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

Post image for Reminiscences of the Civil War by William and Adelia Lyon.

Reminiscences of the Civil War by William and Adelia Lyon.

August 10, 2015

Reminiscences of the Civil War, William and Adelia Lyon

Colonel Lyon’s Letters.


Green Lake, Texas, Aug. 10, 1865.—None of our officers or men from Wisconsin have returned yet, but we expect some of them during this month. The mosquitoes are awful here. The weather has been rainy for some days and they have increased in numbers frightfully. The sleeping in camp is done in the day time mainly. The men have no bars and it is impossible to sleep without them at night, so the men dance all night. They have an old fiddle, and half a dozen fiddlers take turns at the instrument, and a hundred men at a time break it down in regular stag dance style on the prairie by the hour. Last night they wanted to know if the frolic disturbed me, but I told them no, to wade in and enjoy themselves—yet they kept me awake for hours. My bar affords me ample protection and if I do not get sleep at night I take it in the day time. Looking over the camp now, 11 o’clock a. m., you can not see twenty-five men, yet there are 350 at least in it. They are all asleep. The weather is hot, the thermometer seldom be low 80 degrees day or night, usually in the day time from 90 to 95 degrees; but during the day we get a breeze from the Gulf, which relieves us greatly.

I need not tell you that I am impatient for the time to come when I shall be home again for good. I think when I walk into our shanty, hang up my hat, and take you and our little ones (one at a time of course) in my arms, I shall be about as happy a fellow as you can find around there. I find it necessary to use some restraint or I should be counting the days that intervene before my muster out, but I do not do it, at least aloud. I will say to you, however, privately, that it is just 45 days, or one and one-half months.

If I could take the regiment home with me I should be just about perfectly happy, but I see but little prospect of being permitted to do that. We shall leave in a few days for San Antonio I expect. We do not know when. The First Division has already gone to Victoria. San Antonio is distant from here 120 or 130 miles. It will require about three weeks to get letters there from Wisconsin.

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