ICICLES IN THEIR BEARDS – WINTER 1861-1862 BETWEEN WINCHESTER and BERKELEY SPRINGS by Jim Surkamp
. . . About Cleon Moore who almost froze with his uniformed, unprotected Charles Town comrades on the snowbound, windswept West Virginia mountains in January, 1862, and lived to tell of it, and, with a wink to AWOL “frolics” with some nice young ladies.
– (Jedediah Hotchkiss).
– (p. 39 – younger)
We remained at “Camp Stephenson” for some time; had good tents, plenty to eat, and nothing to do but guard duty and drill, with plenty of visitors at our camp every day. While at this camp Brigadier General R. B. Garnett was made Brigadier of our brigade, and we had a review, in (61) order to display our soldierly qualities before our new General and the ladies.
Casler’s 33rd Virginia Infantry Regiment broke camp at Stephenson’s Depot and marched north. through Martinsburg further north to Dam No. 5 on the Potomac:
On the 17th day of December we struck tents and marched about fifteen miles towards Martinsburg, and camped within three miles of that place. The next morning we were on the march, and went through Martinsburg down to Dam No. 5, on the Potomac river — another fifteen miles. We had about twenty flatboats with us, in covered wagons. They were not so much concealed but they could be easily seen by any spies there might be about, and there were plenty of them. This was a ruse to make the Federals think we were going to cross the Potomac, while our object was to destroy the dam, so the Chesapeake and Ohio canal could not be used by the enemy.
Almost everybody thought we were going to invade Maryland, but we halted at the dam and commenced to destroy it. The enemy, on the other side of the river, kept up such a continuous firing that we could not work, so we took the boats up the river opposite Little Georgetown, Md., unloaded them, and made preparations as if we were going to cross. The enemy at once drew all their forces up there in order to intercept us,
and left us free to tear open the dam in their absence, which we did. We then returned to our old camp near Winchester, where we remained until January 1, 1862. Thus ended the first year of the war. Casler – pp. 60-61.
Henry Kyd Douglas from Ferry Hill at Shepherdstown was with the 2nd Virginia Infantry regiment. Like Casler’s group, they had encamped first below Winchester then just north of it, then began a march north. But unlike Casler, his unit stayed with a much larger force that headed directly for Bath, Va. (today Berkeley Springs, WV). All would unite at Bath. And for both groups the weather began nicely then turned into a freezing horror.
HENRY KYD DOUGLAS:
Before New Year’s General Jackson made several trips to Dam Number Five on the Potomac for the purpose of destroying it and thereby impairing the efficiency of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, over which large supplies of coal and military stores were transported to Washington. These trips were only partially successful; but there was no loss and the health of the troops was maintained.
Returning home from one of these expeditions, after riding along some distance, the General spied a tree hanging heavy with persimmons, a peculiar fruit of which (he) was very fond. Dismounting he was in a short time seated aloft among the branches, in the midst of abundance. He ate in silence and when satisfied started to descend, but found that it was not so easy as the ascent had been. Attempting to swing himself from a limb to the main fork of the tree, he got so completely entangled that he could move neither up or down and was compelled to call for help. He remained suspended in that attitude until his staff, convulsed with laughter, brought some rails from a fence nearby and made a pair of skids to slide him to the earth. Douglas, p. 19.
The first night I got into camp, Fred Robinson Fred Robinson and I flanked in Winchester and had a frolic. I returned to camp behind Dr. Jack Straith. Fred was too drunk to make the march, about three miles from Winchester. (Fred Robinson went AWOL starting December 27th and appeared in mid- to late- 1862 in Richmond hospitals. – JS) – Robinson’s service record, page 5. (Access to link requires subscription to fold3.com).
In a few days we were marched through Winchester and encamped near Stephenson’s Depot. Here we fixed for the winter, at least we thought so. We did not build huts but pitched our tents in a field. Joe Crane, Charlie Aisquith, Horace Gallaher occupied a tent together.
We had Stephen Goens (Goins) Steve Goens (a colored) man to cook for us and we lived well.
John Wesley Seibert John Wesley Seibert, who was a barber in Shepherdstown for many years after the war, also cooked for the 2nd Virginia regiment. We were in reach of home and often got a supply of eatables. (Goens – also spelled Goins – was the son of and ferry boatman Lawson Goins who ran the ferry to Shannondale Springs resort). Our time here was occupied with the usual camp duties, drilling, guard mounting and so forth.
Julia Chase, a family that had relocated from Maine, sided with the Union and lived on the corner of N. Loudoun Street and Fairfax Lane, complained that the new large encampment just north of their end of town promised unpleasant encounters as soldiers sought fun in town:
The troops are moving their quarters from near Kernstown and are going in the neighborhood of Mr. Carter’s, that they may obtain wood and water. Heard that they cut down all the fences nearly, so they make destruction wherever they go. It will be quite lively in our part of town now, as they will have to pass and re-pass our house in going to the camp. – Mahon, p. 12
We frequently went into Winchester and visited a good deal at Mrs. Meredith’s, (located at 311 N. Braddock Street. Mrs. Meredith Mrs. Meredith was a recent widow since her husband James, had died in the previous year. He was a silversmith located at 168 N. Loudoun St. They had two teenaged daughters in 1862 named Lucy and Virginia.-JS)
There were several girls here and we spent some pleasant hours. We also visited at Mr. Ginnis (“George Ginn” living at 108 E. Piccadilly) – he had a grand-daughter, Betty, a very pretty girl.
A frolic at Randall Evans’ establishment – Winchester 145 N. Loudoun Street, Winchester December, 1861:
Randall Evans (a colored man) kept a restaurant in town and we frequently called on him. In fact, we spent all our money there. I shall never forget one night we were in town with George Flagg and Jim Towner among the number on our flank. It was necessary for us to get the countersign to go to camp. The militia were stationed on the pike and were very strict about hailing everyone.
We could not go to Col. Lawson Botts (our commander) for we were away from our command without leave. So we resorted to a piece of strategy. Towner feigned drunkeness; we pretended to be a squad taking him to camp. Up at the post where we were ordered to halt, explained to the militia man that we were taking to camp a drunken soldier and failed to get the countersign. Towner by this time was getting very boisterous. It was no use. The soldier was immovable. We told him we would be compelled to leave the drunken man at his hands . . .
Towner pretended to lose himself. When we released our grasp, Towner gave a yell and jumped at the sentinel who turned and ran from his post toward a little hut they had constructed by the side of the road. The officer came running out and allowed us to pass. Very often it would be past the middle of the night when we got to camp.
JANUARY 1ST, 1862:
We stayed there until the first of January, 1862. The morning was bright and pleasant. On that day we got the order to get ready to move and none of us knew where. pp. 99-100.
Henry Kyd Douglas, who grew up at Ferry Hill opposite Shepherdstown in Maryland, joined Company B of the 2nd Virginia infantry along with many white young men from Shepherdstown.
About 4 o’clock that morning we were awakened by an untimely reveille and long roll. Every soldier knew before he left his bed (excuse my civilized style of saying “bed”) that a march was before him in celebration of the advent of 1862. No one knew whither, but a majority dolefully thought of Romney. About day-light we were on the way, puzzling as to our course. The day was pleasant, although rather warm for marching. It was soon evident that the whole army (militia included) was along and an active expedition was expected . . . the General knew he could accomplish what he set out to do, namely, drive the Federal troops across the Potomac and out of his Department. – “Douglas to Boteler.”
ANNA JACKSON (STONEWALL JACKSON’S WIDOW):
That morning had all the glory and mildness of a spring day, and, the roads being in good condition, General Jackson started out with his little army of about eight thousand five hundred men, five battalions, and a few companies of cavalry, all moving forward with alacrity and fine spirits. p. 223.
