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The Camp & Field Articles
by Theodore Wolbach
Cpl. Theodore Wolbach

Cpl. Theodore D. Wolbach

Web Author's Notes:

The following image is taken from a book titled "Mortality and Statistics of the Census of 1850" in which it is believed retired Captain Rezin H. Vorhes, Company H, pasted over the pages a series of articles written by Cpl. Theodore D. Wolbach, Company E, titled "Camp and Field" and published, by chapter, in the Holmes County (Ohio) Republican newspaper from February 24, 1881 to August 17, 1882. The articles tell the story, in great detail and color, of the 16th OVI, from the inception of the 3-year regiment in October, 1861, through all its camps, battles and marches until it was disbanded on October 31, 1864. The articles pasted in the Vorhes book cover the first 35 chapters, published through October 20, 1881. All the remaining chapters were recently found in a Holmes County library by researcher Rob Garber who obtained copies, performed the transcriptions and provided to this website and which are also presented here, thus providing the complete work by Theodore Wolbach.

Throughout these articles click on the underlined white text for additional details.

The webauthor thanks 16th Ohio descendant Rob Garber for his excellent research on the Camp And Field articles and for performing the tedious digital transcription of those articles found on each page. The transcriptions were made to reflect the original articles verbatim, misspellings and all. Rob is the 3rd great nephew of Capt. William Buchanan, Company F, 16th Ohio, who served in the 90-day regiment as a private, re-enlisting in the three year regiment, and eventually making the rank of Captain of Company F. Thanks Rob!

Page 42 - Chapter 26, 27 - October, 1862

Camp and Field

many were inclined to be insubordinate. We wanted tents, clothing and cooking utensils, and no doubt the proper officers were as expeditious as possible in getting them, but the boys were somewhat dissatisfied, and were willing to be noisy when the spirit moved them. Some fellows thought they ought to have furloughs to visit their homes because they were handy to them. Many took French leave and returned. I believe there were no actual desertions from this camp.

One night some Co. D boys, a little the worse for liquor, got defiant and ugly. Their captain, Milton Mills, an adept in the manly art of self defence, went among them and pummeled a couple of them severely, blacking their eyes badly. Captain Harn had punished one of his boys away back in Kentucky, for some breach of discipline. The victim had held it in bitter remembrance, smothering his wrath and waiting for an opportunity to square accounts. The grey-haired father of the young man came down from Wayne county to see his son, who related the circumstances of his punishment. The old gentleman, warmed up with anger, went to look for Harn. After a short search, he found the lion-hearted captain under his shelter of thatched straw. With very little question or remark, the old gent went for the object of his anger with energy enough to have carried the day--but there was a lack of muscle. Harn received his adversary with coolness and held him off at arm's length until the rumpus could be settled with the tongue.

Published in Holmes County Republican
August 25, 1881


Plenty of sutlers soon set up in business but what tempted them to swarm in on Morgan's Division, at this time, is among the unexplained mysteries. Few of the boys had money in sufficient quantity to luxuriate in the delicacies of the sutler's shanty, at the exhorbitant prices of that period. The tempting array of canned material, tobacco, cheese, &c., brought into life again the ingenuity of the camp thief, who, hesitating to steal from a comrade, looked upon

the sutler as legitimate prey, and when any merchandise was abstracted from the sutler's stock by these nimble fingered gentry, it was as utterly useless to look for it among the soldiers as to search the tangled forests of the Amazon.

Levi Smith, an elderly man from Wooster, came to visit his son, a member of Co. H. Remaining several days, he took lodging at some house near the depot. During the daytime he made several trips to and from camp. Coming up toward camp one morning in company with some visiting acquaintances, he was abruptly and very unceremoniously approached by a very sad looking lady, whose husband, according to her story, had evidently been killed in battle. Smith had been pointed out to her as the Gineral. She had come far and wanted to see about getting a pension. In her half-frantic state of mind she opened out on Smith a [illegible] with pleading eloquence her touching story, addressing him frequently as Gineral. Smith tried to explain to her that he was only a citizen and not a General. The lady talked, and Smith talked, and the latter got considerably embarrassed, but after a few minutes patient and persistent explanation, he succeeded in convincing her that she was surely mistaken in the man. Mr. Smith briefly gave her such advise as he thought would help her along in her pension business, then leisurely moved on with his friends enjoying with them the joke of the lady's mistake.

The East Tennesseeans, ever since our first meeting with them, had been at times a source of amusement to us. It was very easy for us to distinguish them from the men of other states. Their appearance, manner and many expressions of speech were peculiar. The word regiment they pronounced reegamant. They used the word fightinest in praising up the fighting qualities of an individual or organization. These fellows, in their early service, yielded to sickness very readily and when sent to the hospital preferred to go with all the available conveniences. A man with a monstrous knapsack,

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