Showing posts with label Pontoons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pontoons. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Captain Charles Wright Wills: November 26, 1864 – 12 p.m.

Eight miles east of Oconee River, three miles south of M. & S. R. R.
November 26, 1864, 12 p.m. 

Howard wrote Osterhaus a letter congratulating him on the success in the Griswoldville fight, and had it published to us to-day.
 

HEADQUARTERS DEPT. AND ARMY of THE TENNESSEE.,

GoRDON, GA., November 23d, 1864.

 

Mayor General Osterhaus, Com'dg 15th Corps:


             General:

I take sincere pleasure in congratulating the Brigade of General Walcutt, of General Wood's Division of the 15th Corps, on its complete sucess in the action of yesterday.

 

Officers from other commands who were looking on say that there never was a better brigade of soldiers.

 

I am exceedingly sorry that any of our brave men should fall, and for the suffering of the wounded, the thanks of the army are doubly due to them.

 

I tender my sympathy through you to the brave and excellent commander of the brigade, Brigadier General Walcutt.

 

It is hoped that his wound will not disable him.

 

Very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

O. O. HOWARD,

Major General.

 

P. S. The loss of the enemy is estimated from 1,500 to 2,000 killed, wounded, and prisoners. O. O. H., M. G.

We lay in camp until 4 p.m., when we started, and after three miles of miserable pine swamp we crossed the Oconee on pontoons. It was dark, but I noticed that the current was rapid and the water looked deep. 

I counted 80 steps on the bridge and ten boats under it. I am sure that I to-day saw palm-leaf fan material growing. It is a most singular looking plant. The country this side of the river to our camp is quite level and four-fifths cultivated. All the woods pine, and soil all sand. 

SOURCE: Charles Wright Wills, Army Life of an Illinois Soldier, p. 326-7

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Letter from G., May 13, 1864

BELLE PLAIN, VA., May 13, 1864.

On the S. C. boat, pulling up to the shore Government flatboats of horses and cavalry recruits. There are no docks and the army supplies are being landed from barges connected by pontoons with the shore. A constant stream of contrabands passing with bags of grain and barrels of pork on their shoulders. Dr. Douglas and Dr. Agnew are here. Good Dr. Cuyler is here. Senator Pomeroy is on board going down to bring up General Bartlett of Massachusetts who went into the fight with a Palmer leg and was wounded again. Col. —— tells me there has been great anxiety at the War Department. Mr. Stanton said to him, “When we have a victory the whole North shall know it.”—“And when there is silence?” said Col. ——. “Then,” said the Secretary, “there is no communication with the front.” We have a Feeding-Station on shore and are putting up another two miles away, on the hill, where ambulance trains halt sometimes for hours, owing to obstructions in the road. The mud is frightful and the rain is coming on again. We are directed to take the return train of ambulances for Fredericksburg.

Just as I finished, the train from Fredericksburg arrived. Nothing I have ever seen equals the condition of these men. They had been two or three days in the ambulances; roads dreadful; no food. We have been at work with them from morning till night without ceasing; filling one boat, feeding the men; filling another, feeding them. There is no sort of use in trying to tell you the story. I can scarcely bear to think of it. All the nurses and cooks from the Invalid Corps of our Hospital, who marched off that day, Sullivan, Lewis and the rest, armed with muskets again, are down here guarding prisoners. Yesterday a squad of rebel officers was marched on board a boat lying by ours. I had to pass through their ranks to get supplies from our boat, and shook hands with our boys and saw the officers; Stewart and Bradley Johnson among them; strong well-fed, iron looking men, all of them. There's no give in in such looking men as these. Our soldiers from the front say the rebels stand— stand—in solid masses, giving and taking tremendous blows and never being shoved an inch. It is magnificent!

