(The 93rd spent most of the first 6 months of 1864 in the region around Huntsville and Decatur, Alabama. While there were a few skirmishes with Confederate Cavalry, most of the time was spent on guard duty, foraging, work details and drill. The regiment was in the line of battle at Dalton, Georgia in February.)
January 7, 1864
Today we have marching orders. We have all the tents down and all on the wagon. Yesterday I come to the regiment and today I haf to march.
January 8, 1864
Last night we marched till about 8 o clock . It was the roughest road that I ever seen. We just camped in the timber no tent or nothing. I slept aside a good fire. I am a writing by the fire. It wasn't daylight yet and I am making some coffee for me and my pardner.
January 10, 1864
Today we are in camp at a (unidentified) Huntsville a very nice town right on the Memphis and Charleston railroad. We marched through it yesterday and it is a very nice town. The streets are all paved of stone so they wont get mudy. The boys are hauling lumber and are making shebangs (a shebang is a hut or shack) to go in.
January 17, 1864
Today is Sunday and a very lonesome day it is. I think if I was at home I could employ myself some better then I can have today. They had a man out of our regiment out of Company E a standing on a barrel for sleeping on guard. He had a board tied on his back. The man that sleep on guard and has his gun stolen from him. That is what one gets for sleeping while on duty. I think it is prety hard for a man if he is punished for sleeping on guard but so it goes while a man serves uncle sam.
January 18, 1864
Today I got a pass to go down to Huntsville to get my boots half soled. I got them soled for a dollar and a half. I got a pie for 25 cents and bread they had at two single loaf for a quarter and cheece for fifty cents per pound.
January 20, 1864
Yesterday I drawed an dress coat two pairs of drawers. That is all I got. I had put in for a lying blanket and some socks but they had none.
January 25, 1864
I am detailed to go a foraging. We went out about 5 miles and loaded five teams. The woman commenced to shout and schold us for taking there corn.
January 26, 1864
Today Capt (unidentified) came from home. He brought a lot of things along for the boys. The Captain seems quite friendly so he does. The ajadent sent a lot of cigars down for the officers to smoke.
January 29, 1864
Today we are in camp. It is a town Brownsville (Alabama). It is no town of any acount only a few houses. Last night the boys went out to get some chickens. They brought in the fatest chickens that I ever saw. This morning it is a raining and we have no tents. Our tents are left at Huntsville. We left our knapsacks. Only took one gum blanket (rubberized blanket) and a wolen one.
January 31, 1864
We marched on the railroad yesterday and had to crall accross a prety large crick. The railroad bridge was burnt and some crossed over on the bridge and others crossed over on logs and so on. It was prety hard marching. We are now in camp. We come in about two o clock. We had quite a trip when we come back. Henry Hockman of our company come back. He has been on a furlow. He was wounded at the batel of Missionary Rige. He was shot in the sholder.
February 6, 1864
This morning it is raining and I am detailed to with the foraging train. We went out about 12 miles and drove right in a field and comenced to pull off the corn. We got a hundred wagons full.
March 12, 1864
This morning there are 15 men detailed to go on picket. We were on picket yesterday. We had quite a time. We had a general inspection. Our company was prety good.
March 14, 1864
We got orders to build shebangs. They hauled some timber to build them. The officers had to move all of there tents. They had quite a time today. Today we had to have some lumber for cook shabangs. Some boards and some cedar.
March 15, 1864
Today the carpenters out of our company are puting up the cooks shabang. It is going to make a nice tent for to cook in. Only they wont have board enough to finish it. Well they have to confisticat some more.
March 20, 1864
I was down in the Episcapal church. I think the nicest church that I ever was in. Lot of young girls but no young men of any acount. But lots of soldiers and sholder straps. They are as plenty as can be. I think if it dont rain I go to church to night if there is any.
March 25, 1864
This morning our regiment is detailed to go on picket. There are 13 out of our company detailed and I am one of the lucky boys. We are away out on the Braumbough Rd a very nice place.
March 27, 1864
Today I was in Huntsville in church. A prety good sermon it was.
April 14, 1864
This morning we were routed out at two o clock and had to fall in on the collor line. There we remained till 5 o clock. Then we went in to get our breakfast and we are here yet. It was reported that old Forest (Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest) was on the Elkhorn raid with 500 caverley. Then I guess old Gen Mathies (Union General Charles Matthies) got excited a bit when he got orders to be redy at a moment notice.
