Diary of Orrin Brown—Jan 17, 1865

Map January 1865Diary of Orrin Brown, Savannah, Georgia

Tuesday–Jan- 17th

We had a heavy frost this morning. The sun has warmed the air a little but there is a cool west wind blowing, all the clothing I drew last night was one pr. Drawers. The Sargt. has gone to draw rations it is the report that we are to go out with 10 days rations. We drew hardtack, Saltpork, Fresh Beef, Salt, Coffe, Rice and soap and we are to draw soft bread yet. I have been waiting all day thinking I would get a letter but it does not come yet. We have had a nice warm day but it is getting cool again this evening. I read 6 Chapt. in Testament today.

At the beginning of 1865, the US Army counted almost 1,000,000 men, and would before the war’s end.  The Confederate Army counted less than half that.  Virginia remained clutched in winter’s cold with supplies slipping, although Cavalry commander Brig. Gen Thomas Rosser led a successful raid on Beverly in the Alleghanies mid-month.  In North Carolina, Sherman’s West Point classmate Confederate Gen. Braxton Bragg had taken command of Rebel forces in the Wilmington area, but (spoiler alert) was unable to save Ft. Fisher in North Carolina.  Gen. Grant detached Gen. John Schofield‘s XXIII Corp from Tennessee and sent them overland to Washington, DC, in preparation for a campaign up the Cape Fear.  Tennessee remained fairly quiet after Hood’s defeat at Nashville.  While Forrest and his cavalry remained near Tupelo, remnants of the Rebel army were sent East toward the Carolinas, widely believed the next stop on Sherman’s march.

Thank you for following along with Pvt. Orrin Brown as he marched with Sherman through Georgia, and prepares to march again.



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