Journal of John B. Patrick, April 19, 1863-August 12, 1863

Title

Journal of John B. Patrick, April 19, 1863-August 12, 1863

Description

John B. Patrick was a member of The Citadel's Class of 1855. He served as a professor of mathematics at the Arsenal Academy in Columbia from 1859-1865 and as secretary for the Board of Visitors from 1862-1865. During the Civil War, he was lieutenant in charge of the Battalion of State Cadets. His journals span from 1861-1865 and detail his personal life and health, religion, his work at the Arsenal Academy, cadet discipline, and Civil War activities.

Source

A1993.4

Publisher

The Citadel Archives & Museum

Date

Rights

Materials in The Citadel Archives & Museum Digital Collections are intended for educational and research use. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright. For more information contact The Citadel Archives & Museum, The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina, 29409.

Relation

John B. Patrick Civil War Journals

Format

application/pdf

Language

English

Type

Text

Identifier

https://citadeldigitalarchives.omeka.net/items/show/789

Date Valid

Text

[Page 1]
Sunday, April 19.

Spent the day as I usually spend my Sundays.

Monday, April 20.

Began to prepare my papers for the “Official Register” of the Academy this evening.

Tuesday, April 21.

My engagements to day were as usual.

Wednesday, April, 21.

After the duties of the day I went to prayer meeting this evening. Only a few were out.

Thursday April, 22.

I am weary and feel the need of rest.

Friday, April 23.

Had some of the cadets and a few girls to tea this evening. They appeared to enjoy themselves. It gave

[Page 2]
me pleasure to see them enjoying their innocent amusements.

Saturday, April 25.

Bro. George arrived this evening from home, and brought with him new evidences of the kindness of my parents. From the account he gives me of things at home I am relieved of much of the anxiety that I had.

Sunday, April, 26

Rev. G. B. Taylor of Va. preached for us this evening, after which he spoke in reference to colportage in the army and took up a collection in its behalf.

Monday, April 27.

Had Bro’s P. - T. & T. all three ministers to tea with us this evening. - The time passed off very pleasantly & profitably to me.

[Page 3]
Tuesday, April, 28.

Attended the Teacher’s Convention today and to my surprise was requested to act as Secretary in the preliminary organization. I at first declined to serve, but as no one else seemed disposed to accept the position, I concluded to act until the meeting should be permanently organized. It happened that there was more preliminary business than I supposed, and hence I have been very much hurried to day to discharge the duties required of me there and in the Academy. - The meeting was much larger than I expected it would be, and from the interest manifested in the cause of education, I hope good will result from it. - Dr. R. W. Gibbs of this city was called to the chair pro. tem.

[Page 4]
Wednesday, April 29.

The Teacher’s Convention took a good deal of my time again to day. The committee on permanent organization nominated me for Treasurer, a position I dislike to hold in any organization body. I used every effort I could, without absolutely refusing to serve, but to no avail. I was elected any how and will now try to serve to the best of my ability.

Thursday, April, 30.

The teacher’s association adjourned to day. A permanent association was organized, a number of important resolutions were adopted and suggestions were made, that can but result in good. Among other things, I think the movement is likely calculated to cover the

[Page 5]
Profession of teaching to be more respected than it has heretofore been. - The next meeting of the Association is to be held in Atlanta Ga. on the 1st Wednesday in Sept. next.

Friday May 1.

Have discharged my usual duties to day.

Saturday, May, 2.

This has been a seasonable day.

Sunday, May, 3.

Have been kept at home all day by indisposition. It has been a great privation to me not to be able to take my place in the sanctuary. I am feeling better this evening, though I am not well yet.

Monday, May, 4.

I am not well to day, though I have performed my duties.

[Page 6]
Tuesday, May, 5.

I am still unwell though up.

Wednesday, May, 6.

The weather is very cool for the season, hence one reason that I feel so unwell.

Thursday, May, 7.

