington, [William] Banks, Draig [?], Hale, R. [Philander] Dowd, H[enry] Harrington, Corp. [Brad] Harrington, Corp.[Miletus] Blodgett, Mortimore Messinger, [Stephen] Spencer, [George D.] Stinebough, [Henry A.] Stephens, [Charles L.] Dewey, Corp. [Daniel] Wilbur, [John] Cochran, West, [Henry] Mills, [Daniel W.] Moffitt, S[idney B.] Pease.
Sunday morning, February 16th 1862. Before daylight this morning we left our place, moved a little to the right, built some fires, and got our breakfast. One hour later the troops are again getting around the enemy’s entrenchments. The hour of surrendering the fort soon will be over and if not surrendered, will be stormed. They have surrendered. Great enthusiasm among the Union troops. 9 o’clock, we are now marching towards the fort. An immense number of Union troops are here. There seems to be no end to them. The number of prisoners are twelve thousand. The gunboats and steamers loaded with troops passed by in order to overtake the runaways. General Buckner is here among the prisoners. Floyd and Pillow escaped. Floyd is said to be shot by one of his captains whilst going on board the boat. Martin went home on furlough.

The Surrender of Fort Donelson on 16 February 1862

February 17th. It is cold and wet and awful muddy. Helped bury our dead. Sergeant [Joseph] Lee, Corporal [Charles] Irving, and [Henry] Doyle are buried in separate graves. [William] Culver and [William] Atwood are in one, and [John] Willsey, and [William] Cumpston in another. I went all over the battlefield and oh! what a horrid sight. Full of dead. Bodies laying around. A few rods above Dover there is hardly anything visible but riddled timber, broken down carriages, and dead horses and mules.
February 18th. Rained most all last night. Wet and cold all day.
February 19th. Weather disagreeable. Went on fatigue. Received marching orders. Many citizens arrived here from Evansville.

February 20th 1862. Fort Donelson. Had company inspection this morning. Coffee and pancakes for our breakfast. Some citizens from Springfield had been here this morning. They went to see the battlefield.
February 21. Wet and rainy.
February 22. Rained nearly all last night. Left Fort Donelson, went on board the Memphis, passed John Bell’s cannon manufactory about 6 miles south of Donelson which has been destroyed by our gunboats. Arrived at Clarksville at 10 o’clock in the night. Stayed on board the boat until morning.
Sunday, February 23rd. Marched to the fort. It is now quite warm. Can do without fires and overcoats. The town lies on a side hill, has very nice buildings, and had one day 10 thousand inhabitants. We found the 7th Illinois here. The 9th Illinois arrived this morning. The town of Providence lies one mile north of Clarksville. Fort Sevier lies between the two towns.
February 24th. It was quite windy last night but pleasant through the day. Troops kept passing here on the river all day and last night.
February 25th. Chilly it was last night but now overcoats are sparable. A letter from [ ].
February 26. Weather fair. Quite cold towards night. Hard wind. Was on guard. Sent a letter to R. M. B. Received marching orders.
February 27th. Fresh but clear weather. 11 o’clock a.m. went on board the Woodford. arrived at Nashville, Tenn., at night.
February 28, 1852. Weather quite fair. Were mustered for pay this morning on board the boat. Happened to meet Mayor Stevens from Amboy [Illinois]. Had quite a chat with him. Two bridges over this river are destroyed by the secesh. Was up in town after bread Found it to be as nice a town as ever I saw one before. Several regiments are stationed here. I hear we are going back again.

