Little Doubt That Lincoln Will Be Elected ~ Fredrick C. Winkler
Lincoln extends his thanks to General Sheridan while there is an increasingly strong sentiment that Lincoln will prevail in the upcoming election. Many people– soldiers and civilians– hope for the speedy conclusion of the war yet veterans on both sides still have plenty of fight left in them. A drunken shout-out for Jeff Davis can land a man in a Northern jail. George Whitman, now a prisoner, writes to reassure his mother. A Southern soldier requests his wife to send him warm clothes. The governors of six Southern states inform the Confederate government what they will, and by implication will not, do for the cause.
October 22– Saturday– Wheeling, West Virginia– “Yesterday an old chap named James Kelley was released from the Atheneum by order of Gen. Crook, upon taking the oath of allegiance. Kelley resides in Fulton. About four or five weeks ago he got drunk and yelled for Jeff Davis, when he was arrested by the Provost Guard and put in the military prison.” ~ Wheeling Daily Intelligencer.
October 22– Saturday– Washington, D.C.– “With great pleasure I tender to you and your brave army the thanks of the nation, and my own personal admiration and gratitude, for the month’s operations in the Shenandoah Valley; and especially for the splendid work of October 19, 1864.” ~ Telegram from President Lincoln to Union General Phil Sheridan.
October 22– Saturday– Richmond, Virginia– “Wanton Murder. Yesterday evening, a child eight years old named James Duke, was shot and killed by William Bohannon, a soldier at Seabrook’s Hospital. It seems that Bohannon was sitting in the hospital yard with his musket beside him. The child climbed on a fence and looked into the hospital yard. Bohannon fired at the child, the bullet tearing off the top of his skull and killing him instantly. Bohannon ran, but was pursued and captured by officer Granger.” ~ Richmond Daily Whig.
October 22– Saturday– Wilmington, North Carolina– The Federal navy strengthens its blockade of the harbor.
October 22– Saturday– Independence, Missouri; Mockabee Farm, Missouri; Byram’s Ford, Missouri; State Line, Missouri; near St Charles, Arkansas; Brashear City, Louisiana– Skirmishes, raids, probing and maneuvering.
October 23– Sunday– New York City– “In July, 1861, a Northern mob and a Souther mob came into collision at Bull Run, and the North was routed. In 1864, Northern veterans are meeting Southern veterans in Georgia and on the Shenandoah, and the case is altered.” ~ Diary of George Templeton Strong.
October 23– Sunday– Winchester, Virginia– “All is quiet, and we are doing routine duty. Today I attended (for a change) the Lutheran church which has just opened. The minister prayed for peace and unity then preached a rebellious sermon. There is not much difference in the ministers of this town. The Rebel citizens do not feel as happy they did last Wednesday when they thought General Early’s Army was coming. . . . Well, a few more victories like the two we have had in the Valley and the war will be over. No one will rejoice more than myself, for I am tired of bloodshed. But God has been good to me, and I hope I shall live to see the end as I saw the beginning of the Rebellion.” ~ Diary of Elisha Hunt Rhodes.
October 23– Sunday– Petersburg, Virginia– “I want you to make me some drawers anyhow, for the government drawers are pretty sorry sure and soon rip up. In making soldiers’ clothing, all of you should recollect that we have some neighbors here called lice and be sure to fell (I believe that is what they call it) all the seams. Or in other words, sew it down tight everywhere so they will have no hiding place. I am always so glad to hear that [my son] Henry is well and hearty. I suppose he can control his puppy pretty well now. I would be so glad to see them frolicking together. Write me if Henry can go to his Grand Ma’s by himself now, and all about him.” ~ Letter from Confederate soldier Marion Hill Fitzpatrick to his wife Amanda.
October 23– Sunday– Danville Virginia– “I wrote you a line from Libby Prison a few days after I was taken prisoner, but think it doubtful if you received it. I was taken, (along with almost our entire Regiment, both Officers and men) on the 30th day of September, near the Weldon Rail Road, but am proud to think that we stood and fought until we were entirely surrounded, Major Wright, Lieutenants Pooley, Sims, and 9 other Officers of our Regimentt, are here, Captain Walton and Lieutenant Butler was wounded, but I don’t know how badly, I am very well indeed, and in tip top spirits, am tough as a mule, and about as ugly, and can eat any amount of corn bread, so you see, dear Mother that I am all right, and my greatest trouble is that you will worry about me, but I beg of you not to fret, as I get along first rate. Please write to Lieutenant Babcock, Company F of our Regiment. and tell him to send my things home by Express. Much love to all.” ~ Letter from Union soldier George Whitman to his mother Louisa.