We have gained another victory in Va, though I fear it is dearly bought. Gen. Jackson (Stonewall) is among the wounded.

Friday May, 8.

Apart from my usual duties, I have been engaged closely, in preparing matter for our Annual Official Register.

Saturday, May 9

I have not finished preparing the Register for print yet. I find it tedious. I hope, however, to do the Academy a service, by the extra labor I am bestowing on it.

[Page 7]
Sunday, May, 10.

Heard two very good sermons to day, preached by Presbyterian ministers, who are here to attend the General Assembly now in session.

Monday, May, 11.

Have been closely engaged preparing matter for the Official Register, what time I could command from the discharge of my regular duties.

Tuesday, May, 12.

Have been engaged to day as yesterday.

Wednesday, May, 13

After a busy day, I attended prayer meeting this evening. Heard Bro. Braker speak of the Southern Baptist convention from which he has just returned. He was pleased with his visit, thought much good would result from the meeting.

[Page 8]
Thursday, May 14.

I neglected to state on Monday that Genl (Stonewall) Jackson died on Sunday afternoon at 3 ¼ o’clock. Humanly speaking, his place will hardly if ever be filled; but it should be remembered that the same God who gave us such a General is able to give us another. We should not murmur therefore but trust in Him who is able to do and to will all things according to His good pleasure.

Friday, May. 15

Our recitations for this session closed with to day.

Saturday, May, 16

Nothing unusual has transpired to day. This however need not be an excuse for not writing. I seldom have

[Page 9]
anything unusual to record, and hence were I to write only when I have something of unusual interest, I should seldom write at all.

Sunday, May, 17

Heard two sermons to day, one from Bro. S -, of Raleigh N. C., the other from Dr. J. - of Richmond Va. Both were good sermons of their kind, but I thought that by the former would have been more appropriate on a day of Fasting and prayer. That by Dr. J. - was an excellent sermon. His subject was “the equity of the future punishment of the wicked.”

Monday May 18.

One examination began to day. Thus far the class is doing about as well as preceding classes have done. The corps paraded through the street

[Page 10]
this afternoon under command of Capt Thomas, and as usual attracted attention.

A friend who was in the battle of Sharpsburg called to see me this evening, and related the following incident which he witnessed on that memorable day. A Lt of the 1st Reg. S. C. V. commanding a company, lost all his men but one, either killed, wounded or missing. Standing behind this one he waved his sword over his head exclaiming “go it Thomson”! “go it Thomson”!, and while in this attitude he fell severely wounded. His man Thomson remained on the field alone until he too fell from the effects of a severe wound. For his bearing on that occasion, young Thomson has been appointed, by the Governor of this state, a state cadet in this The S. C. Military Academy.

[Page 11]
Tuesday May, 19.

The examination so far as my department is concerned was concluded to day. Altogether the class did about as well as classes generally do.

Wednesday, May 20.

This has been a day of great anxiety to me. My wife and child are both sick, the latter I feared, seriously so. At present I am happy to say both seem better, for which I hope I am thankful to the Ruler of us all.

Thursday, May, 21.

I am happy and, I hope, thankful that the health of my family is better this evening.

The Academic Board met to day to decide what Cadets had failed to pass the examination, and after due consultation delib-

[Page 12]
eration it was decided to discharge six for deficiency. - This is always a painful duty to me, yet it has to be done in order to promote the general good.

Friday May, 22

I am sorry to bear unfavorable news from the west this evening. But our trust is not in man, and hence I do not despair.

Saturday, May 23.

Hope to rest quietly to-night and be prepared to enjoy the exercises appropriate to Sunday.

Sunday, May, 24.

In consequence of sickness in my family I did not attend church this morning. This evening I went out and enjoyed the music and perhaps I ought to have enjoyed the sermon likewise. I did

[Page 13]
not however. It was in my judgement an ordinary effort.

Monday, May, 25.

