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The Civil War Journal of
Seymour Gilbert

1st Lieut., Co. G, 28th Wisconsin Infantry Volunteers

Pine Bluff, Arkansas
November 1864

Typescripted from the original holograph by
H. Wayne Overstreet
Further editing and background research by
M. Alan Overstreet, MA, MLIS

November 1864 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 6 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 7 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 8 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 9 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 10 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 11 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 12 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 13 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 14 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 15 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 16 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 17 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 18 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 19 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 20 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 21 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 22 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 23 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 24 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 25 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 26 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 27 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 28 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 29 In Pine Bluff
Nov. 30 On the March
Dec. 3rd Little Rock, Ark.
Dec. 25th Little Rock, Ark.
Jan. 1st 1865Little Rock, Ark.
Jan. 22nd From Little Rock to Pine Bluff
Jan. 26th From Pine Bluff to Mount Elba
Jan. 28th Mount Elba, Ark.
Jan. 30th From Mount Elba to Pine Bluff
Feb. 1st From Pine Bluff to Little Rock
Feb. 5th Little Rock, Ark.
Feb. 11th From Little Rock to Clarendon
Feb. 12th From Clarendon to Mouth of White River
Feb. 13th From Mouth of White River to Gaines Landing
Feb. 14th From Gaines' Landing to Vicksburg
Feb. 15th From Vicksburg to Port Hudson
Feb. 16th From Port Hudson to New Orleans
Feb. 17th Algiers, La.
Feb. 22nd From New Orleans to Mouth of River
Feb. 23rd Mouth of the Mississippi
Feb. 25th Mobile Point, Ala.
March 7th Navy Cove, Mobile Point, Al.
End of Journal as it was found.


The year was 1864 and major events of American history were being forged in a war of a nation not yet one hundred years old; a nation at war with itself. The record of those events having been written in blood are somewhat less faded than others by the annals of time and rightfully so. Many of the campaigns and battles of the War between the States were considered "glorious" by those who were there to recount the tales, but only by those who lived. The glory of these events was in the cause and the victory, but not in the price paid for those achievements. A greater achievement to the individual may have been the mere survival of those hard and desperate times, further compounded by war.

The journal of Lieutenant Seymour Gilbert is the true story of a survivor. A very moral young Union Officer, the Wisconsin-born Lieutenant Gilbert chronicled his day to day life and thoughts while in the service of his nation. The manner in which he lived, his moral and religious convictions and his complete devotion to family may have been the keys to his survival, moreover they are the pillars of honor.

After more than a century, this personal diary has been wrenched finally from the encroaching dust of oblivion. May other lost chronicles of the history of our forefathers also emerge someday.

This shall be known when we are dead,
And left on long record,
That ages yet unborn may read,
And trust and praise the Lord.
PSALM 102 13-21/6

November [1864] in Pine Bluff

We had a very pleasant day, bright and warm, with a cloudless sky, just such a day as to make one glad and happy, if he were free and at home, and a day to cause one to regret not being so. There was still a great deal of talk among officers and men in regard to going to the Rock, the matter still remaining unsettled. In the morning a dispatch was received by General Clayton from General Stuls, informing him that the 29th Iowa had been ordered here to relieve the 28th but that for the present the order had been countermanded, and the 29th were retained at the Rock, awaiting the movements of the enemy. It was supposed to have reference to the defeat of Price in Missouri as it was reported that his scattered forces were on their way to Arkansas. It was reported that he was badly beaten by the Kansas Militia near the Kansas border, and that he lost all his artillery, and a large number of men are prisoners - also that Major Walker of the old 5th having turned out to help whip Price. Later in the day Captain Stevens received a dispatch from Major White, stating that the 29th were coming to relieve the 28th and that their quarters would be safely guarded until we were there to take position, so we did not know what to defend upon. A good many thought that we would not go at all, and others thought we would go as soon as the matter in regard to Price came to an issue. I cared scarcely anything about it - almost prefer to go, and really preferring to go, if it were not for leaving our comfortable quarters. It was my regular day for the ague, but for the first time on my regular day, for two weeks - I escaped, for which I was very glad.

A part of the 5th Kansas started for home in the morning by way of the Rock, and they took our mail. I wrote a letter to my wife, but it was not in time for the mail. Everything went on as usual in camp. Col. Gray was making a great effort for his defense when his trial should come on before the Court Martial, but I understood that his trial was to come off at the Rock, instead of the Bluff.

Nov. 6th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had a very fine day and I spent most of it in our quarters. The Captain had inspection at 8:30 A.M. but as I was still reported sick, I did not go out. I thought of attending church in the forenoon, and hearing our Chaplain preach, but finally concluded to wait until afternoon and hear Mr. Rosenberry, Chaplain of the 126th Ill. Infantry. I wrote Melinda a long letter, and did some other writing. I went to the Presbyterian Church in the afternoon and heard a sermon from the Chaplain of the 126th Ill. I had never seen nor heard him before. He was a rough looking sort of man, with unshaven face, but he seemed to be a man of kindly feeling, and he preached quite a good practical sermon from a text in Corinthians - but I could not remember whether in 1st or 2nd Corinthians - nor what chapter or verse. I understood that he was a Presbyterian, but some one that heard him in the evening, told me he thought he was a Universalist. He mentioned at the close of his sermon that he was to attend the funeral of one of the members of his regiment that evening, and that it was the third case of mortality in the 126th within a week. I could not help contrasting it with our own regiment for it had been some time since we had lost a man. Blanchard of our Company being the last that I could call to mind. We had Dress Parade at 5 P.M. but being excused by the Doctor I did not have to go out. There were but few men and only five officers - including the Adjutant present and Captain Tichenor being the ranking officer, acted as Colonel and conducted the parade for the first time since the regiment was formed. There was no further news in regard to going to the Rock, and matters at the post were entirely quiet. I felt real well, and the ague seemed to have left me, and I certainly thought it about time. The day was quite warm, and the night the warmest we had for some time, and there was considerable rain not far from midnight.

