Sunday, September 30, 2012

Diary of Alexander G. Downing: Sunday, December 8, 1861

Reveille sounded this morning at 2 o’clock. We jumped out of our bunks, packed our knapsacks, and got started for the railroad station by daylight. As we left the barracks and entered the main street leading down to the city, the sun away to the southeast, just above the hills, showed its face — a regular ball of fire. How glorious it was! I think I shall never forget it. Arriving at the railroad yards, we stacked arms and went to loading our commissariat onto the cars — coal cars. At noon we boarded the train for Jefferson City, riding in box-cars and open cars, and reached our destination at 6 p. m.

While loading our train at St. Louis, we heard the church bells calling the people to worship. It made many of us think of home and I wonder if the folks at home were thinking of us boys here at the seat of war. For here there is no church for us, and when we get orders to go, there is no stopping for Sunday.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 22

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