Monday, June 30, 2014

Letter from Rufus Dawes to Mary Dawes, June 30, 1864

June 30th, 1864
We are getting fixed up for a muster for pay, and are pretty well straightened out, but accounts and returns have become inextricably confused in this campaign.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Letter from Rufus Dawes to his wife, Mary June 28

Before Petersburg, June 28th, 1864
We are to go out to the entrenchments to-night to relieve the second brigade, but as there is no firing on the line in our front, the service is not hard.  I am trying to get my company business straightened out, but the loss of so many officers, and the confusion resulting from so long an inattention to returns, makes a great deal of trouble.  I fear our pay rolls will be defective. 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Letter from Rufus Dawes to his wife Mary, June 26

June 26, 1864
I have been washed, shaved and shampooed, and feel wonderfully revived.  I have got some hams, soft bread, flour and biscuit; the latter luxury comes from the Christian Commission.  You may be sure I am feeling much better and more cheerful.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Letter from Rufus Dawes to his wife, June 23

Before Petersburg, June 23rd, 7 P. M.
I have lain all day in this dirty hole and am too stupid for any use.  The Calcutta black hole was not more disagreeable and the constant shower of rebel bullets are the chains that keep us imprisoned.  Things look rather blue, I must confess, about Petersburg.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Letter from Rufus R. Dawes to his wife, Mary Gates Dawes on June 22

Line of Battle before Petersburg
June 22nd, 8 A. M.
Still skulking in our holes, and dirty, dusty places they are, but the Johnnies leave us no alternative.  William brings my breakfast and enough for a cold dinner up to the works before daylight, and supper after dark.  We can see the spires of Petersburg about two miles away to the northwest.  There seems to be a severe musketry fight going on this evening to our left and troops have been moving that way all day and yesterday

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Letter from Rufus R. Dawes to his wife, Mary Gates Dawes

Line of Battle before Petersburg,
June 21st, 1864

I am sitting in a hole four feet deep, eight feet long and three feet wide, shaded by green boughs and quite cool and pleasant for a hot day.  This is my regimental headquarters.  Sergeant Major Cuyler Babcock, who is Acting Adjutant, sits at the other end of the hole, and we are company for each other.  To raise a head in daylight above the surface of the ground is almost certain death, for it will draw the fire of a dozen sharpshooters.  Babcock knows nothing about Latin, but I taught him to-day about twenty lines of Cicero’s first oration against Caitlin, and so we pass our time.  Few of our men are hurt and none need be.  Sometimes a foolish fellow will imagine he wants a drink of water badly enough risk his life to get it, and he generally loses his life trying to run for it.  We have lost forty-five men before Petersburg, six killed. The suicidal manner in which we are sent against the enemy’s entrenchments is discouraging.  Our brigade was simply food for powder in the assault day before yesterday.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Missing Pages

Peggy's note:
Julia Cutler's journals were kept by the family for many years.  They were eventually donated to Marietta College in Ohio where they are housed in the Special Collections Library.  For the most part, the journals are intact and in good condition.   At some point, however, the pages with the entries beginning June 16, 1864 through July 13, 1864 were carefully cut from the original binding and removed.  It is believed that the pages were removed by a family member prior to the donation to Marietta College.  While it is disappointing to be missing nearly a month of entires, and while I can only speculate as to who cut them out and why,  the fact is that they are missing.

As there are no actual journal entries to post for the next four weeks, I will endeavor to post additional contemporary family letters and more information about Ephraim Dawes's recovery.  Julia's entries will resume on July 13.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Wednesday June 15 1864

They finished shearing the sheep, about 240.  It is very difficult for Ephe to talk much but little by little we learn how much he has suffered.  It is wonderful that he is alive.  The journey home in the state of his wound must have been little less than torture.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Friday, June 13, 2014

Monday June 13 1864

William went to Athens on business.  Ephe and Lucy went to Marietta taking Wesley with them.  The Major bears up heroically, always cheerful and uncomplaining.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Sunday, June 12" 1864

Maggie Voris is sick with mumps.  Mr. Curtis took up a collection for missions.  $88

