Chelmsford Historical Society
Daniel P. Byam, December 1864

Thursday, December 1st, 1864

Very warm. One of the men belonging to our detachment, a Sergt. Brawn, has deserted and taken another man's wife with him. Expect he has gone to Matamoras, Mexico.

Friday, December 2nd, 1864

Have been out riding this afternoon. Went over a great part of the city. Orange trees hang full; they look very nice. Harry Waitt came back today. He has been up White River on steamer Jenny Rogers with Gen. Reylord.

Saturday, December 3rd, 1864

Getting ready for Inspection. Steamer Morning Star stuck on the bar. Lowell and myself took a walk up to the Amsterdam and Shoemaker. Quite rainy. On water detail today.

Sunday, December 4th, 1864

On guard today. Very pleasant. F____S_____arrived this evening. There was a big time at the Crescent Beer Garden. I went in a few moments, but was glad to get out; men and women were both drunk.

Monday, December 5th, 1864

Had a pass; went up town; went to the Sutler's, got some butter. Very pleasant and warm; received a letter from Home.

Tuesday, December 6th, 1864

Very warm. Flag drill this forenoon. Have a severe cold; got a pretty hard rap on the nose by Holmes, but it was an accident.

Wednesday, December 7th, 1864

Written Home. A sabre drill this forenoon. Waitt and Richmond raised ________; a gay time in old King Cotton Press.; broke the windows the roof tonight; they are arrested.

Thursday, December 8th, 1864

Went up town today, drew clothing. 280 Rebel prisoners left here for Ship ________________. There were lots of Seceshon [secession] the …

Friday, December 9th, 1864

___thing to do; rainy all day. Richmond and I went to town. Got a custard. Cold.

Saturday, December 10th, 1864

Quite cold today. Guiding Star leaves for New York. Holmes and I went up street; reached some potatoes.

Sunday, December 11th, 1864

Inspection this morning, by Lieut. Erwin. Very cold today. Went up to church on Carondelet St. This evening; heard a good Lecture by Dr. Newman; subject was The Young Man and His Country; the text was Psalm 137, 5 & 6 verses. A splendid sermon. I like him much.

Monday, December 12th, 1864

Had a pass; went up to the Camp of Instruction to see Chellis, but he had not come on from the North. Howe's European Circus arrived from Memphis. Received a letter from home answered it.

Thursday, December 13th, 1864

On guard today; quite warm to what it has been; have suffered with ulcerated teeth all day and night.

Friday, December 14th, 1864

Quite warm. My teeth have stopped aching, but they are very sore. Eaton came back from Mobile Bay. He has been on Sloop of War Richmond off Fort Morgan.

Saturday, December 15th, 1864

A very warm day. On ? an half an hour. Richmond took a walk up to Congo square where the Circus is stopping.

Friday, December 16th, 1864

Was detailed today to go up to Capt. Ludwig's Hdquarters to clean paint–not a very desirable job–but did not hurt myself, I reckon. Went to City Library; got a book; went to Sutler's for butter for Richmond. Very warm.

Saturday, December 17th, 1864

Cloudy and very warm. Getting ready for inspection. Steamer Evening Star arrives from New York.

Sunday, December 18th, 1864

Quite warm. Inspection this morning. The Star brought no mail.
W. G. Washington started the same day with mail.

Monday, December 19th, 1864

Another general inspection today of knapsacks and equipment. Richmond and Waitt and myself visited Howe's European Circus and Crockett's trained Lions; was delighted with it. Very warm and sultry. Steamer G. Washington is stuck on the Bar.

Tuesday, December 20th, 1864

On guard today. Rainy. Received 2 letters from Home and 1 from Lysander. It cleared off in the night, quite cold. Finney returned from his furlough.

Wednesday, December 21st, 1864

Very cool. Written home and to Lysander. Went up town; went to Sutler's and to the Library.

Thursday, December 22nd, 1864

Sabre drill this forenoon. Last night was very cold, but Waitt and I made out to keep warm.

Friday, December 23rd, 1864

Had a pass; went up town to Sytler's in the forenoon. Waitt and I rode up in the cars in the afternoon; drew a knapsack and lantern. Hear of Officers and men going to Memphis.

Saturday, December 24th, 1864

Preparing for inspection. Quite warm today. Evening Star and Geo. Washington leave for New York. 2 boys arrested for forging passes. They were arrested in the Circus.

Sunday, December 25th, 1864

Inspection this morning. Quite warm. Rather a disagreeable Christmas in the daytime with no money, but in the evening things went on pretty lively at the Crescent Garden.

Monday, December 26th, 1864

On guard today. Very warm and pleasant. 5 officers and 3 men each are going to Memphis.

Tuesday, December 27th, 1864

A beautiful day. Have been up town; drew some clothing; received a letter from Newell, 1 from Sumner, 1 one Father.

Wednesday, December 28th, 1864

Very pleasant. Sabre drill this afternoon.

Thursday, December 29th, 1864

Had a pass; was up town; wrote to Sumner.

Friday, December 30th, 1864

Sabre drill. Orderly Sergt. MacDonald has been relieved; he is going to Memphis.

Saturday, December 31st, 1864

A general Inspection by Lieut. Adams. A fine day.

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