Site Logo

7th Vermont Infantry

Journals
Luman Ballou's War Journal
The Journals
1866

Jan. 1 (Mon.) New year morning cold and cloudy I am called out to police the camp work till eleven oclock. I move and now tent with Jerome Smith [Pvt. Smith, Rutland]. very cold wind

Jan. 2 (Tues.) Awful cold last night. I go up town on detail unloading boat till noon I go up to see Charles come back bye some Alcohol to [put?] reptiles in

Jan. 3 (Wed.) It is very cold morning the boys and I sing some. I go out to the pond and wash cloths a mail come to day. I play at Market [balance indecipherable]

Jan. 4 (Thurs.) Very cold now. I sleep late. Ezra came over wants me to make a fiddle key I make it then cut hair for some of the boys the day passed cold & clear

Jan. 5 (Fri.) I dont arise very early the sun rises bright and warm I take some sewing to do cutting down coat collars dont feel very well all day. pleasant day

Jan. 6 (Sat.) To day I set some [indecipherable] on Sargent Fullers coat. cut Wm Perkins [Sgt. William H. Perkins, Springfield] hair and wrote a letter to Danby today is clear & cold

Jan. 7 (Sun.) Inspection of Company I git me a dress coat of M E Wheeler am on guard to day No 5. I cut a head of hair make pen holder. warm day

Jan. 8 (Mon.) I dont go over to guard house but lay in my bunk we have but little to eat now. to day I make a pen holder and a ring. rainy, muddy, windy day

Jan. 9 (Tues.) On guard again at seven oclock up town I am on at the Landing. I came down to camp at three eat supper go back again fair day

Jan. 10 (Wed.) We git relieved at nine I come back to camp eat about two loves of bread git some clothes go and wash Oh it rains bad time to day I got very wet. mud plenty

Jan. 11 (Thurs.) I sew a while am detailed to chop wood one load go to sewing again work all day on pants and coat consitable said now about Mexico A very clear warm day

Jan. 12 (Fri.) I whittle a spell this morn daniel Adams [Pvt. Daniel O. Adams, Ludlow] brought me some work sewing. A Perkins [Pvt. Adams Baker Perkins, Weathersfield] too I cut Longs hair is rumer about going to Mexico S Taylor [Pvt. Samuel R. Taylor, Ludlow] discharged butiful warm day

Jan. 13 (Sat.) Whittle on a pen holder in shape of a leg sell it to Moses Rumrill. L Mainard [Pvt. English Leroy Maynard, Fair Haven] mustered out to day. I got a detail as carpenter again alter over Miles coat. there was a battallion drill this morning one hour. warm day

Jan. 14 (Sun.) After I breakfast I go up Town to the baker then to hospital. Come back with Charley to Cathlick meeting [note his second brush with religion] take a walk our brigade was reviewed by Gen Wityle [sp?] the day has been Cloudy windy

Jan. 15 (Mon.) I report to Capt Lewinbase [sp?] then go to the Carpenter shop to Sargent Slaythe Coudy take a walk up in town come back. Hale of Co A and I make a bunk. After dinner I take a sleep I went to Regt. fair day

Jan. 16 (Tues.) Quite cold last night after breakfast of hard tack because the bakery failed. I take a walk after dinner I go far out in the bushes. go up to day with Charles cool day

Jan. 17 (Wed.) I go back from the Convalesent camp to where I stay. git some breakfast then go to work on a house out back of town all day. It has been fair

Jan. 18 (Thurs.) News that our brigade are to be mustered out of service. We work on the Powder building all day. It was only three Regiments to be discharged and that was revoked Very warm to day

Jan. 19 (Fri.) I sleep till breakfast is ready. I feel rather sleepy. go to work again boarding up the building a heigh wind blows all day dust flys so it is very unpleasant working

Jan. 20 (Sat.) Blow ye windy morning And awful windy to and looks so much like rain That we dont know what to do I hung to Axes went up to hospital stay all night with Charles Roberts. Cloudy

Jan. 21 (Sun.) I take my breakfast with Charles. both go down to the city. go to Church the thirty fourth Indiana Regt have got orders to muster out. the other not. I write a letter and stay all night quite cool

Jan. 22 (Mon.) I came to Carpenters Shop. take breakfast go to work as usual I help the mason lay brick lots of news about discharging all gammane [?]. growing warm

Jan. 23 (Tues.) My hours of sleep all far more pleasant than when awake we go to work as usual the wind blows a perfect storm of dust went down to the regt at evening. windy day

Jan. 24 (Wed.) very late when I got up this morning. help lay the floor of plank in the after noon lay shingles at eve went to a prayer meeting serve the Lord then go serve the Devil a while fair day

