More Duty in Virginia

January, 1863

1 Pleasant. Matters as usual. In looking back the past year, I think I have not got along well, considering the poor society that I have been obliged to be in. On guard last night. Watched the old year out and the new one in.

2 No entry.

3 Got a pass and went to Lieut. Ryan's camp five miles toward Suffolk. Staid all night. Had a pleasant time.

4 No entry.

5 On guard at the R. R. bridge. Had a pleasant time & conversation.

6 No entry.

7 No entry.

8 No entry.

9 No entry.

10 No entry.

11 No entry.

12 Nothing of any account has occurred the past few days. At 5 A. M. Co A, B, & T started on a scout to Suffolk by way of Lake Drummond. Col. in command. Had mules to tow us in a lighter, ten miles to the feeder. Then poled the boat up to the feeder and in the lake. Could not get out of the lake to Suffolk, so had to come back the same way we went. A lighter is a large open barge used normally to unload ships anchored in harbor. The feeder is the ship it would unload. Lake Drummond is in Virginia near the North Carolina border. According to Army Official Records, "The lake was thoroughly explored and the fact established that no considerable force could penetrate from North Carolina in that direction to attack the post."

13 Last night got on a log. Could not get in the lake yesterday, so turned back a little way and bivouacked around the lock. Passed the night comfortably although there was a white frost. Was on the lake today. Nothing remarkable about it; only one shanty on its shore.

14 Got back to camp at nine o'clock. Had a pleasant excursion. There used to be a hotel on the shore, but the mosquitoes were too thick. It has since been burnt.

15 Rainy toward night.

16 Rainy day. Cold in the eve. On guard.

17 Pleasant but cold. Very cold last night.

18 Pleasant.

19 Pleasant. We are expecting a cavalry raid. So we turn out in the night frequently so as to be ready for them.

20 Rainy and windy. On home guard.

21 Very rainy and windy last night. Pleasant today.

22 Rainy day.

23 Disagreeable weather. Damp.

24 The same today as yesterday.

25 A warm, pleasant day. Had a lengthy inspection. On guard. Did not get upon guard till noon.

26 A pleasant day. The company was on reserve picket.

27 A rainy day.

28 Rainy. On guard. Quite a disagreeable day.

29 A little snow last night. Pleasant today.

30 Pleasant.

31 A fine day. Heard cannon at Suffolk. The paymaster has come at last.

February, 1863

1 Another fine day. On guard. Got paid today.

2 A pleasant day. Was collecting a few small debts and lost $8.00.

3 A very cold & severe N. E. snow storm all the forenoon. The hardest that I have seen in Virginia.

4 Clear & cold. On guard. A little more moderate toward night. On guard today over the prisoners.

5 Rain most all day.

6 Fair & warm.

7 Pleasant day. Nothing unusual happened.

8 A very pleasant day. On home guard.

9 Nothing unusual occurred. Warm and pleasant. Went to Suffolk.

10 A lovely day. Enjoyed myself well with my friends.

11 Another fine day. A little foggy. Returned to camp today.

12 A little rainy.

13 Fair and cool. On picket guard. Countersign Mohawk.

14 A very pleasant day. The Inspector General was in camp to condemn useless articles.

15 Quite rainy today. Took dinner with a citizen. Had a street inspection.

16 Cloudy. No rain. On camp guard. Countersign Fort Donnelson.

17 Quite rainy. A box of tobacco came to me from New York.

18 A very rainy day. Nothing unusual occurred.

19 Cloudy but no rain. On home guard.

20 Pleasant day. Matters as usual.

21 Pleasant till toward night.

22 Quite rainy all day. A little snow last night.

23 Cloudy and quite cool. On camp guard.

24 Got a pass and went to Norfolk. A fine day. Went to the theatre in the eve. Did not like it much.

25 A very lovely day. Warm like spring. Staid with Mr. Potter last night. Went to Tanners Creek to see Mr. Hilliard. He is to go North in a few days with his family.