No words can express the horrible confusion of this place. The wounded arrive one train a day, but the trains are miles long; blocked by all sorts of accidents, wagon trains, bad roads, broken bridges; two, three days on the way, plunged in quagmires, jolted over corduroy, without food, fainting, starving; filthy; frightfully wounded, arms gone to the shoulder, horrible wounds in face and head. I would rather a thousand times have a friend killed on the field than suffer in this way. It is worse than White House, Harrison's, or Gettysburg by far. Many die on the way. We found thirty-five dead in the ambulances yesterday, and six more died on the stretchers while being put on board the boats. The boats are anything that can be got hold of, cattle scows, anything. Barges of horses are landed by the side of the transports and the horses cross the deck where the helpless men lie. Mules, stretchers, army wagons, prisoners, dead men and officials as good as dead are tumbled and jumbled on the wretched dock which falls in every little while and keeps the trains waiting for hours. We fed the men at once. We fed all the five boats that got off yesterday. There is no Government provision for this, beyond bread; no coffee, no soup, no cups or pails, or vessels of any kind for holding food. The men eat as if starving. These had been three days without food. We are ordered to Fredericksburg today to report to Dr. Douglas, as there is more misery there than here.

SOURCE: Jane Stuart Woolsey, Hospital Days, p. 150-1

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Diary of 5th Sergeant Osborn H. Oldroyd: May 18, 1863

Sherman's men inflating rubber pontoon on which to cross Big Black River.
The army last night made pontoons, on which this morning the Black River has been crossed. McClernand is on the left, McPherson in the center, and Sherman on the right. In this position the three great corps will move to Vicksburg by different roads. We are nearing the doomed city, and are now on the lookout for fun.

As we crossed the river and marched up the bank, a brass band stood playing national airs. O, how proud we felt as we marched through the rebel works, and up to the muzzles of the abandoned guns that had been planted to stay our progress. Every man felt the combined Confederate army could not keep us out of Vicksburg. It was a grand sight, the long lines of infantry moving over the pontoons, and winding their way up the bluffs, with flags flying in the breeze, and the morning sun glancing upon the guns as they lay across the shoulders of the boys. Cheer after cheer went up in welcome and triumph from the thousands who had already crossed and stood in waiting lines upon the bluff above. This is supposed to be the last halting place before we knock for admittance at our goal—the boosted Gibraltar of the west.

Our division has made a long march to-day, and we have bivouaced for the night without supper, and with no prospect of breakfast, for our rations have been entirely exhausted. Murmurings and complaints are loud and deep, and the swearing fully up to the army standard. General Leggett walked into our camp, and in his usual happy way inquired, “Well, boys, have you had your supper?” “No, General, we have not had any.” “Well, boys, I have not had any either, and we shall probably have to fight for our breakfast.” “Very well, General; guess we can stand it as well as you,” came the ready answer from a score of us, and resignation settled back upon the features of tired and hungry, but unsubdued, patriot soldiers.

“You may study the hopeful, bright brows of these men,
Who have marched all day over hill and through glen,
Half clad and unfed; but who is it will dare
Claim to find on those faces one trace of despair?”

SOURCE: Osborn Hamiline Oldroyd, A Soldier's Story of the Siege of Vicksburg, p. 26-7

Monday, February 11, 2019

Diary of Captain Luman Harris Tenney: March 25, 1865

Ready to march at 6. Took my pockets full of mail to the landing. Dismounted men went by boats. Our regt. in rear of Div. and train. Crossed the Chickahominy on pontoons and reached Harrison's Landing in evening. Fortifications.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 148

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Diary of Captain Luman Harris Tenney: February 28, 1865

Reveille at 4 A. M. Brigade moved out in advance at 6. Waited at the Shenandoah for the pontoons to come up. Most of our brigade forded. One 3rd N. J. man drowned. Our regt. did nicely. Camped at Lacey's Springs.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 146

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Charles A. Dana to Edwin M. Stanton, October 16, 1863 – 12 p.m.

CHATTANOOGA, October 16, 186312 m.

