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Diary of Abram Stafford -- 1863

 

This is a transcription of the Diary of Abram Harrison Stafford of Chardon Ohio, the son of Reuben Stafford. Abram served in Company E of the 103rd Regiment of the Ohio Volunteer Infantry, 2nd Brigade 3rd Divison. The spelling of words have been kept but phrases have been grouped or put into sentences.

Michael Harrison Stafford
A great grandson

Thursday, January 1, 1863

P. Murray of Co E - Kennard.....T. Worthy of Co E - .....W. Brown...D? Handcock ....?Pumaroy ...B. Rump - Co B. September.

Friday, January 2, 1863

Charles Right K .. H. Bowdy ..A Furni ..Far

Saturday, January 3, 1863

Schlabach T ...P. Huntley ...K of W Derr ... H Pulfer E ...Keohe, K .... Corp Stevens - Second relief Co K. ... F Smiht ... G Thorn G ...R Woodard ...R Bates C 3 ...Barker D 2 ...Worthey 1 ... Chatman H

Sunday, January 4, 1863.

Weather rainey. Mooved out to the ferry. Crossed over in a vary poor boat it has sunk 5 or 6 times. It sunk this morning 5 men & a team of 6 mules lost. Gone into camp a short distance
from the River.

Monday, January 5, 1863.

Weather damp & cold - (I) was unwell last night. We have had a regular old shave in our tent today. I got my hare cut. I shaved my upper lip.

Tuesday, January 6, 1863.

Weather stormy. Still laying in camp.

Wednesday, January 7, 1863.

Weather is rainey & cold. We have to keep a big fire to keep warm. I washed today.

Thursday, January 8, 1863.

Weather cold and ground covered with about 2 inches of snow.

Friday, January 9, 1863.

Weather fine but cold. Snow still on the ground. We have drawed 7 pounds of crackers in 3 days when we aught to have drawde 126 lbs.

Saturday, January 10, 1863.

Weather clear & cold. Ice in the Holston makes it dangerous to ferry across. Too of our boys are out after forage. We have to go from 8 to 12 miles before anything can be bought. Today we
drawed 2/9 of a teacup full off meal.

Sunday, January 11, 1863.

Weather clear & cold. Thaws a vary little in the sun. Drue 2 thirds of a pint of meal. 2 Ohio calvary are to start home tomorow. On the 8 a Reb. spy was hung at Knoxville by a Lieutenant Dutton of the 2(nd) Ohio C.V.V.B. His name is Dix from Texas.

Monday, January 12, 1863.

Weather fine still laying in camp.

Tuesday, January 13, 1863.

Weather cold & bad. Still in cam in camp.

Wednesday, January 14, 1863.

Weather cold & grub vary short. Bought a little meal at 10 cents a quart & some bacon at .20.

Thursday, January 15, 1863.

Weather cold & orders to be ready to march at 7 O'clock tomorow morning.

Friday, January 16, 1863.

Weather wet and rainey. Started for Dandrig (Dandug?) at half past 8. Went 15 miles. The mud was very deep but 2 of the co (company) was up to stack arms at night. Isac Carpenter &
myself. There was also 3 sargeant. Other co was the same. It rained some through the day.

Saturday, January 17, 1863.

Weather cold nights & thawed days. We continued our march about 9 O'clock. Went 3 miles to an encampment. Rebs were pressed to close for camp so we were mooved out about 2
miles more making 5 miles.

Sunday, January 18, 1863.

Weather fine but cold. I was sick last night & can hardly get around yet mooved camp & went over to the Front. Pitched tents, but had to strike them in less than you think & go to the
front where they were a fighting.

Monday, January 19, 1863.

Weather cool. Commenced to retreat. Made but 2 1/2 miles all last night. Marched next day all day. Arrived within 3 miles off (of) strawberry plains. The mud was awful to behold. Horses & mules died by the hundreds.

Tuesday, January 20, 1863.

Weather last night rather windery. Snowed all night. Most started and went 2 miles beyond the plains. Staid all night.

Wednesday, January 21, 1863.

Weather fine but mud deep. It takes from 16 to 20 horces to draw them. Left camp this day. Came within 7 m. of Knoxville. (I) Was train guard.

Thursday, January 22, 1863

Weather cold. Left camp & came to Knoxville about 2 o'clock - had to draw one section of battery by hand, the rebels pressed us so hard. This is a great retreat in froint of gen Shep. A
boy aught to have done better.

Friday, January 23, 1863

Weather fine - laying over in town. Rations short & wood scarce to cook with. Wrote a letter to Mary.

Saturday, January 24, 1863

Weather fine - left camp at 10 o'clock, crossed the river to our old camp where we staid during the seag. I am not very well.

Sunday, January 25, 1863

Weather very fine. Washed some clothes. I think some live hanibles died. I never saw sutch fine weather in my life.

Monday, January 26,1863

Weather fine. Shlid out some slabs & fixed out tent.

Tuesday, January 27, 1863

Weather fine. Still laying in camp. Wrote a letter home to my folks.