On this trip, a gentleman of Winchester sent Gen. Jackson a bottle of fine old whiskey. It was consigned to the care of one of the staff. Douglas, p. 20.
We marched about sixteen miles that day on the grade towards Romney and Bath about forty miles distant. . . An old gentleman had been captured traveling in a buggy towards Bath who we suspected of endeavoring to convey information to the enemy. . . . We marched to Unger’s crossroads and encamped. The wagons did not get up. We had no blankets, no rations. – Moore, pp. 100-101.
Our brigade was placed upon a high hill covered with pine-trees, resembling the spur of a mountain. – Douglas to Boteler.
JANUARY 1ST – EVENING:
– (George Neese ).
Artillerist George Neese wrote a few miles from Jacksons encampment:
This is a beautiful bright night. The moon hangs in a clear sky, and it is nearly as light as day. A few tiny fragments of dissolving clouds, that look like little bunches of snowy lace, are scudding across the azure dome chasing each other toward the gates of morning. p. 12.
Then night rolled in on a fierce wind.
The old gentleman we captured was placed in the charge of our guard and we gave him the best accommodations we could afford. A seat by a large fire, and as the wind blew with great force, he was compelled to move his seat every few minutes as the volume of smoke would be driven in his face. The only stabling for his horse was a large tree to which they were hitched . . . – Moore p. 101.
As evening came on and it began to grow much colder, it occurred to the General that a drink of wine – for such he supposed it was – would be very acceptable. Asking for the bottle, he uncorked it, tilted it to his mouth and without stopping to taste, swallowed about as much of that old whiskey as if it had been light domestic wine. If he discovered the mistake he said nothing, but when handed the General’s drink, I soon disposed of all that he had left. In short, while the General complained of being very warm, although it was getting still colder, and he unbuttoned his overcoat and some of the buttons on his uniform. The truth is, General Jackson was incipiently tight. He grew more than usually loquacious . . . Douglas, p. 20.
Later, on the same night the General and his staff occupied a room in a very small log house. . . They neither felt like talking nor going to bed. While in this charming social state, someone asked if there was no readable book in the party. Sandie Pendleton said he had Charles Lamb, whereupon he was requested by the staff to read the famous essay on roast pig.
– (Sandie Pendleton).
Being a good reader, Sandy gladly consented. . . .
The swineherd, Ho-ti, having gone out in the woods one morning, as his manner was, to collect masts for his hogs, left his cottage in the care of his oldest son Bo-bo, a great lubberly boy, who being fond of playing with fire, as younkers of his age commonly are, let some sparks escape into a bundle of straw, which kindling quickly, spread the conflagration over every part of their poor mansion, till it was reduced to ashes. . . a fine litter of new-farrowed pigs, no less than nine in number, perished.
He was thinking what he should say to his father, and wringing his hands over the smoking remnants of one of those untimely sufferers, an odor assailed his nostrils, unlike any scent which he had before experienced. What could it proceed from?
The truth at length broke into his slow understanding, that it was the pig that smelt so, and the pig that tasted so delicious; and surrendering himself up to the newborn pleasure, he fell to tearing up whole handfuls of the scorched skin with the flesh next it, and was cramming it down his throat in his beastly fashion, when his sire entered amid the smoking rafters, armed with retributory cudgel, and finding how affairs stood, began to rain blows upon the young rogue’s shoulders, as thick as hailstones. . . – Lamb Lamb.
– (N. C. Wyeth).
This elicited smiles and laughter from all but the General. He said nothing but sat looking into the fire, as if unconscious that anything was being read. Pendleton was suddenly interrupted by Gen. Jackson, who ordered him to get his horse and ride to General Winder’s General Winder’s three or four miles distant. – Douglas, pp. 21-22.
It was a dismal and trying night. It had been and was still snowing lightly, and the small army was in uncomfortable bivouac. – Douglas, p. 20.
The winds blew in real winter blasts and, increasing in ferocity, kept it up all night. Our baggage, being in the rear of the whole wagon train which was about 5 miles long, did not reach us at all that night and consequently we were left exposed to the cold chilly winds without a blanket and many were without their overcoats. Pine fires had been built, but the smoke and sparks were dashed in all directions so furiously that it was almost impossible to stand near enough to the fires.
I laid down by the fire and, covering my head with the cape of my overcoat, tried to sleep. I had just succeeded in getting into a nap when I was awakened by a severe shake and on looking up found several soldiers engaged in putting out the fire which had caught my overcoat in several places. I stood by the fire for the rest of the night – and was duly thankful in the morning that I was still alive.
– Henry Kyd Douglas Papers – Duke University; Douglas to Boteler.
A squad of soldiers (were) standing around a large fire and some (were) lying about it wrapped up in their thin and inadequate blankets. The sharp wind was blowing over the hills and through the trees with a mocking whistle, whirling the sparks and smoke in eyes and over prostrate bodies.
A doleful defender, who had been lying down by the fire with one side to it, just long enough to get warm and comfortable while the other got equally cold and uncomfortable, rose up and having gathered his flapping blanket around him as well as possible, stood nodding and staggering over the flames. When the sparks set his blanket on fire it exhausted his patience and in the extremity of his disgust he exclaimed: “I wish the Yankees were in Hell.”
As he yawned this with a sleepy drawl, William Wintermoyer of Shepherdstown, lying behind a fallen tree, shivering with cold but determined not to get up, muttered, “I don’t. Old Jack would follow them there, with our brigade in front!”
“Well, that’s so, Bill – but I wish the Yankees were in Heaven. They’re too good for this earth!”
– (T. de Thulstrup).
“I don’t! Because Old Jack would follow them there, too, and as it’s our turn to go on picket, we wouldn’t enjoy ourselves a bit.”
The discomfited soldier threw himself to the ground with a grunt, and all was quiet but the keen wind and crackling flames. Douglas, pp. 20-21.
MORNING, JANUARY 2ND – LEAVING UNGER’S STORE AND HEADING NORTH TO BATH:
Next morning, the ground was covered with snow and it was still falling. Soon after daylight we resumed our march toward Bath. Many supposed we were going toward Romney until we got to the crossroads. – Moore p. 101.
There are people living all through these mountains and uplands. Here and there I saw little cleared spots, hanging along the hill and mountain slopes, with small, low wooden houses on them, weather-stained, gray with (15) age, that constitute the homes of these dwellers in the highlands. It is hard to comprehend how these mountaineers can be contented to spend their lives in these isolated, solitary, dreary spots in this mountain wilderness, but I suppose they, like all highland dwellers, love the lofty slopes that lift their humble homes to the storm. – pp. 14-15.
– (David Hunter Strother).
We found that there were some staunch southern people in the mountains as they rejoiced very much at our advance and whenever opportunity offered entertained us their best. One rainy evening I remember three, fat healthy girls stood on the stile in front of a farm house and sang at the top of their voices several pitiful southern songs. They were very enthusiastic and kept up the singing while the army passed. One verse I remember was “General Jackson is very large and the Yankees he will charge.” It excited much merriment among our troops – tho most of us wearied with a long march and wet to the skin. Now & then you’d hear a soldier shout “Go to it old gal.” We ought to have felt complimented for with the girls “the spirit was willing” and they did their best if their voices were cracked. – pp. 101-102.
ANNA JACKSON (STONEWALL’S WIDOW):
The weather, which on the first day had been so propitious, on the second suddenly changed to be very severe, and the snow and sleet made the roads almost impassable for loaded wagons, unless the teams were specially shod for the purpose.
The sufferings of the troops were terrible, as the frozen state of the roads rendered it impossible for the wagons to come up in time, and for several nights the soldiers bivouacked under the cold winter sky without tents or blankets. All these hardships and privations Jackson shared. p. 223.