March 1862

March 1, 1862. It is chilly and cloudy this morning. we are on board the Woodford yet. The 9th Illinois is on her too. 9 o’clock a.m. We are now pushing out. Arrived at Clarksville 2 p.m. Damaged our boat going through the bridge.
Sunday, March 2. Raining pretty much all day. Received a letter from Ch. Hammerly.
March 3d. Cold it is today. It snows at intervals. Had election. Stevenson is elected Captain, Towner First [Lt.] and Orderly, Cook 2nd Lieut. Sent away three letters—one to Rolla, one to Amboy, and one to Christian Hammerly. Received an old letter from George H.
March 4th 1862. Froze hard. Went to town. It seems to be clearing off.
March 5th. Froze hard. This morning sky clear but cold.
March 6th. We had as stormy a day and as cold a day as I have seen in Dixie. At 12 a.m. received marching orders. Went on board the Commercial and stayed all night. Had a poor sleep on account of the room and my cold.
March 7th. Left the Commercial and went on the Sir Wm. Wallace. Went up to levee at Clarksville, loaded on some artillery and provisions. Afternoon pushed out and now we are going down the river. 5 o’clock arrived at Fort Donelson. It is getting warmer. Almost night when we left Donelson. Arrived at Smithland midnight. Laid over until daybreak. Arrived at Paducah.
March 8th. 7:30 a.m. got shaven and my hair cut. Then sent away a few lines to Martin. Left about 10 o’clock p.m. Stopped for coal when we pushed out on the Tennessee River and with many other boats arrived at Fort Henry at mid or a little after midnight. Weather had been quite fair all day.
Sunday, March 9th. It is again clouding up and growing cold. Left Fort Henry at 8 o’clock a.m. Arrived at camp 4 miles above Fort Henry. I counted 26-27 boats around here all loaded with troops. Probably others are out of sight but not far from here. After the rumors. The gunboats are said to be above. Received two mails whilst we halted. Got one from Rosa (Franklin Grove). 4 o’clock saw the boys of the 46th on board the Aurora. went only about 3 miles today.
March 10th. It rained nearly all last night. Went about 1 mile when we laid over all night. This morning it is raining yet. We are again pushing out. Now we are going faster. We have not halted but once. A little above Dover Dale, we stopped again where we took in wood. Had to pass over a burned secesh boat. A crazy man jumped over board. He said he belonged to the 13th Missouri.
These are the names of steamers on our expedition:
(1) Aurora (2) Boston (3) Continental (4) Commercial (5) Diamong (6) Empress (7) Emerald (8) E. H. Fairchild (9) Eugene (10) Edward Walsh (11) Fanny Bullit (12) Glendale (13) Gladiator (14) Goody Friends (15) Hannibal (16) Hazel Dell (17) Horizon (18) Hastings (19) Hiawatha (20) Iatan (21) J. B. Ford (22) John Rain (23) John J. Roe (24) J. W. Cheesman (5) John Warner (26) Lady Pike (27) Leonora (28) Lancaster (29) Minnehaha (30) Memphis (31) Maringo (32) Masonic Jim (33) New Uncle Sam (34) New Gold State (35) Ohio No. 1 (36) Ohio No. 2 (37) Ohio No. 3 (38) Poland (39) Prairie Rose (40) Rocket (41) Rose Hambleton (42) Sir Wm. Wallace (43) Silver Moon (44) Saline (45) South Wester (46) Shenengo (47) Sally Gest (48) Sunny South (49) Shingiss (50) Saint Louis (51) Tigress (52) T. S. McGill (53) Universe (54) White Cloud (55) Argyle (56) Alick Scott (57) B. J. Adams (58) Baltic (59) Chortean (60) Clara Poe (61) Chancellor (62) Champion No. 3 (63) Champion No. 4 (64) Crescent City (65) Conewago (66) City of Memphis (67) D. A. January (68) Dunleith (69) Telegraph No. 3 (70) Anglo Saxon (71) Bostona No. 2 (72) Allen Collier (73) Iowa (74) Madison (75) Meteor (76) Bay City (77) Queen of the West (78) War Eagle (79) Florence (80) Fort Wayne (81) J. [ ] Bell (82) War Eagle (83) Lancaster No. 3 (84) Planet (84) D. G. Taylor (85) Tecumseh (86) Sunshine (87) City of Madison (88) N. W. Thomas. The gunboats Tyler and Lexington. Many others went by of which I could not get their names.
Savannah, March11, 1862. Weather fine all day. Arrived here at 5 o’clock p.m. Found two gunboats and a number of steamers landed here. Steamers are arriving here constantly.
March 12th. Quite warm today. Had a review of arms 2 p.m. Marched through the town of Savannah with martial music. Afternoon C Company and I went out to the fairgrounds. Stopped to get some water in house. They wanted us to take supper with them. We consented!!! of course.
March 13th. Rain most all night. Considerable rain in the morning. Afternoon clear and nice and warm.
Savannah, Tennessee. March 14th. It is quite warm this morning. Took a promenade along through town. After noon, our boat pushed out and landed a few rods above where they unloaded a few pieces of artillery. I went to see the 46th [Illinois] boys on the Aurora when I was left but found our boat again on the same old place. Commenced raining about 4 o’clock p.m. Rained nearly all night and has not got over it yet. This evening the 15th, received two letters from Penn. One from Ch. The other from J. M. H.
March 15th. Sent up a letter to J. M. Hammerly.
March 16th Sunday. Wet cloudy and cold. Sent away a letter to Ed Bridgman.
March 17th 1862, Monday morning. We are on board the Sir Wm. Wallace yet and landed at Savannah, Tennessee ever since the 11th inst. We went on board of her at Clarksville the 7th inst. It is quite warm today. Had company drill and dress parade up on the hill opposite the landing place.
March 17. Left Savannah about noon. Came up about 8 miles and landed [at Pittsburg Landing] where they had a fight the 1st of March. Graves are found scattered around our camp. Weather fine and warm also.
March 18th. We landed our boats at the Pittsburg Landing on the Tennessee River.
March 19th. I went through the different camps and regiments. Found quite a number of graves of the Union army, part of them killed in a skirmish the 1st of March. Others died by disease. Also numbers of secesh army are buried here.
March 20th. Weather fair. Evening growing colder.
March 21st. Received marching orders. Quite cold.
March 22. I was quite unwell all day. I think of account of eating warm bread baked in a hurry and in an army oven.
March 23rd. Sunday. Left our camp and went into the woods 1.5 miles. Got a nice camping place. It’s getting warmer.
March 24th. Weather quite fair, only a little cloudy. Received a letter from R. M. B. and Martin. Clink arrived.
March 25. Weather fair.
March 26. Quite warm today. Went over to see the 46th & 15th Illinois volunteers.
March 27th. Weather fair. A. Warner arrived. Sent a letter to Indianapolis to Hirge.
March 28th. Pittsburgh. Weather fine. Three more of our company arrived here. Then all three were wounded.
March 29th. Weather fine. Sent a letter to Martin.
Sunday March 30, Weather fine.
Monday March 31. Rain in the morning. Sunshine in the afternoon. Had a general inspection.