Wednesday, January 28, 1863

Weather never was finer. Still laying in camp. A good deal of duty is still to be done. Rations are vary short or els not eny.

Thursday, January 29, 1863

Weather is fine - still laying in camp.

Friday, January 30, 1863

Weather a little rainey, but warm. I went out foragain. Citazens all scard to death - most all leaving their homes. I was within 1 mile of where Citazens said they saw them. Got 20 biskets for 5 cents. They were small but good.

Saturday, January 31, 1863

Weather fine. Grub vary short - one gets one meal a day and hardley that. Wrote a letter to Mary & also one to my folks.


Sunday, February 1, 1863

Rained this morning & untill about 9 o'clock then it cleared off & is fine weather as one could wish for - wrote a letter to Miss Truman.

Monday, February 2, 1863

Weather fine as one could wish. They have made a great stir about marching. Drue 3 days rations, one days of soft bread & 1 cup full of flour for 2 days. Order countermanded. Colonel Molford was in a tight place.

Tuesday, February 3, 1863

Weather fine but a little colder than comon (common). Last night it blowed (blew) vary (very) hard. A good meny (many) tents wer (were) blown down.

Wednesday, February 4, 1863

Weather fine but some what cold for East Teams. I am on gard (guard). Nothing going on of eny (any) moment.

Thursday, February 5, 1863

Weather cloudy. Went out & choped (chopped) 2 hours. Draw 5 ounces of meal for one day.

Friday, February 6, 1863

Weather lowery & looks like rain. Corn meal is worth 25 cents a quart this morning. Boys almost in a starving condition.

Saturday, February 7, 1863

Weather rainey (rainy) Co E have got to go out on picit. It makes the boys swear some & I can't blame them Mutch. Company H are out & have had a few shots with the rebs & got drove in. Old
Jack orderd (ordered) us to deploy & skirmish the woods over & find where they are. We saw none.

Sunday, February 8, 1863

Weather cleard (cleared). Rebs fiard into our Vydetts? & drove them in. After that all was quiet some of the boys wer (were) pretty nearvous (nervous) keeping their knapsacks on all night. I would see them in tofit? before I would keep my duds on all night.

Monday, February 9, 1863

Weather windy & rather cold. Went out on picit had rather cold.

Tuesday, February 10, 1863

Weather fine. All Quiet last night on Picit. Came in to camp got my breakfast of greace (grease) & cornmeal.

Wednesday, February 11, 1863

Weather fine but chilly. Wrote a letter to Mary. Received a pair of Socks yesterday by mail.

Thursday, February 12, 1863

Weather cloudy & rather cold. Had a shave. Expect to go on picit. Don't like it much for I think it will rain before tomorow.

Friday, February 13, 1863

Weather lowery unpromising. I am on Picit. This afternoon there was general inspection. This forenoon Old Jack gave us a small drill. He was well pleased so was the Colonel commanding
the Brig. I pressume some of the Picits will be attackted (attacked) tonight.

Saturday, February 14, 1863

Weather lowery. Rains a little. I am on a good ? by a barn so let it rain. Every thing was all quiet last night with exception of a single shot fiard (fired) by some nearvous (nervous) person. Have got relieved sooner than I expected. Gard (guard) mounting is to be in the morning.

Sunday, February 15, 1863

Weather bad. Rained most all night & still continues to rain. It lacks a quarter to 11 & I havent (haven't) commenced to get my breakfast yet. One would get wet through before the fiar (fire) would burn. It raines (rains) so hard we won't get enny (any) rations today if it don't stop.

Monday, February 16, 1863

Weather disagreeable. Wind blows a perfect gail. It is pretty cold. I have been down at the foot ot our hill to get out of the wind.

Tuesday, February 17, 1863

Weather vary (very) cold & no rations. Baught (bought) 5 lbs of flour at 14 cen a pound. We draw beaf with no fat on it.


No diary entries from Wednesday, February 18, 1863 to Sunday, August 16, 16, 1863.


Monday, August 17, 1863

Left Danville in the morning for Stanford. arrived there a little after noon. The day intencely hot. One died out of the 103. He was sunstroked. Out of the 44? - 15 died. There was 2 brigades in this force. A few died out of some of the other Reg(iments). Distance 15 m. This Baright today loss 50.

Tuesday, August 18, 1863

This day we laid in camp all day. Temperature about the same as the day previous. Water vary (very) scarce. A canteen full is worth 2 hours hard labor.

Wednesday, August 19, 1863

Marched from Stanford to Craborchard, distance 11 miles. Started on out journey about 4 O'Clock, arrived at camp 11 O'Clock all varry mutch fateauged for it vary hot & water was
scarce. This was what we needed for every breath drawed in more or less dust.

Thursday, August 20, 1863

Laid in camp all day & was Corp. of the gard. 5/6 of my Relief drunk at night. We had orders to put 2 days rations in haversack and be ready to march at 3 in the morn.

Friday, August 21, 1863

Started from Craborchard 4 O'clock AM. Arrived at camp at Duck Crick about 4 O'clock PM. This was a vary hard march we went vary slow in the morning but after it got vary hot we
marched fast with few halts - distance 17 m.

