Diary of a Young Officer–Josiah Marshall Favill (57th New York Infantry)

Manassas Junction, March 18, 1862. Lieutenant J. M. Favill, A. A. A. General, Sir: On the 14th instant, about 9:30 A. M., this regiment marched with a brigade of cavalry, all under the command of Brigadier-General George Stoneman, via the Orange and Alexandria railroad to Cedar Run. The march was rendered somewhat tedious and difficult [...]

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(March 18th) I occupied the rebel adjutant general's office, which was a large, long, log house, with a good fireplace in one end of it, shingle roof, and board door. The roof leaked a good deal, but otherwise the place was very comfortable. We found it strewn with reports, letters, and returns, and picked up [...]

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(March 16, 1862) On the 14th the cavalry, accompanied by the Fifty-seventh, started along the Orange and Alexandria railroad to Cedar Run. They had a brush with the enemy's pickets in the evening near Cedar Run, driving them off the ground. On the 15th the infantry advanced to Catlett's Station, where they exchanged shots for [...]

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On the tenth of December the colonel received a letter from the adjutant general of the state, stating that I had been appointed first lieutenant and adjutant of the regiment and would be commissioned as such just as soon as he would furnish the date of Fiske's appointment as assistant adjutant general of volunteers. I [...]

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December 7, 1861. ON the 25th of November General Casey was relieved from the command of the provisional brigade, and Colonel Zook as senior colonel present for duty, assumed command in his stead. Fiske was made temporary assistant adjutant-general, and I was detailed as acting adjutant of the regiment, much to my satisfaction. Hard work [...]

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(Late July to Late November, 1861) Two days after the regiment returned to the yard it was ordered home by rail, going by way of South Amboy, and landed at pier 1, North River; from thence it marched up Broadway to the armory on Centre Street. Depositing our arms and accoutrements, we were dismissed till [...]

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July 25th. Nearly all the men are back again to-night, and military duty is to be resumed to-morrow, but our three months have expired, and we are ordered back to New York to be mustered out of service. The President has called for three hundred thousand men to serve for three years, or the war. [...]

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July 23d. I awoke after a long, refreshing sleep, very stiff, and feet badly blistered, but, after a cold bath at the hydrant, and a cup of coffee, felt quite myself again. Many men have returned but not enough to complete the organization, so we were not required to perform any duty. The first thing [...]

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(July 21 & 22) IN the order prescribed by the regulations, for a force feeling the enemy preparatory to an attack, we marched forward, passing over the open field and into a piece of full grown timber, apparently the slope of a considerable hill. As we slowly ascended the rising ground, suddenly a loud screeching [...]

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July 19th and 20th.—Nothing worthy of especial mention the last two days; reports say the rebels are seventy thousand strong, with ten thousand additional men near at hand, strongly posted behind the run, with all commanding points well fortified. We have made many reconnoisances and find the enemy's position in front and left too strong [...]

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July 18th. To-day great droves of beef cattle were driven into camp and slaughtered, and three days' cooked rations prepared, and issued to all the troops; we got enough to completely fill our haversacks, and load us down uncomfortably. Nothing occurred during the day worth mentioning, the band played frequently while we cleaned our muskets, [...]

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(April to the middle of July) Arrangements were made to quarter the regiment in the various sail lofts and store-houses. Double bunks, three tiers high, built to hold two men each, filled the room, with numerous narrow passages running between them. My company was assigned the upper floor of the first store room to the [...]

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Wednesday morning, 24th. Reveille at daybreak, when we fell in and stood under arms for half an hour, when, finding everything quiet, and no enemy in sight, we broke ranks and prepared breakfast. Authentic reports came in early that the railroad between this place and the junction has been destroyed, and all the bridges burnt. [...]

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(Tuesday, April 23rd) On Tuesday morning we came to an anchor, and were told the ship was off the Naval Academy at Annapolis, on the Chesapeake Bay. Our experience the past two days has been most unpleasant. The ship is outrageously crowded from deck to keelson; towards evening of the first day out the wind [...]

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(Sunday, April 21st) I LEFT home at 7 A. M., satchel in hand, crossed the ferry, and soon arrived at the armory. It was already filled with men of the regiment receiving their arms and equipments. We were furnished with a Springfield musket, bayonet, cartridge-box, cap-pouch, haversack, and blanket. Our new uniform were not ready, [...]

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Saturday night, April 20th. To-morrow we start for the war. Since Wednesday I have been receiving the utmost attention from everybody. It is so strange to see this wonderful enthusiasm and loyalty. It is impossible for a man in uniform to pay for anything he wants; wherever I go all want to do something for [...]

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