Nov. 7th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had another real warm pleasant day, and I felt real well all day, there being no signs of a return of my ague. My appetite was becoming first rate again, and I could eat everything in the shape of well cooked victuals that could be set before me. Also John's victuals never happened to be in such a condition, so I did not have any opportunities of testing the matter - but I knew that such would be the case if good victuals were set before me. Old John did not have facilities for getting many things to eat except from our Commissary, so he did not have much of a variety to eat , and what he did have, he did not know how to cook. I wondered how it would seem to sit down to Father's table at home, and eat a good meal of victuals once more - or to our own table - Mira and I. In the morning we learned that an escort of Cavalry came through from the Rock some time during the night, bringing us a mail and about 8 O'clock we received it. I had a letter from Almira, and one each from Alvarus and Frederick Harrison. I also received an envelope from Alvarus and one from Myron containing Union ballots to be used at the election the next day. The letter from Harrison contained his photograph, and informed me that he was about starting for home, having been quite sick. The letter from Mira informed me that she and baby were well at the writing of the letter, which was the best news that I could hear. Alvarus's letter informed me that he was not coming into the Army, he having hired a substitute, paying $725.00. They were both hopeful and cheerful and did me a good deal of benefit. I sat down and answered Almira's letter enclosing Harrison's photograph. I also answered Alvarus's and Harrison's letters, and they were sent to the Post Office. There was no news and everything at the Post went off as usual.

Nov. 8th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We were up early in the morning in order to open the polls in time for the forager details to vote before they started out for two days, and we had the polls open in our Company before seven O'clock, and before noon we had the election closed up. We polled 46 votes, all for Lincoln and Johnson. Every legal voter in Company "G" at the Bluff voted, and no man running the so called Democratic ticket received a vote in our Company. Myron Gilbert for member of the Assembly received 29 votes and Benjamin Hankins none. Halbert E. Paine for Member of Congress received 41 votes, and A. Scott Sloan received 5 votes - five of our voters being from Washington Company. John G. Mc Mynn received 46 votes and our Company ticket from 39 to 41. The number of votes for Lincoln in the regiment was 407 and the number for Mc Clellan 31 - and they were distributed among the Company's as follows, "B" 3 - "D" 7 - "E" 9 - "F" 9 - "H" 2 and "I" 2, "A" - "C" - "G" and "K" giving him none. The Lincoln votes were distributed as follows, "A" 59 _"B" 37 - "C" 44 - "D" 36 - "E" 41 - "F" 32 - "G" 46 - "H" 36 - "I" 40 and "K" 36. The votes for Gilbert were as follows, "A" 17 - "B" 19 -"F" 2 "G" 29 - "H" 15 and "K" 3 aggregate 85. The vote for B. Hankins as follows "B" 2 and "H" 2 - aggregate 4. John G. Mc Mynn for Supt. received the same number as the Lincoln Electors. We were well satisfied with the result, as it was somewhat better than we anticipated. A few others would have voted for Mc Clellan, only they were ashamed to show their colors - and they did not vote at all.

The day was cloudy, but warm and pleasant and in the night we had a very heavy rain accompanied by a heavy wind. I felt real well all day, there being no signs of a return of my ague. I wrote short letters to my wife and Myron - sending to the latter as complete returns of the election as I could obtain that night for I knew that he would want to hear as soon as possible. We received notice about 8:30 in the evening that the mail would be taken to Post Headquarters in half an hour, and Jake Heaton took ours down to the Post Office. At night I could not help thinking how much depended upon the result of that day's election and how irrevocable was it's decree. I believed that the fate of the nation was suspended upon it, and I could not help feeling anxious, though I was confident that Lincoln would be reelected. I knew that the story was told, though no one knew the result. It really seemed strange to me that any could manifest such indifference as some did - and I could only account for it on the ground of ignorance or lack of ordinary good sense. I felt that a great responsibility rested upon me as one of the many upon whom the responsibility of a choice of President rested, and I tried conscientiously to meet that responsibility. In voting for Abraham Lincoln I believed that I did so, and I would not to save my right hand, have voted for Geo. B. Mc Clellan. Most of the other troops at the Bluff were from Illinois and were not allowed to vote. They thought pretty grinding, and I did not blame them.

Nov. 9th Pine Bluff, Ark.

It cleared up in the morning after the rain, and was real cold. The elbow to our stove pipe was a borrowed one, and Vanderpool came and got it on election day, so we could not keep a fire in our stove, and our quarters were anything by comfortable. Mose and Donaldson tried to find an elbow somewhere, but without success. The Captain and Lts Coates and Bingham were on picket, Lt. Kowing was on forage with 30 men of our regiment. Our Captain was General Officer and another Field Officer of the Day - and, 90 men and 15 Non-Commissioned Officers were on picket - making almost the entire regiment. In the forenoon we heard that our forager train had been cut off by the Rebels - some 20 miles or more down the river, and Colonel Erskine of the 13th Illinois Cavalry was sent out in command of what cavalry could be raised as a reinforcement, and even General Clayton went out himself, so anxious was he. There was considerable excitement among the boys, and I heard some of the "K" boys saying that their Lt. Kowing was gone up. But Clayton had not been gone long before he returned with the news that the train was safe, and had not been attacked, the bridge that he heard was destroyed, being a different bridge from the one he thought. The advance guard of the train came in about sunset, but the train did not come in until 9 O'clock in the evening. The boys reported that about 36 Rebels were seen, but that the train was not fired upon at all, though two of the 13th Illinois who were out foraging for beef were taken by the Rebels. They reported the roads in a terrible condition, and expressed the opinion that another loaded train could not be taken over the same road, as they had to lift and pry wagons out of the mud almost constantly.

There was a report that old Price had been whipped again up near Dardanelle and 400 prisoners captured from him, but I could not learn that the report came from a reliable source. There was still talk of the 28th going to the Rock, and the opinion seemed to prevail that we would go and that the 29th were only retained at the Rock until the fate of Price could be definitely known. On account of the excess of duty at the Bluff, and more especially on account of the foraging duty, I rather preferred to go. The idea of going out 25 or 30 miles foraging every few days, to be gone two or three days, was anything but pleasant, the weather cold and stormy, and the roads almost unpassable on account of mud, and all the time surrounded by rebels, and liable to be attacked by a superior force. In fact almost any change seemed preferable.

Nov. 10th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had quite a pleasant, but rather cool day. In the P.M. I went down town, and while there, called at the Post Commissarys, and saw Mc Kee, Goelger, Draper and King, and received and introduction to Captain C. H. Blakely - Post C. S. . Mc Kee gave me a number of business envelopes of different sizes, of which I was much in need, and a nice cake of officer's soap - a finely scented article.

