Civil War Diary

By James Davis, Lieutenant Colonel, Confederate

                                                                    Journal Entry #1                                                                                               

Dear Diary,

It has now been over a week since our valiant troops fired on Fort Sumter. I just received the news that we had taken the Fort after hours of hard fighting. Even this far away in Alabama, the news traveled quickly. A couple of my slaves told me while I was on leave and I took the first bus to report for duty in Montgomery. As Lieutenant Colonel, my presence was needed quickly. I am actually one of the oldest of the group at 22 years old. Well, need to go for duty. Bye!James Davis, Lieutenant Colonel


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Photo Prompt- Color

                                                        Journal Entry #2

D: Were running into a hard case here

B: There will be hornets flying everywhere, remember to take your Arkansas Toothpick and pepper box with you

V: Want some tar water?

D: I’m not getting wallpapered. I have to be fit as a fiddle

B: Me either, I want to have some horse sense when we are fighting

V:Yeah, just like the skunks tell us we have to do to be a top rail #1

D: That’s just Hunky Dorey.

B: I hope we will not have to see the sawbones after this

V: Yeah, but a healthy man is about as scarce as a hen’s tooth

D: Watch out the hornets are coming! We must Skedaddle!

B: Come on possums, lets go!


                                                      Journal Entry #3

Dear Father,

Our brigade is encamped in southern Kentucky. Every single day, the men are awoken at 7 to start their duties. Work and drudgery for them the whole day long. Hmm. Guess it does them well. Wouldn't want to be them, though. I just oversee everything, hand out large punishments, and sit around and eat and drink to my heart's content. Ah, the joys of peacetime......

Yesterday, I had to hand out a rather cruel punishment to a soldier who stole from other soldiers- and he got away with it for over 3 months! he was tied to a wooden post, flogged, then branded with an "B" for burglar, and left to even worse work the next day.

Well, so long!

James Davis

Photo Prompt- Morning

Sunrise on a meadow


Villano, Len. Morning in the Meadow. Digital image. Len Villano Photographer. Len Villano, n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2014. <>.

                                                                   Journal Entry #4

                                         Interview with Jeremiah Handley

When reading the story, we read pages 1,2,3 5,6,10, and 17

Interview with boy named Jeremiah:

Names: Rishi Narayanan, Christopher Varghese, Emma Sullivan, Thomas Huang

Interview question 1

Jeremiah, when you chose to stay and care for your mother, what caused you to make that choice?

JEREMIAH: "I thought the war would be a small conflict and and that it would end before I could get into any of the action. Besides, I valued my mother’s health. Who wouldn’t?

Interview question 2

INTERVIEWER: Jeremiah, looking back, what is something in your life that you are proud or happy about?

JEREMIAH:“I am proud of my decision of helping runaway slaves escape, and sticking up for what I believe in.”

Interview question 3

INTERVIEWER: Jeremiah, what is one thing about your life you wish had been different?

JEREMIAH: “I wish that my mother had not gotten sick. I also wish I could have stayed together with my brother and fought alongside him.”

Interview question 4

INTERVIEWER: How did you and the Union troops, some of whom are African-

American, react to slaves they meet? How do the hungry troops treat Southern farms? Will

you ever know what happened to his brother?

JEREMIAH: I would let the slaves I meet on the way get by. I would convince (or try to convince) my commanding officers to let them either go free or join the army. We would take food from the Southern farms, but give them fair price. I probably will never know what happened to my brother…

Photo Prompt- Fun

Soldiers playing cards during free time


Corbis. World War II: Rest and Relaxation. Digital image. World War II: Rest and Relaxation Photo Gallery., n.d. Web. 28 Apr. 2014. <>.


                                                      Journal Entry #5

Dear John McJohn,

How are you? Well, camp life here is just terrible. Here are some of the aspects.

My favorite meal is moldy cornbread. You make this by combining the flour with pieces of moldy corn and join them together, and bake it for a couple of minutes. To escape from the rigors of camp life, I play cards with fellow officers. This helps me relax and plan for future conflicts.

Until next time,

Lieutenant Colonel James Davis

                                                             Journal Entry #6

My marching song....(for the Confederacy)


Our nation is in a time of war, fighting for what’s right against the vicious misanthropes. We shall hold true to our cause with God on our side!

Chorus :Long live our country, as glorious as one can be! We shall fight for our freedom and to defend our country. God bless the Confederacy!

We shall drive those fiends from this paradise, ensuring that this nation shall not be wiped from this earth. We cannot lose with God on our side!

Chorus: Long live our country, as glorious as one can be! We shall fight for our freedom and to defend our country. God bless the Confederacy!

Now all must answer the call! Hearken to the conflict, defenders of freedom! Fame and glory is to be won. To arms! To arms!

Chorus: Long live our country, as glorious as one can be! We shall fight for our freedom and to defend our country. God bless the Confederacy!

Call thy sons! Thy friends! Thy brothers! Thy cousins! All must answer the call, all who shall fight for freedom and liberty, under the command of God!

Chorus: Long live our country, as glorious as one can be! We shall fight for our freedom and to defend our country. God bless the Confederacy!


The repeated use of "God is on our side" was quite common among songs like these

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                                                                       Journal Entry #8

Today was my first day back after the strenuous war. I came home to  see my house in shambles, my family nowhere to be found, all that I had ever held dear gone. It was the worst day of my life. To fight so hard and with so much courage- only to be crushed heartlessly by the monster of war. My life was going from bad to worse when I found out that my family had mostly died from starvation. T'was the worst day of my life.


Former Lieutenant Colonel James Davis, Confederate

Journal Entry #7

Today, I had to oversee the treatment of soldiers from the recent battle. It was as gruesome a sight that anyone shall ever witness.

There were about 250 people dead. Blood, mangled bodies, amputated limbs, filth, dirty water- all of these are in abundance throughout the camp.

The doctors were helpless against the oncoming injuries, but even worse, the diseases. We have no idea how to combat these diseases. Men were sent out due to the doctors' incompetence and the pure number of people coming in. The wounds got infected, filled with pus, and the soldiers died long horrific deaths from blood poisoning. I was fortunate to not be dead myself.

This is war. The art of suffering.

Photo Prompt- Color

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Vermilya, Daniel. Rainbow over Gettysburg Field. Digital image. Our Country's Fiery Ordeal. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2014. <>.

Royle, Trevor. Charge of the Light Brigade. Digital image. The Charge of the Light Brigade, 1854. Eyewitness to History, n.d. Web. 29 Apr. 2014. <>.

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