"Who is this that looks forth like the dawn, fair as the moon, bright as the sun, terrible as an army with banners?"

Friday, November 2, 2012

Sunday November 2, 1862. Uncomfortably warm.

"Sunday 2d. Uncomfortably warm. Cannonading heard in the direction of Centreville." ~ Joseph Spafford,  1st Lieutenant, Sixteenth Regiment, Company E, Letter, November 9, 1862

" Three soldiers were taken severely sick yesterday, supposed to have been poisoned by pedlars who are hanging about our camp. Several have been arrested and, if found guilty of such a devilish purpose, will be shot.
"This ground has not been used for a camp before, and to-day the regiment are busily engaged in clearing off the rubbish.
"We hear that McClellan is preparing for a battle on the Upper Potomac, and troops are being rapidly sent forward from this department. The order to march to Hunting Creek has been so modified, as to embrace only the 12th and 13th regiments, these only having first class arms. The other regiments are waiting an exchange of guns, when they will be sent forward."  ~ John C. Williams,  14th Regiment, Life in Camp:... a history of the Fourteenth  21.

"I had a luxury today. I got up at 7 o’clock and took my pail, basin, sponge, and towel and went about 3/4ths of a mile to a fine spring, got a pail of water, and then a few rods off in the middle of a thousand acre lot, with scores around me doing the same thing. I stripped and gave myself a thorough washing. I tell you the water did not feel half as chilly as it does in the chamber. It felt warm and good not a pimple was raised and then the walk back to quarters with my basin, etc, in one hand and twelve quart pail of water in the other gave me a glow that I have felt all day. I never so enjoyed a washing in my life, but then I should never think of doing such a thing at home.

"After breakfast I inspected the entire regiment, dress, arms, equipment, clothing, tents, kitchens, cooking utensils, etc. It took me three and half hours and I worked smartly.  Gen. Baxter was in camp today. He rode past we while I was inspecting my regiment, so I could only bow to him. 

"Today heavy cannonading in the direction of Centerville and Thoroughfare Gap has been heard almost continuously. There is a fighting in that direction and smoke.  More than 30,000 troops have moved from the vicinity of Chain Bridge in that direction today".Lt. Col. Charles Cummings, Sixteenth Regiment, Letter No. 3. November 2, 1862

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