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

Post image for A Soldier’s Story of the Siege of Vicksburg–Osborn H. Oldroyd.

A Soldier’s Story of the Siege of Vicksburg–Osborn H. Oldroyd.

July 2, 2013

A Soldier’s Story of the Siege of Vicksburg–Osborn H. Oldroyd

JULY 2ND.—This is Camp Tiffin. Our regiment was favored to-day with a large mail, and nothing could have been more acceptable. Letters from home were looked into first, and next, of course, came sweethearts. One letter was read aloud, describing the capture of a butternut camp, in Holmes county, Ohio. The fort was built on a hill, and manned with several cannon, to resist the draft. A few soldiers from Camp Chase, however, went over and soon put an end to that attempt at resistance. I regret to hear of such a disgraceful affair occurring in my native State. From other letters and papers it appears this thing occurs in many other Northern States, and of course it must give encouragement to the rebels.

The rumor now runs that the paymaster will be at hand tomorrow, but he is about as reliable as Johnston, for we have been something like a week looking for both these gentlemen. I confess I would rather meet greenbacks than graybacks.

This afternoon, with several others, I went blackberrying again, and in searching for something to eat, we paid a visit to a house where, to our happy surprise, we found a birthday party, brightened by the presence of no less than eleven young ladies. We asked, of course, where “the boys” were, and they replied, as we expected, “out hunting Yanks.” Well, we found it a treat to get a taste of sociality once more, after being so long famished. They were very nice rebel girls, though I think the color of the eyes of one of them was what I might call true blue. They asked us to lunch with them, which we did with pleasure. The eatables were good, and we had a splendid time—all the while, of course, keeping one eye on the girls and the other on the window. We told our experience at our last blackberrying excursion, when they assured as we had nothing to fear with them, for they were all “for the Union.” No doubt they will be whenever their “boys” come home.

Fac-simile of a "hard tack" issued at Vicksburg, June, 1863.  The scene on it represents a soldier toasting his cracker, and the spots in the cracker were caused by the worms that inhabited it.

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