Saturday, August 22, 1863

Marched from duck crick about 4 in the morn - got to Sumerset about 11. Got a cup of tea & went to swim and crick. This was a hard march the teams dident get up with us untill 11. I took some mules & went for forage and sutch roads I never saw for ___ ___ 18 miles.

Sunday, August 23, 1863

Started from camp about 4 to build roads. Forded the river about noon - maid this day about 6 miles - water vary scarfiar(?).

Monday, August 24, 1863

This day we laid in camp untill 2 Oclock. Distance 10 miles this day. It rained dreadfull hard most all day. Rained through the night - road very rough - houses almost unknown.

Tuesday, August 25, 1863

Started from camp about 5 still continues to rain. Come to a big hill our Reg had to deploy & help the artillery & wagons up. This took untill 12. Then we went on 12 miles. The train was over 6 hundred wagons.

Wednesday, August 26, 1863

Started from camp about 5 - marched 20 miles over vary larg hills or the spurs of the Cumberland mountains - got into camp before sundown today and washed the first time for two days - our
camp is in Tenn - the people are just as ignorant as can be - land worth $1 an a.

Thursday, August 27, 1863

Drawed rations and left camp about 8 - marched about 2 miles & went into camp again. Caughed up with the first brigade. Rained vary hard this afternoon - went out foraging for the mules.

Friday, August 28, 1863

I was in camp all day - drawed rations - 4 crackers for 2 days - rained today vary hard.

Saturday, August 29, 1863

Got up 4 Oclock - started about 6 - marched about 20 miles - yet we are not as near Foxville(?) as we were yesterday - we have taken a roundabout way - the direct road being blockaded. It is
one year today that I have seen home.

Sunday, August 30, 1863

Got up about 4 & got ready to move - Started about 12 - marched 12 miles - very dusty & rations all gone - got into camp after dark. Jack told us where there was some corn. This was all I had for supper.

Monday, August 31, 1863

Got up about 4 - marched 5 1/8 - had corn for breakfast. Drawed 4 crackers for 2 days. Could have ate them all at one meal.


Tuesday, September 1, 1863

Broke camp at 11 Oclock - left all of our dunage except our blankets - drawed 2 days rations.

Wednesday, September 2, 1863

Broke camp at poperler crick - marched 8 m - hot & dusty - drawed 8 days rations - making ten days in all - had to carry them in our napsacks.

Thursday, September 3, 1863

Warm and dusty. Broke camp at 8 Oclock - marched 12 miles- 2 O.V.G. & 2 Illinois Battery attached to our brigade.

Friday, September 4, 1863

Marched 6 m - encamped at Linoire Station Camp in a old Reb camp - dusty as can be - camp on Noxvill & Chantanuga R.R.

Saturday, September 5, 1863

Our train came up with our tents - commenced to build oversee & lay the railroad track where our men tore up to stop the rebs from running off with the cars.

Sunday, September 6, 1863

Orders to march at 8 - marched 8 miles to Concord - went down to a crick - had a wash & som mellons to eat.

Monday, September 7, 1863

Went out with the wagons after forage - Or Gates & I got a bushell of apples - got a good supper for 25 - got to camp after dark - found the reg all ready to moove - shouldered my plunder &
started for the Depot - stoped at Huntsville.

Tuesday, September 8, 1863

Took the cars at 10 Oclock for the state line of Via union - centiment vary strong - met some of the Dead and wounded of the 100 Reg on the road - the ladies of Greenville treated us to lots
of grub whitch was good for we had fasted a while.

Wednesday, September 9, 1863

Hurd that the 100 had a fight & all gobbled - mooved on vary slow? - found the tressell work burned - fixed it & went on - came to where the Brig was burned - got off & went 5 miles - got
within sight of rebs - they were to many so we retreated - they wer 17 hundred.

Thursday, September 10, 1863

Encamped at lick crick - Brig went on Picit - came back to greenvill on the train - all quiet - it dous us good to see the shines the Citazens cut up - went on gard.

Friday, September 11, 1863

News that Cumberland gap was taken - nothing to read not mutch grub.

Saturday, September 12, 1863

Drawed rations of flower & nothing els - don't know what we will do with it - perhaps eat it raw.

Sunday, September 13, 1863

Citazens are enlisting - 80 came from North Carlina - Old Jack is commander of the Post & is organizing Regs.

Monday, September 14, 1863

On picit on the Rogerville road - plenty of grub but no change to buy with. Reg drawed up in line of battle. Rebs reported to be within 3 m - all quiet on the picit post - milked a cow - had some bread and milk for supper.

Tuesday, September 15, 1863

We didn't get relieved from Picit untill night. Saw an old Veteran Soldier with 4 fritefull scars shot through the shoulder a tomyhawk gash on the same a bayonet thrust in the side an arrow
wound in the right limb bone all came out.

Wednesday, September 16, 1863

Got a pass? & went down town to get my watch fixed - got a good dinner for 50.

