|September, 1863||Linn Diary Index||16th OVI Home Page||November, 1863|
Sun out and weather pleasant. Harry Myers, Newt Gorsuch and I cross the bayou for sweet potatoes and pumpkins. Suttlers set up their shop, had a long chat with Eckles and Lemon the Suttlers. Lemon was a member of Co. E. and lost a leg at Chickasaw Bayou. Raymond Fenner and I capture an oven-pan and I a plate and fork tonight.
Berwick's Bay, La., Oct. 2, 1863
Mr. Eckle leaves here for Millersburg in a few days as soon as we leave this camp and has offered to take any thing the boys have to send home with him. I seize the opportunity to send a few relics with him. Mr. Eckle was formerly of the firm of Everly, Eckle & Co. of Nashville, is now with Ezra Lemon (one of Capt. Tanneyhill's men who had a leg shot off at Chickasaw Bayou) Suttlers for our regiment. They only got here yesterday, don't know how we will like them.
There is some talk of our moving on tomorrow, don't know whether we will or not, expect we will move forward in a few days anyway. If Mr. Eckle will take them I wish to send a music book I captured at Jackson, a bible, comb and brush and a toothpick I took on the battle field of Champion Hill and some Alligator scales I got at Carrollton.
I can not understand why it is that I get no letters; with the exception of one from Mary Ellen Williams I have not had a single letter from any one since we left Carrollton and yet my papers have come through from Millersburg. Why is it? Not because my friends do not write I hope. If that is what's the matter I will tell you and you may tell them that although I am way down here among the Louisiana swamps almost out of the world it is true, I am not defunct but still able to draw breath and eat government rations of hard-tack and rotten pork. When I wrote last I was not well had diarrhea, headache, etc. I have got entirely over that and am enjoying usual health again.
I dread the march before us - it is a long way to Galveston or to Maramoras if we go to either of those places. I am afraid the rainy season will set in soon and then - Oh the mud!! We had a three or four days rain and everything we have is wet -- wetter -- wettest -- our shelter tents are very poor things in wet weather the rain beats right through them - under them and in at the ends. They are splendid for a summer campaign but not fit for a winter one. Hope we will have good winter quarters to go into when we get to our journey's end.
I suppose our County will give the Valandingham ticket a big lift next Tuesday week. Do all you can to make their majority as small as possible. Old Val. will not get much encouragement from the soldiers. He will not get more than one vote in Co. B. if that. Hurrah for Brough and freedom.
Mail just come in - two letters and a paper from Tom - one from Billy Fleming - the other from College Corner. I must stop to read them and my Republican of Sept. 17th.
Well I have read my letters and will try to answer Billy's and send it with this.
Friday, Oct. 2, 1863
Ed McCoy came up this morning long before day. Looks natural as life. Got an order on the Suttler for two dollars and deal it out. Newt Gorsuch, Ed McCoy, Harry Myers and I wash our shirts this P.M. Prepare for marching in the morning. Received letters from Lizzie and Billy Fleming and a Republican. Wrote to Father and Mother and to Billy Fleming and send the letters and books by Mr. Eckle. Two years ago we were mustered in as U.S. Soldiers at Camp Tiffin, Ohio. Of that large regiment of ardent young soldiers but a remnant of veterans remains. It has buried its dead in Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia and Louisiana. It has won honor in the battles of Cumberland Gap, Tazewell, Tenn., Chickasaw Bayou, Port Gibson, Champion Hill, Black River Bridge, Siege of Vicksburg and siege of Jackson, Miss. What will the next year bring forth and who will be left to tell the story?
Saturday, Oct. 3, 1863
Start on our march this morning at the appointed time and traveled in a little north of west direction all day. Passed through a little town - Paris - something. Supposed to have come 15 miles. Not so tired as I expected to be.
Sunday, Oct. 4, 1863
On the road by 6 o'clock this morning and came west. Passed through Centerville and go in to camp at Franklin. Came 10 miles. Boys more than go for sweet-potatoes. Stood the march finely.