We continued until about 3 p.m. This was a cold disagreeable day but we kept up the march until after 10 at night when we bivouacked for the night. Some poor fellows fell in the many runs we crossed after dark, and the ice on their clothes soon reminded one of sleighing times. In the meantime we had white-spotted evidence that it was going to snow adding to the disagreeability of the march. Douglas to Boteler.
OFFICIAL REPORT THOMAS JOHNATHAN JACKSON:
On the evening of the second day’s march General Carson, with part of his brigade and parts of two companies of cavalry, under Captain Harper, joined the main body, thus swelling the command to about 8,500 in the aggregate. p. 390.
ANNA JACKSON (STONEWALL’s WIDOW):
The adverse weather had the effect of greatly intensifying the discontent and disgust of Loring and his men, who had from the first been disinclined to a winter campaign; and an unfortunate jealousy springing up between the two commands – Jackson’s and Loring’s – caused an immense amount of trouble and disappointment (224) to Jackson, and frustrated much of the success for which he had reason to hope. Many of the malcontents left their posts on the plea of sickness and returned to Winchester, and taunted “Jackson’s pet lambs,” as they called the Stonewall Brigade, for their foolhardiness. pp. 223-224.
January 3rd sunrise: The main body of Jackson’s brigade arose again and resumed the last leg of the march to Bath:
Last night we had more than our quantity of bed-clothing for, in putting my head out from under the blankets, whither it had been driven by sleet and snow, I found in the morning about two inches of the old goo(s)man’s geese feathers on top of my bed. I had observed frequently during the night that the snow (which is much more insinuating and curious than rain) had penetrated through the small crevices between the blankets and brought itself in very disagreeable contact with my head and face.
January 2nd-3rd – That same night, about two miles from Dam. No. 5, George Neese and Chew’s battery encamp and in the morning continued heading towards Bath to join the rest of Jackson’s brigade:
Sunrise found us on the march in a northwestern direction across the northern portion of Berkeley County. We passed North Mountain depot on the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, and came through Hedgesville, a small village about eight miles north of Martinsburg, crossed Back Creek this afternoon, and this evening we are camped in a pine thicket in Morgan County. The weather is cold, disagreeable, and very unfavorable for outing; we have no shelter save some pine brush thrown together on the hog-shed fashion.
John Casler, of the catching-up 33rd Virginia infantry regiment, wrote:
The wagons came up the morning of the 3rd, when we cooked rations, and we were soon on the march again. – p. 62.
APPROACHING BATH (BERKELEY SPRINGS):
GEN. STONEWALL JACKSON’S OFFICIAL REPORT:
. . . and when within about 10 miles of Bath the militia, under Generals Carson and Meem,
inclined to the left and crossed the Warm Springs Mountain for the purpose of attacking Bath from the west, while the main body, General Loring’s command leading, continued to advance via the Frederick and Morgan turnpike. (391) But we left Bath and went on to the river about four miles. The Yankees had fled precipitately from Bath and owing to the cowardice and inefficiency of the contemptible militia. . . – p. 391.
We took up our quarters for the night in different parts of the town, in houses. Col. Strother and Mrs. Randolph, David Strother’s wife, and Emma (Emily) at the hotel.
We entered Bath and our brigade quartered there for the night. Our camp stayed in a beautiful cottage built by Mr. McGilmer of Bath for a summer residence and slept on the spring lawn. It was beautifully furnished, French bedsteads, etc. oil-cloth and matting on the floor; innumerable beautiful engravings and some very handsome paintings around the walls – entirely too handsome for soldiers’ barracks. I should have preferred a good stable loft. But I’m glad to say nothing was injured and we left it very early next morning. But we had at least spent one night in Bath and that in the winter.
Did you ever read “The Daltons”? If so do you remember the description of Baden, the celebrated German watering place in winter. The resemblance to Bath is clear. To those who live at such a place all the time, the contrast between summer and winter must make either one or the other, according to the fancy, all most unendurable.
From The Daltons:
BADEN OUT OF SEASON:
A theater by daylight . . . (is) scarcely more stripped of their legitimate illusions than a fashionable watering-place on the approach of winter. The gay shops and stalls of flaunting wares, are closed ; the promenades, lately kept in trimmest order, are weed grown and neglected ; the “sear and yellow leaves” are fluttering and rustling along the alleys where ” Beauty’s step was wont to tread.” Both music and fountains have ceased to play ; the very statues are putting on great overcoats of snow, while the orange-trees file off like a sad funeral procession to hide themselves in dusky sheds till the coining spring. . . .The few who yet linger seem to have undergone a strange transmutation. The smiling landlord . . .is a half-sulky, farmer-looking personage, busily engaged in storing up his Indian corn, and his firewood and his forage, against the season of snows. The bland ” Croupier,” on whose impassive countenance no shade of fortune was able to mark even a passing emotion, is now seen higgling with a peasant for a sack of charcoal,. . .The trim maiden, whose golden locks and soft blue eyes made the bouquets she sold seem fairer to look on, is now a stout wench, whose uncouth fur cap and wooden shoes are the very antidotes to romance. All the transformations take the same sad colors. It is a pantomime read backwards.
Such was Baden-Baden in November, 1825.. Some weeks of bad and broken weather had scattered and dispersed all of the gay company. The hotels and assembly-rooms were closed for the winter. The ball-room, which so lately was alight with a thousand tapers, was now barricaded like a gaol. The Hotel de Russie was the only house open in the little town; but although the door lay ajar, no busy throng of waiters, no lamps, invited the traveller to believe a hospitable reception might await him within. Lever, pp. 1-2.
Just imaginatively repeople Bath with its summer visitors, gauze drapes, bare arms, low necks, light slippers, bare-heads – walking through the snow, stepping on ice, and watching the white rocks and leafless trees on the barren hill that rises up among the winds and seems to protect Bath. Wouldn’t it be a suggestive but strange sight? Our camps fared very well in Yankee plunder, some getting jackets, some hats, shoes etc. and some entering into speculations by selling what they had captured or stolen.
The suffering of the soldiers during these few days and until the army arrived where it now is, was greater, much greater than I had described, between rain, snow, ice and cold. It was the Valley Forge of the Revolution, even to the frozen and bleeding feet. I cannot bore you by a description and even if given it would seem almost incredible. – Douglas to Boteler.
Casler’s 33rd Virginia infantry arrived at Bath:
That evening we entered Bath (now Berkeley Springs) and captured some few of the enemy, but the greater portion escaped by running over the militia force that was sent around to cut off their retreat to the Potomac. – p. 62.
George Neese and Chew’s Battery continue to make their way from Dam No. 5 west to rendez-vous with Jackson’s brigade who were arriving at Bath.
January 3-4 — Snowed last night, and our hog nest shelter did nothing but sift snow on us all night. We did not leave our camp till nearly midday, then marched over a rough mountainous country.
We crossed one mountain over a rough steep road. At some places it meandered through deep and wooded ravines and at others it wound along the craggy sides of steep rocky ridges, like a huge serpent feeling its way around insurmountable barriers.
On top of the mountain we had a grand and imposing view of wild and picturesque scenery, mountains piled up in every direction, ridged and ravined and covered with new-fallen snow, the rocks and trees all mantled in the crystal garb of winter. Looking to the north, ridge succeeds ridge and mountain follows mountain, like mighty waves on some storm-swept ocean, until way in the dim distance the snowy crests touched the bending sky and softly blended with the dull leaden wintry haze that hung along the horizon.
It was nearly sunset when we arrived at Bath, and General Jackson’s men had already driven the enemy away an hour before our arrival. Bath is the county-seat of Morgan County, and also noted as a summer resort and watering-place, bearing the name of Berkeley Springs. It is almost entirely surrounded by steep little mountains close by, and on top of the nearest one to the little village the Yanks had a few pieces of artillery in position, from which they fired a few rounds at Jackson’s infantry when it first approached the town.