I was afraid all day, that I should be detailed for forage for the next day, but when the details came around at night, and none came for me, I began to think that I should escape though I was afraid the 106th Illinois might fail to fill their detail, as it would be their day for picket. I had been to bed but a short time, and had just gone to sleep when the Adjutant's orderly brought me a detail, sure enough, ordering me to report at the Pontoon Bridge a 4 O'clock the next morning. I dressed again and in the first place went and presented my order for a horse to the Q.M. Sergeant and then went and notified the hostler that I should want the horse at 3:30 in the morning. I then let Old John know that I should want something to eat early in the morning, and something to carry along to eat while away. By that time it was quite late, and I was glad to get back to bed again, so as to be fit to start out early in the morning. It was just one year from the time we came to Pine Bluff, and a good many of the boys spoke of it.

Nov. 11th Pine Bluff, Ark.

I was up at 3 O' clock, and at a quarter past went to Old John's for something to eat - but he had overslept himself and had nothing but bread. I took some bread and took it back to the Company and took some coffee and meat with Pear Beans. By that time the detail were falling in, so I went for my horse - a kind and gentle gray. We immediately reported at the bridge - and found the Details from the 62nd and 126th Illinois already there. Each Regiment had 50 men, making 150 Infantry besides Cavalry. Captain Brown of the 13th Illinois Cavalry who was to have command of the train commenced to cross. The 62nd took the front wagons that crossed the river and the 126th the rear wagons and our men crossed the river and took the Post wagons, so were in the front after all. When our boys learned that they were to have the front of the train, they raised a regular shout, as they much preferred being in the front. We got an early start, and finding the roads much better than we anticipated, we were up to the corn (we went up the river) 22 miles from the Bluff, as Captain said - only a little after noon. The corn was standing in the field, and we had to pick it from the stalks. We distributed the men regularly among the wagons, and they went to work with a will, and in a short time all the wagons were loaded except six or eight in the rear of the train. I went for some of my men, and we had them, the six or eight wagons filled from the crib, the standing corn not holding out. While we were still loading them, some officers and others that started from the Rock with a train a couple days before, came up with us, and passed on toward the Bluff. We started back about the middle of the afternoon, and that end of the road was so good that we got back to within ten or twelve miles of the Bluff before sunset, and went into camp near the Widow Alcorn's place. Captain Brown so arranged it that there should be three Infantry picket posts, and he ordered each Infantry Regiment to take one, and station 25 men or half his command at his post. I had the advance post on the road, and sent out 25 men. He afterwards required me to furnish eight men to guard the Widow Alcorn's house. I took care of my horse, ate a supper of bread and meat, and coffee with nice milk in it, and the lay down in what had been a little Negro house, with a nice fire place in it, and slept until three O' clock the next morning. We had a splendid day and night and everything passed off well, except that the other Regiments fired at hogs a good deal especially in the night, so much that the Captain told me some Negros from the Rean Plantation came riding up, armed, thinking we were having a fight, their purpose being to assist us. Captain Brown told me he thought he should arrest the Lieutenants in command of the 62nd and 126th Details for not restraining their men.

Nov. 12th Pine Bluff, Ark.

I was up again at 3 O' clock in the morning, and in a short time had my horse eating, and the boys cooking breakfast. I again made a meal of bread, raw meat and coffee, and long before the train hitched up, I was ready to start. I found a Sergeant of the 7th Missouri Cavalry stealing chickens, and just as I had halted him, and was inquiring who he was, Captain Brown came up, and arrested him. I was glad that I found him when the Captain was by, as it helped to clear our Regiment who might easily have been accused of doing the mischief, they being camped nearest the out buildings. Long before daylight the train was in motion - 50 wagons - and by 9 O' clock we were once more in time, having had a very pleasant trip. Before noon the mail train was in from the Rock, and we had our mail. I received two letters from my wife, a letter and a paper from Myron, and a letter each from Sarah, Helen, and Mary Nash and Philena Evans. Mira and Baby were real well, but Mrs. Nash was very sick, having given birth to another boy the 20th of October. I was very glad to hear from home again and to learn that all my little family were well - that being the most welcome news I could possibly hear. Philena wrote a good sensible letter, and showed that she followed her mother's teachings in politics rather than her father's. Mary and Helen were getting along well at Appleton, and seemed to like their school very much. Sarah's letter was written on the 23rd and 25th of October and she wrote that the corn was all husked and potatoes dug, and Pylranus was plowing every day. The news of the defeat of Price and the capture of his artillery and train - and of Generals Marmaduke and Caball with a large number of men, and the wounding of Fagan was confirmed in the papers. I took a good bath in the evening, and was glad to get another good nights sleep in a comfortable bed - at least a comfortable bed for the army.

Nov. 13th Pine Bluff, Ark.

Our Company was so small on account of so many being on duty, that the Captain had no Inspection in the morning. After being shaved by my Barber, William Young - and finishing a letter to Mira, I went with Foster to church, to hear Mr. Peake preach. I sat until most of the preliminaries were gone over, when not feeling well, on account of a slight diarrhea, I left the church, and returned to my quarters. I felt well enough the rest of the day, and at noon I ate a hearty dinner. Old John had the best meal he had in a long time, though consisting of the same articles of food. His table seemed to be running down, but I did not consider it so much his fault as the fault of the officers, as they paid him nothing with which to keep up his table. I paid him $ three dollars the day before, so that he might buy some butter or sugar for supper, and all the officers boarding there were owing him. In the afternoon I wrote to Myron and Sarah, in answer to the letters I received from them the day before, and in the evening I answered Philena Evan's letter. The Post Master came and told us that the mail would go out early in the morning, so I sent off my mail- two letters for Mira, and one each for the others mentioned above. We had Dress Parade at 4:30 P.M. and I was out for the first time as an officer. It was just two years and one month from the date of our muster into the U. S. service, and the thought would come that we had another month less to serve. The thought was by no means an unpleasant one, for the manner in which we saw the war carried on - the favor shown to Rebels, the readiness with which they were trusted upon taking the oath - when we knew they took it only to save their property, and from policy being still our enemies at heart, and the severe punishment of our soldiers for taking a pig or a chicken from our enemies - all these considerations had a tendency to cause us to look with gratification upon the approach of the close of our terms of service.

Nov. 14th Pine Bluff, Ark.