Monday, Oct. 5, 1863
Off early came through Franklin and left a little town to our right. Marched some 12 miles. Paid off this evening for two months. $26.00. Hired a negro, Randal, to cook for us at $5.00 a month.
Tuesday, Oct. 6, 1863
Fourth day of the March and come about 12 miles. This evening Gen. Lawler made one of the 42nd Ohio carry his knapsack back and forth as a punishment for going to a house. One of the 18th Indiana boy's cursed Gen. Lawler in his quarters and was arrested.
Wednesday, Oct. 7, 1863
Lay over today. Fosse and Murray of Co. A. have a knockdown. Letter I wrote to Ike McCullough came back to the regiment again.
Thursday, Oct. 8, 1863
Taking off and putting on my drumhead. Write to Lizzie also a few words to Ike McCullough and start his letter to him again.
I received a letter from you four days ago just as we were preparing for another march and had no time to answer then. We are halting at this out of the way place for a few days to rest and bring up more provisions, when we will resume our march for some point in Texas as yet un- known to high privates although both Galveston and Fort Brown on the Rio Grande are spoken of. I hope we will go to Galveston, our mail facilities will be so much better than at Fort Brown. It is said we are to protect the borders from the French. When I wrote you last I was sick if I remember right. I am glad to tell you I have entirely recovered.
You ask what I mean when I say I intend to come back again when my time is out without shouldering a musket. I hope the war will be over and I will not have to come at all but if it is not I mean if the government will accept my services in some other way than a private I will come again but will not come as a private or a drummer. I will serve again as a Lieutenant, Captain, Commissary Clerk or sergeant or any other way that I will not have to carry a knapsack when I march. Probably I may try for something to do in the War department without going into the field. I have not fully made up my mind how I will apply nor is it necessary yet till I get out of the service this time. I intend going home first and then will think of and decide what I shall do. I wish to see and talk the matter over with you before binding myself again.
Friday, Oct. 9, 1863
Aroused by Newt this morning and found every body almost ready to march. Hustled round and was ready as soon as the rest were. Made an extremely hard march today and am very stiff and sore. Suppose to have come 20 miles today. Came through two towns both handsome little villages called New Iberia and Martinsville. Saw plenty of Mexicans and some pretty girls.
Saturday, Oct. 10, 1863
Early start this morning. Came about 10 miles and stop early. Boys going for sweet potatoes, hogs, etc.
Sunday, Oct. 11, 1863
Out foraging with Newt Gorsuch and Hen Snyder and bring in a lot of chickens. Found three letters for me - from Lizzie, Rebecca Powers and one from home bringing news of the deaths of my twin brother and sister. Albert died August 22nd and Allie died September 18th. Wrote to Father and Mother and to Si Martin.
Vermillionville, La., October 11, 1863
Your letters of Sept. 20th the first I have received since some time before we left Carrollton, has just been received. It brought me sad, very sad news that my little twin brother and sister are no more of this world; their pure little spirits are gone to join their sister and brothers in heaven above: they were sent as it were to cheer up our hearts and prevent us from fretting and mourning unnecessarily over our heavy -- yes God only knows how heavy - blow of last winter - the deaths of our much loved and deeply mourned Lizzie and Cappie. Their mission performed and they are called home again. They were only lent of the Lord. I have never seen them and never will see them on earth yet they are my own brother and sister and the tear will start and my heart feel sad - how much more severe the stroke on you, you who have raised them, who have been with them ever since they saw the light and who only knew to love. Were they buried at the Temple?
I got my pen. Newt Gorsuch arrived safely and is now with us well and hearty. He stayed one week with his sister and his brother-in-law, who is a Doctor, completely cured him. I have written every opportunity since we left Carrollton and you know by this time that we are on our way to Texas, are now about 160 miles from New Orleans in a North-west direction near Vermillionville. I do not know whether it is marked on the map or not. We are resting today. We are making the trip by easy marches going three or four days and then rest a day or two. The march day before yesterday nearly became a forced one as we had to march 20 miles before we found water. We generally march about 12 miles a day, stop about two o'clock P.M. and put up our tents.