The Yanks, without making much resistance, fled toward Hancock, Md., which is six miles away due north from Bath. Jackson’s men pursued them, and just at nightfall we started from Bath toward Hancock. – p. 15.
JANUARY 3RD – VERY LATE:
It was drawing toward midnight when we arrived near the river opposite Hancock. Some Yankee sharpshooters in or near the town were firing at the dark hills on the Virginia side of the river, and some of Jackson’s batteries were replying to the Yankee fireworks at midnight. The scene was grand. The light that flashed from the cannon darted around the hills and lighted the frosty landscape just like regular old-time lightning would do it when it is playing from the clouds.
The troughy road is crowded with Jackson’s shivering infantry, standing in the cold and dark. The snow is about four inches deep, and the night is very unfavorable for an outdoor performance; and to add to (16)the disagreeableness of the situation, an icy breeze is creeping over the frozen hills and feels like a breath from the North Pole. – pp. 15-16.
JANUARY 4TH (VERY EARLY IN THE MORNING)
At last, about two hours after midnight, an order came around permitting us to make fires, and I never before saw fences disappear so fast. In twenty minutes after the ” You may make fires ” was spoken there were a hundred friendly camp-fires cheerfully blazing along the snowy hillside. – p. 16.
While encamped near Berkeley Springs, if it can called a camp . . . in the middle of the night I felt moisture on my face, sleeping soundly. In the early light I awoke and found myself oppressed with heat. Rising up and throwing off my blanket, I scattered to the air and ground perhaps five inches of snow that had fallen on me. – p. 22.
The scene before was a weird one. Great logs of men were lying in all directions, covered over with snow and as quiet as graves. Now and then one would breakout and look about him with amazement. Suddenly all were aroused by the strident voice of Bill Wintermoyer, the wag of the few nights before, who jumping to his feet, cried out, “great Jehosophat! The Resurrection!” After that night I knew what the Bible means when it speaks of snow as wool, – I often wished we could make durable blankets out of it – and why farmers always want a good layer of snow in the winter to protect their tender wheat from excessive cold.
Douglas, pp. 22-23.
JANUARY 4TH – EVENING:
The next night I was permitted to take that part of my company into the vacated Berkeley Springs Hotel. It was a most fashionable summer resort and I had often
wanted to see it, but under different conditions. There was “the banquet hall deserted”; the men took possession of that and soon had a fire roaring in the wide chimney. There was the ballroom, empty and echoing departed music and merriment and the soft sound of dancing feet. I took that, but it was most uncheerful and cold. A mattress was brought to me and from the corner where a pile of white lace curtains reached halfway to the ceiling I drew a great mass of them for covering, but the more I spread over me the colder I got. I laid aside the lace curtains and dignity and went in to the banquet hall and laid down among the men as had often done before.
Some stores and a few prisoners were taken, but the fruits of the expedition did not compensate for the sickness and suffering in our army.
Douglas, p. 23.
JANUARY 5TH – MORNING:
– (Carpenter – p. 705).
In fact, we did not camp last night, but lay on the road-side about a mile from Hancock, trying to sleep a little, but it was too cold for the business, and moreover it was way after midnight before we were allowed to break ranks.
At daylight this morning the troops were all ready for what next. About nine o’clock I saw Colonel Ashby going toward the river under a white flag. He crossed the Potomac, and I suppose demanded the surrender of the town, which, from all appearances, was refused ; for as soon as Ashby returned Jackson commenced planting his batteries in position on the heights this side of the river.
About two o’clock this afternoon Jackson’s guns commenced a slow fire across the river. The artillerists did not fire promiscuously on the town, but directed the shots to points where they were most likely to find Yankee game with guns. – p. 16.
The 2nd Virginia Infantry breakfast somewhere between Hancock and Bath:
My breakfast that morning consisted of a piece of beef – cooked before a fire by using my sword as a spit – with hard tack, a tin cup of coffee, and dessert. The dessert was furnished by a sutler’s wagon, captured by the cavalry. It consisted of a can of peaches into which I poured a small can of condensed milk and stirred it up to the point of my useful sword. Peaches and cream in January, and furnished by the enemy, too!
Amid the snow and ice, several messes in our camp regaled themselves with corn and tomatoes, canned, taken from the yankees and as delightful and fresh as I have ever seen them in winter. – Douglas to Boteler.
We threw a few shells across the Potomac at Hancock. We captured some government stores and remained there two days, the weather being very bad all the time — snowing, sleeting, raining and freezing. We would lie down at nights without tents, rolled up head and heels in our blankets, and in the morning would be covered with snow. Every few minutes some one of the party I was sleeping with would poke his head out from under the blankets and let in the snow around our necks, when he would get punched in the ribs until he would “haul in his horns.”
The weather was very cold and we were marched toward the river. I think we remained there nearly opposite Hancock for two nights pretending to be making preparations to cross the river. The wind blew fearfully cold, the road was as smooth as glass, the snow being packed down by the wagons in front and the portion of the army that had preceded us.
RETURNING TO UNGER’S STORE, THEN ROMNEY, THEN WINCHESTER – A PERFECT HELL FROZEN OVER
After remaining several days in the vicinity of Bath (Berkeley Springs), the General withdrew his command to Unger’s Store and thence marched to Romney, which the enemy evacuated hurriedly on his approach. Gen. Jackson returned to Winchester with the Stonewall Brigade, leaving Gen. Loring and his command at Romney.
ELISHA PAXTON TO MARGARET, HIS WIFE, JANUARY 8TH:
Morgan Co., January 8, 1862.
An opportunity of sending to Winchester enables me to write that I am here in the woods, all hands froze up and waiting for the weather to move. I take it for granted the General will come to the conclusion from this experiment that a winter campaign won’t pay, and will put us into winter quarters. I am quite well and have not suffered much.