In the morning I wrote to Mary and Helen, theirs being the last letters I had to answer. Immense numbers of pigeons were flying around, and one flock, miles in length must have contained millions of pigeons and was many times the largest flock I ever saw. There was a pigeon roost out about 17 miles on the Sulphur Springs Road, and in the afternoon, the Adjutant 2. No. Captain Slawson and Lieutenant Seymour, and perhaps other officers, and 20 or 30 Cavalry started out there to get pigeons. They returned about 2 O' clock in the night, having all the pigeons they could carry. They arrived at the roost after dark, and knocked their pigeons down with sticks by the light of torches. Captain Slawson brought in nearly a bushel and he said that they did not pick up a quarter they killed. He said the noise they made, sounded when they were still miles away, like rumbling of a long train of cars. It rained terribly while they were there, and as the party had no Rubber Ponchos or blankets they were soaked to the skin, in which condition they came into camp. About noon I received and order to report at Post Headquarters at one P.M. as member of a Board of Survey, to determine the amount of nails taken from Messrs Hough and Co. - Merchants of Pine Bluff for the use of the U.S. and to fix the value of the same - the Board consisting of Captain J. L. Bowman, 106th Illinois Infantry, 1st Lieutenant R. C. Kenyon 1st Arkansas Light Artillery and myself. We met as ordered, and were instructed to proceed to the store of Hough and Co. and obtain what evidence we could in relation to the matter. Captain Bowman acted as President, and I as Recorder, and we examined three witnesses - Packard, Hough & White, and ascertained that the amount of nails taken was 140 lbs and that the cost of the nails here was $14.50 per cwt. We then adjourned until 2 O' clock P.M. the next day in order to obtain the evidence of Sergeant Hoag of Company "F" who was clerk in the Q.M. Department when the nails were taken by Post Q.M. Hillyer. It took me all the evening to make out my report as far as we had gone as I had to make out triplicate papers. It rained nearly all the evening, but before morning it cleared up, and became real cold. Chaplain Peake told me that Captain Stevens received a letter from Colonel Benton of the 29th Iowa, giving a description of their barracks, and saying that they would keep their barracks in good condition for us, and requesting us to do the same with ours - as it was definitely settled that the two Regiments were to change places. I was by no means sorry for the prospect of a change.

Nov. 15th Pine Bluff, Ark.

In the morning we found it clear again, but quite cold, but it soon clouded over, though the cold continued. Immediately after breakfast I went down to Company "F"'s quarters to see Sergeant Hoag, and procured his evidence, if anything new in regard to the taking of the nails from Hough & Co. by Lieutenant E. D. Hillyer 5th Kansas Cavalry Volunteers a. a. g. m. Post of Pine Bluff, for the use of the U.S. but he knew nothing more about the matter and I did not take his testimony. After returning to my quarters I wrote Mira a short letter, writing to my wife and friends being by far the pleasantest employment I could find. I did not know what I should do if it were not for hearing from all my little family in her letters, and though I had never seen our baby, I was always anxious to learn that our little Melinda Almira was well and doing well. The name, though not a fanciful one by any means, was nevertheless my choice, as it combined the names of my wife and one of my sisters, the name reading the same as hers - Melinda A. Gilbert. It was a fancy of mine to have her thus named - though it may have been and odd one, and an evidence with some of decidedly poor taste in such matters. But neither one has an ordinary or common name, and I thought enough of both the persons bearing the names to be willing that our child should be named after them - to be anxious that she should receive those names, because belonging to those persons. Mira proposed naming her after her Mother and my mother making her name Catharine Elizabeth, but for some reason I preferred Melinda Almira. I afterwards thought that I ought not to have stated any preference, but Mira was anxious that I should, so I did it - but really with reluctance. At 2 O' clock P. M. Captain Bowman and Lieutenant Kenyon came to my quarters, and we proceeded to complete the business commenced the day before. We determined the quantity of nails taken from Messrs Hough & Co. to be 140 lbs and fixed the price of the same at $ 0.16 per lb. Before sunset our business was finished and the papers completed and signed. I employed the evening in talking with the Captain and in doing some writing. There were no news and matters in Camp remained the same as usual. There was no Dress Parade, on account of 90 men, 15 Non-Commissioned and 3 Commissioned Officers being on picket. The river commenced to rise again, and we began to hope we might still go to the Rock by water instead of land.

Nov. 16th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had quite a pleasant day, though somewhat cloudy. It commenced to rain some time in the night, and there was a very heavy storm. The wet season seemed to be coming on, and the river was on the rise. It was telegraphed from the Rock that a boat had started for Pine Bluff, and we expected it to arrive the next day. We were glad to see the river rising again, as it gave us a prospect of going up to the Rock on a boat, if at all. It seemed that so much rain ought to affect the river, but rains at Pine Bluff or Little Rock, or in fact anywhere in Arkansas did not seem to have any effect upon the river - the height of the water seeming to depend almost entirely upon rains in the mountains and upon the head branches of the stream. The fall seemed to be quite different from a year before, and the river was navigable much more of the time. In the A.M. we received a circular from the Commander of the Regiment - Captain Stevens, stating that there would be a meeting of an officers' class at his quarters at 7 O' clock in the evening. The Captain and I went there at the hour, but no lesson was recited, the meeting or class simply adjourning until after Dress Parade the following day. While there, Captain Stevens read a letter from Thomas H. Benton Jr. Colonel of the 29th Iowa stating that the 29th had just purchased a regimental bakery which was in good running order - with new pans etc., and which cost $125.00 which they would like to exchange with us for one of equal value, in case we had one - and the Regimental Board decided to use enough of the Regiment Fund to purchase it, we having none to exchange for it. We had Dress Parade at 4:30 P.M. and I for the first time acted as file closer - as a Commissioned Officer. There was some talk that Major Carroll of the 13th Illinois Cavalry and Captain Kenyon of the 28th would have charges preferred against them for being drunk while out in charge of a forage train, a Lieutenant of the 126th Illinois Infantry having told Lieutenant Hartwell that he should prefer charges against them. Before Captain Kenyon came into the U. S. Service, he was a very religious young man, but his religion did not seem to be made of the right stuff, as it did not last him until he left Camp Washburn. Well, the army is a place that tries men and determines of what stuff they are made - and it requires stern stuff to resist its' temptations, and retain ones manhood. But observation proved that quite too few possessed the requisite force of character. I paid Old John $5.00 more, making $25.00 in all, and I commenced boarding on the 22nd of September the time I stopped boarding at Mrs. Buck's.