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Saturday, June 11" 1864

Prof. E. B. Andrews, Mrs. Andrews, and their daughter Claire were here to see Ephe & took dinner with us.  In the after noon Miss Walker and Mrs. W. R. Howe of Belpre called, they were much interested to see & talk with Ephe.  Indeed everybody takes an interest in him.  Mrs. Dawes went home on the after noon train.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Friday, June 10" 1864

Mrs. Dawes went to town this morning & came back on the 11’ o’clock train.  Mr. Burgess, Capt. Augustus Dickey, Mr. W. W. Graves, Mrs. W. D. Bailey & Miss Maggie Voris called to see the Major.  Dr. Frank Hart came down to see him and dress his wound.  He says by a skillful surgical operation with the aid of the Dentist that he can speak and eat as well as ever again.  Dr. Blackman told him that by next October he thought, he would be well enough to have an operation performed.  A new under lip will have to be made, a new jaw and teeth inserted -- after which he thinks the disfigurement will not be great.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Thursday, June 9" 1864

Morgan, the rebel raider, is reported to be in Maysville, Ky.  Prayer meeting here.  Mrs. W. D. Bailey & Emeline attended.  
Ephe, accompanied by Lucy and Wesley his colored servant, arrived on the evening train, Mrs. Dawes met them at Scotts Landing and came with them  The Major though very tired was in good spirits and his wound, a ghastly one to behold, is said to be doing well.  Wesley has been taught how to cleanse it with a syringe & to dress it properly.  ---  Ephe has such wonderful fortitude -- he never complained or makes ado about what he has suffered & is still suffering.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Wednesday, June 8" 1864

Lizzie Cutler went to town today.  Recieved the following dispatch from William “Cincinnati June 8”.  Ephraim arrived this morning.  He will remain here to-day.  The outer part of his under jaw was cut off by a musket ball.  The wound is a bad one, but I think not dangerous.  He suffered intensely the past three days, but it does not pain him now.”  We also recieved a note from Lucy saying they should be home tomorrow.  To-day Dr. George Blackman the most distinguished surgeon in Cincinnati is to see Ephe, and decide what can be done for his wound.  He will come here at William’s desire, because it is cool & quiet.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Tuesday, June 7" 1864

This morning William started to Cincinnati to meet Ephe, Lucy also goes on same train.  Mrs Cutler & little Sarah spent the day at Mr. Burgess’.  Mrs. Terril is here picking gooseberries and preparing them to be canned.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Monday, June 6" 1864

William went to Marietta where he found this dispatch from Major E. C. Dawes dated at Nashville June 5” --  “I leave for Cincinnati tomorrow -- wound doing well.”

Peggy's note:
On June 6, Rufus wrote to his wife Mary about her brother:
I have received your father's note announcing Charley's death.  How strange that so suddenly, while you have suffered so long in dread of harm to me, I am safe, and Charley is called to his grave.  Truly, we can not tell what is in store for us.
Rufus had not yet heard that his own brother, Ephraim, had been wounded.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Sabbath June 5" 1864

Sacrament.  Rev. A. J. McKim assisted Mr Curtis.   Lizzie, Hattie, James & Scott Bailey, children of B. C. Bailey, Alice Augusta Scott, daughter of the late Sergeant John Scott, Jr., Annette Bailey, daughter of W. D. Bailey, & Alice Blackinton daughter of Jason Blackinton united with the church.  Mr. Curtis and Mr. McKim were here and took tea.  The latter gentleman is expecting to go on a foreign mission.  He is cousin to the young man John H. McKim, killed in the RailRoad accident.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Saturday June 4" 1864

Mr. Bailiey is attending to our sheep this season.  They are washing the sheep this morning in the river just above the house.  Lucy came down on the 11’ o’clock train and with her Mrs. Graves, and her cousin Mrs. Clark & Miss Belle Dodge and little Minnie Green.  We expected Mrs. Dodge & her other daughter Georgia, but this young lady is in very poor health -- disease of the heart -- and cannot leave home to-day.  If she is better they will start next Wednesday for their New England home in Lyme N. H.  -----   Our guests took dinner, gathered beauquets of roses &c and returned to Marietta on the afternoon train.  
William has telegraphed to Ephe, but gets no answer.  We are extremely anxious about him.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Friday, June 3d, 1864

