On Christmas my wife's cousins, Lieutenant Nelson and privates Ed and Ike Cook and Jim McKell1 dined with me; all of Company D, Eighty-ninth Regiment. A. M. of that day the regiment fired by battalion and file. P. M. I offered a turkey to the marksman who would hit his head, and a bottle of wine and a tumbler to next best shot, and a bottle of wine to third best. A bright, warm day and a jolly one — a merry Christmas indeed.
[The] 26th and 27th, mild days and cloudy but only a few drops of rain. Dr. Kellogg spent the 26th with us — surgeon on General Scammon's staff. Talked free-thinking talk with him in a joking vein. A clever gentleman. Major Carey stopped [the] 27th with us — of the Twelfth. Told a good one; the Thirty-fourth got a good lot of lumber; put a sentinel over it. After dark the Twelfth got up a relief — relieved the Thirty-four sentinel and carried off the lumber!
1 Willie McKell. He died at Andersonville 1864. — This written on margin by Mr. Hayes.
SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 380