Nov. 17th Pine Bluff, Ark.

In the morning it was still raining, though it stopped at about 8 O' clock and did not begin again until we were out on Dress Parade, but from that time it rained quite hard until bed time, when it fairly poured. We learned in the morning that the boat that started the morning before, sprung a leak, and turned back for repairs, and that she did not start again until 4 O' clock P.M. On that account we did not expect her until night, and just at dusk we saw her coming, and in a short time she passed our camp proving to be the Annie Jacobs. We expected Company mail, but were disappointed, the boat starting about half an hour before the mail was distributed. In the evening General Clayton was said to receive a dispatch from General Stuls, giving the intelligence that General Sherman had evacuated Atlanta, first burning the city to the ground and started for Charleston, leaving General Thomas to take care of General Hood and Sherman's rear. Also that the State of New York had given Lincoln 20,000 Majority, and Illinois 30,000 Majority. I did not know how much of it to believe, we had been so often fooled by false and premature reports. During the day I wrote my wife a letter, and in the evening I wrote to Sylvanus. The officer' class met at the quarters of Captain Stevens immediately after Dress Parade and Captain Stevens read and asked the questions. I saw more of Lieutenant Bingham in a certain way that I had ever seen before, and I came to the conclusion that he possessed less mind than any other officer in the regiment. I felt a little like the ague in the afternoon, but it passed off, and I escaped. I was detailed as Officer of the Grand Guard, to report at Guard Mounting the next morning, so I hoped it would cease raining. The indications seemed to be that we would remain at the Bluff, the 29th Iowa being ordered on duty.

Nov. 18th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had Guard Mounting at 8:30 in the morning, and Captain Tichenor, Lieutenant Bingham and myself reported as Officers of the Grand Guard. The Captain and Bingham both ranked me, and I thought likely I should be sent on the Lower River Road, but the Captain sent Bingham down there, and me with 30 men and 5 Non Commissioned Officers on the Warren Road. Bingham was real angry, but could not very well help himself, though he complained that he was sent down there every time. I had to send 15 men and two Non Commissioned Officers on the upper Monticello Road, and I had 13 men and two Non Commissioned Officers with me. We found a poor shanty that the 126th Illinois had put up for their use of the post, and we could keep a rousing fire in the fire place, so though it rained all day and all night, and it was real cold, we managed to keep quite comfortable. Major Graltan was General Officer of the Day, and he visited us at 3 P.M. and again at 3 A.M., but he did not require the Guard to turn out. Neither did the Field Officer of the Day, so we had quite and easy time. A boat was expected from the Rock, but it did not make its appearance. It was evident that something had to be done soon, as there was no forager at the Post, and the roads were so bad that no foraging could be done from the Post except by boats. Forage was expected from the Rock on the next boats, which would somewhat alleviate the difficulty. Stacks and stacks of sacks of grain were rotting down at De Valle Bluff, while our mules were starving for want of it because transportation could not be furnished on the Rail Road, while citizens could get any quantity of goods transported, more than half of which perhaps, finally went into the hands of the Rebels. Such a state of things I did not like, though men high in the authority were responsible for it. There seemed to be a deplorable lack of true patriotism among those in authority in the Department and inordinate amount of selfishness and money getting spirit. It was at times enough to discourage the most hopeful of us. It was reported on the picket lines that the States of Tennessee, New York and Delaware had gone for Mc Clellan.

Nov. 19th Pine Bluff Ark.

I found it still cold and rainy in the morning and was glad when the Detail from the 126th Illinois came to relieve us at 9 O' clock. I did not go through with the ceremony of presenting arms etc., not thinking that it paid - such bad rainy weather. It was about 10 O' clock when the Captain and I went to Old John's for our breakfast and after that I made my report concerning the General Officers of the Day, and Donaldson took it and the Captain's over to Post Headquarters. The Annie Jacobs was expected to go out some time during the day, so I wrote a short letter to my wife, but the boat started without it after all. Just as we were going to supper she was starting out, and Higley went out on her. We were looking for a boat from the Rock, as they were expecting one down at Post Headquarters, but none came. An escort from Little Rock came in the evening, and reported that a boat started about the time they started, which was some time in the morning.

We had and Officer's class at 4 O' clock P.M. which passed off very well, though not as I thought, as well as it might. Lieutenant Seymour was there at first somewhat intoxicated but Kendrick came and blurted out - "They say you are drunk Seymour, how is it?" It made Seymour mad and he left. In the evening Seymour, Collyer, Bennett and I presume other officers, got on a great drunk, and were raiding around most of the night. I could see more and more plainly every day, that I could not be one of the officers of the 28th as far as association was concerned, though I did not allow the existence of the fact to trouble me much. Bennett and I were mustered at the same time, but I could not shut my eyes to the fact that he was a good fellow, among the other officers, one of them, in fact. I was nobody among the drinking officers, was hardly ever appealed to in a pleasant way by them. - as they addressed each other, was seldom addressed by Colonel Gray, except in the commonest way though treated well by all of a different character. Well, their habits and company were doubtless as distasteful to me, as mine to them, and they probably thought that I kept aloof from them as much as I thought they kept aloof from me. At any rate I did not flinch from the plan that I had adopted, of marking out my own course, without too closely patterning after any one. In the evening I was detailed as Officer of the Day to report at Regiment Headquarters at 9 A.M. the next morning for instructions, and still later we received an order from Post Headquarters to furnish men and officers to run the picket line the next day, because Lieutenant Colonel Hurd of the 106 Illinois was dead, and the Regiment were excused from duty to attend his funeral. Hurd had been Court Martialed a few days before, and it was said that his sentence was to be dishonorably dismissed from the Service. His disease was said to be Brain Fever, and I thought that quite likely, his trial and the result might have had much effect upon his disease, being perhaps one of the chief inducing causes. The weather was cold and damp, and my limbs felt like the ague but otherwise I felt well. It was just 2 years and 3 months since my enlistment and the next day would be two years and eleven months since I last saw family or friends.

Nov. 20th Pine Bluff, Ark.