Thursday, September 17. 1863

On the 23 (Sept) we were on the advance of every thing - we wer within musket shot of their forts - they threw some shells - they whised quite merily - they didn't know where to direct their shots at us. One man shot himself in our Reg - he will probably die - he has a wife and family of 5 children.

Friday, September 18, 1863

On gard - rained pretty hard during the night.

Saturday, September 19, 1863

Weather vary cold - fixed up our tent with boards & straw. Broke about 2 Oclock - got abord of the cars & took our leave of Greenville. Went about 6 m to a Brig we are agoing to build it
up again - pitched out tents in the woods.

Sunday, September 20, 1863

One of the teamsters came down to the company to get a hand to go out & help him forage. I went with him. We went to the foot of Smokey mountains or Blue ridge - got a load of Reb corn - picked a few sweet potatoes & bigger ones I never saw. Got to camp, the Reg all gone took my duds & followed - went 20 miles to Jonesburrough - left at 3 got there about 10 Oclock.

Monday, September 21, 1863

Got up at 4 - started after the Rebs - marched about 8 or 9 miles - formed in line of battle & stoped. Could hear the enimy firing - this made us anksious to go on during the night. We
could hear musketry & canonading. Hungry as could be - draw nothing but flour & havent for the last week no way of cooking.

Tuesday, September 22, 1863

Got some fresh meet (meat) and one or two biskets a piece - cooked the meet and ate a few hard apples. This was a feast. Our camp was at Parsons depot - left about 10 Oclock - went about
3 miles - formed in line of battle & marched up and down a mountain - it was almost pirpondicular too. Laid there untill dark marched out & deploid alond in front of their fortif - rest (of this) on Sept 17 (page).

Wednesday, September 23, 1863

Rebs have evacuated - burned their block house & Brig - sot them on fiar about 3 Oc in the morning. We have drawed back about 3/4 m. A few deserters came in - they had about 6000 men & 11 peices of artillery - there was seviral men a dying around the fields- dead eight laid out - left camp about 8 marched 12 m.

Thursday, September 24, 1863

Arived at Jonesboro about 2 in the morn. Broke camp about 6 marched 20 m back to Henderson Station - roads vary dusty & no rations - news has just come that Rosey is whiped & we are now
going to reinforce him hence the reason of our taking the back track. We have not drawed rations for a long time to amount to anything.

Friday, September 25, 1863

Broke camp 6 Oc - went to Greenvill - distance 8 miles - stoped on our old camp grounds - staid round untill night - pitched our tents for the night - the first time for a long time. The news is now that we are agoing to stay here - the 8 Ten Reg is disbanded for 3 days - they are most all going home.

Saturday, September 26, 1863

Clear and cold - two of our companies went down to Henderson Station to gard the mill and depot. Been out foragin - got some apples.

Sunday, September 27, 1863

On Picit - had a good time - lots of people coming through to avoid the Rebs. Report is that the rebs are advancing & Gen Carter falling back - Reb force reported to be from 10 to 20,000
strong - dont know how many there is our force - cant be over 4 or 5,000.

Monday, September 28, 1863

Weather warm & dusty - went out foragin - we got some apples - went to meeting in the evening - our chaplain preached - he done vary well. Rebs are within 6 miles of us. Carter still falling back.

Tuesday, September 29, 1863

Still laying in camp - Rebs still close by - report just come in that the Rebs have us surounded but I don't see it. I have been to meeting - some pretty girls there.

Wednesday, September 30, 1863

Broke camp at 2 Oc in the morning - marched 15 miles to lick crick Brig, the citazens are all leaving their homes - some are enlisting but they are of no good at present. We drawed up in
line - the rebs thought it was to fight - they broke & ran for the woods. Rested untill dark - marched 6 m to Bulls gap - we are surounded by the Rebs.


Thursday, October 1, 1863

Rained all day - tents leak like a riddle - got soping wet - went foragin - got some sweet potatoes & liked to have got bobled by the gards but was too sharp for them. There is some splendid
seenry here but sutch seenry is getting plaid out - there is nothing but hills & mt around here.

Friday, October 2, 1863

Still in camp - passed a miserable night - blankets all wet - had to lay on a piece of ground about 2 feet square - had some sweet potatoes & salt for breakfast - salt and sweet potatoes for dinner.

Saturday, October 3, 1863

Out on picit - rather dry times - killed one pig & a sheep or else we should have to go hungry.

Sunday, October 4, 1863

Laid in camp all day - drawed rations at night. Our rations are not quite half rations.

Monday, October 5, 1863

Broke camp about 3 in the morn - marched out 9 miles to Blue Springs to where the 6th army was. Co A & D wer sent out as skirmachers - they advanced but a short distance before they fell
in with the enimy. They fell back in the center - the right & left keeping their posich. Our Boys saw their boys & fell back. They faught 1/2 hour. Loss Co A 6 killed 4 Co D 3 wounded. Cos P & E were ordered out to their relief but a few shell from one of our batteries made them run. The Rebs had 2 Regs in the engagement - they have a strong posis (position?). Got back to our old camp about 9 at night.

