December 19

Colonel W. W. Henry started for Vermont this morning; most of the officers of the regiment went to the cars to see him off; commenced raining about 8 o'clock a. m.; didn't rain long; men very busy on their cabins; got a Washington Chronicle to-night; good news from Generals Sherman and Thomas, the latter having captured fifty eight guns and five thousand prisoners.

Saturday, 19th.—We are dry-docked to-day at Sotteville, outside Rouen. Z. and I half walked and half trammed into Rouen this morning.

It is lovely to get out of the train. This afternoon No.— played a football match against the Khaki train and got well beaten. They've only been in the country six weeks, and only do about one journey every eight days, so they are in better training than ours, but it will do them a lot of good: we looked on.

December 19, 1862

Fifteen cases of fever reported this morning. A dead man was taken out very early and buried in a hurry. This has given rise to the story that smallpox has come, too. It looks as if it might be so, for it's about the only thing we haven't got. Those that seemed strongest are as likely to be taken now as the weakest. I have been half sick through it all and yet I hold my own, and only for my sore throat and this racking cough would enjoy every minute.

December Nineteenth

Word of gloom from the war, one day;
Johnston pressed at the front, they say.
Little Giffen was up and away;
A tear—his first—as he bade good-bye,
Dimmed the glint of his steel-blue eye.
“I'll write, if spared!” There was news of the fight;
But none of Giffen.—He did not write.
Francis O. Ticknor


Crittenden's compromise opposed by dominant party in Congress, 1860


Some of the manufacturing states think that a fight would be awful. Without a little bloodletting this Union will not, in my estimation, be worth a rush.

Z. Chandler
(Senator from Michigan )



December 19, 1863

Saturday. We heard a gun in the night, and are looking for letters to-day. We have got the President's message and have read it through and through. He has no notion of giving up the ship yet. He must be real game, for as near as I can make out he not only has the whole South to fight, but a part of the North as well. I wish he would send the Copperheads down here where they belong. Sim Bryan, the mail-man of the 128th, is here, waiting for a boat. He says the boys of Company B are in fine spirits, and are still at Baton Rouge. If I had staid with them all this time I should surely have died with the blues. Besides, what would I have had to put in my diary? My stomach has a trick of throwing up the good things I eat as fast as I put them down. The weather keeps cool, and I do nothing but sit over the stove and shiver. We hear no more of going anywhere, and I begin to think we shall put in the winter right here.