I reported as Officer of the Day at Guard Mounting - 8:30, but had nothing to do during the day as Officer of the Day, So many of the Company were on duty that the Captain did not have Inspection, and as far as I knew such was the case with most of the Companies. I got William Smith to shave me, and then Foster and I went to Church. We heard a sermon from Mr. Peake in the Presbyterian Church, and he read quite a good sermon, though the introductory services, as usual, were so tedious that we were nearly tired out before he commenced to preach. There were but few present, mostly soldiers. The music was quite good, in fact was with me the chief attraction. For a wonder, I was not sleepy a bit, though it could not have been on account of the superior interest of the service, but it must have been because of the splendid sleep I had the night before. As we were returning from church the 106th Illinois were just falling in to attend the funeral of Lieutenant Colonel Hurd, and in an hour or so we heard the three volleys fired over his grave - and they were the most miserable volleys I ever heard anywhere. About the middle of the afternoon the Steamer Leonora made he appearance from the Rock, and before supper a smallish mail was distributed. I received a letter from Mira, and one from Melinda and a couple of papers from Sarah. Mira and Baby were well, and Mira had just received an order for $36.50 from Madison for which I was very glad as I had not sent her any money for eight or nine months, and I was afraid she was really suffering for want of money. I felt real sorry that she had to live with such a large family small children, as she could not take half as good care of Baby and it was altogether unpleasant for her, in many respects, after having charge of her own house for couple of years - but I could not help it so long a s I remained in the army. I was very anxious on that account, for my term of service to expire. Melinda had taken the school for the winter term that she taught in the summer, the Whicher School, I think - and Luritte had taken the Hile School. Both were to receive $26.00 per month, but Melinda was to pay $2.00 per month more for board. Melinda's school was to commence on the 7th of November. I also received a letter from Alick Mc Neill, containing $40.00 which he was letting me have until pay day. It was very kind of Alick, but it was only as I had always found him - manly and accommodating. I offered Dan some of the money, but he said he did not need it.

Nov 21st Pine Bluff, Ark.

In the morning we found a very strong, cold wind blowing from the North West and it was a most forcible reminder of some winds from the same direction in Wisconsin. It seemed just as cold to me as any similar wind in Wisconsin, and they used to almost blow through and through a fellow, no matter how he might be dressed. I had no idea of going on duty, but in the A.M. just as I had seated my self to do some writing, Colonel Gray and Adjutant Kendrick came into our quarters, and the latter told me that an officer was required for fatigue and as the one he had detailed was not to be found in camp, he should be under the necessity of calling upon me to take charge of a Detail of 21 men and 4 Non Commissioned Officers, and report to Captain Barnes, Port Q. M. which I did at once. He sent us to the forage house to stack away sacks of oats as they were hauled there from the boat. I remained there in charge of the Detail until some time in the P.M. 2 or 2:30 O' clock, when I was obliged to go to my quarters on account of the ague. I left the Detail in charge of Sergeant Noblet of Company "I" and reported to Captain Barnes who told me to go to my quarters, leaving the Detail in charge of some good Non Commissioned Officer. I knew Sergeant Noblet to be such, so I came away without returning to the forage house. I had a real sick time until late at night when I fell into an unquiet sleep. I had a sever headache all the afternoon and evening, and I had one or two spells of vomiting. It seemed singular that my ague should always come on in the P.M. but it had never come on at any other time. It had been a little more than two weeks since I had had the ague before, and I thought I might have escaped then if it had not been for getting so chilly in that cold North West wind. I sent for some medicine at Surgeon's call in the P.M. and they sent men three Quinine powders, but I did not take any that night. I wished that I could be at home for a short time to cleanse out, and get rid of the ague for good, but there was no prospect of obtaining any such favor.

Nov. 22nd Pine Bluff, Ark.

I felt much better in the morning, though not well yet, and my head troubled me all day, and at night, even after taking a good bath, I could not get to sleep until after midnight. It was some time in the afternoon that I went to the Doctor in charge of our Regiment and obtained a prescription which Foster took over to the Hospital for me. He brought back six or eight Quinine pills, the same kind that I took when that Doctor prescribed for me before. I did not take any medicine during the day, for I hoped that my ague was caused by becoming chilled through while on Fatigue Duty, and that I might not be obliged to take another quantity of Quinine into my system. Lieutenant Bennett was on fatigue in the A.M. and while passing the barn in which the Colonel lept his horses, the Colonel's dog came out at him, and Bennett drew his sword and struck the dog - but being drunk, or nearly so, he broke his sword instead of hurting the dog, and at dinner time he was quite angry, and swore he would shoot the dog. Shortly after dinner he took his revolver, and going to the barn, fired twice at the dog, the last time wounding him in the hip. He and a number of other officers then went down town to have a spree over it, and at the supper table they were so much under the influence of whiskey as to be quite indecent, and Ellen, the Mulatto girl waiting on the table went away on account of it. They threw biscuits and onions at each other, and told bawdy stories, and acted like drunken men generally. Of course I did not join in it at all, and they did not insult me, nor try to run upon me in the least. In the morning early I learned that the mail was soon going out on the Leonora, so I hurriedly finished a letter to Mira, that I commenced a day or two before, and sent it down by Stutsman. I already had one in the mail that was left behind when the Annie Jacobs went out a day or two before. I also wrote to Melinda in reply to the letter I received from her the previous Sunday. I paid old John $7.00 more which squared us up to date. In the evening Jacob Heaton brought up a Little Rock paper of the 17th which gave an account of the Chicago Plot, and giving the aggregate majorities of the different states at the Presidential Election, basing the statements upon the returns so far as heard from. The paper claimed that had every Southern State been entitled to a vote, and had they all gone for Mc Clellan, still Lincoln would have received a majority of the Electoral votes.

Nov. 23rd Pine Bluff, Ark.

Foster forgot to send my name to the Doctor with the list of sick, so I was not excused, but I knew well enough that I should not have to go on duty, and the Captain said I need not go on Dress Parade, so I did not care much about it. But instead of Parade, an order came for an inspection by the Medical Director on Stuls' staff, but I think he did not make his appearance. I felt quite well until noon, when I went over to dinner, but then I began to feel chilly, and by the time I had eated a sweet potato, I felt like returning to my quarters. I then commenced to shake, and I shook for an hour or two, when my Fever came on, accompanied as usual with a violent headache. I was real sick all the rest of the afternoon, and until after midnight, when I fell into a troubled sleep. It seemed to affect my head almost altogether, rendering me almost incapable of the power of thought. It really seemed to me the most exquisite misery. I had never known anything about sickness from experience previous to coming into the army, and the Fever following the ague was the worst sickness I had known in the army. I was really afraid that I might become a little discouraged if the ague hung about me much longer. Just at night the Steamer May Duke came up the river alone and without escort. She had been fired into for sixty miles by Guerrillas but she held gallantly on her way, and arrived at the Bluff in safety. The same Captain had charge of a boat at the breaking out of the Rebellion, and when his boat was loaded with Ordinance Stores by the Rebels at Little Rock and ordered to Fort Smith he took his boat part way, ran her on a snag and sunk her, and then made his escape.