Tuesday, October 6, 1863

Laid in camp all day - grub short.

Wednesday, October 7, 1863

Commenced to rain about 8 Oclock - cold & dreary weather - rained all day.

Thursday, October 8, 1863

Laid in camp & ate short rations. Some of the 1st army corps came in on the railroad. France came to camp - been gone from his Co 1 year. He was picked up and sent back. Mott has
got back - left us just as we started over the mountains - been home but was gobled & sent back.

Friday, October 9, 1863
Cold & dreary. More reinforcements from the 1st corps. Went out (east?) foragain - got a peck of potatoes. Wouldnt have had nothing to if I hadnt. Rations all plaid out.

Saturday, October 10, 1863

Broke camp 8 Oc - marched 10 miles - fetched up in front of the Rebs. Sharp fiering in the front - went on a double quick 1 mile. This brought us betwixt the enimy & our batteries - the shell came bussing around in fine stile - some came vary close. Oficers & men all laid down. Shells looked butifull when they bursted. Night came and stoped all fight. Marched around to take a new posish - run us into the Reb picite - backed out & came around in another place within a few rods of them again. Laid there all night in the (snow?).

Sunday, October 11, 1863

They were all gone - started after them about 9 Oclock - marched 20 m - stoped - grub all plaid out. Colonel (Foster?) in their rear but couldnt hold them. Blame laid to him.

Monday, October 12, 1863

Revallee 5 Oclock (got out?) had some squash for breakfast. Same last night for supper. Went out - got a few apples waiting for grabs - dead Rebs lay all around here in the lots. It was here Col Foster fought them.

Tuesday, October 13, 1863

Pleasant. Today we voted. I voted for John Brough - drawed rations - 1 1/2 crackers for 3 days. Our camp is near Raytown - everything looks dreary around here. Boys went out foragain -
got 2 sheep & one pig.

Wednesday, October 14, 1863

Broke camp at sunrise - marched 13 miles - stoped at Stewarts Hill - went out foragain but couldnt (beg?) eny thing - got some straw - rains a little.

Thursday, October 15, 1863

Warm & pleasant - cant leave camp - under strict orders.

Friday, October 16, 1863

Washed clothes & wrote a letter to Mary. Weather pretty cold.

Saturday, October 17, 1863

Weather fine - Corpr Gates & I went after chestnuts - got all we could eat.

Sunday, October 18, 1863

Weather stormy. I was on gard but didnt get wet. Wrote to Susan.

Monday, October 19, 1863

Weather fine - wrote a letter home - sent it by C. W. Mead who started for home with 8 other comish & noncomish. Went after some persimonds - got all I could eat. Went out foragain in the
afternoon - got 2 loves off bread & a canteen full of molasses.

Tuesday, October 20, 1863

Had orders to march at 6 Oc - struck our tents but did not go. Went & got some persimonds to eat.

Wednesday, October 21, 1863

Rained most all day. O. M. Gates & I went out & cut down a persimond tree - got our fill. Gates feels bad tonight - he has lost his girls photograph. I dont know but his heart will break.

Thursday, October 22, 1863

Got orders to move. Broke camp at 1 Oc - marched 12 ms - stoped for the night on an old Rebs farm. He had a fine lot of apples. The boys all went for them.

Friday, October 23, 1863

Broke camp 7 Oc - marched 2 mi to (Watauga?) River - took up a posish opisit the ferry - staid untill 5 Oc - it has rained most all day & all of the night. At 5 we started back for our old camp through mud & rain - such marching never was seen. We had to ford lots of small streams - went 14 miles without a halt - got back at 9 Oc. This was a tuff time.

Saturday, October 24, 1863

Got up about 8 - still a raining - self & blankets all wet - shoes & socks all full of mud - fixed them uo as best I could & went on gard. Rained some through the night. Had orders to be ready to march at an hours notice - news has come that old (Tigram? is making a raid in Ky - bully for him.

Sunday, October 25, 1863

Ratther cold & wet - washed some clothes so as to be ready for a march - wrote a letter to Mary.

Monday, October 26, 1863

Laid around camp all day - am not vary well. Rained for most the day.

Tuesday, October 27, 1863

Got a (pass?) & went out after something to eat - got a loaf of bread. Rained about half of the day - pretty well tiard out when I got back.

Wednesday, October 28, 1863

We got up at 12 to march but didnt start untill 8 Oc - marched about 18 miles - was vary unwell - got a pass from the Captain & fell out - stoped to a houce - got into a bed for the first time since I left home. Laid about 2 hours - heard so many teams go past - thaught I would see what was up - found the last Reg off Cavelry passing.

Thursday, October 29, 1863

Laid in camp all day. Wrote a letter to Mary.

Friday, October 30, 1863

Broke camp at 10 1/2 Oc. Marched 14 miles. Boys all out off grub - a good many fell out. I am not vary well. Rained vary hard during the night - weather vary dubious.