The weather is still warm and dry. Hope we will have rain soon.

Tuesday, May, 26.

All is quiet to day. No news from the seat of war. Hope all is going on well for us. There is still some sickness in my family & hence I cannot feel as cheerful as I otherwise would.

Wednesday, May 27.

I wrote home yesterday saying that I expected to go down to see them on Friday, but I am afraid I shall be disappointed. The sickness of which I spoke yesterday is likely to obtain me here. I endeavor to console myself with the reflection, that it

[Page 14]
is a Providential dispensation and therefore doubtless intended for good.

Thursday, May 28.

Father-in-law is here and will return in the morning. He came on business, and moreover the health of his family will not permit him to prolong his stay with us. My family will return with him. Though in feeble health it is thought Lou can bear the fatigue, and that a change will help her.

I have been planting out cabbages to day as we had some rain and are likely to have more.

Friday, May 29.

My family left this morning for Greenville - hope they went safe. I have made arrangements to go home

[Page 15]
on a short furlough - and will leave in the morning providence permitting. - We were blessed with a good rain to day and it is raining still. It was much needed will do crops a great deal of good.

Saturday, May 30.

I am now at home, and am thankful to find that the health of my parents is as good as it is. They are both getting old and cannot undergo the exposure they once could. Their furrowed cheeks remind me that years have passed away since I bade them goodbye to enter upon the duties of life on my own responsibility, and that ere long it may be said of me “he is a man of middle age.” How short life is!

[Page 16]
I saw a number of soldiers, on their way to Vicksburg. One poor fellow in response to a friend who asked him where he was going said “I don’t know. I’m a gwine to hunt my destiny.” I could but feel that there was truth in his answer though it was singularly expressed.

Sunday, May. 31.

There is no preaching any where near to day and I remain at home until the afternoon. Father proposes that we ride over to see Old Bro. W. S - a deacon of the Baptist Church who is very feeble health. He is glad to see us. Poor old man! does not look as though he would live long.

Monday, June 1.

Went over to a neighbor’s house to

[Page 17]
day to look at some cows that I heard were for sale but did not purchase. The remainder of the day I stay at home with my parents.

Tuesday, June 2.

Returned home to day. Fell in company with and old friend of my father, Bro. Kennedy, and had him to come and spend the night with me. He seems to enjoy himself well and I find his company very agreeable.

Wednesday June 3.

Saw my friend and schoolmate J. F. L - to day, on his way to rejoin the army from which he has been absent in consequence of sickness. Had a short but interesting interview with him.

[Page 18]
Thursday, June 4.

Called to see our pastor this evening and had an agreeable interview with him.

Friday, June 5.

A telegram received here to day, states that official reports put down the enemy’s loss at and near Vicksburg at 50.000. Add to this our loss whatever it may be, and what a fearful number we have of killed and mangled human beings! And all growing out of the depravity of the human heart. When will wars cease and brotherly love prevail!

Saturday, June, 6.

Nothing of interest to day so far as I know, from the seat of war. I have been engaged part of the day working in my garden.

[Page 19]
Sunday, June, 7.

Went to S- school and church this morning, and to church again to-night as usual. This morning out pastor’s sermon was addressed particularly to mothers, and it was urged upon them to send their children to S- school, it being the nursery of the church, and an auxiliary to parental training. I hope it may have the effect to stir them up and cause them to take a deeper interest in the S. school. Certain it is, that many do not appreciate its advantages as they ought.

Monday, June 8.

I sold my cow to day for two hundred dollars, a large price compared with what they sold for in ordinary times, but cheap according

[Page 20]
to what they are selling for now. I have another, otherwise I should not have parted with her. - To day I have been engaged part of the time in directing copies of the Official Register to different persons, part in transacting business for a friend and part in working in my garden. And now before retiring I must read a while.

Tuesday, June, 9.

