August 5

Received marching orders at 4 o'clock a. m. to be ready to move at 5 o'clock, and thus it has been all day, but night finds us still in the same camp. It's rumored our pickets were driven in last night at Harper's Ferry. I have pitched my tent and made arrangements to stay all night, which is the only indication of a move; generally move when I do this.

August Fifth

By the recognized universal public law of all the earth, war dissolves all political compacts. Our forefathers gave as one of their grounds for asserting their independence that the King of Great Britain had “abdicated government here by declaring us out of his protection and waging war upon us.” The people and the Government of the Northern States of the late Union have acted in the same manner toward Missouri, and have dissolved, by war, the connection heretofore existing between her and them.

Gov. C. F. Jackson


Governor Jackson declares Missouri out of the Union, 1861



August 5, 1863

Wednesday. The sick we left at Donaldsonville have been brought on, and I suppose the rest of the stuff will come sometime. Landon P. Rider of our company died last night, and we buried him in a little graveyard here. It is the first man we have laid away in such a place since we came south. It is a pretty little plot, and for his parents' sake I am glad we happened here at this time. Curtis L. Porter, whom we left sick at Baton Rouge, died on July 23. So we go! These last two men were among our toughest and best men. We gave Landon a military funeral, and it went off without a hitch, even if I did have charge of it. That was my job before I was sick at Camp Parapet, and since that this is the only time we have done anything more than dig a hole and put them in.

193. Abigail Adams

5 August, 1777.

If alarming half a dozen places at the same time is an act of generalship, Howe may boast of his late conduct. We have never, since the evacuation of Boston, been under apprehensions of an invasion equal to what we suffered last week. All Boston was in confusion packing up and carting out of town household furniture, military stores, goods, etc. Not less than a thousand teams were employed on Friday and Saturday; and, to their shame be it told, not a small trunk would they carry under eight dollars, and many of them, I am told, asked a hundred dollars a load; for carting a hogshead of molasses eight miles, thirty dollars. O human nature! or rather, O inhuman nature! what art thou? The report of the fleet's being seen off Cape Ann Friday night gave me the alarm, and, though pretty weak, I set about packing up my things, and on Saturday removed a load.

When I looked around me and beheld the bounties of Heaven so liberally bestowed, in fine fields of corn, grass, flax, and English grain, and thought it might soon become a prey to these merciless ravagers, our habitations laid waste, and if our flight preserved our lives, we must return to barren fields, empty barns, and desolate habitations, if any we find (perhaps not where to lay our heads), my heart was too full to bear the weight of affliction which I thought just ready to overtake us, and my body too weak almost to bear the shock, unsupported by my better half.

But, thanks be to Heaven, we are at present relieved from our fears respecting ourselves. I now feel anxious for your safety, but hope prudence will direct to a proper care and attention to yourselves. May this second attempt of Howe's prove his utter ruin. May destruction overtake him as a whirlwind.

We have a report of an engagement at the northward, in which our troops behaved well, drove the enemy into their lines, killed and took three hundred and fifty prisoners. The account came in last night. I have not particulars. We are under apprehensions that the Hancock  is taken.

Your obliging letters of the 8th, 10th, and 13th came to hand last week. I hope before this time you are relieved from the anxiety you express for your bosom friend. I feel my sufferings amply rewarded, in the tenderness you express for me. But in one of your letters you have drawn a picture which drew a flood of tears from my eyes, and wrung my heart with anguish inexpressible. I pray Heaven I may not live to realize it.

It is almost thirteen years since we were united, but not more than half that time have we had the happiness of living together. The unfeeling world may consider it in what light they please. I consider it as a sacrifice to my country, and one of my greatest misfortunes, for you to be separated from my children, at a time of life when the joint instructions and admonition of parents sink deeper than in maturer years.

The hope of the smiles and approbation of my friend sweetens all my toils and labors.

"Ye Powers, whom men and birds obey,Great rulers of your creatures, say Why mourning comes, by bliss conveyed,And even the sweets of love allayed.Where grows enjoyment tall and fair,Around it twines entangling care;While fear for what our sons possess Enervates every power to bless.Yet friendship forms the bliss above,And, life! what art thou without love!"