Civil War Battle Journal | Teen Ink

Civil War Battle Journal

April 11, 2013
By cayaTW PLATINUM, Yuma, Arizona
cayaTW PLATINUM, Yuma, Arizona
29 articles 0 photos 83 comments

Favorite Quote:
Those who forget history will often repeat it

April 14, 1861 (Fort Sumter)

Two days ago we received orders from General Beauregard to open fire on the fort. We fired non-stop for two days. Yesterday we got the word that the other general and his men surrendered. He had initially refused, but we showed him and the entire Union what we're made of. Perhaps now they'll begin to take us seriously. While we luckily had no casualties, I hear the Union lost a few men today when a cannon exploded prematurely during a salute as they evacuated.. Lincoln should feel embarrassed and scared that we pulled this off. Anyway, we celebrate our first victory. All the guys, including myself realize it's just the beginning. We are ready for what the Union has to bring. I know we will win because we aren't just fighting because we hate the Union. We are fighting for our way of life, and no one can take that away from us.

July 21, 1861 (Manassas 1)

I'm not sure which word to use— victory or defeat. We lost General Bee and Colonel Bartow along with many of our men. However, we succeeded in making the Yankees retreat. We couldn't have done it without Stonewall. He showed great bravery and leadership. We waited for his orders to begin firing as the Yankee soldiers advanced. He stood resolute and finally gave the order. We obeyed, and we won. One thing is for sure. The reality of this war has sunk in. I'm not the only one who's seeing death for the first time. We're all shaken. There's no feeling compared to the one you get when you see the ground littered with the corpses of men you had just talked to and laughed with the day before. I can't escape the harsh reality that it could have been me or could be me when the next battle comes. Once again we have victory close to their capital, and once again Lincoln should be convinced of our determination.

April 17, 1862 (Pittsburg Landing)

Unfortunately, we had to withdraw to Corinth. Our sneak attack on the Union army as they stayed in the church went right, but they launched a mean counterattack today at the Hornet's nest. We tasted defeat for the first time and it tastes bitter. We all feel a change coming. We know in order to win this war we are going to have to leave old strategies behind and come up with knew ones. We weren't able to break the north's battle line. It makes me wonder how many battles we have ahead of us and how many we will lose. It makes me wonder whether we will win the big battle that will determine the future of our nation.

September 19, 1862 (Sharpsburg)

I wasn't at he cornfield, but a buddy of mine says the Yankees were marching in endless rows, shoulder to shoulder. He says it was like shooting fish in a barrel. He says there were piles of blue jackets. He says it was sad that they just kept on marching. Another soldier, I don't know his name, was talking about how the fighting at the sunken road was the bloodiest he had ever experienced. He says they started off fine obviously having the advantage, but the Yankees finally got the sense to go around and surround them from both sides. I was at the bridge when they advanced. At first it was easy, but then they kept coming faster and faster, faster than we could reload. That's when we had to retreat. The Union may have 'won', but I feel they lost more men.

May 7, 1863 (Chancellorsville)

It's good to say we won another battle after our defeat last year at Sharpsburg. Just yesterday the Yankees retreated. On the third day of fighting I helped carry Stonewall out of the field. His arm was badly wounded. I saw it all happen. He was fired at by one of us in a gray uniform. It was an accident. Word has it that they had to amputate his arm. To be honest, it felt like Hooker's counterattack would be too strong to fight off, but thanks to commander Stuart, we were able to fight them off.

July 4, 1863 (Gettysburg)

In Gettysburg, we were devastatingly beaten by the Union army. They had more men, and they had more weapons. No matter how many men we put down more blue jackets arrived. On the third day we gave one last feeble attempt to damage the north under General Lee. We were harshly driven back. Our attempt was unsuccessful. The number of men wounded sky rocketed. Today we retreated to Williamsport. This is the most men I've ever seen wounded since the war began. There's rows and rows of wounded colleagues. It's sad to think that most likely more than half of them will not overcome their injuries. I don't know how we are going to recover from this loss.

July 5, !863 (Vicksburg)

Our worst fear has been realized. The Union has taken control of the Mississippi. That means they have managed to cut our army in half and they and they'll cut off our supplies. The Union was sly and distracted the army by taking out railroads. Our troops were trapped in the fort. Their supplies were cut off and they were being fired at with cannons. They surrendered and that's how the Union gained control of the Mississippi. Before, I had hope we would recover. Now I'm not sure. Next thing you know they'll try to take out our capital.

April 10, 1965 (Appomattox Court House)

Shocked and numb I was when General Lee surrendered yesterday. I could not believe it. I don't want to believe it. We marched to the courthouse ready to attack the north. The Yankees managed to surround us from all three sides. General Lee surrendered. The war is over, and I'm not sure what will happen. I cannot believe we failed. I cannot believe the Union will get what it wants. I refuse to believe it will abolish our way of life and all we fought for. At least I can go home to my family now. I wonder if word has reached them yet. It makes me sick that some of my closest friends and some of my closest family died and now the Union celebrates as we stand in dismay.

The author's comments:
this was a fun history assignment

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