For fifteen hours little rain has fallen, but the skies remain threatening and the barometer still points to rain. The river has risen some 4 feet, and old boatmen predict a rise of 6 feet more. Our bridge was broken by drift-wood at 10 p.m. yesterday, but all the pontoons and chess planks were saved. The rebels sent down two or three rafts to break it, but they came after it was broken. The steamer Paint Rock and a flat-boat were employed during the night in gathering these masses of floating timber, much of which may prove useful. The bridge is not yet replaced, it being thought more prudent to wait till to-morrow when the rise will be complete and the drift will have mainly passed down.

Our couriers report that from Bridgeport to the foot of the mountain the mud is up to their horses' bellies. The mortality among animals here rapidly increases, and those remaining must soon perish. Day before yesterday the mules attached to the empty train returning to Bridgeport were too weak to haul the wagons up the mountain without doubling the teams, though they went on the easiest of all our roads, which had just been put in thorough order. General Brannan tells me he could not possibly haul away the artillery with the horses that are left.

I think I reported some time ago that all the artillery horses, except four per gun, had been sent to Stevenson to be fed, but those that are there are so far reduced that it will require a month's feeding to make them effective.

Nothing can prevent the retreat of the army from this place within a fortnight, and with a vast loss of public property and possibly of life, except the opening of the river. General Hooker has been ordered to prepare for this, but Rosecrans thinks he cannot move till his transportation arrives from Nashville, from which place it marched on the 8th. It should have been in Bridgeport on the 14th, but is not yet reported. The telegraph between there and here is broken, however, and it now requires ten to twelve hours for couriers to make the distance.

In the midst of all these difficulties General Rosecrans seems to be insensible to the impending danger, and dawdles with trifles in a manner which can scarcely be imagined. Having completed his report, which he sent off for Washington by General Garfield yesterday, he is now much occupied with the map of the battle-field and with the topography of the country between here and Burnside's lower posts. Most probably the enemy contemplates crossing in that region, but we are no longer able to pursue him, hardly to strike a sudden blow at his flank before he shall have crushed Burnside. Meanwhile, with plenty of zealous and energetic officers ready to do whatever can be done, all this precious time is lost because our dazed and mazy commander cannot perceive the catastrophe that is close upon us, nor fix his mind upon the means of preventing it. I never saw anything which seemed so lamentable and hopeless.

A rebel officer last evening shouted to one of our pickets that Bragg had been relieved and either Johnston or Longstreet put in his place.

Reports from our cavalry, which Rosecrans will forward to-day, make the rebel loss in the recent raid 2,000 men and five guns. Thirty-eight men captured in our uniform were summarily executed. Nothing heard from forces of Sherman.

[C. A. DANA.]
Hon. E. M. STANTON,
[Secretary of War.]

SOURCES: The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series I, Volume 30, Part 1 (Serial No. 50), p. 218-9

Monday, July 17, 2017

Diary of Sergeant Major Luman Harris Tenney: Thursday, June 11, 1863

In the morning issued beef and rations for 5 days. Pontoons gone to the river. Dr. Smith returned and reported John Devlin found in the morning, wounded in bowels and died at 3 P. M. yesterday. Chapman also died. Uncertain in regard to Case. Badly wounded, brave fellow. He told me to tell the Capt. that he fell at the head of his company. Rebs came in with flag of truce to care for wounded. Made fair bargain not to parole our men, if would let theirs alone. Evidently considered themselves whipped and we still near. Afterwards claimed a victory. Took a good nap. Saw C. G. in evening. Letter from home. A. B. much better.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 73

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Diary of Sergeant Major Luman Harris Tenney: Monday, June 1, 1863

Ration day. After breakfast and morning work, we went at it. Hereafter to have fresh beef every day. Pontoon train arrived in P. M. indicating a forward move. Talk of pay; order reducing of baggage to 30 lb. Capt. Nettleton sick. Commenced a letter to Fannie.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 71

