about all day cleaning up harnesses, horses, etc. Captain
came around and examined them.’
And so on day after day.
Naturally new conditions of life prevailed and as some one has said ‘Citizens had to be made into soldiers.’
The regret manifested by the people of Baltimore
when the battery was ordered south speaks well for the conduct and character of its men. Discipline of course was strictly maintained and we are not surprised to read in one diary, ‘Privates
—and—had to walk in barrels eight hours a day for three days’; or ‘—was threatened with a barrel for missing roll call this morning.’
But certainly this does not seem like a very heinous offence to the civilian.
Letters from home were eagerly welcomed.
In one diary opposite the date December 25 we read ‘Letter from home—good Christmas
present that’; and another writes ‘I don't get my letters so often as I wish I did.’
Boxes too were gladly received and their contents shared with less fortunate comrades.
A quotation from the Boston Journal
of February gives a picture of a social event in camp.
‘The first grand ball of the battery came off at Stewart's Hall, Baltimore
, on Monday evening and was a grand success.
The floor managers and musicians were all members of the battery.
The order of dances consisted of a grand promenade, four quadrilles, some fancy dances and wound up with a “walk around” by Mr.
C. We hope to have our next ball in Boston
among our friends.’
It was expected that the battery would now be attached to the Army of the Potomac but on the organization of Gen. B. F. Butler
's expedition, Captain Nims
and his men were assigned to the Department of the Gulf and the Mississippi
Accordingly on February 25, 1862 the battery left Baltimore
and went by steamer Columbia
to Fort Monroe
camping near Hampton
in view of the mouth of the James River