September 15, 1863

Temple and I have been surveying the Island this morning, and getting statistics.  There are about 1450 men encamped here under command of Gen. Devens.  About 770 are conscripts and substitutes.   From Maine 193.  N.H. 174.  Vt. 200, and Mass. 150.  Negroes 54, mostly from Mass.  The rest about 680 are guard.  Of these Co. A, 81 men and Co. C, 70, are conscripts, Co. B, 150 men, are officers detailed from regiments to take charge of conscripts and Co. 7, 8 & 9, 132, 130, 116 men respectively are Heavy Artillery, half vols. Half old soldiers.  The health of all is good generally.  The negroes are encamped near the water at a distance from the rest of us.  The Sergeant in charge told us they are intelligent, apt and orderly.  All write their own letters.  I noticed several of them were pitching coppers, and others playing cards.

Those who attempted to escape Sunday night were from Vermont.  Two of them were drowned, and the other two have been taken.

Election news is glorious.  The Pine  Tree State still maintains her position, is true to the Union, and worthy of her motto ‘Dirigo.’  Copperheads at home are beaten and we can only hope that traitors elsewhere may be whipped as completely and gloriously.

Letter from George gladly received.  He failed to get a pass to the Island.  So failed I in my attempt to get him a pass from Gen. Devens.  No go for substitutes.  The Captain has disciplined several today.  Punishment has been inflicted by having offenders stand on a barrel in front of the Captain’s head-quarters.

Diary of Edwin Emery [Edwin Emery Diaries and Memoir]


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