Friday, December 2, 2016

Diary of 2nd Lieutenant Lemuel A. Abbott: Tuesday, June 14, 1864

Very cool and comfortable for this season; marched about six miles this morning and went into camp; have remained here all day and possibly shall tonight; hope to at any rate for I am very tired and need rest; was ordered back to take command of Company D this morning; am not much sorry for the change for it's my Company. We are only a short distance from the James river; can hear the steamboats whistle plainly. It does seem so good not to hear musketry and picket firing, but from force of habit I hear both in my sleep nights. Our army excepting the First and Third Divisions of our Corps crossed the river here to-day on a pontoon bridge. It took one hundred pontoons to construct the bridge which is held in place by large vessels at anchor above and below the bridge, especially during the ebb and flow of the tide which is about four feet. For the last ten miles before reaching here we passed through a fine country and community with fine old plantations and houses surrounded with lovely flowers and beautifully embowered.

SOURCE: Lemuel Abijah Abbott, Personal Recollections and Civil War Diary, 1864, p. 82

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Diary of 4th Sergeant John S. Morgan: Wednesday, August 5, 1863

Hot as an oven, Think will not go on the expedition. Davidsons provision and pontoon train in today.

SOURCE: “Diary of John S. Morgan, Company G, 33rd Iowa Infantry,” Annals of Iowa, 3rd Series, Vol. 13, No. 7, January 1923, p. 494

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Diary of Colonel William F. Bartlett: Saturday, March 14, 1863

Got the order at midnight to start at three A. M. It made a wild picture in the dark morning, the camp fires blazing high, surrounded by dark forms. A little piece of the old moon just rising in the east. We bade good-by to the camp, marched through the town, and about daylight struck the Bayou Sara road towards Port Hudson. We knew then for the first time in which direction we were going.

It was very pleasant marching in the cool of the morning through the heavy woods. The road was perfectly straight, and we could see it narrowing until the trees on each side seemed to meet, miles ahead. About nine A. M. we reached the river, Bayou Montesino. Two bridges crossed it, a pontoon and a plank. At this time, General Banks passed through the lines to the front. All was silence. I could not help thinking of the time, nearly a year ago, when we were marching in the same way, on a road very similar, towards Yorktown, when McClellan passed along through the army, and for miles and miles the cheers were deafening. We halted at the bridge some time for the wagons to get over. At noon we halted near a farm-house, fourteen miles from Port Hudson. The men made sad work with the poultry and stock. This army will be demoralized, if this pillaging is allowed to go on. My regiment think it hard that I won't let them go in and plunder when every body else is doing it. These marauders not only steal poultry and other live meat, but in some cases even go into the houses, and take the food off the table, steal jewelry, and other valuables. I believe in “living on the enemy's country,” but the beef and other food should be taken by the proper officers and issued to the troops as it is required, not slaughtered recklessly and left untouched to waste. Besides, it is the moral effect on troops, if they are allowed to steal and kill, each one for himself. They soon become lawless and ungovernable, — an armed mob.

My regiment shall not pillage in this way, if every other regiment in this army does.

These people will be likely to favor the advance of a federal army, if their houses are to be ransacked, furniture broken, etc., by a mob of soldiers, every time a brigade passes their door. Banks must publish some severe order to stop this thing, or I wouldn't give much for his army in a month's time.

(Since writing the above a week ago, an order has been issued to remedy this evil. It is not severe enough yet.)

We marched a few miles farther and went into bivouac, in a large open field, and pitched the shelter tents.

I had been in the saddle since three in the morning, twelve hours, but it made me laugh to myself, at hearing other mounted officers complain of “being all tired out,” etc. I found a good place for the horses in a barn near by, and then lay down on the grass and fell asleep, waiting for the wagon with my tent and food to come up. Got the tent pitched about sundown. Some hay made a luxurious bed, into which I crawled as soon as I had attended to everything, which was near nine P. M. Grover's advance is within four or five miles of the enemy's works; Emory's between us and Grover. I went to sleep the moment I touched the ground. Was awakened at eleven by heavy cannonading at the front, towards the river. It was the gunboats. We slept after this with one eye open, hearing the terrific roar of artillery.