26 Some rain. Quite warm. Came back to camp today. Did not enjoy myself very well at Norfolk.

1 A very little rain during the day. On picket guard. Two Bridges. Had a very pleasant time.

2 Quite rainy today. Mustered in again for another two months pay. Did not get relieved from guard till noon.

March, 1863

1 Very rainy all day. Wrote several letters.

2 Tolerable pleasant today. A little cloudy.

3 Very pleasant. On picket guard. Left bank canal. An easy time during the day.

4 Very cold today. Did not feel well today.

5 Clear and very cold.

6 Clear and moderating. Detailed for Provost Guard. This is a military police guard.

7 A little rain. Warm. On guard. Countersign Fair Oaks. Had three posts at the village. Had no one to relieve me but got along well.

8 Very pleasant. Everything as usual.

9 A very pleasant day. Got orders to get ready to move. Toward night the 177th Pa. came to relieve us. Our negro minstrel band performed tonight for the first time. They did well.

10 At daylight turned out and got breakfast. Started about 6 ½ o'clock for Suffolk. Took the cars. Got there at 9 o'clock. Their camp moved from Deep Creek to Suffolk.

11 It rained hard yesterday and last night and cold too. Staid last night with Doc Angle, 11th Pa. Cav. Today a little more pleasant but quite cool.

12 Pleasant but windy and cool. Got our tent fixed up in style.

13 Fair but quite cool. On picket guard. Got a new fort. Corcoran. All quiet. General Michael Corcoran was the commander of a brigade of several New York regiments located here at this time.

14 Tolerable pleasant but quite cool. Very cold last night. One of 11th Pa. Cav. while on a scout got shot today.

15 Cloudy & cool. Had inspection. Was told off for color guard. Went to the camp of the 11th Pa. Cav.

16 Cloudy & cool. Nothing unusual.

17 Tolerable pleasant. Fair and warm. The 11th Pa. Cav. & a battery went to Blc'k water. Lost about 40 men and accomplished nothing. Regimental history records indicate the 11th was in action at Blackwater River and Franklin, Virginia, on this date.

18 On guard at camp. Countersign Winston. A little rain before morning. Quite cool.

19 Quite cold. Began to hail and snow and continued all day.

20 Snowed all day today. Quite cold. Nothing unusual happened.

21 Cloudy and a little rainy today. Very disagreeable weather.

22 Quite pleasant and warm. Snow melting and very sloppy and muddy. Went to the camp of the 11th Pa. Cav. To church in the afternoon.

23 Very warm and pleasant today. On guard with 6 men at the Head Quarters of Brig. Gen. Terry. Had a good time. General Alfred Terry.

24 Another fine warm day. Matters as usual.

25 A fine day. Matters as usual. The reg't practiced firing with blank cartridges. Did tolerable well.

26 A very fine day. Went to the 11th Pa. Cavalry.

27 A fine day.

28 Tolerable pleasant. Heavy shower toward night.

29 A pleasant day but quite cold. On picket guard. Countersign Corinth.

30 Quite pleasant but rain in the eve. Cold.

31 A rainy day. Got 4 months pay.

April, 1863

1 Pleasant, but very cold.

2 Cold but pleasant. Most all the men went to the village but came home sober as no whiskey could be had.

3 A fine day. Windy but quite warm. Went to town and to 11th Pa. Cavalry.

4 Sent $5.25 to H. C. Davis, two to Belvidere, yesterday. Sent $15.00 to C. F. Clark. $10.00 to my sister. Today cool and cloudy. Snowy in the eve. On guard. A bad time of it.

5 Quite cool today. The snow fell to the depth of about 3 inches. Expected an attack last night.

6 Cool. Snow about all gone.

7 Pleasant but quite cool. Some talk about leaving.

8 Pleasant. Was waked up last night in order to pack up to leave camp. Got ready, then went to sleep.

9 On picket. Took knapsack. Quite a pleasant time.

10 We were to leave this morn but the order was countermanded as the enemy were reported near. We all fell in and stacked our arms on the parade ground. From April 10 to May 4 the battle and siege at Suffolk, Virginia occurred. The Federals had increased troops in this area and the Confederates were concerned about another march toward Richmond. Confederate General James Longstreet was sent to engage the Federals. The focus of this was at Suffolk, southwest of Norfolk. The New York 99th and Eugene Goodwin were in the line of battle during this period. The engagement turned into a stalemate and General Longstreet withdrew his troops on May 4.