Later in the evening, very unexpectedly to us the old Steamer Cadot came down from the Rock, bringing us quite a respectable little mail. I received one letter from Mira written from the 6th to the 9th and two from Alvarus, one written at home on the 6th and the other at Waukesha on the 10th. The county had given a Copperhead Majority - of 160 or 170 on the home vote, but it was thought that the soldiers vote would overcome it. General Paine was between 600 and 700 behind on the home vote, but no doubts were entertained that the soldiers would bring him out all right. Myron was 29 behind on the home vote, but our majority of 81 for him made him all right, if the returns were made in proper shape, and went through all right. The previously received rumors of the reelection of old Abe by an overwhelming majority - were fully confirmed and we heartily rejoiced, because we believed that it ensured the salvation of the country. Mira's letter contained the welcome news that she and Baby - and all our friends, so far as she knew were well. I was too sick to read the letters that night, but left them until morning.

Nov. 24th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had a real fine day once more, from morning until night, and it seemed quite a luxury. I read my letters the first thing in the morning as soon as it was light enough, and before I got up. I felt much better than the night before, but not well enough to eat any breakfast. At noon I ate a little, the first in 24 hours, and then I only ate a sweet potato. In the afternoon I felt quite well, but at night after going to bed I did not feel at all well, and was so nervous that I had to get up and walk around once or twice, and after I did go to sleep, I would wake up every little while in profuse perspiration, and feeling miserly. It was the first time I had been troubled with night sweats, and I found them very uncomfortable indeed. At 10 O' clock A.M. our Regiment were inspected in heavy marching order by George OE. Sokalski, Ist Lt, 2nd U.S. Cavalry & a. a. a. Gen. When we first came to Little Rock, but afterward Acting Inspector General, on General Stuls' staff, in which capacity he inspected our command. The inspection did not amount to much, as he merely walked up and down the line once, without going into the quarters or examining the soldiers. I did not feel very well, and did not even go to the door to look on.

In the P.M. I wrote to my wife, Alvarus and Alex Mc Neill. In Aleck's letter I enclosed a note for the $40.00 he sent men a short time before, it being written "On Demand" and payable to himself or Order. The note bore date Nov. 24'/64/

It was Thanksgiving Day, and I celebrated it by sending sown by Walton for 25 cents worth of apples, and eating them - three in number. I judged that some others celebrated the day in a different manner, as I saw them staggering across the Parade ground in quite a Bacchanalian style. How strange it seems that men will thus desecrate the days that are set apart for grand and sacred purposes! The Cadot went up the river shortly after noon, but she did not take the mail, as there was not enough to pay for the trouble. There were rumors that our Regiment and the 9th Wisconsin were to be consolidated, but I gave no credit to them.

Nov. 25th Pine Bluff, Ark.

It was cloudy most of the day, but just before night the sun came out for a short time, and I thought it might clear off, but I was disappointed, for it soon clouded over again, and it rained by spells all night.

The river still remained quite high, and in the forenoon a fleet of five Transports came up the river. The names of the boats were St. Cloud, Eclipse, Emma No. 2, Live Oak, and Tempest, all quite respectable in size and appearance. They had on board, besides Government Stores - a quantity of green apples and potatoes, and a considerable amount of Sutler goods. The first three started up for the Rock the same day, as the May Duke, under her Captain Sam Houston. Higley intended to take the mail up on one of them, but they were too quick for him, and he and the mail were left. I had a number of letters in it, as it had been some days since the mail had gone out. Just at night we learned that a dispatch had been received from Headquarters at Little Rock, ordering our Regiment there as soon as the weather should become settled, after the arrival of the 62nd Illinois Veterans - and as they came upon the fleet, we supposed it could not be long before we should receive and order from General Clayton to start. It was understood that the 62nd were to occupy our quarters, and that we were to have none at the Rock until we built them ourselves - so the prospect was anything but a flattering one to us. I looked upon it as an outrage upon American Soldiers, to order us out of our comfortable quarters in the worst possible season of the year, without any apparent good reason whatever. A good deal of suffering would be unavoidable before comfortable quarters could be erected, and doubtless a number of deaths would be part of the result. But for myself, I was rather pleased with the idea, for I considered the Rock a healthier place than Pine Bluff, a point by no means to be overlooked.

I felt quite well most of the day, but at night after going to bed, I felt miserable again and it must have been past midnight before I could get to sleep at all, and then I could only sleep a few minutes at a time, when I would wake up in a cold sweat. I never spent nights much more miserably than that and one or two preceding it. My sleep seemed to do me no good at all, and I could not tell the reason of it, but I resolved to consult the Doctor and if possible ascertain something about it.

Nov. 26th Pine Bluff, Ark.

We had a tolerably pleasant day, though it was cloudy most of the time. It was warm during the day and night, and the boys had a comfortable time on picket. The greatest drawback to the weather was the mud, which was deep and sticky all over the town. Matters in camp went on as usual and it could not well be otherwise, as most of the men, and five or six of the officers were on duty - most of them on picket. I wrote to my wife, and to Sylvanus, thinking that the mail was going out - but the boat that was expected to go out, and which the boys were unloading, still had between 100 and 200 tons of stores on her at night, so neither boat nor mail went. I felt tolerably well most of the day, and at night I slept better than for several nights before, and I had strong hopes that I was to get rid of not only my ague, but my night sweats and nervousness. Just before going to bed I unexpectedly received and order to report to Quartermaster Barnes at 7 O' clock the next morning with the Fatigue Detail of the 28th Wisconsin. I did not really feel fit for any kind of duty, but I decided to make the best of it, and report as ordered. Foster forgot to send my name to the Doctor so I was not excused, or I should not have been detailed. The river commenced to fall again, and we began to feel afraid that we should have to walk - or march to the Rock after all, as it seemed pretty certain that our Regiment would be ordered there.