UNGER’S STORE, JANUARY 12, 1862 – PAXTON TO HIS WIFE:Unger’s Store, January 12, 1862.I was much disappointed in not getting a furlough a few days ago. I could not help but think that as the condition of the weather and the roads had made the expedition from which we had just returned a failure, it was full time to stop active operations, and in that event I was entitled to a leave of absence, if they were to be granted to any. I applied and was informed that two field officers must be left with the regiment, and that as a leave had been given to Col. Echols, none could be given to me until he returned. Hardly two days elapsed, however, until I received an order detaching me from my regiment and assigning me to the duties of a provost-marshal of the post, thus leaving but one field officer to my regiment. I have handed in my resignation, and whether that will be accepted or not I do not know. Jackson entered his disapproval of its acceptance, which will probably induce the Secretary of War and the Governor to do the same. The disapproval, it is true, implies the compliment that my services are valued, and that those in authority do not (43) wish to dispense with them; but I do not feel satisfied, and the whole affair gives me much unhappiness. I shall endeavor to take such course as will not forfeit the good opinion which I have enjoyed from those with whom I have served, and at the same time try to be content with whatever may happen. I wish you to act upon the same principle. Some of us have as hard a road to travel as yourself. I should like to be at home, and know that you fondly desire my return. If I can’t get home, we must both be satisfied. I wish you to make up your mind to remain there, and take care of what we have as well as you can. You have, I doubt not, been as happy there for the last four or five months as you could have been elsewhere. With the work on the farm, your housekeeping, and the children, you will have too much to do to be lonesome. Plenty of work is a good antidote for loneliness; a very good means of drowning your sorrows. By this course you will be of infinite service to me, and will add much to your own comfort and happiness.If there is an honorable road to get home, I shall spare no effort to find it as speedily as possible. In the meantime, Love, devote yourself to the babies and the farm, and not to grieving about me or my troubles. I will give them my undivided attention and get through with them as soon as I can. I don’t wish to share so great a luxury with you. Now, Love, good-bye. Kiss our dear little baby and tell Matthew and Galla papa says they must be good boys. Remember me kindly to Jack, Jane and Phebe (slaves). I am very grateful to them for their fidelity. Tell Jane to get married whenever she wishes, and not to trouble herself about the threats of her last husband. pp. 42-43.CASLER:
We then marched back towards Winchester and camped at Unger’s Store. The roads were one glare of ice, and it was very difficult for the wagons and artillery to get along. Four men were detailed to go with each wagon in order to keep it on the road on going around the hillside curves. I (63) was on one detail, and we would tie ropes to the top of the wagon-bed in the rear. and all swing to the upper side of the road. The horses were smooth shod, and in going up a little hill I have seen one horse in each team down nearly all the time. As soon as one would get up, another would be down, and sometimes all four at once. That day I saw General Jackson get down off his horse and put his shoulder to the wheel of a wagon to keep it from, sliding back. By slow and tedious work we arrived at camp after night. The troops were marching in the rear. I had our tent up and a good fire made out of rails by the time they arrived. pp. 62-63We remained at this camp three days, sent all the sick to Winchester, and took up the line of march for Romney, Hampshire County, thirty-five miles west. The first night we camped at the Great Capon river, built a bridge across it and North river, and camped the second night at Slane’s Crossroads.The third day we entered Romney, and found the enemy had evacuated the place on hearing of our approach. The weather was extremely rough. We were all covered over with sleet, and as it would freeze fast to us as it fell we presented rather an icy appearance.We remained in Romney several days, when our brigade was ordered back to Winchester, some of General W. W. Loring’s command remaining. My company, being’ from Hampshire County, received ten days’ furlough, through the kindness of Lieutenant Colonel J. R. Jones, who pleaded with General Jackson in our behalf. So we all started off for Springfield, our native town, nine miles north of Romney, in high spirits, and the brigade started for Winchester. – pp. 62-63.ELISHA PAXTON TO MARGARET:
– (Carpenter – p. 711).Romney, January 19, 1862.We left Unger’s Monday morning and reached here on Wednesday, after three days’ hard march on roads as bad as rain, sleet and snow could make them. For some time since we reached here it has been raining, and the whole (46) country is flooded with water. Since we left Winchester three weeks ago, we have indeed been making war upon the elements, and our men have stood an amount of hardship and exposure which I would not have thought was possible had I not witnessed it. In passing through it all, I have suffered but little, and my health is now as good as it ever was. Whilst this is true of myself, our ranks had been made thinner by disease since we left Winchester. Two battles would not have done us as much injury as hard weather and exposure have effected. After writing to you last Sunday, I concluded to write to the Governor to consider my resignation as withdrawn and I would trust to the chance of getting a furlough to go home. I am promised it as soon as Echols returns, and his furlough is out sixteen days from this time. I hope Jackson will have concluded by that time that a winter campaign is fruitful of disaster only, as it has been, and will put us at rest until spring. Then I may expect to see you.Now, darling, just here the mail has come to hand, bringing your letter of the 15th inst. and the gratifying news that all are well at home. You say the sleet and snow were falling whilst you wrote, and you felt some anxiety lest I might be exposed to it. You were just about right. I left that morning at daybreak and marched in sleet and snow some fifteen miles to this place. When I got here the cape of my overcoat was a sheet of ice. If you have hard times, you may console yourself by knowing that I have hard times, too. I am amused with your fears of an inroad of the Yankees into Rockbridge Their nearest force is about eighty miles from you, and if the roads in that section have not improved very much, they will have a hard road to travel. You all are easily scared. By the time you had been near the Yankees as long as I have, you would not be so easily frightened.You must come to the conclusion which has forced itself upon me some time since. Bear the present in patience, and hope for the best. If it turns out bad console ourselves (47) with the reflection that it is no worse. We can see nothing of the future, and it is well for us we don’t. I have but little idea to-day where I will sleep to-night, or what shall be doing to-morrow. Our business is all uncertainties. I have been in great danger only once since I have been in the service, yet I suppose I have thought a hundred times that we were on the eve of a battle which might terminate my life. Now, after all, Love, I think it best to trouble myself little with fears of danger, and to find happiness in the hope that you and I and our dear children will one day live together again happily and in peace. It may be, dearest, this hope will never be realized, yet I will cherish it as my greatest source of happiness, to be abandoned only when my flowing blood and failing breath shall teach me that I have seen the last of earth. All may yet be well with us. – pp. 45-49.H. K. DOUGLAS TO TIPPIE BOTELER:
– (Henry K. Douglas – findagrave.com).
– (Tippie Boteler – civilwarscholars.com).The last march the army took was a dreadful one. The road was almost an uninterruptible sheet of ice, rendering it almost impossible for man or beast to travel, while by moonlight, the beards of the men, (not mine), matted with ice and glistening like crystals, presented a very peculiar yet ludicrous appearance. I have not been able to find a man in the 2nd Reg. who did not fall down at least twice. I laid down (rapidly and with emphasis) three times. Three men in our brigade broke their arms falling, and several rendered their guns useless. Several horses were killed and many wagons were compelled to go into night quarters along the road, being unable to get along at all. Nearly all the march of 18 miles was made after dark. to where the brigade and regiment are encamped – at Unger’s store. – Douglas to Boteler.Cleon Moore and his pals fall behind in the march en route from Bath to Unger’s Store and find warmth. shelter and food at the home of a put-upon “old Dutchman.” (a distortion of the word “Deutsch” meaning German).CLEON:
– (David Hunter Strother – p. 308).After we passed through the town of Bath, hoping soon to encamp, we trudged on, barely to keep on our feet. Every now and then, down a man would come with a thump and an oath. Fortunately the moon shone bright. We walked till we were almost exhausted. At last the report spread down the line that we were to encamp at Unger’s crossroads, a distance of seventeen miles from Bath. This was demoralizing and the men began to straggle. Joe Crane and I turned off the road and looked for quarters for the night. We soon came upon a house in which a bright fire was burning, looked through the windows and recognized some of Company A (Rowans) of our Regiment snugly housed, soon made ourselves known and they admitted us. Their quarters seemed to be a shop in which was a goodwill of wood. We built app a fire, wrapped our blankets and slept comfortably until morning. In the morning tried to get breakfast, at first the old Dutchman insisted upon it. the well was froze up and he had no flour – but after some coaxing his wife cooked a griddle cake made of buckwheat flour and a good allowance of dirt I supposed from the color and we sat down expecting to enjoy our meal on the table on the table. There was sauce of pickle to which we helped ourselves plentifully and which seemed to whet our appetites. The cake was divided into three parts. Joe Crane, Charles Aisquith and I each taking a piece. Joe finished his piece eating ravenously and turned around looking for another when toehold woman had just finished wiping the griddle and hung it up by the fireplace. We took up our march soon after in the track of the army.DOUGLAS:
The expedition had been conducted in fearful weather. Rain, snow, and storm spent their fury upon unprotected troops at one time marching through water, mud, and slush impossible for the men of a regiment to move together over the smooth roads, and limbs were broken as well as guns and swords when a dozen soldiers went down at the same time. Horses fell and were killed. Sometimes a team of four would be struggling on the ice, while the wagons or artillery to which they were attached was pressing upon them, slipping over the glassy surface. The soldiers laughed and wore and compared the trip to those of Hannibal and Napoleon and all others with which their knowledge of ancient and modern history made them familiar. – Douglas, p. 24.Douglas concludes his letter to Tippie Boteler:
– (Henry K. Douglas – findagrave.com).