April 1862

Tuesday, April 1, 1862. Weather very fine. Companies A & F with some of the 9th [Illinois] went up the river. Three gunboats and several other steamers loaded with troops went ahead of them. Co.’s A & F and the 9th came back in the evening. They had foraged lumber.
Wednesday, April 2d. We had quite a shower last night but cleared off in the forenoon.
April 3d. Weather fair. Received a letter from Alfred and one from Ed Bridger.
Friday, April 4. Rain last night. A severe hard showers through the day. Went up to a part of our Company. C, D, K up the river after lumber. Got back after dark when we hear the news that Beauregard had with a portion of his force driven in our advance. Sent a letter to C. Alfred Hammerly.
Saturday, April 5th. Some rainfall last night. It is quite cool this morning but clear. Weather fine the remaining day.
Sunday, April 6th. Early this morning we heard some cannonading. Soon after the long roll was heard in some of our camps. About 8 o’clock it was all over heard and soon we had the word to fall in. About that time, musketry and cannon fire was heard over a great portion of our line. Marching toward the fire, it grew heavier and soon it was a continual roar from our right to left. After we halted at several places, we got orders to take the extreme left. We watched for the enemy when we soon found him, firing a few rounds on us. We had a hard struggle with, got him on a retreat, but soon come on to us again with reinforcements when we lost quite a number killed and wounded. Firing was kept up until night. Towards evening light and heavy artillery played alone and such a noise I never expected to hear. Through the night the gunboats throwed shells to the enemy’s line every half hour. I was on guard. It commenced raining very hard at midnight. After the rain, the wounded in the field and in the hospitals around us kept up a continual shriek and groan until morning. Buell began landing his troops at 4 o’clock p.m.
Monday, [April] 7th. Daybreak. The firing is heard again and close by. Yesterday the enemy gained two-thirds of our camping ground, but Buell’s coming is so fast with his reinforcements encouraged our men and we kept on driving the enemy slowly until 4 o’clock p.m. when they started to run. It was as desperate a day as Sunday and any were the killed and wounded. Night rain again.
Tuesday, 8th of April. Our officers gathered up all the men in the regiment and ordered us to fall in. We marched out about two miles over the battlefield, laid around there till late in the afternoon when almost night our teams brought the two days rations. But before we had a chance to get them, new orders arrived to march us back to our camp which were immediately obeyed.
Wednesday, April 9th. Rained again last night and is now growing cold. Several of us went as far over the battlefield as we could, found an immense number dead—men, horses, mules laying over the field. Our men had two graves filled with death in a place where the hardest fight was Monday. In one of them were 147 Confederates. In the other 38 Union men. It is evident that we killed more of them than tey did of us although they wounded perhaps a greater number of us than we did of theirs.
Thursday, April 10th. Weather quite cool. Went on guard again. Was quite cold through the night. Got a letter from New York,
Pittsburg [Landing] April 11th. Weather cold and wet. Got a letter from Martin by R. Hale. [Andrew] Morrow, [Harlan] Brewer, and Cairwell came from the Saint Louis Hospital.
Saturday, 12th. Commenced raining at midnight and kept on until afternoon. It seems to be clearing up now. Sent away two letters—one to R. M. B, Amboy and another to J. F. Blocker. Penn. General Halleck arrived here.
Sunday, April 13th. Rained again last night but has been nice, warm, and clear all day. Had a prayer and thanksgiving to the victories of Pea Ridge, Arkansas, Island No. 10 on the Mississippi River and Pittsburg, Tennessee. This was done according to Gen. Halleck’s orders.
Monday, April 14th. Pittsburg [Landing] Weather quite pleasant. Lieut. [Wright] Seaman, 1st Lieut. of Co. C was dug up and sent home in a metallic coffin. He was killed Sunday the 6th 1862.
Tuesday, April 15th. Weather fine. Looked cloudy in the morning.
Wednesday, April 16th. Weather fair. Cloudy in the morning.
Thursday, April 17th. Quite warm it has been today. went to visit Dixon’s Battery. D___ and [Doct.] Adams arrived here this morning.
Friday, April 18th. It has been warm all day but commenced raining towards evening.
Saturday, Pittsburg, April 19th. Rained most all last night and nearly all today.
Sunday, April 20th. Rain last night and most again all day. Martin and Herring arrived here this morning. Doct. Adams came to see us, Went over with him to the 45th [Illinois] and got things which he brought from Amboy. Left $5 for the Amboy boys for their comfort.
Monday, April 21st. It is raining yet and the fire in our tent feels comfortable.
Tuesday, April 22. It cleared off last night and today it has been quite pleasant weather.