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. 61.

-which is a manufacturing town remains standing. I visited some of the most notable buildings of Richmond. Some of them are very large and handsome. The Capitol stands in a very beautiful Green something like our parade ground, and looks down on the business streets & river. I saw Jeff Davis residence as well as those of other prominent men in the confederacy. It being sunday the church bells rang out cheerfully and thousands of people were on their way to church. Most of the inhabitants seem to have remained, in fact so hurried was the evacuation that few of the people knew of it till they saw our soldiers in the city. Many of the familys are in extreme want, but there are many others who from their appearance seem to have never known what want was. Decidedly the hardships of man have fell on the lower classes. There was probably but few soldiers in the city at the time of its evacuation and Lee no doubt withdrew them as quietly as possible preferring to leave the citizens behind rather than be burdened with them hereafter. They express their surprise at the orderly conduct of our soldiers and say that their own are not so well behaved. Of course we have but few in the town, the main body are after Lee. I walked about till I was tired and then returned to the Barge where I found Capt King acting Chief Engr waiting for me. He stated that the whole three Depots would be joined in one at Richmond and he wanted me to go with him to select a building large enough to hold all the stuff. We soon selected one on the edge of the canal and I returned to dinner. At 2 P.M. I took the steamer Metamona on my return to B. 100. At the wharf I found one of our barges just arrived and heard Lieut B. was on his way up. I reached B.100 at 5 P.M. Soon after Lieut Coe arrived from F.M. Lieut B returned at 9 P.M. During the evening 100 guns was fired at City Point and the rumor is that Lee has

-225-

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