Diary of a Yankee Engineer: The Civil War Story of John H. Westervelt, Engineer, 1st New York Volunteer Engineer Corps

By John H. Westervelt; Anita Palladino | Go to book overview

Diary of an Engineer During the
Rebellion

Number 44

August 1864

18th Lieut Coe, Sergt La Due and 6 men went to Fortress Monroe to day to stay for the present. Otis is in charge here under Lieut Parsons of our Regt. Two or three small showers to day. 19th & 20th Still light showers and getting quite muddy. Sunday 21st Overcast but no rain. I have been quite unwell for two or three days with pain in my bones and head and stiffness of the limbs. I believe I caught cold through getting in a deep perspiration getting some lumber out of the hold of one of the barges and then cooling off suddenly in the open air. I feel better to day. The heavy guns at Grants front (Sunday 21st) indicate verry heavy fighting all forenoon.1 Reports from reliable sources say we have taken possession of and hold a portion of the Petersburgh and Welden rail road. This is bad for the rebs as it is the main source of supplies for the city. Otis crossed the river this morning and brought back a lot of green corn. Water melons are plenty and verry large. They come from Norfolk. They sell from fifty cts upwards. 22nd to 27th Dull. Engaged putting up a depot building 25 x 50 ft. A cargo of lumber arrived to day, and we have the Quarter Masters darkies to unload it. Patterson and five more men went to the depot at Fortress Monroe to day. Ten men from Co K arrived to fill their place. Sunday 28th No work to day. Clear and beautiful with a cool breeze blowing. Not knowing what else to do with myself I jumped into a small skiff and rowed myself across the river. It was so pleasant that I rowed a couple of miles down along the shore. Seeing some apples on some trees I landed and found them ripe and very fine. I soon gathered enough for the boys and put them in the

1. Fighting continues as Union forces finally manage to claim the northern section of the Weldon railroad, a severe loss to the South. Long, Day by Day, p. 558.

-161-

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Diary of a Yankee Engineer: The Civil War Story of John H. Westervelt, Engineer, 1st New York Volunteer Engineer Corps
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