– (Tippie Boteler – civilwarscholars.com).Hoping to hear from you very soon, with a letter that will rival mine in length, with many good messages to you, Ma and family, I am Yours in inexpressible friendship, Henry Kyd Douglas. – Douglas to Boteler.
– (Dr. Charles Clark – added by Mike Sherpa).Dr. Charles Clark of the 39th Illinois infantry describes the evidence of plunder and persecution of Union sympathizers in Bath, including those named by Cleon Moore:On returning to Bath a great many changes were noticeable in the appearance of things since the 4th of January, the date of the advent of the rebels. Old Colonel Strother had died, his death being hastened by the outrages committed by Jackson s troops in consequence of the outspoken sympathies of his family for the Union cause. His home had been pillaged from cellar to garret and much valuable property destroyed.John Strother died at the Berkeley Springs on the 16th of January, 1862, in the midst of his family, his last words expressing solicitude for his beloved country, and his absent son, then serving in the Federal army. – p. 144.CLARK RESUMES:Judge Pendleton and family were still there and gave them hearty welcome, together with the sad tale of the wholesale destruction of the effects of the Union sympathizers. Bath was neutral ground at this time, and they did not care to tarry long, especially after learning that the rebel cavalry frequently made a dash into the town; but regarding the importunities of their friends (the rebels) consented to remain during the night and were furnished with a room in a remote part of the big house by Mr. Randolph, a son-in-law of Strother. In the early morning they returned safely via Alpine Station, where the regiment had proceeded. p. 60.
– (James W. Allen – archivesweb.vmi.edu).Julia Allen, wife of Col. James Allen, who commanded the 2nd Virginia infantry regiment at Bath, wrote of his bed-ridden recovery from sickness in a Winchester bed:
He was taken with a disorder of the stomach & bowels, which he neglected, . . . through all the rain & mud until he was so weakened as to be forced to stay in and have a Doctor. He has now been in bed five days with more or less fever all the time, though the original disease is controlled, Nature seems to be slow in righting herself. He is kept on very light diet, Toast & Tea, Jelly and Oysters & by the way there is no Green Tea to be gotten in this place, and the Coffee, mostly or wholly Rye. I wish I could get at some of Mother’s stores now. Mr. A. won’t drink Black Tea which is Hobson’s choice here. The Dr. said he had no fever this morning and thinks he will be up in a day or two! Mammy came up to me last Saturday and is a great help!Julia Chase lived on the northeast corner of Fairfax Lane and N. Loudoun Street. Her family came from Maine and they sympathized with the Union forces. She wrote of the consequences of the harsh experiences of the men serving under Gen. Jackson and to a lesser extent, others:JANUARY 18TH, 1862 – WINCHESTER, VA.:Julia Chase wrote:
We have 1800 sick soldiers in town and deaths are occurring every day. 2 Georgians came for something to eat. Said while in Morgan Co. (county of Bath) the week before, they were without fire for 4 days and were obliged to lay on the cold wet ground. The weather was very severe and they experienced in that campaign, if they had not before, all the hardship’s of a soldier’s life. They had not eaten anything since morning of the day before they came here. We understand that some seven were frozen to death, 2 of which were Georgians. . . . More die from exposure and sickness than are killed on the battlefield. – from McMahon, p. 16Cold wintry weather indeed. Wood is selling at $10 per cord. Tea $4 per pound.A Colonel Robert F. Baldwin of Jackson’s staff received a letter in late January from Peyton Clark on the state of the “First Georgia Regiment, then camped at “Camp G. W. Smith” Clark wrote that his regiment began the march to Bath near Winchester on the 1st of January, numbering 700 men, that dwindled down to just 250 men “the rest had all broken down and been sent off to the hospitals.” In the absence of corroborating sources of information, he added: “This trip will cost lives of over a thousand men.” – Quarles, p. 64.Men from Jefferson County with Henry Kyd Douglas and Cleon Moore in the 2nd Virginia infantry who fell sick or went AWOL between November, 1861 and February, 1862 during these marches and hardships were: With very special thanks to the sources of most of the following: Dennis Frye, Harper’s Ferry Chief Historian – (Frye, Dennis. (1984). “2nd Virginia Infantry.” Lynchburg, VA: H.E. Howard Publishers).1. ADAMS, GEORGE E.: b. 3/21/43. Confectioner. enl. 4/29/61 in Co. B as Pvt. Absent sick Nov. 1861 and taken POW while on furlough. Exchanged 8/5/62. Surrendered at Appomattox. d. 9/29/05. bur. Elmwood Cem., Shepherdstown, W.Va.2. AISQUITH, CHARLES W.: b. about 1841 in Jefferson Co. 5’8″. fair complexion, blue eyes, dark hair. Clerk. enl. 4/18/61 at Charles Town in Co. G as Pvt. To Sgt., date not listed. Wded. in neck at 1st Manassas, 7/21/61. Returned to duty 9/25/61. Absent sick Nov./Dec. 1861. Present again 4/30-10/31, 1862. Hospitalized 4/5/63, chronic diarrhea. Last official entry shows him commissioned as hospital steward, 6/1/63. d. 4/2/92. bur. Zion Episcopal Cem., Charles Town, WV.3. BOWERS, JOHN B.: b. 7/32. Farmer. enl. 6/8/61 at Camp Jackson at Harpers Ferry in Co. A as Pvt. Detailed as teamster, 8/16-8/26 1861. Detailed as ambulance driver, 9/16/61. Last official entry shows him sick in hospital at Winchester and still on detail as ambulance driver, 11/27/61. Paroled 5/2/65 at Winchester. d. 1/19/03. bur. Edge Hill Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.4. BROWN, WILLIAM J.: b. 1831. 5’7″. dark complexion, black eyes, sandy hair, gray, sandy whiskers. Clerk for circuit court of Jefferson Co.; also a lawyer. enl. 4/18/61 at Charles Town in Co. A as Pvt. sick at hospital, Nov./Dec. 1861. Wded. elbow joint, right arm, 2nd Manassas, 8/28/62. Captured at Charles Town and paroled, Sept./Oct. 1862. Detailed by Secretary of War, 8/4/63, to report to Richmond to serve as clerk for T. C. Green, state collector of C.S. taxes in Va. Given 6 months’ disability certificate, 4/19/64, due to permanently disabled right arm. No further record.5. BURNETT, WILLIAM: b. 1837? 