I sent a bundle of things containing a couple of books, etc. a letter to you and one to Billy Fleming with Mr. Eckle, told him to leave them at Uncle Freys shop did you receive them? Has Cicero got work in Fort Wayne? Was he at Wapakenneta and at Henry McConnels? What did he appear to think of the business qualities of Wapakenneta? How are Mr. Levingston, Henry and the rest of the family? Tell Hen I am patiently waiting and looking for that long letter he promised me. Give my love to all. Send your letters via New Orleans instead of Memphis. I will write again as soon as I can.
Monday, Oct. 12, 1863
Lying around camp and resting, eating chickens, etc. Looks like rain this evening and we ditch around our tent.
Tuesday, Oct. 13, 1863
Rained hard last night - clear this morning. Received a letter from Frank Wilson. Election day -- soldiers voting - some excitement. Put in my first vote, voted the straight Union ticket headed by John Brough for Governor. Vote in our regiment stands - Brough; 157 - Valanding- ham 23 - Brough's majority 134. In camp near Vermillionville, La.
Wednesday, Oct. 14, 1863
Brigade drill this forenoon, took all forenoon. On short rations. Strict orders forbidding foraging by the men were read at dress parade this evening.
Thursday, Oct. 15, 1863
Friday, Oct. 16, 1863
Battalion drill. Wrote letters for Harry Myers to Billy Korn's brother, and one to Father.
Saturday, Oct. 17, 1863
No Battalion drill this morning but regiment cleans quarters. Wrote to Lizzie, Brownhill, George Smith and Rebecca Powers.
Vermillionville, La., Oct. 16, 1863
A mail will go out in a few minutes and I have only time to say a word. I wrote my last letter from here, we may stay here several days yet, maybe a week or more. It is rumored the 19th Army Corps ahead of us are skirmishing, can hear their cannonading, don't think we will be needed. Have an idea our corps will not have much fighting this trip to do - the 19th will do it.
You can not send me any clothes while we are way down here. I have plenty of socks, four pairs: -- I captured three new pair of home made socks at Champion Hills and have the pair Mother sent me by Lieut. Corn. I need a vest, the one Corn brought is worn out, will likely buy one here. You need not try to send me any thing of the sort while I stay in Louisiana. Persons coming from there here frequently have to lay over so much on the way, they don't like to have extra baggage with them -- to much chance of losing it.
I must tell you how we soldiers do our voting. All the Ohio regiments went strong - very strong for Brough. I will give you the vote of the 16th in full. It is as follows: --
Company A. Brough 7 Vallandingham 9 Total vote 16 B. " 16 " 4 " 20 C. " 23 " 1 " 24 D. " 18 " 1 " 19 E. " 8 " 6 " 14 F. " 12 " 0 " 12 G. " 22 " 0 " 22 H. " 19 " 0 " 19 I. " 17 " 2 " 19 K. " 15 " 0 " 15 Totals Brough 157 " 23 " 180
This makes a majority of 134 for Brough in the 16th Ohio. The 114th gave Vallandingham 21 votes, the 42nd gave him only 6 and the 120th gave Valandingham more votes I don't know the number.
I am gong to send your last letter home in this as I can't carry it and don't want to tear it up. I am well. I guess I have nothing else to write just now. Give my love to all.
Vermillionville, La., Oct. 17, 1863 I must write a few lines to you if it is but a few. I have not heard a word from you for a long time and would like to have a few scratches from your pen. I suppose you are still at Mr. Martins, I shall direct this to Fredericksburg anyway hoping you will get it. I am well and last Tuesday put one of the biggest tickets in the ballot box you ever saw for Brough & Co. I went the Union Ticket wholesale and retail. But I must stop and eat supper and then I will tell you all about our election. We had four Valandinghammers in our Company and they were ashamed to vote an open ticket. The looked as though they had been stealing sheep - they came up to the polls and after turning round four times got as red as fire in the face and handed the judge a ticket folded so tight that you could almost hear the eagle squeal as it left their hand. There was a great deal of electioneering in Co. E. by the Valandingham men. Here is the vote of our regiment.