Nov 27th Pine Bluff, Ark.

I was up early, and had just got ready to go to Old John's for my breakfast when I heard the fatigue call, and I shortly went out and took charge of the Detail of 31 men and 4 Non commissioned Officers, and we went down to the Post Q. M. to report. The office was not yet open, and we had to wait nearly an hour before we could receive our orders. At last we went down to the boat, and I sent 26 of my men to the forage house to unload the sacks of oats from the wagons, and pack them away while the remainder, and a Detail of 35 men from the 126th Illinois took them from the boat and loaded them into the wagons. The sacks were large and the boys had to carry them up quite a steep muddy bank, and it was decidedly hard work for any one and especially for men not used to work. The Forage Master said the sacks would average 145 lbs and the Detail carried off about 1800. I did not feel very well, so I did not go back for my breakfast, but went without until noon, preferring to do so, to returning through the mud for something to eat. On my way up to dinner I bought three apples for 25 cents and on my way back I bought one for 10 cents. It was pretty dear eating, but I felt real hungry for them, and I thought they did me good. We quit work a little before sunset, and I was glad to put on some clean clothes and settle down for Sunday, I had not been on Fatigue Duty on Sunday in a long time before, but it was one way of spending the Sabbath in the army, and whether we liked it or not, we could not help ourselves. In the evening it was stated that Company "O" had been relieved from the Steam Saw Mill, and Company "F" from Provost Guard, and it began to look very much as though we might be on our way to Little Rock soon. The river kept falling, and I was afraid we should have to foot it up through the mud. I felt better at night than I had for a week before, and slept first rate.

Nov. 28th Pine Bluff, Ark.

A warm, cloudy day, but no rain, though it threatened to rain most of the time. The regiment had inspecting at 10 O' clock A.M., Captain Stevens being the inspecting officer. It was said to be preparation to going to the Rock, but no one could see any reason for it on that score. I had nothing to do with it, being excused by the Doctor. Lieutenant Hartwell was relieved from working on the fortifications in the forenoon, at his own request, on the ground that he needed time to settle up his affairs previous to going to the Rock. He had been on that duty for three months, and was as sick of it as a person well could be, and he was as pleased as a boy at being relieved. He was a person of ordinary abilities, but more than ordinary energy and self reliance, and he made a pretty good officer. He had a fair common school education, and was a person of fair, though not superior intelligence, and he had taught a common school one or two terms. He was quite young, and cast his first vote after entering the army. I concluded that he had had a pretty good bringing up at home, but he did not always have strength of character to resist evil influences, and he used to drink too much once in a while. He was anything but well behaved at table, and his vulgar talk and ungentlemanly conduct at Old John's table used to cause him a great deal of trouble. He always treated me well, and I took him to be a good hearted, clever fellow. There was no coward about him, and no shirking.

Doctor Smith said that he asked General Clayton to give him permission to put some things on the boat, as he might have another opportunity, and he might not, to send them to the Rock. Clayton told him not to be in a hurry, as the 28th had not gone yet, so we were as much in suspense as ever. I wrote to my wife, supposing that the mail was going out, but it did not go.

Nov. 29th Pine Bluff Ark.

We had a fine warm day, and more sunshine than we had had for some time previously. In the forenoon an order was received at Regimental Headquarters for the 28th to be ready to march to Little Rock at 8 O' clock A.M. the following day, and the same order relieved all the detached men at the Post belonging to the Regiment except five or six, two of them being Draper and Mc Kee of Company "G" - and we made out descriptive rolls for them. I went down to the Post Q.M. to buy a pair of boots in which to march to the Rock, but they had none of the right size. I then went to the Q.M. of the 13th Illinois thinking I might exchange with him, and obtain the right size, but I failed, and then I got Jake Heaton to fix up one of my old Government quaints that was in a bad condition, for the purpose of marching in them. I also tried to find a pair of shoes large enough for Mose, but failed, and we were afraid he could not march through with us as he was nearly barefooted. In the evening the Captain and I packed our things, I using Daw's box and my own valise, and the Captain using his trunk and valise, and the Company Field Chest. We were expecting a boat and a mail from the Rock, but none came. I was real glad that matters had at last come to a focus, as we had been in suspense long enough. The boys were selling off one thing and another during the day, chairs, tables, stoves etc., and even windows. General Clayton came to the camp and bought a stove of Company "K" paying $15.00 for it, when it was not actually worth $3.00 - and it made quite a laugh among the boys. One of our Messes sold a stove for $15.00 that did not cost them anything, and the camp was crowded with buyers all day. Many citizens expressed their regret that we were going away, and I did not doubt that their regrets in many cases genuine, as our Regiment had always been very peaceable and well behaved. For our last supper in Pine Bluff, Old John had stewed Kidd - and it was the first Kid meat I had ever eaten.

Nov. 30 On the March

We were up, and had breakfast early, and after sunrise I went down town to buy Mose a pair of shoes to march in, but the shops were not yet open, and I did not buy them. In the meantime the Captain sold the window and stove out of the shanty for 10 dollars, and shortly after my return to the quarters, the Regiment fell in for the march. The boys had sold my bunk for $1.50 worth of apples, and eaten all but one, which they gave to me. We started about 9 O' clock, escorted by the 7th Indiana Cavalry who rode in advance of us for two or three miles. We went about 8 miles in the forenoon, when we stopped from 12 till 1 for dinner. We found that all Old John had for us to eat was bread and meat, and we were all dissatisfied. Our Company were Rear Guard and after seeing what Old John had, I went back and ate with the boys. In the P.M. we went about 9 miles, and camped on a high ridge near what were called Rock Springs our camp ground being the site of a large hotel which our boys - some of the Cavalry had burned some time before, because it was a notorious rendezvous for Guerrillas. Coal and some partly burned timbers still remained. All the country over which we had passed was quite heavily timbered with pine and oak, and Demby's house, inside our lines at Pine Bluff, was the last house we passed containing any inhabitants. Old John's dinner was repeated for supper, only his fresh kid - the first I ever ate, was older and not so good. I lay down on the ground with the Captain and slept tolerably well though it was quite cool toward morning. Lieutenant Hartwell was Officer of the Guard, and posted the pickets and made the Grand Rounds.

Journal of Lieut. Seymour Gilbert
Nov. 1864 | Dec. 1864 | Jan. 1865 | Feb. 1865 | Mar. 1865 |

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