I am somewhat depressed in spirits this evening, at not hearing from my family, hope, however, that they are well.

Wednesday, June 10.

Went to prayer-meeting this evening, and was glad to see a large attendance. It always argues well, to see people at the house of prayer.

[Page 21]
Thursday, June. 11.

Went round to see the process of making medicines at the laboratory under the management of Dr. Chisolm, and though I am unable from the meager statements made to me, to give any accurate description of what I saw, I feel amply repaid for my visit. Should the war continue much longer, our resources will be developed in other respects as well as in this of making medicine.

Friday, June 12.

I am feeling some anxiety about my family this evening.

Saturday, June 13.

Attended a meeting of the citizens in the city-hall to day, for the purpose of organizing companies

[Page 22]
for home defense, or rather for protection against the raids which are now becoming so common. I have been appointed a member of one of the committees to canvass the city for volunteers. -

This evening, the remains of Lt. Col Frank Hampton arrived and were interred by in the Episcopal burying ground. A large procession followed, while a Military escort preceded the body from the city hall to the graveyard. The most impressive feature about the procession to my mind was that of his horse, a fine animal, following the hearse (led by a servant) with bridle and saddle on, with crape attached about the head. What a horrible thing is war!

[Page 23]
Sunday June 14.

Was made to feel somewhat depressed this morning at S- school, at having faults of others visited upon me. But so it is those who neglect their duties always endeavor to excuse themselves by transferring the blame to others. This evening, a letter that I should have received yesterday, tells me that my little daughter is quite sick - my wife is much alarmed and desires that I should come forthwith. I must go to-morrow.

Monday June 15.

Crops look well along the R. Road though they are small. There seems to have been rather too much rain in some parts for corn. It is hoped however that an abundance will be made.

[Page 24]
I was gratified to meet Rev. Drs. Broadus & Williams on the train. With the former of these I had a long conversation on S. schools and derived from him many useful hints in regard to the manner of conducting one successfully.

I am pleased to find our babe is better. She is however, looking quite feeble.

Tuesday, June 16.

Attended prayer meeting this afternoon. The church here has determined to hold two prayer-meetings every week - one on Tuesday evening, the other on Thursday afternoon. Hope it may be attended with good.

Wednesday, June 17.

Visited the State Foundry to day and was much pleased with what I saw. The plan is extensive, but

[Page 25]
from some cause there are not enough hands to carry it all out to its fullest extent. Col. Morse showed me his new percussion lock and his Carbine both of which, to my judgement appear to be decided improvements on any thing of the kind that has preceded them.

Thursday June 18.

Remained about home all day. Spent most of the time reading.

Friday June 19.

To day as yesterday has been spent in reading.

Saturday, June 20.

Finished “The Prince of the House of David” to day. The book is interesting enough to read, but I am doubtful whether it is cal-

[Page 26]
culated to accomplish the good designed by its author. “The sincere milk of the word” is too much diluted with water.

Sunday June, 21.

It is refreshing to visit such a S. school as that at the Baptist Church in this place. Two hundred & ninety six scholars, teachers & officers all engaged in leaving and teaching the truths that appertain to the welfare of the soul.

Heard a good sermon this morning by the pastor Rev. W. D. T. from the text “ He that believeth not shall be damned.” - This evening Rev. Dr. J. A. Broadus delivered an excellent discourse from the text “I am the way.”

Monday, June, 22.

Saw a detachment of cavalry start

[Page 27]
for Va. to day. The men were all in fine spirits. It is calculated to excite serious thoughts to see men start to the army, and it is hardly less so to see horses led away to serve in the army for they know not what. Indeed, I sometimes feel more for the horse than for the rider.

Tuesday, June 23.

Dined with my old friend Prof. C. J. T. had an agreeable time. Was called on by Rev. W. D. T. who asked me to do a slight favor for him in Columbia, which I of course agreed to do. - It is said that J. P. B. - D. D. has decided to accept a nomination for Congress. This I deem an impolitic step for a minister. Yet I think there is little danger in this case that the Dr. will have his ministerial influence injured, and hope that he will be elected, as he has

[Page 28]
thought proper to accept the nomination.

