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. 63

Apr 17, Fine weather, my health is coming back, but very slowly. The mournful confirmation of the assassination of the President, and the wounding of Sect Seward was published in the Richmond Whig this morning. As yet no outward show of mourning has been made. It is the common topic of conversation on all sides. Among union men deep mutterings of revenge may be heard, But comments are useless. Let justice and the law take its course. The citizens are out in great numbers to day, all classes and Sexes—

There are one or two places in the town established to issue rations to the poor. I passed one to day and the crowd was so dense the street was almost impassible. Men, women and children, blacks and whites were all mixed in one heterogeneous mess together. One person who had drawn his allowance for 7 days remarked that it was more than the rebels gave them for a whole month. Thus while the poor of Rebeldom are fed and clothed, the familys of union soldiers are suffering for the want of their just dues. I consider your relief money part of my pay as it was promised me, nor would I have enlisted without the assurance that I would get it regular. 18th Very little demonstration has been made here thus far in regard to the death of Lincoln. Flags are only hoisted half mast, and I have been told that the fleet fired minute guns last night though I did not hear them. The Theatre was closed last night and on their sign board instead of the usual bills was the following inscription, (As an humble tribute of respect to the memory of the great man).

Weather still fine with a slight shower in the afternoon. We are doing nothing, The barges still lie in the canal loaded. I hear nothing more about getting a building to store the stuff. I suppose things will remain as they are till Coe comes up. 19th This being the day of the funeral of President Lincoln

-232-

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