A great many called at Mrs. Dawes’ to inquire about Ephe among them were Prof. Andrews and lady, Mr. W. Buell, Mr. S. Slocomb, Mrs. Buell, Mrs. Hawkins, Mrs. Sam Shipman, Mrs. S. Newton, Dr. Frank Hart, Miss Cone &c. &c, all express their sympathy & regret.  Charlie B. Gates’ funeral was attended in the Congregational Church at 2 o’clock.  We went to the house and went with the family.  Pres. Andrews made a very good address & Mr. Wickes prayed.  The funeral was very numerously attended.  Lucy came with me to meet the Cincinnati train where I found William.  Ephe was wounded at Dallas, Ga. very badly -- this is all we know.  Our anxiety about him is very great.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Thursday, June 2, 1864

Female prayer meeting -- Mrs. McClure and Emeline here.  
Lucy came on evening train.  
Ephe is wounded, lower jaw shot off.  They received the dispatch from William who is in Chillicothe, also one from Ephe June 1st from Kingston “I leave for Nashville today.” & one from Stephenson of Portsmouth saying he should leave for Chattanooga as soon as he heard from Marietta.  We are extremely anxious about Ephe, but thankful he is alive.  
Lucy & I went to Marietta on the extra train which took up Mr. & Mrs. Gates and poor Charlie’s lifeless body.  Several persons from Marietta were on who went to Belpre to meet them.  We went in the omnibus to the Gates’ house -- it was a sad scene.

Peggy's comments:
Ephe is Ephraim Cutler Dawes, Julia's nephew and the brother of Rufus R. Dawes.  He had been serving with the 53rd Ohio and was marching with General Sherman toward Atlanta.

Ephraim Cutler Dawes

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Wednesday, June 1st, 1864

James Bailey called to tell us that Lieut. Charles B. Gates is dead.  I fear his parents were too late to see him alive.  He is their only son, and a very affectionate, amiable young man.  He was pursuing his education at Marietta College but left his studies to serve his country.

Charley, Bettie, and Mary Gates

Charles Beman Gates

Peggy's comments:
Charles Beman Gates was the brother of Mary Gates Dawes (wife of Rufus R. Dawes).   Charley's parents and his sister knew he had been injured in the railroad accident of the previous week but at the time, no one believed it was a serious injury.  Charley proceeded to Harper's Ferry, but could not go on as by this time he was quite ill with pneumonia.   A telegram was sent on May 30, calling his parents, Beman and Betsey Gates, to his bedside at Harper's Ferry.  They arrived by train, shortly after he died.

This is an excerpt of a letter that Mary wrote to her brother a few days after the accident but before the serious nature of his condition was known.  It is unknown whether he received it in time to read it. 

No doubt all the letters today will tell you we miss you and not to be behind the rest, I shall say it too for -- we do miss you.  Father this morning started for the kitchen armed with boots, brushes and blacking and saying "Pshaw but I don't like to black boots, Charley always does it when he is at home."  Adaline [the cook] has lost an important prop to her institute.  Her pies and cakes dry up and blow away from the want of somebody to eat them.  Adaline certainly has a tender heart and is sorry to have you away from home but then she might feel worse for her pump is in good working order and more than all there is water in the cistern but I doubt not Charley she has tender feelings for you every time the wheezy old thing goes.  I do.  Bettie misses you at all times and on all occasions and from the conversation of the young autocrat at the breakfast table she evidently sees you still in her dreams.  But Mother, "Oh that these lips had language!"  And Charley I miss you.  Of course I have no need to tell you that I miss you "boat nights," and that I often want you to do errands, to do this, to stop doing that, but I don't know, I guess you never thought I would think of you so many times in a day and wish you would come in and make me laugh, or show by your look or a quiet goodnight kiss that you felt sorry for and pitied me.  And so it goes we all talk of you and plans for your coming home.