A. L. Peel
to A. L. Peel Diary
Robert H. Peel's Letters
August 4th. 1863
19th. Mississippi Regiment
October 1, 1863 - Some
yanks came got in Rifle range of our line to shoot a hog our boys fired
on them & wounded one, they left Double quick. I spent the day
laying about reading & watching my steed graze until 5 o'clock until
When we were relieved and returned to camp.
October 2 - Rain has fallen steadily
all day. I spent most of my time as usual reading and writing, wrote
a flowing document for Pryor to send to his sweet sister Ann Jane.
October 3 - I performed my regular
duties. Let a good many men off guard for having clean guns &
got them on again for not knowing the manual of arms. I made a long
report for the Bureau of Conscription - expected company today and got
up a nice dinner.
4, 1863 - I attended preaching
& heard a good sermon spent most of the day reading We had rain this
evening,, The enemy are reported to be moving up the River.
Col Hardin Capt Dean and Lt Wilson went up on Clark mountain to view the
5 - We went on picket at 3 o'clock
put out heavy pickets Maj Duncan came & ordered them to still be strengthened
we put all on post & I went to General Anderson's to night, got one
Regt for support
6 - Last night was very cold
I slept but little Lu Alex returned from home brought many articles
for his company, I got only one letter,, I expected a pair of boots was
disappointed we were relieved at 3 o'clock & returned to camp
7, 1863 - I wrote an order requireing
a Court Martial to convene at my tent to try two of Co I Holmes & McCluskey
- we are ordered to be ready for action at a moments warning,, I have just
finished reading Aurora Floyd.
8 - We received orders at 2 o'clock
this morning to move at 7 o'clock at which hour we struck camp and marched
(our whole corps) through orange - took the road to Liberty Mills halted
after going ten miles and are cooking rations, We expect to cross the River
tomorrow and fight.
9 - Somebody stoled my horse
last night I found him this morning, We crossed the Rapidan came 4 m's
& are resting. moved three miles farther & struck camp.
We are ordered to have very little fire to make no noise and to keep close
in the woods, so that the enemy can't see us I have just eaten supper
and am sitting by my fire.
10, 1863 - We moved at 5 o'clock
this morning crossed Roberson River & two other streams. Genl
Steward captured 270 yanks & killed 15(75?) We hear cannonading
at a distance to our right We are on the Speraville? & Madison
Pike, 12 ms from Sand 13 from Culpepper.
11 - We took up our march at
6 o'clock came about 8 ms and found that the enemy have evacuated Culpepper
and are moving towards Warrenton Ewell is in Culpepper,, we have
orders to cook two days rations a few prisoners came in this evening,
we have no rations.
12 - We cooked rations and marched
at 10 o'clock came 5 miles & halted. I suppose that we are again
trying to flank the yanks our barefooted boys suplied themselves
with shoes & c in the yankeys camps. crossed the Rappahannock came
to Amissville our Regt is on picket to night at a crossroad. I am
waiting for Damon to bring me some grub.
13, 1863 - We were drawn off
of Picket at 7 o'clock this morning found our Corp's moving, came
on got to Warrenton at 2 o'clock, Stacked armes, the enemy left here yesterday
We are ordered to cook rations for Two days in great haste I expect
that we will march tonight. The enemy are moving towards Manasses
14 - Our men were cooking nearly
all night. We started at 5 a.m. down the Centreville Pike.
Sent the 16 Miss in advance they Shirmished ahead our Division turned
to the right, took a few Prisoners followed the enemy & caught them
near Bristoe, formed in line of battle & went forward, I am now in
a Pine thicket where the Shells come thick & fast, we will sleep in
line of battle.
15 - We were not disturbed last
night. The enemy retreated under cover of night. Cooks Brigade
was repulsed & lost 5 cannon of Mackentoshes Battalion. We have
taken a great many prisoners & more are coming in. We have cooked
rations and moved one mile and camped, heavy cannonading is heard in direction
of Manassa Junction.
