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Civil War Diary

John Miller
Emmitsburg Area Historical Society

Dairy of Joseph E. Wible 1861-1862, Part 4 (Read Part 3)

Monday, Nov. 4 – We have been living in expectation all day but this expectation ended in appearance, for about five o’clock we were drawn up in line to receive our money which rejoiced the heart of us all. There was four of Van Allen’s cavalry companies come in here this evening, about two hundred all told.

Tuesday, Nov. 5 – Have been marching through town all forenoon after soldiers who left camp without a pass. Rested from dinner till supper, then marched out with our company on some mysterious mission. Cartridges were given [to] us, and I thought that we were to have a skirmish, but after all it was only to arrest the wagoners of a supply train, and, after arresting them and standing guard around the wagon for about three hours, we were dismissed.

Wednesday, Nov. 6 – This has been a very disagreeable and rainy day and, up to the present time everything has passed off very quiet for election day. I cast two votes for the Union ticket, whilst some of our men cast as many more. Have been running over town tonight hunting up loose soldiers. We rode to nearly all the fancy houses in town.

Thursday Nov. 7 – The Van Allen cavalry returned today. They had been all over the western part of Maryland at the different polls. One company went to Emmitsburg. They were well pleased with their reception there. They were presented with a flag by the ladies of Emmitsburg. The State (Md.) had given a large majority for the Union.

Friday, Nov. 8 – This morning about nine o’clock we saddled up and escorted the New York boys about a mile from town. Today has been very pleasant. Received a letter from friend J.H.C.W. today. Had some more fun with the "Legs" tonight; somebody carried off his bed and he raised the camp to find it.

Saturday, Nov. 9 – Rained all day and the (ground) is very slippery and disagreeable. We kept closely housed up all day and were glad when night came on in hoping to find better weather in the morning. Nearly all of our men returned home at a very late hour tonight very weary with their journey.

Sunday, Nov. 10 – The morning broke upon us very clear and beautiful yet the earth beneath us was quite disagreeable, but it has dried off very much to the present time. Did not go to church this morning. Started for church this evening but did not get there being induced by my chum to call on some very agreeable young ladies. Took a walk around town with them ad spent a very agreeable evening with them, then returned to church in time to join our squad for home.

Monday, Nov. 11 – nothing unusual occurred today until evening when we went to church.

Tuesday, Nov. 12 – Today has been very pleasant. We have had quite a skirmish tonight with "Legs" in which the whole mess joined; it lasted about three hours. Joe Wills returned tonight bringing tidings from home.

Wednesday Nov. 13 – Today opened up very beautiful, all was mirth and gladness this morning; but this evening how changed the same our First Lieutenant is even now breathing his last, all the effect of carelessly handling a loaded carbine and that too by one of his intimate friends, who himself is almost deranged at the terrible result of his own carelessness. May this ever be a warning to those who are reckless in handling deadly weapons, and may it ever remind us that "in the midst of life we are in death". It seems to me like a dream, but today at noon I was making myself more than usually familiar with him in social conversation and he is packing up to leave us for the spirit land.

Thursday Nov, 14 – Left Frederick this morning for this place (Emmitsburg) with the funeral train of Lieutenant [John Motter] Annan. Arrived here about five o’clock. The weather an[d] roads have been disagreeable today. Captain [John] Horner brought us over here with(out) making any provisions for our confront and when we did get here left us without anything to eat or place to sleep. The weather at the same time being very inclement. We were thrown upon the charity of citizens without their knowledge at the time, but overhearing our men complaining about their ill treatment, many of the citizens came nobly forward to our relief, and fortunately for us all got under the cover of night. I took supper with Joe Wills and together with Buckingham, Fest and Hughes, stayed all night with Mr. Wattley where we had a very comfortable bed on the floor of a very nice front room.

Friday, Nov. 15 – Woke up this morning and found it raining and very gloomy, took breakfast with Mr. Wattley. The funeral services took place in the Presbyterian Church at nine o’clock, after which we took up our line of march for the burying ground about one mile north of Emmitsburg and after we returned we got our dinner and started for this place (Frederick) again where we arrived about eight o’clock, muddy and tired. I took dinner today with Mr. Meals. There was five of us dined with him: Buckingham, Huber, Kean, Hughes and myself. We had a very good dinner. Fred Meals is a clever, warm hearted gentleman.

Saturday, Nov. 16 – Today has set in very cold. We did not drill today.

Sunday, Nov. 17 – Today has been very cold. Went to the Methodist Church this morning. This afternoon started out for Sunday School but happened to get into a private house where was a very nice young lady where I, in company of two others spent a very agreeable afternoon. Was on guard duty this evening.

Monday, Nov. 18 – Today has been clear but very cold. This evening after dress parade, balloted for 1st Lieutenant but were not successful in choosing one. Went to Methodist Church this evening. Came home beneath a clear sky and laid me down on my soft board to rest for the night.

Tuesday, Nov. 19 – The weather has moderated somewhat today yet it is very cold this evening. We balloted for First Lieutenant today and elected Second Lieutenant [Washington] Morrison for our First Lieutenant after which we balloted for a Second Lieutenant. But after several unsuccessful attempts gave it up for another day. [Albert] Hunter ran six ahead of [A.M.] Walker, having thirty-eight to Walker’s thirty-two, it requiring 43 to elect.

Wednesday, Nov. 20 – Went through the usual routine of duty today and this evening went to church, Methodist, where there is a protracted meeting in progress. There was one mourner of a soldier.

Thursday, Nov. 21 – The weather today has been very changeable, calm and sunshine intermingle with cold blustery wind. Took a short "march" this afternoon instead of a drill. Went out with a church squad this evening but soon left it for the society of several agreeable young ladies. In company with Mr. Knott spent a very agreeable evening, a very delightful evening.

Friday, Nov. 22 – Received a letter from my sister Mary today and wrote one to my brother Stephen in answer to one which I have received from him a few days previously. We commenced jumping our horses across ditches today. We made some very good jumps.

Read part 5

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