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6th Vermont Infantry
Frederick Marius Kimball - 1863 Diary
Feb. 1 - We return to the main reserve. The mail is brought out & I get three letters respectfully from Jeff, mother & Sue. Tomorrow we go back to camp and another regt. takes our place. I devote a portion of time in writing to moth. I get permission to come in from picket.
Feb. 2 - Pleasant. The regt. comes off picket about 3PM. The stores belonging to the regt. that were sent to Washington from Camp Griffin & stored there since then have been forwarded to the regiment.
Feb. 3 - Cold last night-windy. Nothing of importance. Orders have been issued granting furloughs for ten days only. I do not care to go home for that time, yet I would love to visit my friends. I guess Nye will go.
Feb. 4 - Very cold morning. Visit Livingston & Baxter who are sick in the hospital. We get wood from the old camp of the 5 ____. Write Sue. May God keep my beloved one.
Feb. 5 - Cold this morning. Snows. Rains. Receive a letter from Aunt Mary P. Reply to the same.
Feb. 6 - All quiet-warmer. Write a letter for Chismore.
Feb. 7 - Nothing of interest. Receive a letter from father & mother with braid for Sheverons. Write Jeff. Sergt. Nye gets his furlough.
Feb. 8 - Inspection. Write Napoleon Davis. Write home. Beautiful day. Read over a host of old letters. Dress parade.
Feb. 9 - Sergt. Nye starts with the others of the regt. who are going home for Vt. at 3AM. I send by him for a nice watch of American manufacture worth $35. Also for a gold locket for my mother's & sister's ambrotype. The one I have is broken. I send for some other things also. Drill PM. Hatch, Sergt. of the 3d comes in.
Feb. 10 - Company drill at 9AM. Brigade review at 2PM. Make a bone ring & put my mistrials. Have potatoes for supper. Shepherd gets badly bruised by a mule. Have a sing in the Lt's tent this evening. Roll call and now roll up.
Feb. 11 - One hundred rank and file and fifty go on picket from our regiment. Lieut. McClary starts for Washington-a long time before he will be able to do duty. Lt. Davis alone commands the company. Visit Charles Perry in the 4th regt. Rainy day. Roll call.
Feb. 12 - No news. Nothing exciting. Non-commissioned officers drilled by Col. Barney. The sword & belt we are to present to Maj. Hale has come.
Feb. 13 - Ditto. Drill the company. Evening sing in the Lts. Tent.
Feb. 14 - Pickets come in. Been out three days. Complete a bone slide and present it to Sergt. Stiles a good friend. Prepare for inspection for tomorrow. We present our once loved Captain, now a Major, a splendid sword and belt worth $60.00. It was imposed on me to make the presentation and remarks appropriate. We took the Maj. by supprise. He made us some well addressed remarks.
Feb. 15 - Yesterday was St. Valentines day. Write some verses on the presentation of a sword. Nothing new.
Feb. 16 - Nye is now probably enjoying himself first rate. Read an interesting romance entitled "Countess on the Iron Cross." Bill has come back to the company. Been in the hospital about two weeks. Battalion drill by the Lt. Col. Maj. Hale holds dress parade.
Feb. 17 - This morning we find about two inches of snow on the ground and still snowing. Yesterday I got a letter from home. No stirring in camp today. Visit with Lieut. Davis. Have potatoes for dinner. Storms all day. Writing in diary at 9PM. Have a hard cold. Why don't I have a letter.
Feb. 18 - Commenced raining early this morning and rains now at 9PM. Snow, rain, & mud. Write for Walton's Journal. Read some. By the way we are rather short for reading matter. Have a visit with Capt. Dwinell-talk over old times. Talk of those joys when he & I were boys.
Feb. 19 - Again another day God keeps me safe as in the hallow of his hand. May God be blest. Write to friend Chase. Have a chat with Lt. Davis. Sergt. Nye's furlough was up last, yet he does not come. He will have to be reported in my report tomorrow as absent without leave if he does not come. Take a game of checkers.
Feb. 20 - The clouds have dispersed & today is pleasant. For many days it has been stormy. Elbert Nye comes tonight. Has had a fine time. He brings some little things to me from home & a letter from Napoleon, Jeff and my beloved mother. My dear mother. God bless her. She is dear to me. Sgt. Nye gets the watch for me I ordered, yet not exactly such a one, still a nice one.
Feb. 21 - Sergt. Nye is in arrest for being off beyond his furlough. Receive a letter from Sue and also receive a commission a 2nd Lieut. In Co. G. I scarce know what to say or think. It came wholly unexpectedly to me. The promotion is unmerited I fear, still I shall labor to do each and every duty. Lt. Davis is Captain now of Co. D & Lt. Joslyn 1st Lt. Co. D.
Feb. 22 - Last night it snowed & today it snowed all day. The most I've know in Va. ever. Pass the day at the address of Co. G. by writing home & to Sue. This is the birthday of Washington, the father of our country & the first day of my experience as a subaltern officer in the U.S. service. The date of my commission is Feb. 3d. I have entered upon new duties & trials.
Feb. 23 - Snow this morning about 8 inches deep-the most like Vermont of any thing we have had. Sun again comes out after the storm & the snow is melting away. Sergt. Nye of my old company fills my place as orderly & Hobart Bliss is made corporal. Have a dress parade. Adjt. Lincoln takes his new place. I think he will do well. I like Co. G.
Feb. 24 - All quiet. Have a game of snowball. More furloughed men start for home. Pleasant. Write Jeff & also to the State Treasurer to see about my allotted pay. Read a romance entitled ____. Tis pleasant to call over to Co. D occasionally.
Feb. 25 - Have a great game this PM of snowball. The 26th N.J. challenges the 3d & 4th Vt. rgts. The Vt. boys drove them & took many prisoners-took all their field officers. Adjutant Lincoln & I get our discharge & are mustered in as commissioned officers. Little time this evening. Writing this coming to a friend.
Feb. 26 - Rains this morning & in fact it rains most all day. Write to O and also to Lieut. McClary. Take dinner with Capt. Davis. He is a fine fellow & so is Lt. Joslyn. Col. Tuttle returns from home.
Feb. 27 - Make out muster & pay rolls, also a monthly return. Take a game of checkers with Lt. Joslyn. Write to friend Napoleon. This day is some cloudy.
Feb. 28 - Mustered at 10AM. Have an inspection, also work on pay rolls. "Yield not to the tempter." This month is nearly with the cycles of the past.
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Letters to the Editor
Diaries transcribed by Frederick's 2nd great-grandson.