Jan. 25 (Thurs.) We lay awake so late last night telling stories that I arise late feeling old. We lay shingles to day. It is awful warm Suffocating heat in the sun shine but cold nights

Jan. 26 (Fri.) Very thick fog this morning Lay shingles most all day. went down to the Regiment. small mail came News. we are going to be paid. we are all very discontented. warm day

Jan. 27 (Sat.) General Witezal [sp?] was relieved yesterday by Brig Gen Stonman Regular Army We did not do much this A.M. layed shingles this P.M. Mr Brown is cured of us now 34th Indiana men gone. warm day cool evening

Jan. 28 (Sun.) I am whittling making a pen holder in shape of a leg. Charley Roberts came down. I went back with him. sold my pen holder and made a ring went to evening meeting. very warm

Jan. 29 (Mon.) we work on the ordnance Depot and finish it in the fore noon dont do anything but whittle finish my ring cut three heads of hair. warm day

Jan. 30 (Tues.) I finish another pen holder and cut Ira Welchs hair made a ruler. a mail came to day I went down to the regt at sun down. No prospects of gitting out of service weather warm

Jan. 31 (Wed.) All that we do is but little Most that we do is to whittle The orders now are very strict About passing guard without permit. My helth is good But time is drearey So here ends fair January

Feb. 1 (Thurs.) General Witzel leaves the stand A regular Officer in command More reports are now about Conserning being mustered out I whittle all day on a cain head. S Wilson cut my hair this day is warm and fair [Note this sudden flair for poetry that begins with today's quatrain.]

Feb. 2 (Fri.) To day I whittle out a head For a handle to a cain Ten thousand more to be discharged Gen Wright is here again Maximillians power is going down The Foreign troops to be withdrawn Weather fine

Feb. 3 (Sat.) Windy this morning I fix Mr Browns cain. sold my rule and pen holders the Tampico came brought a mail I went down to the regt to git it but got none for me. dark & cloudy

Feb. 4 (Sun.) To day I reflected of days thats past With affliction first burned in my boyish heart. How pleasant the time that I past with the Loved one. But sad was the hour that told we must part. I went up to the hospital cold and cloudy

Feb. 5 (Mon.) Dark and cloudy was the morn And prospects of another storm It is to cold for any comfort I sold another pen holder and got me a body belt I have made up my mind to have to stay my time out I am sick to night. very cold

Feb. 6 (Tues.) Oh, home. why did I leave thee I know why. But this is a cold morning I go down and put in some window glass for En Wright and some to the office. help unload some shingles Clear & Cool

Feb. 7 (Wed.) I make another pen holder then go out in the city and help put up a tent. a number of our boys are mustered out to day, after dinner I went out to work again. a young man was buried that was killed fair day

Feb. 8 (Thurs.) I make a trade on some of my things I have whittled out made another pen holder in shape of a leg. thats why they sell so well worked some on an old wagon. my bunk mate Hale [MUS Abner B. Hale, Springfield] left to day. butifully fair

Feb. 9 (Fri.) I worked a little on an old wagon set some silver in my cain. cut out a baze [?] of silver for a yong man. the cullerd Gentleman are being paid off. I went up to stay with Charley. Cloudy day

Feb. 10 (Sat) Charley and I woke up early I came back to Breakfast. I and Rock Island put on a fly to tent. George Ballou came up I went out in town with him. wrote a letter. windy day

Feb. 11 (Sun.) I dear me how sleepy I am this morning it is dreadful warm too taped my boots and shaved Me, Brown. Charley came he and I went out to the grave yard to meeting at evening

Feb. 12 (Mon.) Charley stayed with me last night. I helped measure some boards and saw some. whittled out a snake head for Leyon. news that we are going to be paid off again this has been one hotest day

Feb. 13 (Tues.) I went out in town putting up a tent. Levi Rock [Pvt. Levi Rock, Cavendish] came after me to sign the pay rolls. I went to camp got paid about two oclock I collected some debts and returned. Expressed $215.00 [On this date, his account shows he was paid $195.65, plus $23.55 in debts collected.]

Feb. 14 (Wed.) Very warm this morning after breakfast I and two men went up in town to put up another tent awful hot till noon then such a Wind storm then awfull cold. I wrote a letter in after noon

Feb. 15 (Thurs.) A very cold day was cold last night we cant work so I go up to hospital stay all day with Charles Roberts. wrote a letter. Orders have come for 28th Ill. cold all day

Feb. 16 (Fri.) This eve I am writing for Luman while he is lying in his bunk This forenoon he helped me and another one of our boys put up a tent that we commenced day before yesterday and this afternoon he layed in his bunk pretty cold [This is written in another hand, possibly Charley Roberts'.]

