Friday, May 31, 2013

Sunday, May 31, 1863

Mrs. Andrews & Lucy went back to Marietta last evening in a buggy -- Col. Andrews preached to-day from the text “Thou Shall not Kill.”

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Saturday, May 30, 1863

We had Col. Blackinton & lady of Attleboro, Mass., Mr. & Mrs. Jason Blackinton, Col. Andrews & lady, Mrs. Walton & Miss Lucy Dawes here to dinner -- Strawberries --
The seventeen year locusts which have been coming out of the ground for a week or two began to sing or rather scream in the garden today.  Mr. Pond left this P. M.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Friday, May 29, 1863

Clara, Lizzie & I went in the buggy to A. S. Bailey’s where we took dinner. Mr. Pond a young man from Minnesota attending Marietta College came this evening with a letter of introduction to Mrs. Cutler--   Sheep sheering time to-day -- a busy time.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Thursday, May 28, 1863

Clara & I took dinner at W. D. Bailey’s where we met Mrs. Charles Guthrie and wife, Mr. Junson, J. Holister and wife, [unreadable] & Betsey Bailey.  

Monday, May 27, 2013

Wednesday, May 27, 1863

Clara & Eddie returned in the evening time from Barlow where they have been visiting Mr. Walton’s sister, the wife of Rev. D. C. Perry.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Tuesday, May 26, 1863

I called today on Mrs. George Bailey & her mother Mrs. Stapleton, on Mrs. Dickey and her sister in law Mrs. Dr. Lindley, a widow from Missouri, and then on Mrs. Blackinton and Col. Blackinton & wife from Massachusetts, pleasant people.  I walked up but [unreadable name--Lurie?] came after me in the buggy.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Monday, May 25, 1863

Clara & Eddie went to Barlow to spend a few days.
A dispatch has been received from Mr. W. S. Fuller telegraph operator at Memphis Station that the Stars & Stripes wave over Vicksburg.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Sunday, May 24, 1863

Mr. Wickes of Marietta preached for us a sermon on the first resurrection.  He came home with us to tea.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Thursday, May 21, 1863

Wrote to Martha A. Carter, inclosing fifty dollars from William.

Peggy’s comments:
Martha A. Carter was another niece of Julia’s.  Her parents were Nancy Cutler (Julia’s older half-sister) and Rufus Gregory Carter.

On this day, Rufus Dawes wrote to Mary Gates:  
We are under orders to march at daylight with three days’ rations and without knapsacks.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Tuesday, May 19, 1863

Clara, Eddie & I walked up to the grave yard, called on Betsey Bailey as we returned.  Mrs. Burgess & Maggie here to tea.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Monday, May 18, 1863

Mrs. Dawes went home this morning & William to Chillicothe.  Clara & I spent the day at Mr. Burgess’s very pleasantly.  Mrs. McClure & Emeline were there to tea.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Sunday, May 17, 1863

We all went to meeting except Lizzie who is still not strong enough to go.
Rev. Lucious Ford, one of the Editors of the Christian Herald, Cincinnati, preached for us today.  The people seemed delighted to see Clara again.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Saturday, May 16, 1863

Kate is very tired to-day -- Several of the neighbors called to see Clara and to get their bonnets from the city.  Mrs. Dawes came down on the evening train.  Miss Mary C. Nye here to tea.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Friday, May 15, 1863

Our friends returned from Cincinnati this morning.  Sister Clara W. C. Walton and her youngest son Eddie with them.  It is five years next October since she left here for Pana, Illinois.  It is very pleasant to see her here again.  Lucy came down to spend the night.  Kate’s purchases in the city give very good satisfaction -- in all there were 18 bonnets & hats bought. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Thursday, May 14, 1863

Stonewall Jackson is reported dead.  Van Dorn is officially stated dead.  Two bold traitors gone to their account.  
Mr. Davison & his neighbors Lyons & Johnson took their horses today.  The rebels having fallen back 20 miles.  Two men from Wirt Co. Va. with eight horses came to-day.  The name of one is Fairfax, the other I think Kaufman.

Peggy’s comments:
General Stonewall Jackson fought at Chancellorsville where he was accidentally wounded by Confederate troops.  He lost his arm as the result of the wound and died a week later.  

