Page 15-20

 
 

Transcription

Further Discription of a Soldiers life

On the first Sunday of November 1863 we were all ready to cross the river of the Great Missouri an appointed place was knwon - We waited for the evening - A number of us in sheer despair thought we would again go to church - Cedar was the spot. We got there and I met many of my friends both male and female - Mr and Mrs James Self with the not to be forgotten Miss Sallie1 - were all there We listened to the sermon: and then came the Good Byes I will not say a tear did not start to my eye- I know not when I wil see them again. I dined at Elijah Stephans. and after Adrius I started to the spot - We arrived about dusk and about 9 moved on towards the

Annotations

1 Sallie Self would become Henry’s wife in 1866 and they had three children together.

Additional Information

Image of Mr. and Mrs. Cheavens Golden Anniversary Article

 

 
 

Transcription

Bonne Femme1. We traveled all night, striking the Bonne Femme north of Columbia. We camped next day, then on a little stream camped preparatory to crossing. Tuesday night we commenced crossing and had a hard time. It was but about four miles below Boonville, a poor landing, no rowers or guides who were acquainted with the river. The horses would not take to the river. I took mine, he would not swim and tried to turn over. The skiff finally got mired on a bar in the river. By hard pulling got him on dry sand, where I had to leave him till morning. I remained on the south side, cold, wet, and weary. We made a little fire before morning and got some victuals from

Annotations

1 Creek

 

 
 

Transcription

a neighbor. Our horses were all day on the bar in the middle of the river, and a steamboat passed up in the middle of the day. The next night by hard work we succeeded in getting over the men and horses, some 80 or 90 in number. We staid the next day resting ourselves. I occupied myself in directing the division of bread and meat and making cartridges. We fried out meat, took up the grease, made up our dough, and gave a piece to each man to make for himself on a piece of stick over the fire. The next night we traveled so as to be within a few miles of the railroad.1 Camped. In the morning men were sent out after corn for our horses and food for ourselves.

Annotations

1 Many of the planned railroads in Missouri were put on hold during the Civil War. The post-War era saw a boom in railroad speculation and construction in central Missouri.

Additional Information

The Pacific Railroad of Missouri operated trains between St. Louis and Syracuse in Morgan County. The last five miles of the 108-mile line were opened from Tipton to Syracuse on August 1, 1859. Here the railroad terminated in an open prairie.

Margaret Louise Fitzsimmons, "Railroad Development in Missouri, 1860-1870," (Unpublished master's thesis, Washington University, 1931), p. 14

 

 
 

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About an hour after daylight we heard the sound of guns immediately in front of us. It seemed to paralyse all, and all soon left the field after being ordered by officers. I left my horse. The last I saw of Capt. McGuire1 he was mounting his nag. I soon came to where our men had formed and found 52 without any officers but one, Lieutenant Crutcher. We had three or four killed and several wounded and a number taken prisoner. Selby, Sam Hodge, and others. After getting together Crutcher told the company to look out every man for himself and concerning the railroad keep directly south. A few of us remained till night, tried to get a guide, failed, and started.

Annotations

1 Julius McGuire

 

 
 

Transcription

We took the wind for a guide, but it changed before morning. We started to cross the railroad between Tipton and California1. We went through farms, byways, and at last crossed. The rain then set in. I had to ride bareback and the darkness did not agree very well, so once or twice I found myself dismounted. After riding an hour or two we came to a halt overcome by fatigue and rain. My squad had become scattered in the darkness, but three of us were together. We took our blankets, laid them on the wet ground, and were soon in a heavy, if not sweet, sleep. Early in the morning we arose and, feeding our horses from a neighboring field, we went on our way. We soon found that we were but two miles east from Tipton.

Annotations

1 Northwest of Jefferson City

 

 
 

Transcription

We hid our guns and ammunition, then the two young men with me said they would try it on foot. I took the best horse of the crowd with the best saddle and blankets and bidding them goodbye I started with my face Southwards, for, though it was raining, still I could take the course by observing the moss on the north side of the trees1. I traveled on till about 12 o'clock. I came to the edge of the prairie when, having become hungry, I stopped at a house for dinner. It was Sunday and a number of neighbors were in. They had a wounded brother. I ate dinner and started on my journey. I came in sight of a house where I put up though the owner was not at home. The young lady had a brother in the army, Southern of

Annotations

1 An old navigating maxim states that moss grows on the north side of trees and rocks.

 

 
   
University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law © 2010