Feb. 17 (Sat.) Well, the weather is warmer I dont feel very well this morning. I help Brown build a table News that the 7th Vt to be discharged. I sold another pen holder. it has been a butiful day

Feb. 18 (Sun.) A powder explosion in camp last night. Charles and I went to camp. a mail came none for me as usual. the orders have not come but are expected. I went up to hospital stay all night. it is quite cold

Feb. 19 (Mon.) General Stonman is not in command here it is Colonel Brown of the 117th Colored Regt. I put some hooks on door and make me a box to my knapsack washed some cloths. things are mixed. a pleasant day

Feb. 20 (Tues.) I made me some buttons. help pile some boards. put up an A tent in the after noon sold my overcoat and cain to William Cassidy. time is dull many of boys in other regiments are deserting the day has been very fair [On this date, his account shows he received $10.00 for the cane.]

Feb. 21 (Wed.) Rainy damp morning I walk with Boss Brown making a College no 2. in to go up in town. many of the men are in guard house I whittle out another leg dull times rein all day

Feb. 22 (Thurs.) I and Brown quareled about the sawing of some boards so left and went up to the hospital staid till after noon then came back go to work in the school house. it has been fair

Feb. 23 (Fri.) Three of us went up to work on the school room again I put down a step fixed windows in the after [noon] we put up a tent. quit in good time eat supper go up stairs to bed. a high wind

Feb. 24 (Sat.) Awful cold this morning I am whittling an Eagles head on a cain till noon I do justice by a meal of potatoes in the after noon put up two tents went up to the hospital. growing warm

Feb. 25 (Sun.) I came down to shop eat breakfast go down to regt. got citizens suit go over to Matamoras stay all day go to a bull fight. saw Joe Richards & came back at dark. warm

Feb. 26 (Mon.) Mr Toney came for a man to go with hammer and nail to the prison. I went make bunks all day. and went down to the regt at eve a mail had come. I got a letter [from Miss Eunice H. Vail] a suttler was robed on the road lots of tales are afloat. warm day

Feb. 27 (Tues.) I dont feel well I git up to breakfast go back to bed again write a letter and whittle some on John McKnight cain they say the orders are [coming?] the weather is fair

Feb. 28 (Wed.) No rations for breakfast the boys have to bye we all say we will not work we git a promise then Sargent Parker came to git to men I and Leyan go work all day. very warm

Mar. 1 (Thurs.) We all go to work as usual hear that the orders all at Brazos. we begin to think it is so. by and by the Glorious News came that orders have come for the whole brigade to be discharged. I work hard went out to the hospital warm day

Mar. 2 (Fri.) O time passes pleasant now I work planing boards we finish up the school house work. I work on a cain work has about played out with. the rolls are being made. fair day

Mar. 3 (Sat.) About nine oclock Charles came down found me asleep I had not been up. we went down to the regiment. they are making up the rolls. we had a shave all hands. I stay with Charles all night

Mar. 4 (Sun.) My Minor [?] woke us up for breakfast. we went down to city went to Cathlick Meeting. go over to my place git some wood to make buttons of. I stay up here now. very fine day

Mar. 5 (Mon.) Charles and I went down to the [indecipherable] and took breakfast I git my knapsack and come back. whittle all day. orders for al the separate brigades to report. it has rained today

Mar. 6 (Tues.) I whittle on my cain. Chas. went down to the regt after the mail did not git it. I found a hornit toad went to shop got a letter. worked on Dr Pareys chest. very warm

Mar. 7 (Wed.) This fore noon I built a ring set silver in it we had a soup for dinner as usual. we put in roof for Dr White I made two buttons. Charles took a sleep. fair day

Mar. 8 (Thurs.) I make a couple of buttons Charles and I put up a hospital tent frame and covered it. then washed our cloths. took a bath went down to the regiment report at the orders being reworked. fair

Mar. 9 (Fri.) had a good sleep last night I make a little Shield set silver in it. in the after noon I make Dr White a chest. Charles made Dr Caldwell one. we went down town at eve. butiful day

Mar. 10 (Sat.) Charles and I have to move this morning go into ward to good quarters I made a ruler. Charles made a badge we hear we shal be mustered out on the fifteenth of this month O what a lovely day

Mar. 11 (Sun.) Charles and I go down to the train. then down to the regt I git cityzins suit to wear Sargt and Charly Larkin and I go over to Matamoras saw a game cock fight. a high wind lots of dust

