Digital Library of Georgia > Cyrus F. Jenkins Civil War Diary, 1861 - 1862

Cyrus F. Jenkins Civil War Diary, 1861 - 1862
Pages 62 - 67

Author: Jenkins, Cyrus Franklin, ca. 1837-1864
Extent: 1 v. (113 p.)
Repository: Troup County Archives
collection: Jenkins-Bass collection, 1861-ca. 1900 (Ms. 91)
More information: About the Digitized Version

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the mountain where we could command plain view of the river below. with noiseless watchfulness we groped our way to our stands, and had scarcely seated ourselves, when our cannon upon the next peak to our right broke the stillness of our watch, like a peal of angry thunder, sounding, and reverberating throu [through] the mountains long after the peering yankee hoards had found their hiding places. except a few who first ran to & fro peering here and there. like wild beasts of the forest hunted down by the woodsman, now they huddle together near the river bank. and seem very busy. then running around & peering about again all was still. for a moment. then a harsh shrill voice broke the silence. by the one single word "fire", then [added text: a] stream of smoke began to curl up a moment more, and the smoke again flashed up, the cannon roared, and the ball whistled. untill [until] with a crash & roar it busted, but ere the sounds had died out in the mountains, our battery again tore loose filling the air with thundering sounds, reverberating from peak to peak! now it burst, with

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a crashing rumbling sound, a moment more and yells shrieks and loud cries [deleted text: of] are heard in the direction, each tuned to a different key making a strong contrast with the rumbling sounds rolling through the distant hills, Though we are not sure that those cries are of distress, or bidding defiance to our efforts. 12 oclock [o'clock] ., before one sound dies away. another breaks forth keeping up a continual roar, & the clouds above us thickning [thickening] too and now and the rain drops pattering around us. as we sit upon the ground with shivering limbs. and be [deleted text: num] numbed fingers with my aching feet braced against this old cotton oak. to keep[deleted text: ing] from sliding off to the river at our mountains base now the rain begins to fall thicker and the cannons thunder roars dull and heavy. with my constant & careful watch. I feel dull & sleepy,, three o clock [o'clock] though the balls continued to fly back & forth and the thunder howled, amid all I have forgotten a few [added text: painful] moments in sleep, Now we are doomed to stay here through the night, I will crawl to yonder log spread my blanket, and wrap myself from the chilling

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rain. Night 11 oclock [o'clock] . I had scarcely rolled myself & gun in my blanket when, the news came. to double quick down. the mountain, That fifteen hundred yankees had crossed and cut us off from our camps. We now made short work of a long trip, by tumbling falling rolling with first head & then heels up, with odds the difference we soon reached the road below. then forming a line we made our way back one mile where the yankees were said to have been. but there were none now to be seen, Then ordered to double quick across a corn field in to [into] the wood, and up a mountain as rough as the first described, the rain still falling without cessation, and we now drenshed [drenched] in water, after gaining the top, formed, a line of battle on the crooked ridge, we then ordered to quicktime [quick time] down the opposite side from that we came up. in line of battle to the valley, where it was believed the enemy were. I now more fully expected a fight than ever before. I did not feel the least excitement even about, nerves. I now craved to meet the vandals. that I might rieke [wreak] my

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vengiance [vengeance] upon them. without even a thought of the consequences. or circumstances that might perhapse [perhaps] befall myself in the contest. I now feel willing to acknowledge my supprise [surprise] at such feelings which I had never before felt on such occasions, but can attribute them to no particular cause, except it be the recklessness of fatigue & exposure. As I blundered along looking in every – forward – direction. I often fell to the ground, and by looking along our line I could see a dozen or more continually falling & regaining their feet, but we made no stop untill [until] we [added text: reached] the narrow valley when disappointment could be read in the look and countinance [countenance] of all, for the yankees, if ever here, had disappeared,, we now made our way to the turnpike and reached it at dark, without a single star to light our pathway. we now groped our way back to camp. with no cecession [cessation] of the rain which now poured in torrents, with a road afloat with water, and as slick as glass. I was often made to think of the boy who came in school too late, on being asked the cause, he replied that he stept [stepped] one pace forward and [added text: slipped] two backward

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Teacher. How did you get here at all? Boy. I never should, had I not turned backward

Saturday morning November 2nd,, 11 oclock [o'clock] [View Civil War timeline for this date | View Jenkins Chronology]

an order for 15 men from each company making 150 from the regiment. Capt [Captain] McCallay was placed at their head, for picket duty. I did not go, being released from picket guard to do other duty.

Sunday Nov. [November] 3rd.12,oclock [o'clock] . [View Civil War timeline for this date | View Jenkins Chronology]

an other [another] order for 15 more men for duty, the first 15 yet upon duty, this last 15 taking all present, who are able for duty, It was now raining down and had been for some time, we not expecting this order had not eat dinner. The meat was boiling and the biscuit baking. but they prove nothing to us for we are hurried away without a morcel [morsel], we know not where, or for what purpose, but with our blankets and guns we left the camp and were carried to the spot where we had left the road on friday before. to guard the river. now we filed to the right instead of the left, and clome [climbed] the mountain peak upon which stood the thundering gun of friday

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and there to protect this gun from the hands of the yanks. Now here we are upon this high mountain without one morcel [morsel] to quench our already approaching hunger. not a tent to shield our bodies from the cold drenching rain which continues to fall. now we went to work. to prepare some kind of a shelter to cover us. (when not on picket duty.) by digging, down the upper side, and raising the lower untill [until] the ground is level. showing a fall of six to every ten feet,, Then raising a pole & spreading our blankets over for a covering,.

Monday Nov [November] 4th. evening six oclock [o'clock] . [View Civil War timeline for this date | View Jenkins Chronology]

50, of our number being put on picket last night, 50 others to day [today] . now 50 more for the night including myself,, now we hear the officer call. with your cartridge box's [boxes] and guns for guard, we were soon led to our posts with orders,

This picket guard you're obliged to stand
Its not worth while to frown
And if you see a yankee band
Be sure to shoot them down
Upon the mountain slope I stand
With my musket in my hand

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