October 23– Dublin, Virginia– “I have only time this cold Sunday morning to write you a line. Indeed I have nothing of interest here to write you. I come out safely after taking a very active part in late fight at Saltville. General Burbridge U.S.A. was punished very severely for bringing his mixed white & Blacks in the vicinity of Saltville where we Reserves could strike them a blow. Let it be said ‘never more’ that the silvery haired men & the beardless & downy cheeked youths of old Virginia will not fight. They have of late made their own record & the faithful Historian, & future generations will give them a high place in the annals of their country. The fighting for the Season in this country is over . . . . I am in fine health, hoping when these few lines come to hand they’ll find you enjoying the same God’s Blessing. I have just read a letter from Brother Gabriel & Daughter Mollie giving account of depredations &c of the Yankees. They now know & feel what I knew & was made feel near four years ago– only they have never been made suffer from the vandals as I have suffered. They have not felt & known what it was to mourn over the loss of a darling child– the victim of a wicked relentless foe. But enough. God is just & merciful– & the day of Retribution for the wicked ones who have stricken so many hearts & laid waste our beautiful & once happy country is not a far distant. Let it come– I repeat it let it come– God speed it.” ~ Letter from Confederate officer Andrew R. Barber to Mary Anna Silbert.
October 23– Sunday– near Atlanta, Georgia– “Trains are to go through from Chattanooga to-morrow, and then we shall have our regular mails again. . . We are over whelmed with a flood of political prints and pamphlets; they are all on the Republican side. I don’t know how my regiment will vote; it used to be strongly democratic, still I think the officers are, save one or two, for Lincoln. I never talk to them on political subjects. I am going to vote the Republican ticket straight through, but beyond that will not meddle with politics. Mr. Lincoln is personally no abler or stronger than Mc Clellan, but the influences which surround him, both of political and military-men, are such as to Support and strengthen him. I have little doubt that Lincoln will be elected, but the greater his majority, the more emphatic will be the blow to the enemies of the country. I am going on a foraging expedition tomorrow; besides my own regiment, I am going to have one hundred men from each of four others, and will probably be gone three or four days. . . . Our nearest neighbor, Colonel Case, of the 129th Illinois, has a Chicago paper nearly a month old, containing an account of General Sheridan’s battle of the 19th of September. Our terrific losses in consequence of that surprise are sad to contemplate, but the skill and daring of General Sheridan certainly challenges the highest admiration. Almost any other general would have made his men work like beavers to secure themselves against further disaster by strengthening their position, when his bold spirit reorganized his broken and defeated battalions and led them against his victorious and exultant foe. It is the first time in this war that such a thing has been done or even been thought of. Sheridan has shown himself to be the greatest leader of battle that has yet appeared on the American field on either side.” ~ Letter from Union officer Fredrick C. Winkler to his wife Frances.
October 23– Sunday– Atlantic Ocean– For the second of three consecutive days, a hurricane with winds up to maximum of 80 miles per hour rages but no loss of lives or property is known.
October 23– Sunday– Westport, Missouri– A force of 8500 Confederate soldiers tangle with 22,000 Federal troops. The Confederate troops retreat after a day’s hard fighting. Total casualties– killed, wounded, missing– are approximately 1500 for each side.
October 24– Monday– Richmond, Virginia– “A meeting of the Governors of the States of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, was held in Augusta, Georgia, on Monday, the 17th instant. Governor William Smith, of Virginia, presided. After a full, free, and harmonious consultation and interchange of council, the following, among other views, were expressed: Resolved, That there is nothing in the present aspect of public affairs to cause any abatement of our zeal in the prosecution of the war to the accomplishment of a peace based on the independence of the Confederate States. . . . Resolved, That the interests of each of our States are identical in the present struggle for self-government, and wisdom and true patriotism dictate that the military forces of each should aid the others against invasion and subjugation, and for this purpose we will recommend to our several legislatures to repeal all such laws as prohibit the executives from sending their forces beyond their respective limits, in order that they may render temporary service wherever most urgently required. Resolved. That whilst it is our purpose to use every exertion to increase the strength and efficiency of our State and Confederate forces, we respectfully and earnestly request that the Confederate authorities will send to the field every able-bodied man, without exception, in any of its various departments, whose place can be filled by either disabled officers and soldiers, senior reserves or Negroes, and dispense with the use of all provost and post guard, except in important cities, or localities where the presence of large bodies of troops make them necessary, and with all passport agents upon railroads not in the immediate vicinity of the armies, as we consider these agents an unnecessary annoyance to good citizens and of no possible benefit to the country. . . . And whereas, the public enemy having proclaimed the freedom of our slaves, are forced into their armies the able-bodied portion thereof, the more effectually to wage their cruel and bloody war against us; therefore be it Resolved, That it is the true policy and obvious duty of all slave owners timely to remove their slaves from the line of the enemy’s approach, and especially those able to bear arms; and when they shall fail to do so, that it should be made the duty of the proper authorities to enforce the performance of this duty, and to give to such owners all necessary assistance as far as practicable. Resolved, That the course of the enemy in appropriating our slaves who happen to fall in their hands to purposes of war, seems to justify a change of policy on our part; and whilst owners of slaves, under the circumstances, should freely yield them to their country, we recommend to our authorities, under proper regulations, to appropriate such part of them to the public service as may be required. . . . And, lastly, we deem it not inappropriate to declare our firm and unalterable purpose, as we believe it to be that of our fellow-citizens, to maintain our right of self-government, to establish our independence, and to uphold the rights and sovereignty of the States, or to perish in the attempt. Resolved, That the chairman be requested to send a copy of these resolutions to his Excellency President Davis, one each to the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives, to be laid before the respective bodies, and one to the governors of each State in the Confederacy.” ~ Richmond Times Dispatch.