SOURCE: Francis Winthrop Palfrey, Memoir of William Francis Bartlett, p. 73-5

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Thursday, March 16, 1865

We had a thunderstorm yesterday at 2 p. m. and today we had an all-day rain. We marched twelve miles in the mud, our division taking the lead. Our regiment crossed the South river after dark, on the stringers of the bridge, the rebels having burned a part of the bridge. The engineers have to lay the pontoons for the artillery and teams to cross. The country is very poor and forage is scarce.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 262

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Sunday, March 12, 1865

We remained in our bivouac all day, the boys putting in the time in mending their shoes and clothing. The Fifteenth Corps came in today. The engineers laid the pontoons across the river. Fayetteville is just across on the east bank of the river, and is at the head of navigation, ninety miles from Wilmington on the coast. A boat came up this morning from Wilmington. Our men did not burn much property in town, only the public buildings were fired.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 261

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Saturday, March 4, 1865

We remained in bivouac all day. The Fifteenth Corps just came in on a road to our left and is to cross the Pedee ahead of the Seventeenth. The rebel skirmishers are just across the river and our skirmishers are keeping up a lively fusillade. Our engineers cannot lay the pontoons so long as the rebels are on the opposite bank of the river and the plan is to send a detachment above or below and cross the river after dark, and flank them. The foragers of the Seventeenth Corps were put in command of the colonel of the Ninth Illinois today and sent out on a raid to Society Hill, fifteen miles south of Cheraw on the railroad. They captured and destroyed two trains of cars loaded with ammunition and provisions, and then tore up the tracks for some miles and burned everything in town that would burn.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 258

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Sunday, March 5, 1865

The First Division of the Seventeenth Corps crossed the river last evening after dark and drove the rebels back. Our engineers then laid the pontoons and the troops began crossing at once. Our brigade passed through the town and crossed the river at noon and then continued our march for seven miles, when we went into bivouac for the night. Cheraw was nearly all burned to the ground before our men left it. The rebels burned the bridge across the river and upon evacuating the town set fire to it, and our men burned what remained. We are in a rich country again and forage is plentiful.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 259

Friday, January 8, 2016

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Thursday, February 16, 1865

Early this morning cannonading was begun in front of the Fifteenth Corps, followed by some lively skirmishing, and the rebels were routed from their works and driven across the Congaree river. The Fifteenth Corps then marched up along the south bank of the river above the city of Columbia, to the forks, where the Saluda and Broad rivers form the Congaree, and crossed the Saluda on the pontoons. In the meantime our regiment was behind on train guard and did not come into action. We moved forward and with our corps went into camp for the night on the south bank of the Congaree, just opposite Columbia, the state capital.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 253

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Friday, February 17, 1865

The Seventeenth Army Corps remained all day on the south bank of the Congaree river, near the Saluda cotton mills, while the Fifteenth Corps early this morning crossed the north fork, the Broad river, on pontoons, having laid them during the night, and moved down upon Columbia. But when they entered the place they found that the rebels had already left it. In the meantime the Thirteenth Iowa Regiment, being on our skirmish line in front of the city, crossed the river in skiffs and after a little skirmishing succeeded in placing their flag on the State House before any of the Fifteenth Corps even got into town.1 So a part of the Seventeenth Corps was the first to enter Columbia.2 Our corps crossed the forks late this afternoon and went into camp a short distance from town.
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1 This is precisely the substance of the original entry of Mr. Downing's diary. In the following footnote, after almost fifty years, he explains the flag episode more fully and also speaks Incidentally of the burning of Columbia, though he makes no mention of it in his original; that he did not is, however, not to be wondered at, since such burnings were common. In his revision fifty years later he does not enter into the discussion of “Who Burned Columbia,” but makes a single statement, which seems to hold the Confederates responsible. — Ed.

2 It was a bright sunshiny day with a high wind blowing from the south. From where we were, on the south bank of the river just opposite the city, we could see men on foot and on horseback in the main street of Columbia, lighting the cotton bales which they before had piled up in the streets for defenses. In the forenoon, a detachment of men from the Thirteenth Iowa Regiment crossed the river, and driving the enemy's skirmishers into the city, they placed their regimental flag on the State House, thus having the honor of being the first to place the Stars and Stripes on the capitol of the first state to secede from the Union.

