25th.—This A. M., at 6, weighed anchor, and dropped down to Hampton Roads, and disembarked at what was the little town of Hampton. If there be pleasure in the indulgence of sad reflections, how delightful it would be to have all my friends here, to enjoy them with me to-day. For a few hours, whilst [...]
Journal of Surgeon Alfred L Castleman.
March 24th.—We have had a very fine run for about thirty hours, having left Alexandria at 6 P.M., on the 23d, laid too over night near Fort Washington, and at 10 P. M., after having passed Mount Vernon, Ocoquan, Aquia, and many other points noted in this war, have come to anchor off this point.
March 23rd.—At one o'clock this morning, met Major M. in Washington, who informed me that the absent officers of our Brigade had been telegraphed to rejoin their regiments immediately, to embark at 8 this A. M. Left on first boat for Alexandria, and found the most of my Brigade embarked. I had just time, before [...]
March 22nd.—Ordered this morning to Washington to look up hospital stores and boxes, which are scattered "to the four winds." This is the first time since the organization of the Regiment that it has moved without my personally superintending the packing and forwarding of the hospital stores, and the first time they have got scattered. [...]
March 20th.—All quiet. No move.
March 19th.—The wolf has not yet come, and two of the five days' rations are consumed.
March 18th.—All quiet yet; no embarkation; no move
An observation from 2012: The march back to Alexandria was likely on the 15th. Please see discussion in Ron Baumgarten's comment below. - Mike Goad, 3-18-2012 Alexandria, 16th.—Received orders last night to march at 4 this A. M. Simultaneously with the receipt of the order came a northeast wind and heavy clouds. The clouding up [...]
Vienna, March 15th.—Did not lie down last night, but worked in separating and disposing of my sick. Most of them I have brought to this place to embark such as cannot march to Alexandria, by rail. The Brigade did not meet me here, as I expected, and I got to it at Flint Hill (where [...]
March 14th.—Received orders early last night to hold ourselves ready to move at a moment's notice. A few minutes after receiving the above notice, I was ordered to return immediately to Camp Griffin, to look after my sick there—to send such as could not be moved with the Brigade to General Hospital, and the rest [...]
13th.—A sad day is this. The effects of General _____'s vindictive meddling with the Medical Department are beginning to manifest themselves. When he took from me my well-trained hospital attendants and my experienced druggist, on the 5th inst, there were appointed in their places, men, worthless in the ranks, and without knowledge of the important [...]
12th-—On examining the fortifications at Manassas to-day, we find them mounting "wooden guns." Subordinate officers have no right to ask questions, but if I were not a subordinate I should be strongly tempted to ask if, in eight to twelve months of anxiously watching the enemy, it were not possible to find out the nature [...]
11th.—Suffered more from cold last night, than on any other night in the army. The wind was terrific, and I slept out without any way to guard against it. Rode back to Camp Griffin to-day, to see to the sick and the hospital stores left there. What next? No enemy here to fight or to [...]
March 10th, 1862.—Well, the Army of the Potomac is at last in motion. After having lain still with 150,000 men, comparatively idle, for nearly eight months, our National Capital besieged, its great thoroughfare blockaded by a foe of which we have habitually spoken with contempt, the Van Winkle-ish sleep is apparently broken, and we are [...]
March 10th. (AM)—Returned early last night; but before midnight received orders to have two days' rations cooked, and be ready to move at 4 o'clock this A.M. Before I got dressed I found myself not only Regimental Surgeon, but in consequence of the absence of the Brigade Surgeon, I had charge of his duties also. [...]
9th.—All is bustle and confusion. Though there is no order to move, we are all packing, and ambulances are running with our sick to general hospital. This looks like clearing the decks for action. We are notified that when we do march, we shall do so without baggage or tents. So long have we been [...]
7th.—Received orders to-day to draw rations for my hospital force for five days. This kind of an order is unusual. The roads are improving. Perhaps the dumb watch is nearly old enough to run.
6th.—This morning as my newly appointed nurses came in, I was utterly disheartened. There is not a man amongst them who can make a toast or broil a chicken; yet the sick must depend on them for all their cooking. Half of them are applicants for discharge on the ground of disability, yet they are [...]
5th.—The deed is done. The blood-hounds tracked out at least a part of their game. The following will tell its own tale : Headquarters ______ Reg't _____Vols," Camp Griffin, Virginia, March 5th, 1862. Regimental Order, No. 72. Privates _____, _____, _____, _____, _____, _____, _____ are detailed for extra duty in the Regimental Hospital. They [...]
4th.—I returned from Washington to-day, and was met by Colonel _____, who told me that the Brigade Commander had ordered him to have every hospital nurse who had taken any part in the purchase or presentation of the sword to me, dismissed from hospital and returned to the ranks. Well, now, who is to do [...]
March 3d.—In the way of petty tyranny, it seems another Richmond has entered the field. Last week I was presented by some of my friends with a very pretty sword, as a testimonial of their respect and affection for me. To-day I am informed by General _____ that this cannot be tolerated. All the persecution [...]
28th.—All the stirring news of yesterday did not uproot us. I begin to think that we are so deeply stuck in the mud that nothing can get us out, short of the sight of a rebel. That might galvanize us into a move. This morning we received an order countermanding the last one to be [...]
27th.—Three days ago we received orders again to be ready to move at a moment's warning. But here we are yet. I was in Washington to-day. Went intending to. spend two days and witness the "doings of Congress." But, on my arrival got intelligence that Gen. Banks had crossed the Potomac at Edward's Ferry; that [...]
26th.—A pleasant little interlude to-day, to the troubles and hard work through which I have had to pass: At about twelve o'clock, a soldier stepped to the door of my quarters, and said that some friends wished to see me at the door. I stepped out and found my whole corps of hospital attendants, and [...]
21st.—No grounds yet on which to base an opinion as to when or where we shall go. One day brings us assurances that our Division will in a few days go to Annapolis to join the mortar fleet bound South. The next we hear that we are to advance and take Manassas. To-day we hear [...]