Co. Brough Valanding Total Co. Brough Valanding Total A. 7 9 16 F. 12 0 12 B. 16 4 20 G. 22 0 22 C. 23 1 24 H. 19 0 19 D. 18 1 19 I. 17 2 19 E. 8 6 14 K. 15 0 15
Which makes the vote of the 16th Ohio stand - 157 for Brough and 23 for Valandingham a nice little majority of 134 votes for Brough. The 120th piled up the Valandingham vote pretty high - I do not know just how it did go. The 114th gave the old traitor 21 votes and 42nd did better yet as it only gave him six. These are all the Ohio regiments in our division. I long to hear the result in Ohio. There were but two scratched tickets voted in our Company - they were G. Volney Dorsey for probate judge. I will send you a ticket as voted by Holmes County boys of our Company. On the left is marked the number of votes against each candidate or Valandingham votes -- on the right the number each candidate got. One vote of our Company was in Wayne County and one in Coshocton County.
I must tell you where we are. We have been lying on Vermillion Bayou for several days, will likely stay several days longer. We are about 160 miles from New Orleans near Vermil- lionville, La., Fayette Parish, Louisiana. We heard cannonading in front yesterday morning and supposed the 19th Army Corps were fighting, sent the 4th Division on to reinforce them. I do not think our division will have any fighting to do while we are going through. We are to be last to leave this place and will form the rear guard. I must close as it is time for dress parade. Write soon as you receive this.
Vermillion, La., Oct. 17, 1863
I received your dear letter of Sept. 23rd, a few days ago but as I had just put a letter in the office for you I put off answering it for a day or two. You see we are still at Vermillionville. I don't know when we will move forward, we are to be the last division to leave here. I guess the 19th Army Corps has been fighting some, we could hear their cannon and the fourth division went on to reinforce them. I do not think we will have any fighting this trip. There the drum beats for Guard Mounting and I must quit until it and drill is over.
Well dinner over and I can go to my letter again, have not much time to write as mail goes out at one o'clock today. How I would like to call over and help you put away some of those nice peaches and preserves you and Sallie are so busy putting up. But I will not get home now - furloughs have played out and it is too far. But eleven months will soon roll around and then no furloughs will be needed. I'll bet you have plenty to do now you are "chief cook and bottle washer" and have no time to have the blues. How is your grandmother and has your Mother returned? I did know Austins and if they are butternuts I have no particular desire to know them, you see I am no friend of butternuts. I am like you I think the Sunday school picnic would be more pleasant than the Austin party.
Our principal fifer Mr. Littell brought the tune of "When this Cruel War is Over" back with him from home and we now play it in the band. He was home on furlough. I have never seen the words but think it a splendid tune. I should like to have a copy of the song and notes, when you get them please send me a copy. I wish we were where we could get music, I should so like to send you a new collection of some of our war songs, etc. I am going to send you a couple of songs, one written by one of the 49th Indiana regiment belong to our brigade, the other by a lady of secesh from little Holmes County.
I must not forget to tell you that I put in my first vote last Tuesday and that too for Brough. We have four Valandinghammers in our Company and they are half ashamed to themselves. I will give you the vote of our regiment. Co. A. - 7 Brough; 9 Valandingham; Co. B - 16 for B 4 for V.; Co. C - 23 for B. 1 for V.; Co. D - 18 for B. 1 for V. Co. E - 8 for B. 6 for V. Co. F - 12 for B. none for V. Co. G. - 22 for B. none for V. Co. H - 19 for B. none for V. Co. I - 17 for B. 2 for V. Co. K - 15 for B. none for V. The regiment gave 157 for Brough and 23 for Valandingham - a snug little majority of 134 votes for Brough. The 114th regiment gave Valand-ingham 21 votes and 42nd gave him only 6 in the regiment. I must quit - good-by for this time.
Sunday, Oct. 18, 1863
No drill today - dress parade this evening. Received letter from Brownhill.
