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

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An Artilleryman’s Diary–Jenkin Lloyd Jones

November 10, 2013

An Artilleryman's Diary–Jenkin Lloyd Jones, 6th Battery, Wisconsin Artillery.

Camp in Oak Barrens, Tenn., Tuesday, Nov. 10. Prepared for an early march. Moved at 9 A. M. as we had to wait for the 2nd Brigade to move ahead. Passed through town, which is an old fashioned place of quite a size. Looks as though it was the same twenty years ago. Of course it was perfectly dead, no sign of trade or purchase of any kind. Crossed Elk River two miles from the town on the best bridge I ever saw. It is built of solid stone all hewed, five arches, with a foot path on top of each side wall. It is but a single track erected in 1861. Poor country! After we left the river valley, nearly deserted fields lie idle. About noon we entered the Oak Barrens, so called from its sterility. It is a perfectly flat tract of land with a yellow clay soil. Oak openings, no underbrush, the oak not very large. It lies lower than the surrounding country and covered with pond holes which we rendered bottomless with a little travel, the wheels cut down so. No houses or fields to be seen. Went into camp in the first field we saw for five miles, and that was deserted. 4th Platoon wheel horse fell dead tonight before it came to camp. He was the biggest and best horse of the Battery, supposed to be overdone. Train of cars passed out on the Fayetteville branch loaded with crackers for our camp. It was escorted by two regiments of Slocum’s Corps, the New York and Pennsylvania regiments. Mail received. I got letter from home of the 25th ult, so we are once more approaching the Union lines. No news or paper seen save wild camp rumors which are conflicting. No corn to feed our horses to-night. I am on guard.

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