Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Diary of Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes: Tuesday, May 17, 1864

Rained last night of course. Camp at Alderson's Ferry on Centreville road; very wet. Ordered to send a regiment to Union to report to General Averell. Sent five companies from Colonel Duval's command [and] five companies of Twenty-third, all under Lieutenant-Colonel Comly; Major Adney also went with [the] Thirty-sixth companies, [and] Dr. Barrett, surgeon. I don't believe the enmy is in force near Union. All busy with a small ferry-boat getting over wagons, etc.; horses and mules swim. General Crook and staff all at work, clubbing mules into the river. Considerable quantities of corn, etc., got here. Corn in the ear issued to men. Some parch, some boil, some pound up. Regular rations all gone long ago. A prodigious rain-storm about noon; no escape from the flood of falling and running water. The river we are crossing fell two feet last night. This will fill it booming full again.

We are now nearly three weeks without news from the outside or inside world. Great movements have taken place, we know, but “with us or with our foes,” we can't answer. The Rebels we see seem to have heard news which they construe in their own favor, but there is no elation of feeling as we would expect if they had met with decided success. We are so absorbed in our own fate that the more important operations of Grant do not fill us with anxiety.

Lieutenant Hamlin, Thirty-sixth, goes with twenty-two men, three seregants, etc., on Centreville Road.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 460-1

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