Saturday, October 31, 1863

Left on a wild goos chace about 11 - left knapsacks. Went out to Colonel Bottles Funeral. We supposed there would be some Rebs at his grave but they had left as soon as they braught him
the night before. He was a good looking man - his wife took on deadfull. Got back just at sundown. Distance 18 miles.


Sunday, November 1, 1863

Weather vary pleasant - went out hunting persimonds this afternoon. They put on a Brigade camp gard of 150 men - I was corperal. It was a whale off a relief - it was one mile around - the Boys did yell like demonds. Colonel Hoskins tried to stop them but it was no go.

Monday, November 2, 1863

Weather pleasant - was mustered for 2 months more pay. Grub vary short - had nothing to eat for 2 meals - was some hungry.

Tuesday, November 3, 1863

Got marching orders - laid around untill about 2 Oclock - went 15 miles to Hendersons station - cooked a couple of chickens & backed (baked?) some pancakes? for supper. Laid down untill 2
in the morning - loaded up the mules wagons & horces by daylight.

Wednesday, November 4, 1863

Started from Hendersons station about 6 - got through to Knoxville about 6 Oclock - distance 81 miles. Laid around untill dark then marched to camp - distance 2 miles. Made 83 miles this day.

Thursday, November 5, 1863

Weather rainy & bad - pitched our tents - rains still looks as though it would rain all day. Some off our clothing has come - the Boys need it vary bad.

Friday, November 6, 1863

Mooved camp. We are now on the banks off the Holston river. Our colonel has laid out the grounds for our winter quarters. Got marching orders about 1 Oc. This made the Boys swear most
terible - tride to keep us up all night - but I turned in.

Saturday, November 7, 1863

Our Boys got whiped - the 2 Tenn & one Battery was taken. We are still under marching orders - if they hadnt off braught us back thay wouldnt have sutch a hall (haul?) without more blood
being spild. Wrote a letter to Mary.

Sunday, November 8, 1863

I am on gard - it is vary cold & blustering.

Monday, November 9, 1863

Mooved camp to a ceader grove & closter to the river - commenced to put up winter quarters. We have no axes to work with that are worth a having.

Tuesday, November 10, 1863

Still working at our house - getting along first rate.

Wednesday, November 11, 1863

Went on picit - was on duty at the Ferry - the night was intencely cold. We had to send a detail to work on the ford off 100 men.

Thursday, November 12, 1863

Came off picit & wrote a letter to Mary & helped the Boys on the shanty.

Friday, November 13, 1863

Received 2 letters - one from home & one from Mary - have been working vary hard today & am vary tiard.

Saturday, November 14, 1863

Weather cool - worked on our house. Had orders to strike tents 7 get ready for a march. Laid around all day. I was on gard at night - night dark as pitch.

Sunday, November 15, 1863

Went to work at our houses - worked at them untill about noon when an order came to fall in & march. Amediatelly we came out 1 mile in front & stoped to support Wilders Battery. The Rebs drawed? in all off our mounted men - gobled most all off the (11?) Ky Reg - came near doing the same to the 45? Ohio but our Battery opened on them & made them run. The day ended with quite
a sharp battle.

Monday, November 16, 1863

Had revalee at 4 Oc but the ball didnt open untill about 12 Oclock - when it opened quite smart. The rebs tride to out flank us but our artillery put a stop to that. The fight lasted about 4 hours. We went out after our dead & wounded. The Rebs had striped them off all their cloths. They liked to cut off a lieutennants finger to get his ring. Our Co was out on picit last night.

Tuesday, November 17, 1863

Came in from Picit about 8 oclock - the ball opened about 9 Oclock. They fit unceiceingly untill night - both sides were stubborn & almost unyealding. They fought for the crest of a hill for hours - charge after charge was made on both sides but our men regained what they lost. We could see them plainly - they wer on the other side of the R (river?).

Wednesday, November 18, 1863

There is a dence fog but it is clearing up. The Ball has just opened up while I have been writing. They have opened vary briskley. They have keped up a continual fiar all day. The loss must have been heavy on both sides for skirmaching. They say our boys took 600 prisoners today. Mooved our posish up to the fort which is only partley done.

Thursday, November 19, 1863

They attacked us about the same as usual - skirmished most off the day. Artillery was used on both sides to a considerable extent. We are at work hard fortifying - we work night and day. You can hear musketry eny time off the day or night - if you listen. General Saunders died today from wounds received yesterday.

Friday, November 20, 1863

A dence fog is over the land but it will disapear in a few hours. They have took advantage off the fog & advanced their lines up clost to ours but our Boys made them fall back when the fog cleared. They are building fortifications. They have surrounded us - our only hope is to fight.

Saturday, November 21, 1863

Woke up in rather an uncomfertable posish - blankets all wet for it has rained all night & still continues to rain - but it doesnt seam to check the fighting. We still continue to work. Burnside had eleven or 12 houses burned today - the rebel sharp shooters got in them. We had to make a charg to do it. It caused some canonarding.

Sunday, November 22, 1863

Weather pleasant but cold - we are still working on our fortifications - work night & day. Skirmaching continues every day - ends with the loss off some off our brave Boys. A large fiar is ragain over in town - if they continue to burn it up every night it wont last long.