Wednesday, June, 24.

Left Greenville this morning & am now at home in Columbia. I felt reluctant to leave my family then, they not being in good health, yet I felt it my duty to come home to attend to matters that needed my attention. - Corn has improved greatly along the line of the R. Road during the last ten days.

Thursday, June 25.

Spent the greater part of the day in attending to business. - Went to the studio of Mr. S. - to see the portrait of Col. Tew, who was killed at the battle of Sharpsburg. I regard it a good picture though the expression of the eye is not exactly that of the man as he was. It is more stern.

[Page 29]
Friday, June 26.

Have attended to some business to day for a friend and some for myself. - I have had to give some attention too to the sick. My brother, who is with me, was taken sick to day and I thought proper to call in the Dr. to see him.

Saturday, June 27.

I was gratified to day to hear a gentleman who is a member of our congregation, but not of the church, say that he had taken steps to rent a pew to a gentleman who is friendly to our church. It argues an interest on his part, that is not usually manifested by unconverted men. - Brother is better this evening.

[Page 30]
Sunday, June 28.

The exercises of the S. school were better attended this morning than for some time past. Fifty scholars were present and from the interest manifested, I feel encouraged to hope that the day of prosperity, so long desired, is about dawning upon us. At a meeting of the S. school society this afternoon, I was re-elected Supt, a position which I have held four years & nearly a half. I pray God for his blessing on my labors there. Man can accomplish no good of himself.

Monday, June 29.

To day I forwarded forty-one 50/100 dollars, contributed yesterday by the S. school to Rev. Mr. Rice for the purpose of sending Bibles & testaments to soldiers.

I have concluded to take private pupils

[Page 31]
again this year. Prices are so high that justice to my family requires that I should do something to support them comfortably. My salary has not been raised to compete with the times, but I hope it will be ere long, to a small extent at least.

Tuesday, June, 30.

Spent a great part of the day in going round to collect pew rent, and am now feeling weary. I wish that pew-holders would remember their indebtedness and go to the treasurer and pay up without taking so much of my time to remind them of their duty.

My family came home to day. - health not good but better than it was a few days ago. - Hope they will continue to improve.

[Page 32]
Wednesday, July 1.

We resumed Academic duties to day. Recitations will be heard to-morrow & thence on regularly.

At prayer meeting, this evening, two young ladies came forward as candidates for the sacred rite of baptism, and were received. Hope it is but the beginning of a gracious out-pouring in our midst.

Thursday, July, 2.

Bro. P - took tea and spent the evening with us.

Friday, July 3rd.

A battle is supposed to have begun at Tulla Homa, Tenn. the result of which I await with anxiety. Oh what would I give for a speedy and honorable peace!

Saturday, July, 4.

I never spent a more quiet fourth

[Page 33]
of July, and yet there was some demonstration much calculated to remind one that it was the anniversary of a nation’s birth.

Sunday, July, 5.

Was cheered by the attendance at the S. school this morning.

Monday, July, 6.

I have felt depressed to day, more than usual. The war and its consequences have weighed heavily on my mind. It seems that we ought to become more humbled, more economical, and for what we have more thankful, yet I do not see that this so to any great extent upon people generally.

Tuesday, July, 7.

It is rumored that Vicksburg has fallen, but I am not disposed to credit the rumor, though I should not be surprised to know that it is true. It is also stated that Gen Lee

[Page 34]
has taken 40,000 prisoners, in Penn. but this I am persuaded is an overestimate. It will not do to believe all that we bear or read.

Wednesday, July, 8.

