Happy New Year (belated) and Lemuel Abija Abbott
Happy New Year! Okay, maybe a little late. 🙂 I hope everyone had a great holiday and is ready for a “fresh” 2017. And what better way to celebrate the New Year (belatedly) than to share with you some words from the Civil War diary entries of Lemuel Abijah Abbott. Although not a soldier in the Invalid Corps, he was with the Tenth Regiment of the Vermont Volunteer Infantry that helped to stall Jubal Early at the Battle of Monocacy when the latter was on his way south through Maryland headed for Washington DC and Fort Stevens.
Although attached to Company B, Tenth Regiment Vermont Volunteer Infantry, (Capt. Edwin Dillingham’s of Waterbury, Vt.), Lieut. Ezra Stetson commanding, I am Second Lieutenant of Company D (Capt. Samuel Darrah’s of Burlington, Vt.) of the same regiment, having been promoted from First Sergeant of Company B last spring.
All are wishing me a “Happy New Year”! God grant that I may have one. I was awakened long before daylight by the band serenading the birth of the New Year. Lieut. G. W. Burnell took his departure early this morning for Washington, D.C.; he has been promoted Captain of U.S. Colored Troops and is about to take up other duties in Baltimore, Md. It was quite pleasant early in the day but it is very muddy under foot; had a grand New Year’s dinner. There has been a very cold wind this afternoon. This evening it is clear and intensely cold. Will Clark has made me a short call; am feeling very well but studying hard.
SATURDAY, Jan. 2, 1864.
Another day of the new year has passed but a very busy one for me. It has been very cold all day. This afternoon I have been papering my hut so our quarters are quite comfortable now. The band has been out this evening and played some very pretty pieces, and I am thankful for it relieves the monotony of dull camp life. This evening Lieut. D.G. Hill and Captain Goodrich, the brigade Quartermaster called; they were in fine spirits. It is bitter cold, but no wind as last night; have received no letters which of course is provoking.
SUNDAY, Jan. 3, 1864
Quite a comfortable day; no snow yet, but it looks likely to storm in a day or two; wrote to Pert (Note from Day: Pert Thomson was Lemuel’s cousin and a teacher at Goddard Seminary, in Barre, Vermont), and had our usual inspection this forenoon. Since dinner, I have read “Washington’s Farewell Address”, and the “Declaration of Independence”. This evening quite a number of recruits arrived for the regiment, but none for Company B. Capt. J.A. Salisbury has been in to call on Lieut. Stetson, and broken my camp chair. This is still more provoking than not to get a letter from home for chairs are not plentiful here. He is a big man.
Text available at: https://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?flash=true&doc=15&page=transcriptPosted on: January 4, 2017