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

No. 51

Sunday Nov 20th Two days now of constant rain. Our new qrs comes in good. We spent the day in literary occupations viz. sketching, drawing likenesses of each other and writing letters and poetry. One of the men is quite a genius in taking likeness and sketching. An other is a poetical genius and has written some pieces both in poetry and prose for the magazines as good as I ever read. I begin (from the flattery of my friends) to think I can sketch some myself, and though my friend is not much of an artist in the latter he has taken some excellent pictures of our faces. So you see we can afford each other a considerable fund of amusement, when we are obliged to remain in doors. 21st Still heavy rain. The roads are becoming almost impassible. 22nd A hard struggle to clear off this morning. At 10 A.M. the sun peeped through the clouds for a few minutes. In the afternoon squally with scattering flakes of snow. This is the second appearance of snow here. At 8½ P.M. snowing quite fast but it does not lay though it is raw and very cold. 24th Thanksgiving day. We have been waiting the last day or two expecting our portion of the ten thousand turkeys and other things that I have heard was to be sent to the army. I have just heard that a quantity has arrived at Bermuda 100. We had just sat down to our dinner of pork and beans when a waggon arrived from Bermuda bringing a lot of mince pies and a large cake. They were a present from Lieut Coe who sent them all the way from Fortress monroe for us. So you see we made quite a thanksgiving dinner after all. It is pretty cold now but since the storm the weather has been very beautiful, the finest I ever experienced. 25th To day a goose arrived from B. 100. It was our share of the thanksgiving dinner sent by the people of the north to the soldiers in the field. It is a rather singular fact that I can hear of no one having received anything of the kind except the depot detach-

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