Monday, November 23, 1863

Weather fine - raised a flag on our fort. Gen Shacleford was over - he made a short speach. He thinks we are good for them - had the whole Brigage drue up in line. We cheard a little - then an order came to march out in front to recieve the enimy but they didnt come.

Tuesday, November 24, 1863

Weather rainy & cold - marched out in front to receive the enamy. It is vary dreary to stand out in the wet all night - skimished a little with them. They have poseshion off a vary large hill & have planted a battery there. One meal a day is all we get.

Wednesday, November 25, 1863

Weather pleasent - went out to relieve the 24 Ky on picit - they were then skirmaching. The 24 left their posts before they was relieved. The rebs thought we were arunning & charged on us. The Boys backed off a few rods but ralled & faught them for about 2 hours - charged them & drove them under the cover off their guns while they opened on us. Our lofe (loss) was about 100 -
our reg was 12. The Rebs lost more than us by consi(derable).

Thursday, November 26, 1863

Weather cold but clear. Co E was on picit last night standing 4 hours at a time. There was a brigade off men on both sides engaged yesterday. A Reb Lieu that was captured said they never was licked before. Our company has been skirmaching with them all day - each man had a tree & it was hot work to leave it.

Friday, November 27, 1863

Weather clear but cold - laid around in the woods part off the time. Night before last - they had us diging most all night on rifle fire. This morning we were at it again but we worked under difaculties - the reb sharpshooters has us under short range. This was disagreeable - we came back to camp & rested for the night.

Saturday, November 28, 1863

Weather rainy & cold laid around camp untill noon - then we wer ordered out in picit. This made the Boys grumble for they had no grub off eny kind. We went into rifle fite under fiar off the rebs guns but as good luck would have it none off us was hit. The bullets whised around all day - one or too wer hit with spent ball.

Sunday, November 29, 1863

Weather vary cold. Last night the Rebs made a charge with 4 brigades. They stubed their toes against some wier that was fixed for the purpose & fell head long into the entrenchments. Our boys lit shell & threw them amonkest them with their hands. They lost 600 killed & wounded - 700 prisoners - making in all 1300. Our lofe (loss) was 3 killed - 10 wounded - this was a hard charge for them.

Monday, November 30, 1863

Weather cold. Every thing seames quiet - only now & then a cannon breaks the stillness of the morning. Mooved camp. We have got a new hill to fortyfy.


Tuesday, December 1, 1863

Weather clear & cold. We are at work fortifkying our new posish - grub vary short - we get half rations of corn meal. The rebs are closing in on us every day. They are now inside off our
first intrenchments. They creep up like old age - slow but shure. Gates & me had a light supper - we had a pint of sasafras tea.

Wednesday, December 2, 1863

Weather fine yet a cold wind continues to blow. We have drawed rations - we got a pint & one half for 2 mens rations off unbolled meal.

Thursday, December 3, 1863

Weather vary pleasent. Gates & myself have been washing. We washed all off our cloths still working at our fortyfications - reinforcements reported to be close at hand.

Friday, December 4, 1863

Weather fine. We have got reinforcements today - the 195th(?) V Ohio came in besides some other troops. They wer all cavelry but on account off ___ horces but 1100 came in. Large
reinforcements of infantry are coming.

Saturday, December 5, 1863

Weather rainy. The Rebs left last night - I dont know but they will all get away but I hope not. Cap has been over town & saw some off the Reb oficers. He said in the fite of the 25(th) they had picked men from 4 Brigades forming 2 off the same. They all said we faught more like devils than like men - said they never saw men fight so.

Sunday, December 6, 1863

Weather cold - wrote a letter to Mary. We expected to get our pay but didnt. Our living is mosty parched? corn - we draw one meal a day from Goverment. Order has come for us to be ready
to march at 5 1/2 Oc.

Monday, December 7, 1863

Weather vary cold. Drawed 5 days rations whitch consisted of 9? crackers in all. Started about 6 Oc - marched over to Knoxville - there had to wait untill about noon. Marched 12 miles - incamped after dark. We forded the river - it was waist deep - it was no fun.

Tuesday, December 8, 1863

Weather vary cold. Roads froze hard - started on out line of march about sunrise this day. I slid on ice - marched 10 miles had to cross the river again - encamped in a ceader grove.

Wednesday, December 9, 1863

Weather moderate. Took up our line off march about sunrise - marched 14 m. Boys most all out off grub or nearly all. It is vary hard marching. Our camp was near Rutlig. The cuntry was
draned off everything.

Thursday, December 10. 1863

Weather cold. The 103 was ordered back to Strawbery Plains - came back in one day - distance 20 miles. It was mudy & the Boys had no grub. Cap Philpote was in command. He braught in
about 50 of the hole Reg in our co. We had an ordaly, one sargent, 1 private & myself. Some didnt have someny (so many?).

