On the 1st of October, the first division of the Sixth Corps made a ten mile expedition to Mount Crawford
Southwest of Harrisonburg
our company bivouacked on the banks of the Shenandoah
in that hamlet.
What a dreamy life one must lead, up here, in the time of peace.
Our boys answered their last evening roll-call the next night at Harrisonburg
The long supply train from Martinsburg
, with its cavalry and infantry escort, had arrived at this place during our absence, had unladen, and was ready on the 3d of October to retrace its long, toilsome, guerilla-infested route to Winchester
We were to pack our simple effects, shake hands with our comrades, who were thenceforth to be attached to Company M, Fifth United States Artillery, or other batteries of this corps,—those brave men who had elected to continue in the field,—and join the three mile procession down the valley.
Many a message and token we received to be transmitted to the loved ones at home, from their heroes whom we left here,—many an exchange of good wishes.
If we were too old to cry, we yet looked passing grave.
'T was a curious cavalcade that wound down the valley road that October afternoon: cavalry, army wagons, infantry, Confederate prisoners, refugees, contrabands, destined to receive accessions along the route.
The motion of the immense train was like the lazy crawl of a huge serpent just before he enters the comatose state, and is still able to devour and bolt another kid; it could halt easily, with slight reaction, to absorb a contraband's cart loaded with a hen-coop, kettles, and bedquilts, and shiny little elves packed among the truck, or a carriage bearing the wife and children of a refugee, or a knot of Dunkers or Mennonites, who were en route
The necessary work of destruction of barns and stacks, the country wide, had now commenced, and of an evening, if we happened to camp upon a rise which commanded an extensive view of the surrounding country, one could mark a line of blazing heaps on either hand and before him. Clean work was done.
‘If a crow should fly up the valley he must carry his rations with him.’
The camp at night, we fancy, must have resembled that of an emigrant train on the plains, in ante-Pacific Railroad times,—the wagons forming the barriers; the horses and drivers, the prisoners, contrabands, and refugees within the square; the guard properly