The Thirteenth Iowa was in Crocker's Brigade, or the Third Brigade of the Fourth Division of the Seventeenth Army Corps. The boys of the Thirteenth Iowa made the mistake of not placing a guard about their flag, for about an hour after they had raised their flag, the Iowa Brigade in the Fifteenth Army Corps entered the city from the west, and the Thirtieth Iowa Regiment of that brigade, being on the skirmish line, naturally made for the State House. Upon approaching the capitol and seeing no Union soldiers around, they proceeded to investigate a little, and upon entering the building and finding no guard, they took down the flag of the Thirteenth Iowa, and put up their own instead. They then left a guard to defend it. The Thirteenth Iowa was without a flag for two or three days, when the Thirtieth Iowa finally returned to them their flag.

Our corps, the Seventeenth, moved up the river, and by dark had crossed the forks, the Saluda and Broad rivers, on the pontoons. As soon as we had stacked arms, I left for the city to replenish my haversack, which had become rather flat, and I did not get back to our bivouac until 2 o'clock in the morning, and then without anything to eat in my haversack. On entering town I passed by the abandoned Confederate commissary department, and seeing a great abundance of food stuffs, I thought that I would go down into town for a while, and then on my way back would fill up my haversack. But when I returned, I found the building in flames and food and all was In ashes before daylight.—A. G. D.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 253-4

Friday, December 25, 2015

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Sunday, February 12, 1865

Our division relieved the Third Division on the skirmish line at the bridge this morning, while they went down the river about a mile, laid the pontoons and crossed over. The skirmishing was commenced at an early hour all along the line for a distance of fifteen miles. Our men threw shells across the river into Orangeburg, and the rebels left the bridge about 1 o'clock. Our division crossed the bridge two hours later and took possession of the town.1

Orangeburg is nicely situated on the north bank of the Edisto river, and on the railroad running from Charleston to Columbia. The town is almost deserted, but before the war it had a population of three thousand. We destroyed the railroad and went into camp for the night.
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1 The town was on fire when we arrived. The report was that the town was set on fire by a Jew, in revenge for the enemy's setting fire to his cotton, about fifty bales, when they evacuated the place. The high winds which prevailed rapidly spread the fire in spite of the efforts of the soldiers to extinguish it.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 252

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Sunday, February 12, 1865

Our division relieved the Third Division on the skirmish line at the bridge this morning, while they went down the river about a mile, laid the pontoons and crossed over. The skirmishing was commenced at an early hour all along the line for a distance of fifteen miles. Our men threw shells across the river into Orangeburg, and the rebels left the bridge about 1 o'clock. Our division crossed the bridge two hours later and took possession of the town.1

Orangeburg is nicely situated on the north bank of the Edisto river, and on the railroad running from Charleston to Columbia. The town is almost deserted, but before the war it had a population of three thousand. We destroyed the railroad and went into camp for the night.
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1 The town was on fire when we arrived. The report was that the town was set on fire by a Jew, in revenge for the enemy's setting fire to his cotton, about fifty bales, when they evacuated the place. The high winds which prevailed rapidly spread the fire in spite of the efforts of the soldiers to extinguish it.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 252

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Diary of 5th Sergeant Alexander G. Downing: Thursday, February 9, 1865

We remained in camp until noon, when we moved forward again about ten miles and went into bivouac on the east bank of the Edisto river. The First Division waded the river to drive the rebels back so that the engineers with our corps could lay the pontoons for the corps to cross. The Fifteenth Corps crossed the river about a mile above. A great deal of property is being destroyed by our army on this raid. The familiar clouds of smoke are becoming more numerous every day, while out on the left we can count from ten to twenty of the red clouds in the heavens every night.

Source: Alexander G. Downing, Edited by Olynthus B., Clark, Downing’s Civil War Diary, p. 251-2