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

Post image for War Diary and Letters of Stephen Minot Weld.

War Diary and Letters of Stephen Minot Weld.

March 24, 2013

War diary and letters of Stephen Minot Weld

Headquarters Engineer Brigade,

Camp near Falmouth, March 24, 1863.

Dear Father, — We moved over here to the headquarters of the Engineer Brigade yesterday morning. I am still acting as adjutant-general, but expect to be relieved to-morrow or next day. Last Sunday I went down to the Fifth Army Corps, and inquired about Captain Williams, who is on duty there as additional adjutant-general. He was away on a leave of absence, but from what I could learn, he is a very nice fellow. He will probably be ordered to join General Benham. I am sufficiently acquainted with the duties now to perform them whenever the regular officer is absent. I should not like to be adjutant-general permanently, as there is too much office work, and as it is too confining. I think if the army cross successfully, and everything in our department is done promptly and well, that General Benham will stand a very good chance of promotion. In case he is promoted, I shall be also. We are about a third of a mile from headquarters of the army. It is always the custom, I believe, to have the Engineer Brigade near by headquarters.

We shall move soon, I am quite certain. Orders come in every day, which show that a move is soon to be made.

Lieutenant Perkins, our new aide, joined us to-day. He is a very pleasant fellow. . . .

I have no idea where we shall cross the river. I should think that if we crossed down below, we might move to the York River, and establish our base of supplies there.

We have two regiments in this brigade, the 50th and 15th New York Volunteers, numbering about 7800 men in all. .They are very much scattered though, one company being at Harper’s Ferry, one at Washington, and the rest scattered through this army, some at Aquia Creek, some at Stoneman’s Switch, and some at Belle Plain. There are six pontoon trains with the brigade, only two of which are completely equipped and ready. The others lack transportation, but will soon be complete. . . .

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