Monday, Oct. 19, 1863
Company drill this morning. Wrote to Frank Wilson and more in Brownhills letter.
Tuesday, Oct. 20, 1863
Regiment on picket today.
Vermillionville, La., Oct. 19, 1863
I received your very welcome letter of Sept. 26th of yesterday and although I just written you and sealed the letter I will write a few more lines tear open the envelope and send this in your letter. Your letter gave me a great deal of news and consequently is highly prized by me. I have not heard a single word from any of Sheely's folks since last spring although I have written to both Virgil and Homer and twice to Maria since I had a letter from them. I hardly know what to think of their silence. I was slightly acquainted with Mr. Hayes of Benton - did not know any of the rest of his family. My acquaintance did not go very far up that way was more down in the McCullough settlement. Many more knew me around there than I knew. I will be very anxious to hear from you again write as soon as you get this you will no doubt be settled for the winter by that time. I hope you will get in a good place and good wages. I wish Mr. McCullough would hire you for a year. Mr. Martin's brother-in-law made you a pretty good offer. $11.25 a month is not such bad wages taking the whole year round. Where is Charley Greenwood going if he leaves McCullough's? I though he had gone to war. We hear today that Rosecrans has been whipped -- bad news for us for every battle we lose prolongs the war just that much longer. Hope he has not been badly whipped.
I am very anxious to hear how the election has gone. I wish to know how many butter-nuts and traitors we have in Ohio. Give my love to all and write soon.
Wednesday, Oct. 21, 1863
Regiment came in from picket this morning. Orders to be ready to move in the morning if provision train comes in tonight.
Thursday, Oct. 22, 1863
Provision train did not get in and marching orders were countermanded. Received marching orders later tonight. We go in the morning.
Friday, Oct. 23, 1863
Rained last night and still raining this morning. Get up and dry our things out as best we can and march off in the rain. Rain and wind all day - very cold. Raymond Fenner nearly frozen - so are many others - myself included. Suppose we came 14 miles.
Saturday, Oct. 24, 1863
Off early this morning very cold but clear and the sun is shining. Wind blows quite strong yet. Came about 12 miles and went into camp near Opelousis, La.
Sunday, Oct. 25, 1863
Sun out but still cold. Harry Myers and I go out foraging and bring in a mess of potatoes.
Monday, Oct. 26, 1863
Pleasant today. Orders to be ready to march in the morning at seven o'clock. Reported we are to take the backward track.
Tuesday, Oct. 27, 1863
Sure enough we do take the backward route this morning. Pass a human skeleton some wretch had hung on a large tree by the roadside after sticking a hard-tack in its mouth. Marched twelve miles to where we camped last Friday night as we advanced. Companies B and E suddenly ordered to march - destination unknown. Newt Gorsuch, Ed McCoy, Harry Myers and I ordered to stay with the regiment.
Wednesday, Oct. 28, 1863
Day warm and pleasant. Spent the day in copying Sammy Risinger's diary (Co. C.)
Thursday, Oct. 29, 1863
Companies B and E came in about three o'clock this morning - they had been guarding a Catholic institution. Start at six o'clock this morning and march 14 miles - misting and raining all day. Came through Vermillionville. Large mail for us. Received letters from Lizzie, Uncle Caldwell Tidball and Dave Williams and two Republicans of October 1st and 8th.
Friday, Oct. 30, 1863
Lieut. Col. Kershner came back to the regiment last night. Start this morning at four o'clock and march 24 miles to New Iberia. Foot gave out today and I had to ride awhile - rode about seven miles and had my drum and knapsack hauled the rest of the way. Lieut. Boling and Warner Hall got back to the regiment. Lieut. Boling brought me two shirts, pair of socks and a pair of buckskin gloves from home. Had a long talk with Warner Hall about Millersburg folks.
Saturday, Oct. 31, 1863
Cold and clear in the forenoon, more pleasant in the afternoon. Trying to get a calf-skin to make a drum-head. Regiment mustered for pay.
|September, 1863||Linn Diary Index||16th OVI Home Page||November, 1863|