General Earl Van Dorn, who had a noted reputation as a womanizer, was shot in the head by Dr. George Peters because he believed Van Dorn was carrying on an affair with Peters’ wife, Jessie McKissack Peters.  Van Dorn died from the gunshot wound.  Peters was arrested but never brought to trial.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Wednesday, May 13, 1863

Finished planting my flower beds.  It rained in the afternoon.  Mrs. Terril here ironing.  Lizzie not well today.
Hooker’s advance is contradicted.  Dix is going up the York river from Fortress Monroe, threatening Richmond.  Stoneman’s raid has astonished the rebels.  He traversed 10 Counties for nine days, with 5,000 cavalry & set up his gen q within the fortifications of Richmond, he destroyed Lee’s railroad, communication & millions of rebel commissary stores.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Tuesday, May 12, 1863

Kate & Maggie started this morning for the city, each taking a trunk.  Kate had 340 dollars, Maggie 140, nearly five hundred dollars between them to spend.  Mrs. G. W. Bailey & Maggie Stapleton called, also Betsey Bailey.  Today’s Gazzette says Hooker is again South of the Rappahannock, the 1st Army Corp to which Rufus belongs in the advance.

Peggy’s comments:
U. S.  General Hooker had been defeated by Lee at Chancellorsville.  Rufus Dawes wrote to Mary Gates:
 The reason General Hooker recrossed the river was because he was outgeneraled and defeated, -- a humiliating confession, I own, but I believe true 
 Accounts of the battle of Chancellorsville are here and  here.  

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Monday, May 11, 1863

Nancy came back this morning.  
As our anxiety on Rufus’ account is relieved for the present Kate concluded to go to Cincinnati tomorrow where she will meet Clara.
Mr. & Mrs. A. S. Bailey, Mr. & Mrs. W. D. Bailey, Mr. & Mrs. G. W. Bailey, Thomas & Betsey & Lizzie Bailey called.  Kate will have quite an amount of shopping to do for ourselves & others.  She has more than a dozen bonnets to get.

Peggy’s comments:
 Rufus Dawes had received anguished letters from his sisters Lucy and Kate on May 10.  They had written to him after being told by Mary that she had received a packet from Rufus which was to be sent only if Rufus had been killed.  Lucy and Kate wrote desperate letters, fearing that Rufus had been killed or wounded.  In his letter to Mary Gates on May 10, Rufus tells her of his surprise and shock at receiving letters from his sisters and tells her that he thought that Dr. Preston had lost the envelope.  Rufus apologizes for any distress the mistakenly delivered packet of letters caused his family and may have caused Mary.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Sunday, May 10, 1863

William and Kate got home last evening.  He traveled 840 miles between Baltimore and home coming by way of Wheeling, Columbus, & Cincinnati. Mr. Davidson and another Virginian and a German here to dinner.  Mr. William Neal shot and wounded a rebel horseman last night near the head of James Island in Vienna, Va.  We went to meeting and Sab. School.  About 21 dollars collected for Sab. School Library.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Saturday, May 9, 1863

Sarah went home this morning.  One of the two gunboats which have been lying at Parkersburg passed us today    it is partially iron plated & carried ten guns, 32 pounders.  The bridge over the Little Kanawha has been taken up to enable the gunboats to pass up if in order necessary to defend the place.    Rebels reported seven miles out.  Nancy went home.  George Cutter here. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Friday, May 8, 1863

The rebels are reported to be approaching Parkersburg by way of the Stanton pike, mostly mounted men, said to be 5000 strong, some say 15,000.  Six men & boys with twelve horses came here from Virginia, seeking pasture out of reach of the rebels.  Turned the horses into the pasture over the hill.  We gave them dinner.

A dispatch from William says Rufus is safe.

Peggy's Comments:
Rufus was indeed safe.  In the confusion of the battle at Fitz Hugh's Crossing, the envelope addressed to Mary Gates to be delivered only if Rufus had been killed, was inadvertently picked up and mailed.  After the battle, when Rufus tried to retrieve the envelope from Dr. Preston, Dr. Preston could not find it.  Rufus thought that Dr. Preston had lost it and was quite annoyed.  Rufus immediately wrote to Mary, to his sister Lucy, and to others in the family.   But he was again on the march toward Chancellorsville and had little opportunity to try to communicate.   Meanwhile, assuming that the mistakenly mailed envelope was meant for Rufus' sister Lucy, Dr. Preston wrote to Lucy telling her that Rufus was alive and well.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Thursday, May 7, 1863

On inquiry I find that a package of letters has been received by Mary Gates, which were not to be returned except in case of his death --I don’t wonder they all feel alarmed and distressed-- But somehow I can’t help believing he is alive & have tried to inspire Lucy with the same confidence.