5’9″. fair complexion, gray eyes, brown hair. Lawyer. enl. 6/19/61 at Winchester in Co. G as Pvt. Absent sick Nov./Dec. 1861. Discharged 2/28/62, reason not stated. d. 5/12/88. bur. Zion Episcopal Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.6. BUTLER, WILLIAM: b. 8/23/41. enl. 4/18/61 at Halltown in Co. B as Pvt. To Corp. 8/17/61. Absent sick Nov./Dec. 1861-March/April 1862. Wded. at 2nd Manassas, date not specific. Present again Jan /Feb. 1863. d. 5/6 or 5/8 1863 at Chimborazo #5, pneumonia. bur. Elmwood Cem., Shepherdstown, W.Va.7. BUZZARD, GEORGE W.: b. 1842? Laborer. enl. at Harper’s Ferry in Co. K as Pvt. Last official entry shows him absent sick, Nov./Dec. 1861.8. CAMERON, ALEXANDER B.: b. 1834? Clerk. enl. 6/18/61 at Winchester in Co. B as Pvt. Elected Lt. 4/20/62. Absent sick Nov/Dec. 1861. MWIA at 2nd Manassas, 8/28/62; d. 8/29/62. “The Virginia Free Press” 9 Nov. 1865: “Lt. A. B. Cameron wounded 28th of August, 1862 second battle of Manassas, died Aug. 30th, aged 27. bur. Elmwood Cem., Shepherdstown, W.Va.9. CHAPMAN, JAMES W.: b. 1833? Blacksmith. enl. 4/19/61 at Duffields in Co. H as Sgt. To Pvt. 11/22/61. Absent sick July-Aug./Nov./Dec. 1861. AWOL at Bunker Hill, 10/15/62. No further record.10. COLBERT, JOHN JAMES: b. 12/18/39. Farmer. enl. 4/18/61 at Charles Town in Co. G as Pvt. Absent sick Nov/Dec. 1861. Killed 9/9/62? bur. Edge Hill Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.11. CONRAD, ALEXANDER N.: b. 1842? Boatsman. enl. 6/15/61 at Charles Town In Co. A as Pvt. AWOL 12/25-12/30 1861. POW at Berryville, 7/1/62 (Old Capitol Prison, Ft. Monroe). Exchanged 8/5/62. Re-enlisted in Co. A, 9th Va. Cav., Sept./Oct. 1862. No official record of his service in the 9th Va. Cav.12. DANDRIDGE, EDMOND PENDLETON: b. 1/28/41. Farmer. enl. 4/18/61 at Martinsburg in Co. D as Pvt. Wded. in foot at 1st Manassas, 7/21/61. Present again Sept/Oct. 1861. Last official entry shows him sick in hospital, Nov/Dec. 1861.13.ENTLER, DANIEL M.: b. 1835. in Shepherdstown. 5’8″. dark complexion, hazel eyes, dark hair. Carpenter. enl. 4/18/61 at Halltown in Co. B as Pvt. Absent sick Nov-Dec. 1861. On furlough Jan-Feb, 1862. POW at Kernstown, 3/23/62 (Ft. Delaware). Exchanged 8/5/62. Detailed as asst. in commissary dept. (temporarily), Nov. 1862. Wded. in arm at Gettysburg, 7/2/63. Sent to Gen. Hosp. 7/15/63; fractured humerus, left arm. To Chimborazo #4, Richmond, 9/28/63. Surgeon’s Discharge 12/23/63, “wound is still open at elbow joint.”14. LEVI, GEORGE W.: b. 11/23/42 in Jefferson Co. Farmhand. enl. 5/22/61 at Harpers Ferry in Co. I as Pvt. Absent sick Nov/Dec. 1861. Disabled by disease and dropped from the roll, 4/18/62. Postwar, farmer, Clarke Co. sheriff for 10 years; U.S. Marshal for Western District of Va. until 1890. d. 3/1/20 at Berryville. NOTE: HE WAS A CHILD IN JEFFERSON COUNTY.15. McENDREE, DANIEL M.: b. 1838? in Jefferson Co. 5’9″. fair complexion, gray eyes, brown hair. Clerk. enl. 4/27/61 at Harpers Ferry in Co. B as Pvt. Absent sick Nov./Dec. 1861. Present again Jan/Feb. 1862. AWOL since 5/1/62. Discharged 7/27/62, being a “citizen of Kentucky and having served 90 days after expiration of this term.”16. McENDREE, WILLIAM H.: b. 1841? Clerk. enl. 5/29/61 at Lemon’s Ferry in Co. B as Pvt. To Sgt. 4/18/62. Absent sick Jan/Feb. 1862. AWOL during July, 1862 and since 9/20/62. AWOL 10/10-12/1/62. Detailed clerk for QM of 2nd Va. Inf., Dec. 1862. Remained on this detail through last official entry which shows him present, 4/30-10/31/1864. Surrendered at Appomattox.17. NOLAND, JAMES HENRY: b. 12/7/34. Machinist. enl. 4/18/61 at Charles Town in Co. G as Pvt. On duty at Col. Allen’s headquarters, Sept/Oct. 1861. Last official entry shows him absent sick in hosp., Nov/Dec. 1861. Unofficial source states he served in medical dept. Postwar, member of Turner Ashby Camp #22 at Winchester. d. 12/7/98. bur. Edge Hill Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.18. SELDON (SELDEN), JOHN: b. 2/24/22 in Loudoun Co. 6’0″. florid complexion, blue eyes, light brown hair. enl. 4/18/61 at Charles Town in Co. G as Pvt. Absent sick since 8/1/61. Discharged 12/5/61, “unfit for duty.” d. 1/8/96. bur. Zion Episcopal Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.?
19. STRAITH, JOHN ALEXANDER: b. 1/26/35. Physician. Apptd. Asst Surg., 2nd Va. Inf., 5/17/61. Last official entry shows him present, Nov/Dec. 1861. No further record. d. 1/4/72. bur. Zion Episcopal Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.20. STRIDER, JOHN S.: b. 1837? Farmer. enl. 4/20/61 at Harpers Ferry in Co. K as Pvt. Absent sick July/Aug. 1861. Present again Sept/Oct 1861. d. 12/18/61, cause not stated.21. TOWNER, JAMES L. b. about 1828. occupation postmaster. enl. 4/18/61 Halltown. Pvt. 7-8/61 absent on recruiting service not mustered. Present 9-10/61 and 11-12/61. Absent sick 1-2/62. absent sick behind enemy lines 3-4/62. d. 4/16/91. fold3.com 16 September 2011 Web. 20 December 2017.22. WHITTINGTON, GEORGE W.: b. 1843? Blacksmith. enl. 4/18/61 at Berryville in Co. I as Pvt. Absent sick in hosp., July/Aug. 1861. Present again Sept/Oct. 1861. AWOL since 12/27/61. AWOL since 5/30/62, and dropped from the roll. No further record. d. 1/1/24 in Clarke Co.23. WHITTINGTON, JAMES: b. 1843? Laborer. enl. 5/14/61 at Harpers Ferry in Co. H as Pvt. AWOL 31 days, July/Aug. 1861, and fined $11.00 for absence by court-martial. Absent sick, Nov/Dec. 1861. No further record. Later appears on rolls of Co. B 12th Va. Cav. d. 10/28/01. bur. Edge Hill Cem., Charles Town, W.Va.24. WILLINGHAM, GEORGE W.: b. 1838? 5’9″. dark complexion, hazel eyes, dark brown hair. Carpenter. Residence Jefferson Co. enl. 6/16/61 at Winchester in Co. I as Pvt. AWOL 8/4-8/13 1861. Fined $5.00 for absence by court-martial. Absent sick Sept/Oct.-Nov/Dec. 1861. AWOL 3/17-5/28 1862. POW at High Bridge, 4/6/65 (City Point). Oath of Allegiance to U.S., 6/22/65.25. WILTSHIRE, JAMES B.: b. 1844 Farmer. enl. 6/12/61 at Camp Jackson on Bolivar Heights in Co. G as Pvt. Absent sick, Nov./Dec. 1861. enl. 4/17/62 Conrad’s Store Co. 12th Va Cav., 10/1/63 taken prisoner Winchester, Ft. McHenry 11/2/63; d. 7/11/64.