April 15, 1864
I guess we will get new guns today. We are to have inspection today at 10 PM. The 26 Mosurie got there guns yesterday. Today we drawed new springfield rifle muskets.
April 16, 1864
Today our regiment is on pickett again. Yesterday we drawed our new guns the springfield rifle musket. They are a very neat gun. They are not as heavy as the Enfield rifle. They are neatly polished. The Enfields are tarnished and a very rough gun. (The Enfield musket was manufactured in England. The Springfield musket was manufactured in Springfield, Massachusetts and became the standard weapon for Union infantry soldiers.)
April 18, 1864
Today we had regimental drill and inspection of tents by genrels Logan and Smith (probably General "Blackjack" John Logan - unclear which General Smith this was). They inspected our tents while out on drill. They thought they would try and catch us dirty.
April 30, 1864
This morning we took up our march for Decature (Decatur, Alabama). We got on the cars at 8 AM and now we lay at the juncion of the Decature railroad. We got to Decature about 2 o clock. We stoped all night near the court house. One old (unidentified) all torn to pieses.
May 5, 1864
I got relieved of guard this morning again and wrote a letter to father and I must go and help to clean out the quarter in front of our baracks.
May 6, 1864
Last night they skirmished prety hevy. This morning there were about 70 recruits that were recruited about 100 miles from here right in the rebles state. They were from the 1 Alabama. Today I march on the fort. (This may have been the 1st Alabama Colored Infantry. Later they were designated the 55th U.S. Colored Troops.)
May 8, 1864
This morning we had quite a time. The rebles drove some of our caverely pickets in there. They fired a canon. Then we had to fall out on the color lines. Then we stoped till about 6 pm. Then we started for the rifle pits. There we lay quite a time.
May 9, 1864
This morning it is very quiet all along the line. There was some firing all along the line but last night it was very quiet. They fire some on the big road but not mutch. They fired a little on the road I was on but the caverly quelled them pretty soon.
May 10, 1864
This morning they fired the canon again for a signal to fall in. We had to fall in and go to the fort. Then we stayed about half an hour. Then commensed to rain. Then we stayed a little while yet. Then we went to our quarters and then was detailed for to work on the fort. We stood in the rain for about one hour then we were dismissed. (The Regiment constructed a fort in Decatur. There were frequent skirmishes with Confederate cavalry during this period.)
May 12, 1864
This morning I was relieved of picket at 6 o clock. I layed down to sleep and slept very good. Then got up at dinner and right after dinner the old gun cracked. Then we had to fall in and go up in the fort but no rebles come in.
May 13, 1864
The caverely all away now. They have gone on a skout. I dont know wether they will come back or not. Today I am on fatigue cuting trees.
May 20, 1864
Yesterday the 9 Ohio come in again. They were out on a skout of four days. They are camped on the other side of the river.
May 24, 1864
Today is my birthday. I am 21 years old today. The time flyes around way fast.
May 25, 1864
This morning our generl left us. Generl Mathis (General Charles Matthies) he resigned and went home. He was a splendid genrel I think but he complant of his health.
May 27, 1864
Today the streets of Decature are very lively. The 17 Corps is crossing over now and makes quite a nois. They are about 12 thousand strong comanded by genrl Blair (General Francis Blair).
May 31, 1864
Today is our ration day. We issued 10 days rations. We also issued our ration of Whiskey. There were two of our men prety tipsy. They drank to mutch. Today it is reported that the reble Forest (Nathan Bedford Forrest) is out here only 10 miles and is (unidentified words) under a flag of truce for to exchange of prisiners. But we have none here. They only want to get some back out of here to get information of our fortification but I guess we are smart enough for them not to let none out.
June 5, 1864
Last night we had to guard the Pay master up in the tavern. A very nice place to guard. He had a lot of (unidentified). There were two pay masters.
June 13, 1864
Last evening the 18 Michigan regiment come in from Nashville. They were no further south then they are now. This regiment is larger then our whol Brigade and the men are all a harty looke set of men.
June 16, 1864
Today we march again. We started at 6 o clock and we got to Huntsville about noon. We marched 12 miles and got to the Beautiful City of the south again.
June 19, 1864
Today I was down in the church. I herd a prety good sermon preached in the Methodist Church.