Wednesday, January 16, 2013

1862 December 29 across Rappahannock from Fredericksburg, Va.

[from the diary of the Reverend Francis E. Butler, chaplain of the 25th New Jersey]

Mon 29. Lovely day, three of our men died since 11 last night,
Called on Gen. Sumner about flag truce to get Townsends body –
very affable – soldierly man – Knew & remembered my bro. William.
Sent about sick to Gen.’ hospitals – wrote several letters to friends of
sick & dead &c.  Like a day in Sept – but quite cool at night
letter fr. Mr H – Called again – He sd. “no ans. yet-“ There flags
of truce embarrass me. I want to open my guns this
moment on there a rifle pit – they are digging, but
can do nothing” – Attended battalion drill.
Called again on Gen S. no ans. yet. “Probably Comandg. officer
is ten miles in the interior”.  We Sent to Aquia Creek for
Coffins – Came tonight.  No mail – today, found some
Seriousness in hospital –
Capt. Stevens is rehearsing his exploits in Marine Corps
& under Col (now) Genl. Sumner.
Busy with letters to friends of dead.  9 oclk P.M.
just recd. orders for Sixty rounds & 5 days rations & be
ready to march at revielle – Whither?  Lord
direct! I have ordered the graves dug tonight for the
three men to be buried early in morg –

[transcript by Mary Roy Dawson Edwards]

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