16, 1863 - We slept quietly last
night. Stretched tents and kindled large fires, Several Brigades
have been moving up the Rail Road all day. This is the most desolate
country that I ever saw. There is not a House, fence, nor citizen
to be seen. The whole country looks like a vast old battlefield.
Capt Joe Phillips spent the evening with us.
17 - This has been a very pretty
day. We had a detail picking up arms off of the field. We have
orders to cook two days rations. I went to the ground where our Regt
camped when we first came out to the army. I felt Sad to think of
the great change Since that time. many who were well & lively
then are now laying on the battle ground or in their humble graves.
October 18 -
were annoyed last night with reports of the enemys Cavalry advancing, We
formed in line of battle & Slept on our arms - until 3 o'clock a.m.
when we were ordered to move. We marched over a very muddy road &
halted at dark at Rappahannock Station we have come 26 miles; will
Sleep in an old field.
October 19, 1863
- A hail storm woke us up at
4 o'clock this morning. We got very wet and moved across the River
went one mile & halted kindled fires & c cooked two days
rations The Sun Shined out and made a very pretty evening I
wrote a letter. Mike brought us a large mail,
October 20 -
packed up and moved a quarter of a mile and camped in a very nice grove
Where we have a Splendid pasture for our horses. Stewards Cavalry
captured 300 yanks and killed 400 at little Baltimore also took several
October 21 -
Duncan came around and arrested nine officers in our Regt for allowing
their men to take plank from a house. I have spent most of the day
fixing up my camp. We have orders to move tomorrow a 9 oclock a.m.
October 22, 1863
- We moved at 9 o'clock this
morning , came Three miles into a nice woodland and Struck camp Col
Hardin Capt Phipps & my Self laid off our camp in Sistematical order
We then stretched our Tents we have plenty wood & I hope to stay some
time & rest quietly
October 23 -
arrested two men for stealing a hog. (near my tent) - took them to their
Regimental Commanders, Col Hardin sent to the owner of the (drawing of
hog) got it and we have fresh meat, I have been quite busy having camp
cleaned up We have rain this evening Mckei Lt came from home
October 24 -
has been raining all day & has been a dreamy day I wrote a letter,
We put out camp guards, have orders to send off the sick, many are afraid
that we will go to Tennasee We sent out & got some Potatoes &
October 25, 1863
- This has been a very pretty
day Dr Wilson & Capt (picture of lock & key) came over to
see us. (picture of eye) took a (picture of shirt), (picture of pants),
& c and (picture of pen on paper) a (picture of envelope). We
had no divine Service to day time passes very (silly?).
October 26 -
had general inspection reported all deficiencies of clothing, our
Cavalry fought a bout 7 miles from here. We sent Damon out
foraging got some Potatoes they help our Beef & Bread considderably.
Read orders on Dress parade - -
October 27 -
Harris arrived last night he will command the Brigade, I made out a Report
of Ordnance, Bought a pair of Boots of Lt Wilson for $90. The weather
has suddenly turned quite cold. 2nd Lt Riley is promoted to Captain.
October 28, 1863
- I made out a Monthly Report,
our mess built a Chimney to my Tent, I am Sitting by a very bright
& cheerful fire, thinking of how I could appreciate a peaceful home,
Such as a once had and how thankful I would be for every blessing.
Oh when will this cruel war end,
October 29 -
have spent most of the day drawing off forms for Company mornings reports
- I sat by my comfortable fire tonight and read a novel called No name
Pryor thinks that he will make application for a furlough, to go home
October 30 -
received and distributed Payroles to the Regt - The Commissary has stopped
the rations of all officers who have not paid for them, I paid my
Bill for two months amount $102.00cts Rations are ordered
to be slightly increased.
October 31, 1863
- I have spent the day as usual,
read very strict orders on Dress parade We have guards around the
Regt with orders not to let any person pass at any time and have to send
a detail for water under a guard & get wood within our lines