Peggy's comments:
The previous week when Rufus was about to enter battle, he put Mary Gates' letters in an envelope, instructing his friend Dr. Preston to hold the envelope safe for him, unless he were killed in battle and if so, Dr. Preston was to mail the envelope.  Rufus had enclosed the following letter to Mary in the envelope:

April 28, 1863
We are advancing upon the enemy.  I doubt not we must have a desperate battle.  I leave this where I have perfect confidence that it will be sent to you in case I am killed and only in that event.   
I loved you dearly, sincerely, and I am sure my dying prayer will be that God will bless you always and make you happy.  I don't believe you will ever think lightly of the love of a man who, if he had no other merits, gave his life freely for his country and the right.          Rufus R. Dawes

Monday, May 6, 2013

Wednesday, May 6, 1863

After dinner we bade sister Polly good bye & Mr. Dean taking us in his wagon to New England Station.  Annie came as far as Amesville with us, called at Mr. Merwins--Got on train 20 minutes past 5 o’clock, was raining when we changed cars at Scotts Landing where we met Lucy.  There is a report that Rufus was killed in battle, but I cannot believe it true.  They have all been in great suspense & trouble.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Monday, May 4, 1863

Mr. & Mrs. Dean and I called this morning to see Mrs. Betsey Brawley--whom they brought up.  She is now lying very ill with a cancer in her breast--probably cannot live long.
Walter Finch, another foster child of Mr. & Mrs. Dean, and a worthy man, came with his wife to visit them this afternoon.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Sunday, May 3, 1863

Went to hear Mr. Merwin preach and by invitation we dined at his house.  They have one son Charles who is a student at Marietta College, but now at home & two daughters, Amelia & Sarah, very pleasant girls.  In the afternoon we attended the funeral of Col. Absolem Boyle, an early settler & public spirited citizen of Ames township.

Peggy’s comments:
Rufus Dawes, Julia’s nephew, had begun a correspondence with Miss Mary Gates of Marietta.  In late April, Rufus, who was serving with the Sixth Wisconsin in the Army of the Potomac, knew that his regiment would soon be engaged in another battle.  He prepared a packet of the few letters Mary had sent him, put them in an envelope to be returned to her in the event he was killed in battle.  He enclosed a note to her and gave the envelope to his friend, Dr. Preston, to mail if he was killed.   On April 28, Rufus and the Sixth Wisconsin was ordered to cross the Rappahannock to protect the laying of pontoons.  Shortly thereafter, he wrote to his sister to describe the action:

Dear Luce,
At nine o’clock Gen. Reynolds sent down orders that the 6th Wis. and the 24th Mich. must cross and carry the pits.  Such a feeling of horror as came over us!  To be shot like sheep in a huddle and drown in the Rappahannock was the certain death of all if we failed and of many if we succeeded.  The plan was simple.  Troops moved down along the edge of the river, and batteries planted on the hills back of us to fire at the rebels as hard as they could, while we ran into the boats, rowed them across the river, scrabbled up the bank, and drove Rebs out with the bayonet, or held the ground, if we could, until the boats could bring more troops to help us.
After these dispositions had been made, we moved down over the open field in line of battle, truly the forlorn hope of the Army.  The rebels opened on us and our men along the river, and the batteries returned their fire.
We moved down in line until within two hundred yards of the boats, then by the right of companies to the front, double quick, and into the boats the men plunged down on their faces.  The storm of bullets was perfectly awful.
“Heave her off.”  “Down on her.”  “The first man up on the bank shall be a general.”  “Show the Army why the old Sixth was chosen to lead them.”  It was the fiercest regatta ever run in this country.  It was no time to quail or flinch.  One halt or waver was destruction.  I stood up in the bow of the boat I commanded, swinging my sword in one hand, and cheering on the oarsmen; holding my pistol in the other to shoot them if they wavered or flinched.  
Across the river we tumbled into the mud or water waist deep, waded ashore, crawled or scrambled up the bank.  Crack, crack, for two minutes and the rebels were running like sheep over the field or throwing down their arms as prisoners. I took the flag and swung it as a signal of our victory, and such a shout of triumph as went up from ten thousand anxious spectators on the north bank it was good to hear. 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Saturday, May 2, 1863

Miss Elizabeth Rice called this morning at Mr. Deans--she is a daughter of Mr. Jason Rice of this place, & is a pleasant young lady.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Friday, May 1, 1863

Mr & Mrs Merwin at Mr. Dean’s to spend the afternoon.  She is a pretty, genteel, woman.  Mr. Merwin discorsed, but not unkindly, Col.  E. B. Andrews, who has lately resigned the command of the 36th O. V. I.   --That Regiment has conducted in this matter in a way to be much regretted--they have treated Col. Andrews shamefully--