Thursday, January 24, 2013

1863 January 12 Fauquier County, Va.]

[From the diary of Anne Madison Willis Ambler as transcribed by her grand daughter Anne Madison Wright Baylor in 1972]]

Monday night Jan 12th 1863
   It is almost a month since I have
written in my Journal & I will not go back
& write over each day's events but give a short
 sketch so that I can refer to it when I
am so inclined.  In the first place
my greatest pleasure was derived from the
presence of my own dear husband.  He came
very unexpectedly on the 20th of Dec, Saturday
night before Christmas & spent two weeks with
us, left Friday after New Year's day.  I have no
words to express the great delight I felt in
his presence, & the deep sorrow, which weighed
me down, after he left.  But I have borne
& will still bear it.  God in his own good
time will give us deliverance & make the
glad notes of peace once more resound
over our land. I have not had the heart
to write since he left me & and now that I
have taken my pen, I know not what to
say.  I don't feel like writing.  Oh, if I could
only hear oftener from him...................
He brought us the good news of an perfect
success in the fight at Fredericksburg &
said the Yankees had gone over the
river & we were in possession of the
Town. This has been confirmed since & there
have been no movements in that direction
though we have heard rumours that Gen
Lee contemplated crossing the river &
attacking them.  All of the Confederates
have left & we are in the enemies lines once
more.  They occupy Winchester & the country
towards Front Royal.  But we have not
seen one yet though they have been all
around us.  The day before Mr. Ambler left
he & I walked to Porter's Factory, & the next
day the Yankees were there & compelled him

to stop working it.  As I have not yet
heard from Mr. A. I can but feel uneasy
for fear that he was caught:  but I will
put all my trust in God & believe that "all
is for the best, & fear no evil."   Oh that
I loved Him more: & served Him better:
When my dear husband was here I found
it a difficult matter even to give
my attention to my prayers & bible,
performed as a duty, that which should
be my greatest pleasure.   Oh God forgive
these  cold services & warm up my
heart to love Thee more.  "Thou
art the chief among ten thousands
& altogether lovely"....

[The diary ends at this point.  On November 20th Ambler wrote that she did not enjoy keeping the journal and would end it after Christmas. Her husband, Richard Jacquelin Ambler survived the war and returned to their home "Clifton," in Fauquier County, Va.  He died in 1875. Anne lived until 1888 when she and two of her children died within a few months of each other in a typhoid epidemic that swept through Birmingham, Ala., while she was visiting there.]

MSS 15406

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