George F. Parry's Civil War Diaries: April 1865

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George F. Parry's Civil War Diaries: April 1865

2015-04-27 10:46

Friends and acquaintances, we're happy you've returned for more transcriptions from the George F. Parry Civil War diaries (George F. Parry family volumes, Collection 3694). If you're just joining us, in 2012 HSP acquired the diaries of Bucks County resident and Civil War veterinary surgeon George F. Parry. In that collection are three diaries he kept during the Civil War dating from 1863 to 1865, when he served with the 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry. In celebration of Parry's work and the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, I'm providing monthly posts on Fondly, PA of transcripts of entries from his diaries.

To see other posts in the series, check out the links over on the right-hand side of this page.  Clicking on the diary images will take you to our Digital Library where you can examine the volumes page by page, along with other digitized items from the Parry collection.

*****

April 2, 1865, witnessed the Battle of Selma, Alabama, and Parry's regiment was there in full. over the course of three days (April 1-3), Parry described the situation in as much detail as his diary would allow. From Selma, Parry traveled East through Alabama's capital, Montgomery, and he eventually reached quieter times Macon, Georgia, but not without first noting the death of President Abraham Lincoln.


Notes about the transcriptions: I've kept the pattern of Parry's writings as close as formatting here will allow, including his line breaks and spacing. My own additional or clarifying notes will be in brackets [ ]. Any grammatical hiccups that aren’t noted as such are Parry's own.


*****

Saturday, April 1
Reveille at three O’clock[.] marched at
Day light[.] passed through Mountvali[,] a
new place but almost destroyed by
us all[.] public buildings[,] Rail Road depot
and Iron works destroyed. Foragers sent
out from this place and returned with abun-
dance. continued on at a rapid rate
through Randolph and on towards Selma[.]
passed over ground that the advance Regt.
fought over. road lined with dead and
dying. captured several Hun’d Pris[oners] and
several pieces of artillery. Marched to Day
forty five miles. Camped at 11 O’clock night.

*****

Sunday, April 2
Twenty miles north of Selma[.] began our march
at light[,] out Brig’d in advance. The Country the
finest I ever saw. Rich and highly improved[.]
The Rebels fled to their [illegible] a few miles
from the City. Our lines formed for battle on two
lines of the City at two O’clock. after a Steady fight for
some lines were ordered to Charge to rebels. It was
some [of] the Rebels broke [illegible] second line of
walks} – our men charged again and at dark had
possession of the City. Our loss heavy but [illegible]
this day. Selma on eof the richest
Citys[sic] in the South

*****

Monday, April 3
Called on Gen’l
Wilson to extract [illegible] from his Horse. many
men with pockets full of Gold & Silver[,] also
[line erased]
found a bag of money – have $20 gold pieces Silver
Lucy was with me[,] gave then half and after
a trip through the City came to Camp[.]
Selma the Richest and finest City if
ever was in the South --  All kinds
of Ammunition and Guns captured here.

*****

Thursday, April 6
Burned Lieut Seigmund with all
the Horses of Way in the Cemetery
in Selma.
                 Got a pass approved and
with Dans visited the Arsenal and
other places of note in the City.
very hard Thunder Storm and heavy
rain in the Eve’g. draining the River to
the [illegible] the great Arsenal covering twelve
acres of ground was burnt. Millions of
Dolls. worth of Ordinance Stores destroyed.

*****

Sunday, April 9
Alabama River
In Camp near the River all day.
Forage and any thing in great abund-
ance – firing up and Preparing for
a onward movement. Slept the large
portion of Day.

*****

Thursday April 13
In Camp till 12 Noon then moved on
to and Through Montgomery. A fine
City and well defended by Forts and
Earth Works.
                       Slaves coming in and a
joining us by hundreds, Pleased to death
at our arrival.
                      Montgomery a very fine
City and as the Rebels left without firing a
Gun – nothing as disturbed by our Army
City was much pleased with our Army.

*****

Monday, April 17
Marched at day light and at
Eigth O’clock across the river
Chattachooe [Chattahoochee] and in the rich City
of Columbus, Georgia. Moved out of
the city three miles and Halted
till six O’clock[,] then onward at a
rapid rate forty miles to Secure
the bridge over [illegible] River – so
the Rebs could not have it. All
public and private Stores open free
at All. Buy thing to be had.

*****

Sunday, April 23
With Wm. M. Irving(?) rode into Macon and
called on Col. McCormick. Watered our
Horses in Ocmulgee River. rode  around
and toward the City. not to be admired.
some very fine places but majority Poor
Rebels in abundance in the Sheds without
Arms. Our men also with Arms. Hotels full[.]
Got Shaved and Boots blacked for ten 12
Dolls. In Confed. money.   Many fires
taking place[,] set on fire by the [illegible]
Red[sic] news of Death of Abraham Lincoln by
hands of assassin.

*****

Friday, April 28
Reveille at three O’clock[.] moved out at
Seven[.] marched four miles from Camp
to a large Open field and had a close
and careful Inspection of the Comm.
and                     much plunder and valuables
found on men.
                          Loaned Major Green(?)
$3.00
                        Gave Bill Watson .50 cts. in
Silver.

*****

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