Following the American Civil War Sesquicentennial with day by day writings of the time, currently 1863.

February 14.—Major Larmer, of the Fifth Pennsylvania reserve regiment, Acting Inspector-General on General Crawford’s staff, was shot dead in a skirmish with guerrillas about two miles east of Brentsville, Va. He was out with a scouting-party of some fifty men of the Thirteenth Pennsylvania cavalry, who, as they were crossing a bridge over Cedar Run, at the point above mentioned, were suddenly fired upon by a band of guerrillas concealed in a pine thicket a short distance off the road.

His men were driven back across the bridge, but there held their ground until assistance could be sent for from General Crawford’s division. Colonel Jackson, of the Eleventh Pennsylvania reserves, was then sent out with a portion of his regiment, and on his approach the rebels fled. The men then recrossed the bridge to the point where they had been driven back, and brought away the body of Major Larmer, which had been left in the hands of the rebels. The Nationals lost in the skirmish, besides Major Larmer, three cavalrymen killed and one wounded, and two prisoners.

—Gainesville, Florida, was captured by the United States troops under Captain George E. Marshall, of the Fortieth Massachusetts infantry, and held for fifty-six hours against several attacks of the rebels double his own number. A large quantity of rebel stores were distributed among the people of the town, after which Captain Marshall successfully evacuated the place.— (Doc. 87.)

—It appearing that large numbers of men qualified for military duty were preparing to leave Idaho for the far West, for the purpose of evading the draft ordered by the President of the United States, Governor W. M Stone, of that territory, issued a proclamation, announcing that no person would be permitted to depart in that direction without a proper pass, and that passes would be granted to those only who would make satisfactory proof that they were leaving the State for a temporary purpose, and of their intention to return on or before the day of drafting, March tenth.

—Thomas H. Watts, Governor of Alabama, issued the following communication to the people of Mobile:

“Your city is about to be attacked by the enemy. Mobile must be defended at every hazard and to the last extremity. To do this effectively, all who cannot fight must leave the city. The brave defenders of the city can fight with more energy and enthusiasm when they feel assured that the noble women and children are out of danger.

“I appeal to the patriotic non-combatants to leave for the interior. The people of the interior towns, and the planters in the country, will receive and provide support for all who go. The patriots of this city will see the importance and necessity of heeding this call.

“Those who love this city and the glorious cause in which we fight, will not hesitate to obey the calls which patriotism makes.”[1]

[1] General Dabney H. Maury, in command at Mobile, on the thirteenth despatched the following letter to K. H. Slough, the Mayor of that city:

“My Dear Sir: I see but little disposition on the part of noncombatants to leave Mobile. Please use every means in your power to induce them to do so without delay.

“The Governor of Alabama assures me that he will take measures to secure to the people an asylum in the upper region of country bordering the river above here. I cannot believe that the kind and hospitable people of Mobile, who have for years been opening their homes to the homeless refugees from other parts of the Confederacy, will fail to receive a really welcome and kind protection during the attack on their homes.

“Patriotism demands that they leave the city for a while to those who can defend it. Prudence urges that they make no unnecessary delay in going.

“I will assist you here with transportation. The Governor says he will make proper arrangements for their reception and entertainment above.”

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