Wednesday, 25th—The weather is very hot today and our camp is becoming very dry and dusty. Twenty-seven men were detailed this morning to clean up our camp for general inspection.
Diary of Alexander G. Downing; Company E, Eleventh Iowa Infantry
Tuesday, 24th—Our camp was inspected today by the brigade commander. Colonel Hare arrived in camp today. The boys were very glad to see him come back to the regiment.
Monday, 23d—Nothing of importance. I went out to the branch a mile from camp to do my washing. Burtis Rumsey of our company has been sick for about two weeks and he begged me to take two of his shirts along and wash them for him, so I did. I used a small camp kettle [...]
Sunday, 22d—We had company inspection at 5 o'clock this evening. Our chaplain, John S. Whittlesey, died of diphtheria on May 11th at Durant, Iowa, and our regiment has no chaplain at present. We have no services on Sunday now, except that some of the companies occasionally have prayer meetings.
Saturday, 21st—We were relieved this morning by the Thirteenth Iowa. Some of the fruit in this locality is beginning to ripen and we will have some variety in our rations.
Friday, 20th—Our regiment went out on picket this evening. Water is very scarce out on the picket line and so we have our canteens filled in the evening before we go out.
Thursday, 19th—Drill is now all dispensed with on account of the hot weather. But the men are kept busy at fatigue and picket duty.
Wednesday, 18th—It is very hot, but the troops are in fine spirits. Some of the boys who were wounded at Shiloh, together with those who went home on furloughs on account of sickness, are now returning to their commands.
Tuesday, 17th—It is very hot. Nothing of importance.
Monday, 16th—It came my turn for the first time to go on fatigue. Our men are throwing up a line of breastworks and building some very strong forts. I worked all day at one of the big forts built for the siege guns. The fort is fifteen feet high, with a ditch in front fifteen [...]
Sunday, 15th—There were five hundred men from the Sixth Division detailed to go out and cut down the timber in front of the fortifications around the camp. The trees are cut so as to make them fall outward toward the approach of an enemy; the branches are then sharpened, making what is called an abatis. [...]
Saturday, 14th—We came in from picket this morning, having been relieved by the Thirteenth Iowa. We do not have much idle time here, for besides keeping our camp and clothing clean, we have picket duty and fatigue duty on the fortifications.
Friday, 13th—It came the Eleventh Iowa's turn to go on picket today. The teams still have to go to Pittsburg Landing, twenty-two miles from Corinth, for provisions and ammunition for the army.
Thursday, 12th—The farmers living about here are cutting their wheat; some have already begun stacking. Wheat here is good, with some especially fine fields, but some fields were entirely destroyed during the siege of Corinth. The corn is not as good on account of the cold, wet spring.
Wednesday, 11th—I was on guard today at General Todd's headquarters. The weather is very hot. The teams all went to the river for provisions. We are establishing a good camp at this place. We raised our wedge tents up from the ground and built bunks for our beds instead of lying down on the ground. [...]
Tuesday, 10th—It is dry and hot. I wrote a letter to father enclosing $50.00 of the $53.00 which I received from the Government on May 31st, and in greenbacks at that. I had $1.86 coming to me over and above the allowance the Government makes for clothing, which is $40.00 a year.
Monday, 9th—It is dry and hot. We are at work building fortifications here on a large scale, Corinth being an important point for either army to hold, as it is the key to Mississippi and Alabama. The bulk of the Army of the Tennessee is left here, while detachments of the original hundred thousand under [...]
Sunday, 8th—We received orders to clean up for inspection and a detail of men was put to work cleaning up the parade ground. We have a fine drill ground out in a large field. But the camp being out in the open, the sun beats down pretty hot upon the tents.
Saturday, 7th—I stood out on picket all day. We were relieved from picket this evening about dark. We were posted in a heavy timber about two miles out, on one of the main roads leading to town. Water is very scarce and poor at that. We have to go a mile from camp for our [...]
Friday, 6th—We struck our tents and at 7 a. m. started on our march. We marched through Corinth and went into camp again about a mile northwest of town, making camp number 9. The Eleventh Iowa went out on picket.
Thursday, 5th—We received marching orders with one day's rations. It is reported that General Buell will move with the Army of the Ohio into central Tennessee. It is clear and hot today.
Wednesday, 4th—Nothing of importance. Some of the troops are returning to Pittsburg Landing, a part of them to go down the Tennessee river and then up the Cumberland to reinforce the army in eastern Tennessee, and the others are to join the forces going down the Mississippi.
Tuesday, 3d—The weather is very hot. We have no picket duty now, but get plenty of exercise by regular drills, having company drill twice a day. We also get exercise in keeping the camp clean; have to sweep it every morning.
Monday, 2d—I was one of a hundred men detailed to clean up our camp ground. Pope's men who went in pursuit of the rebels are returning and going into camp in and around Corinth. I spent $1.00 for peaches and bread at the sutler's tent.
Sunday, 1st—It rained all day. I took "French leave" this morning and went into Corinth. The town appears to be deserted and it is a dilapidated looking place, as so much of it has been destroyed. I found it to be a fine place, however, on high ground, and when rebuilt it will be beautiful. [...]