– (Emma C. Riely – p. 8).Late that same January Emma Cassandra Riely, whose family resided on Lot 106 on the southeast corner of Kent and Philpott Streets, wrote in her diary:General Jackson had encamped in Winchester that winter and in the latter part of February a malignant type of scarlet fever broke out in our family. My mother was ill at the time, having been paralyzed. Everyone avoided the house on account of the fever, and it was with difficulty that we could get a minister to bury the dead, our minister having a family of young children. Katie Gordon, my niece, died the night of the day that she was taken sick. My little sister, Mary Percival, was taken sick Friday evening and died on Sunday morning. Two children of our cook died during the same week. My youngest sister, Evelyn, and my mother were both very ill. My mother’s sister, then Mrs. O’Bannon, a widow, now Mrs. Lewis B. Williams (and living with me at present) , was living with us at the time, taking care of us as our mother was an invalid. She continued to live with us and be a mother to us as long as we kept our house and were together. She afterwards came to Orange, Virginia, to live with me, where she married a second time and is again a widow. She is proverbial for her flow of spirits and is very amusing, giving the comical side to everything. She is often referred to in these reminiscences as auntie, or Aunt Em. My mother lingered until the Saturday after my sister’s death. On Sunday, it was rumored that General Jackson was going to evacuate Winchester . . . My brothers, two of whom were with him, feared they would be ordered off before the funeral, which was to take place on Monday morning. Riely, pp. 11-12.January 18th, 1862 – Winchester, Va.:Julia Chase wrote:
We have had but one pleasant day this week – snow, rain, or sleet all the time. 19 deaths have taken place since yesterday afternoon, up to noon today. We have had application nearly every day for soldiers to board here. McMahon, p. 12.CLEON MOORE:I went into Winchester the first night we arrived in the neighborhood. Took supper at Randall Evans’ eating house and of course we had a frolic.
– (David Hunter Strother – p. 6 – Same as previous).Cleon Moore and his friends take an excursion to Col. Bonham’s home outside Berryville
– (Hotchkiss Map – loc.gov).
– (Daniel S. and Mrs. Bonham – geni.com).
– (David Hunter Strother – pulling horse – p. 25).
– (David Hunter Strother – two women listening – p. 2).Our encampment for part of the winter was on what is known as the Romney grade about two and a half miles from town. The weather did not allow much drilling, our amusement consisted of reading, smoking and playing cards. We were invited to Colonel Bonham’s house to a dance. We obtained a leave of absence and about three o’clock on a disagreeable winter evening, started off for a dance in a covered wagon. The wagon was drawn by two mules, and according to the practice of those gentle animals, insisted on traveling at a slow safe speed. George Flagg, Joe Crane, Horace Gallaher, Charlie Aisquith, Loony Sadler, and I made up the load.George Flagg drove and I whipped, having first cut down some hickory saplings for that services. From camp to Winchester our progress was slow as there had been a rain and the road was deep. After reaching the Berryville Pike we made better progress and arrived at the Colonel’s early in the evening, soon after dark. Found there a very pleasant company. Miss Meredith from Winchester, Miss L. Bonham and others. The Colonel had received a small Negro man to keep the bottle filled in the office. a small room in the yard and a short distance from the house, which seemed to be set apart for our accommodations – no such opportunity was lost to make a good frolic of it. The dancing soon began and was kept up until morning about three o’clock. The old Negro man fiddled until through exhaustion and the apple toddy fell over, completely subdued by drowsiness. But he waked up and started again, all of us got pretty high as we made regular visits to the office.
– (David Hunter Strother – p. 291).About two o’clock in the morning it became necessary to conduct Loony out the door and George remarked there were marks of violence on his person the next morning. We kept up the frolic all night. A short time before daylight, we retired to the office and slept till about eight o’clock. All were not in the best humor the next morning, but a little bitters soon revived our feelings and a warm breakfast put us in a more comfortable frame of mind. About two o’clock in the evening we returned to Winchester. The mules travelled better, perhaps because they were returning to camp. as they had been in service long enough to look upon the camp as their master’s crib and army fare as the most palatable food. Stopped a short time in Winchester and after getting to camp early in the night, retired to our blankets and slept soundly oblivious to the debauch of the night previous. All army operations on both sides had never ceased for the winter. The roads were deep, and some parts almost impassable and the weather inclement. From indications both sides were preparing for a desperate struggle when the spring opened and armies could be moved. Our government offered a thirty day furlough to all soldiers who would enlist for the war. I enlisted and my furlough granted. How long we remained on the Romney grade encamped is hard to say. But owing to the conditions of the roads, and the difficulty of wagoning supplies, we moved nearer to Winchester. Was delighted at the prospect of spending thirty days at home. Went down in the cars to Charles Town. That town at the time was feeling the effects of the war. Everyone seemed to be awaiting the termination of the war. Many grand enterprises when the war was over, as we sat around the fire talking over our present condition and future prospects. Several of my comrades were at home, we spent our time visiting and enjoying ourselves as best we could, inclined to the opinion that in all probability this would be the last furlough we would enjoy for some time, as we had enlisted for war & when anyhow that would terminate, there was no prophet to inform us.Three war-filled years later, the Bonham’s home had received many men in uniforms from both sides. One – Eugene Ferris of the 30th Massachusetts Infantry arrived just before five men of Mosby’s raiders, led by Charlie Wiltshire.Capt. Eugene Ferris of the 30th Massachusetts Infantry, which was camped nearby at the railroad bridge over Opequon Creek, came to pay a social call upon Miss Emma Virginia Bonham. While sitting in the parlor with her and her father, Col. Daniel S. Bonham, Ferris’s visit was interrupted by the arrival of Lt. Charlie Wiltshire and four other members of Mosby’s commandWiltshire’s surviving brother Jim wrote what happened next:
– (James G. Wiltshire – Williamson p. 370).As my brother rode out of the woods near the Bonham mansion, where he had probably intended to stop, as he knew the family, he saw a Federal officer going from the house toward a small stable a few feet away. Putting spurs to his horse, Lt. Wiltshire dashed forward to capture the Federal, who, it was after learned, was Captain Ferris of the 30th Massachusetts Infantry . For some reason my brother did not draw his pistol but rode up to the stable door in which Ferris stood with a pistol in each hand. Ferris fired and my brother fell from his horse with pistol ball in his left shoulder, just under his collar bone. His men closed in on Ferris, who kept on shooting striking Gill and Bowling of my brother’s party. He fired again at Lieutenant Wiltshire while the Lieutenant lay on the ground wounded but missed him. I suppose my brother was also doing some firing with a pistol held in his uninjured right hand. Lieutenant Ferris jumped on my brother’s horse, which was a magnificent animal and well trained and rode off. He was followed by John Orrick and Bob Eastman or “Bob Ridley,” as he was better known. All were firing and Orrick’s horse was shot in the neck so that he had to stop in the woods and let the Federal offer get away.Meanwhile my brother was cared for by the Bonham family. Ferris’s commander sent him back after my brother, but he (Ferris) declined to take a man who was so badly Another detachment was sent to take Wiltshire dead or alive. My brother was taken in a wagon six or eight miles to John Gilbert’s house. This was within Union lines.
Shepherdstown Register., April 19, 1894, Page 1
chroniclingamerica.loc.gov 3 June 2008 Web. 19 October 2017.
fold3.com 16 September 2011 Web. 20 December 2017.Emma Virginia Bonham is a very interesting person because of the famous fight that took place at Colonel Daniel Bonham’s home in 1865 between a Yankee officer and five of Mosby’s men. I researched this fight in depth and published an article about it in the magazine, “America’s Civil War” in 2001.Capt. Eugene Ferris of the 30th Massachusetts Infantry, which was camped nearby at the railroad bridge over Opequon Creek, came to pay a social call upon Miss Emma Virginia. While sitting in the parlor with her and her father, Col. Daniel S. Bonham, Ferris’s visit was interrupted by the arrival of Lt. Charlie Wiltshire and four other members of Mosby’s command. Capt. Ferris ran to get his horse, and then, a pistol in each hand, shot his way out of the Bonham stable yard, killing two of the Confederates and wounding two others. Ferris made his escape back to camp with his orderly, and was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor about 30 years after the War for this feat of arms due to the efforts of someone who read about this fight in John Scott’s 1867 book “Partisan Life of Col. John S. Mosby”. Your ancestor, Emma Virginia Bonham, wrote a letter to the War Dept. in support of the award in the 1890’s attesting that “no braver soldier ever wore the uniform” or words to that effect.
genforum.genealogy.com 15 August 2000 Web. 2017.