Friday, December 11, 1863

Weather somewhat moderated. Went out foragain - paid .50 for 12 Buiskets. Got back to camp had to go out on picit - enamy in a few miles. Had a chicken for supper - have a hou(se?) to
stay in & am writing this by fiar light.

Saturday, December 12, 1863

Weather fine - came in from picit. They are working on the Brig at strawbery plains. It seams we have stoped drawing rations. We havent drue eny for some time.

Sunday, December 13, 1863

Weather cold. The paymaster has come to pay us off. We have been paid. I got a little over $61.00. We got 4 months pay & our clothing bill settled - some of the boys drue 40.00 more
that they wer allowed - others 20 & 30. I had 9.00 a coming to me. We are a going to send it home by a state agent.

Monday, December 14, 1863

Weather cold - it rained all night last night. I am on picit at the Acadamy. The wind blowe vary cold. There is a splendid bell here & the Boys are making it break the stillness off the morning air. Jim Maple went our & got some buiskets. They are 25 C a dosen - they will make one mouthful a piece.

Tuesday, December 15, 1863

Weather pleasent - came in from picit - found 3 letters for me - one from Mary, one from home, one from Susan. I sat down & commenced to answer them but orders came to moove. We struck
tents & started about 4 Oc - marched 10 miles to Blains crossroads without a rest - through the mud - staid there all night.

Wednesday, December 16, 1863

Weather cold & windy - laid around untill 4 Oc - had orders to moove out to the front. Our forces are falling back all the time. We took up our posish in a ploud lot with the rest off our brigade. The weeds are as tall as ones head. I saw Will Churchill - he was well & tuff or looked so. Sent my money home. I sent $50.00 - this makes 155.00.

Thursday, December 17, 1863

Weather terrible - it rained all night last night & the mud here is about knee deep. The enamy is on the advance. We are a going to move our camp into the woods.

Friday, December 18, 1863

Weather very cold & it froze pretty hard. We are enveloped is a cloud off smoke. It hurts our eyes teribly - so much that I cant see to write more than a moment to time.

Saturday, December 19, 1863

Weather still continues vary cold - still laying in camp. We draw 7 ounce off corn meal a day or the same off flour. Our beaf is so poor that one cant get a speck off fat. There isnt a bit on the kidney.

Sunday, December 20. 1863

Weather cold & freazing. I wrote a letter home. I was up to the 104 - saw Will Churchill. Our Brigade is reported unfit for duty on acount of poor cloths.

Monday, December 21, 1863

Weather still the same. Gates went out foragain - got a pane of corn Bread. We have put in for some cloths but dont know when they will come.

Tuesday, December 22, 1863

Weather vary cold as yet. Colonel James Stearling has just come back to the Reg. I dont know wheather he will stay or not. The Boys gave him 3 good harty chears.

Wednesday, December 23, 1863

Weather eather rather cold or rather chearlefe. Co E ordered on picit just at night. It has thaughed a little in the sun.

Thursday, December 24, 1863

Weather still the same - are still on picit. Lots off the Boys are going out foragain. Hark what is it that brakes the stillness off the morning. It is the booming of artillery - our cavelry are out in front & have found the enamy. I had better do up my things. We may be called to the front.

Friday, December 25, 1863

Today is Christmas - the weather is cloudy but not very cold. For a dinner I had some cornmeal slapjacks - bully for them. I received an old letter from Mary - happy day this.

Saturday, December 26, 1863

Weather rainy - it has rained a good share of the time. All quiet in camp. I saw a few apples today for sale. They asked .25 cents a piece. I tried to get some but couldent get to them in time.

Sunday, December 27, 1863

Weather rainy - got orders to get our breakfast quickley. Got orders to strike tent about 8 Oclock - left camps at 2 Oclock. Still raining - mud over shoe most every step. Marched 8 m - stops in the woods. Still raining - nothing to eat but meat. Lots of the Boys fell out to forage & take short naps.

Monday, December 28, 1863

Weather fine - got orders to be ready to moove at 7 Oc. Marched out at 7 1/2 - marched about 3 miles to Strawbery plains - went into camp. Cap Filpot made some awfull blunders - so much
that Col Camdron commanding Brigade asked promishion to take command for a few moments - which he did.

Tuesday, December 29, 1863

Weather fine - we have polieced out camp. Things look as thought we wer agoing to stay a few days. At least I am mending my blouce - it will soon be all patches - what aint holes.

Wednesday, December 30, 1863

Weather fine - still in camp. The nights are getting pretty cold. We have just received orders to get ready amediately for a march with 2 days cooked rations in haversack. I know there isent 2 days rations for one man in the hole company.

Thursday, December 31, 1863

Weather rainy and growing cold. Drawd one cracker for 2 days. I think my new years dinner will come out rather slim. Wrote home. Gave .05 for an ear of corn - it was all I could get to eat today with the exception of the cracker.

This diary has been donated to the Geauga County Ohio USGenWeb project by Mike Stafford . Copyright 2000 by Mike Stafford and Alice Allen.


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Diary of Abram Stafford -- January-June, 1864

Diary of Abram Stafford -- July-March 4, 1864