Camp & Field Page 46 Camp & Field Index Page 16th OVI Home Page Camp & Field Page 48
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 47 - Chapter 29, 30 - November, 1862

Camp and Field

laugh at the Captain's expense, they all drew again and sent captain Liggett. He went forth and met with a similar experience, mistaking the shadow for a plank. When Liggett, sopping wet, had rejoined his companions and the uproarous [sic] laughter had subsided, a happy thought suggested itself to one of the party. Harn and Liggett had been at variance, for some time, so one of the officers proposed that as both had had a ducking they should drop animosities and be friends. Both of the victims were willing and grasping each other's hands, Harn addressed the Lieutenant: We have now been baptized in the same church, let us henceforward be friends and bury the hatchet. And so it was until the captain fell in battle the following month.

At Cincinnati we tied up two days, and many of the boys took a hasty look at the adjacent part of the city. Here we met many acquaintances in the 120th Ohio, that was encamped at Covington, on the opposite side of the river. New inducements were offered to spend money. Men came with revolvers for sale, and venders of boots visited us. One fellow done a fair business in selling facsimile Confederate States money.

Army rations were abundant and much was shamefully wasted. Full rations never removes the soldier's inclination to steal. A boat moored alongside of us contained a mixed cargo, a part of which was pickled pig's feet in kegs. Although a little hazardous, frequent forays were made, and a number of kegs were in this way transferred to our boat. One German volunteer made a little money by retailing his plunder to his companions.

Many troops were gathered around Cincinnati, both north and south of the river, the greater part destined soon to move for points further south. Bragg and Kirby Smith had been driven from the state of Kentucky after fighting the severe and peculiar battle of Perryville. Their main line of retreat seemed to be through Crab Orchard, Barboursville and Cumberland Gap. One year ago we had passed directly south through here, a little anxious to know something of the realities of war,--now we were crossing our old path, full of experience and rich recollections of the intervening time. The new troops that visited us plied us with many questions about the service we had passed through and no doubt some of the boys, for amusement, related some huge experiences.

Several of the boys went across to Newport, Ky., and enlisted in the United States regulars. Though a strict violation of military laws, and an impudent act these fellows served honorably and faithfully to the end of their new enlistment.

Moving leisurely out into the stream, with bow set towards Louisville, our snug little boat ploughed the current between shores that were a refreshing panorama even in this season of the sere and yellow leaf. For a long distance below Cincinnati, on the north side, the face of the hills toward the river are terraced and planted with grapes, thus rendering land productive that for years had not been considered at all valuable. The most of this grape culture is done by people that emigrated from the vine-clad hills of Europe, where no land is allowed to go to waste but every rod is utilized. Some of the boys, by bumming around the city were left behind and had the fun of paying their way on the cars to catch us at Louisville.

Published in Holmes County Republican
September 15, 1881


The passage of steamboats through the locks of the big canal around the falls or rapids, was a novel entertainment to the soldiers. This work is said to be a fine piece of engineering. The labor of constructing it was immense; the most of it being blasted from the solid rock. It is of great commercial value in low water time, and should be, as it cost the U.S. Government a mint of money.

The usual straying off and then running to catch the boat took place here; some rejoining us at the lower end of the canal. In the continuation of our journey a part of the regiment was on the little sternwheeler Marmora. The engineer's position was on the lower deck, in the aft part of the boat. It was a great curiosity to the boys to see the man that was posted here perform his work. Many gathered around to watch him make his quick and skillful movements whenever the pilot above jingled the little bell or sent an order down through the speaking tube. This, with the crowd around

Camp & Field Page 46 Camp & Field Index Page 16th OVI Home Page Camp & Field Page 48