Mar. 12 (Mon.) We had rather a scanty breakfast. lay around all the forenoon. eat a harty dinner. Charles and I go over to the Rio Grande git a bottle of water. the wind still blows. looks stormy

Mar. 13 (Tues.) Rather late when I awoke Charles left went to regt I cannot see it yet. I stay lay about all the fore noon eat little to much dinner as usual. cut hair and shave in after noon. Charles Patnod came for me. muster out tomorrow

Mar. 14 (Wed.) O happy day. going to be mustered out. I pack up my things leave the hospital go down to camp we are mustered out about ten oclock by Major Bullard. Charles and I take a walk. fair day

Mar. 15 (Thurs.) Charles and I sleep in the cook house. very cloudy this morning. we dont have much breakfast it rains. Chas and I go up to hospital git our dinner. time hangs heavy now waiting transportation rain

Mar. 16 (Fri.) Awful cold this morning I dont git up very early am detailed for guard No 2 third relief. Charles and I both have a head ache we draw rations eat some feel better at eve.

Mar. 17 (Sat.) I come off guard at nine a boat has got into Brazos we git transportation and take down tents leave the old camp ground happily now on board Cal Holcomb going down halt at dark. Cloudy

Mar. 18 (Sun.) Down the river down the river Down the Rio Grande We git to whites ranch about noon. I am on fatigue unload the stuff. we wait there all the remainder of the day and all night. Cloudy

Mar. 19 (Mon.) Well we are here yet. the cars came up report we have got to stay till tomorrow. the[y] went back came up again Chas and kyes [?] and I went up on the bluffs take a bath in a pond this morning high wind

Mar. 20 (Tues.) I bye some bread for my breakfast. the cars came up at eight took half of our regt we went at noon git on the Steamer Crescent both our regt and the 28th wis. [Wisconsin] windy clear

Mar. 21 (Wed.) The sea is rough the boat rocks very hard the boys are sea sick I dont feel very well my self I am on guard. we arive in sight of Galveston at dark go inside the bar and [wait?]. fair

Mar. 22 (Thurs.) Hoist anchor take a turn a stop by a shot acrost our bow are inspected. go in the boat unfit to pass up the Mississippi all have to git off have the boat washed. Charles and I go out in city go to a theater have a good time. it was very cloudy out [On this date, his account shows he paid 50 cents for two drinks, 35 cents for some butter and $1.00 for thetre tickets.]

Mar. 23 (Fri.) We leave Galveston at noon Good by Texas. Good by fleas No more will you torment me. To take bold steps while I sleep Or on forbidden places creep The sea is smooth. the wind is fair Glad will I be when I git there.

Mar. 24 (Sat.) Out on an ocean all boundless we slide We're homeward bound. A strong wind blows from the East which impedes our progress Charles and I have very good place to sleep considering the Sun shines very warm. cold night

Mar. 25 (Sun.) Up the Mississippi going pass the Corenteen [quarantine?] ground in the morning make very slow progress. we eat hard tack Charles and I go carry M Rumrill to hospital go to city have great time fair day

Mar. 26 (Mon.) We git up early have a ride in the horse cars. I shave and cut hair Charles done some washing. we are going to morrow on the Raleigh it rains awfull muddy. we pack up go down to the boat go to the Charles Theatre at evening [On this date, his account shows he received 60 cents for the shave and haircut and paid 50 cents for a theatre ticket.]

Mar. 27 (Tues.) I feel as though I was ninety but I am not. we git on board the boat good many are drunk some git left I and Charles and some others take stearage passage good bunks for $2.50 Gave New Orleans at ten good by old cresant city. a high wind and rain

Mar. 28 (Wed.) We anchored at the mouth of the river till ten oclock then moove out the sea is very rough. every body is sea sick. I cut [count?] up my accounts freely dont eat any thing all day. the wind has gone down the [indecipherable] rain

Mar. 29 (Thurs.) times are better and all are not so sick the wind blows fair we have the sail up make good head way. they say we shall pass Fort Jefferson at midnight. I have a good apetite feel well. pleasant day

Mar. 30 (Fri.) We passed Key West at day break and changed course running now nearly due north I am on guard No 2 1st relief. the wind is square a head and raises the sea so very rough at sun down

Mar. 31 (Sat.) I come off guard feeling very bad about my stomach cant eat much breakfast lay in my bunk most of the time we git two potatoes for dinner the wind raises and we make rapid time this race at night

January-March

April-June

July-September

October-December


Ballou homepage

1864 Journal

1865 Journal

1866 Journal

Correspondence

Poetry

Obituary


Copyright ©2003 Walter Giersbach & VermontCivilWar.Org