Monday, February 11, 2013

1863 February 10 Newport News

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

Tues 10.  Lovely June – like day.  Charming spot    Shore a
level sandy plain with pine woods in rear.
We are 200 miles fr. our late camp – 100 miles further south –
in direct line –

took Sail boat, Chester   Maj: Cap Stevens & Dr. Daily & sailed out in river
good breeze & warm, boarded the Monitor “Nahant” examined
her turrets – has two cannon 11. & 15 inch.  Shot of latter 444 & takes 35 & 50 lbs. powder & costs 30 $ to load - & fire once – Lt. Harmony[?]
very polite – one man turns turret, 70 man her, compass above
center of turret reflected down by mirrors – avoid attraction,
Rack solid iron 30 in. above water, stepd. down fr. one boat
to get on her – Saw Minnesota & Galena near, bot  2 bus
oysters, of Negroes, sailed back   Maj & Cap opened & ate oysters
on way.  Sketched the shore – a beautiful live oak, set
on fire – put it out – in night.  With [-] & Capt S,
Soldiers parade – pleasant letters from home.

[transcript by Mary Roy Dawson Edwards]

MSS 12935

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