The fall of Vicksburg has been announced. The capitulation took place on the 4th of July - the men were paroled & that is about all that I have heard. A severe blow this - the severest that we have received since the war began. But we must expect reverses. This success will encourage the enemy, to even greater exertions, and will, humanly speaking, prolong the war.

I went to the church this evening to attend prayer meeting, but no one else was there, because of the rain I suppose. Hoping that the fall of Vicksburg will not be so

[Page 35]
disastrous as some suppose, I now retire feeling weary and care worn.

Thursday, July, 9.

The news from the army in Maryland is not so favorable this evening, though it is hoped that the official reports will be more cheering.

One [of] my servants has a wedding this evening. The company seem to enjoy themselves finely. I wish I could feel thus cheerful.

Friday, July 10.

We have had some excitement to day. Charleston is again threatened if not already attacked. Our cadets left this evening to participate in the struggle. I go in the morning, and in doing so have to leave my family unwell. Our babe is still sick & my wife is not

[Page 36]
well. But there is One that does all things well, and in Him is my trust. I commit my family and myself to Him.

July 11, 1863.

I take leave of my family and start for Charleston. At the depot, a detachment of Volunteers are placed under my charge. I learn that a severe battle was fought yesterday - the name of one of my old school mates is among the killed - the enemy have gained a footing on Morris Island - various rumors are current - all unfavorable to us. Have not gone far before I find necessary to speak to those under my command in reference to their conduct - the use of profane & obscene language. I am heard and my orders respected.

Arrive safe & in due time in Charleston - find the Battalion of State Cadets, yet

[Page 37]
at the Citadel. There is apparently little excitement in the city so far as I can see. I have seen a number who manifest no more excitement than if any enemy was not in a thousand miles of the city. I should prefer to see a little more interest manifested for the safety of the city.

Orders are sent to detail from the Corps of Cadets, a guard for government stores at different points in the city. I write a letter home, and retire for the night.

Sunday, July, 12.

I am on duty as officer of the day, cannot attend divine service, because of the nature of my duties. Hear cannonading in the direction of Morris Island. Alas for the iniquity of our race! that forces us to forgo the pleasures & the duty of attending church in order to perform military duty.

[Page 38]
Monday, July, 13.

Cannonading still goes on, not rapidly, however. How long shall I have to remain down here? From present appearances it may be that I shall be here for weeks. How am I to live? I do not like to take my meals with -, it may be that it will be regarded as an imposition in these times, though I think he is under some obligation to me for past favors. I will board there to day, tomorrow I will get my meals elsewhere. I will not impose on any one.

Tuesday, July, 14.

To day Lt Sams & myself determined to mess together at our own expense. I thanked - for his hospitality after breakfast and told him of my determination. I am feeling more contented now, though it does seem hard that a man should serve his country at this own expense.

[Written on the side of page 38]
*It turned out contrary to our expectations that we were paid for our services.

[Page 39]
Wednesday, July, 15.

Firing again to day. I find the life I am leading now rather calculated to produce ennui than otherwise. Hope it will not be so long.

Thursday, July, 16.

I awoke this morning to hear the sound of rapid and heavy cannonading, such as I never heard before. It lasted about two hours, after which all was comparatively quiet. Various surmises were made as to the immediate cause, and a number of rumors were soon current concerning it. The truth is, I believe, that the enemy were attacked in their position on James Island, by our troops under Gen. Hagood, and driven off of the island. The “shelling” was from their gun-boats near that point, endeavoring to drive back our men. Our loss was small - that of the enemy, greater.

[Page 40]
Friday, July, 17.

All is comparatively quiet to day. A slow cannonade is going on, however, in the direction of Morris Island.

Saturday, July, 18.

A heavy & rapid fire is going on, on Morris Island. Battery Wagner is the chief object of attack. The enemy are trying both by land and sea to reduce it. It replies deliberately. Fort Sumter replies too, at intervals, to the fire of the enemy. - It is now 10 ½ o’clock, the days have ceased to run the streets, other noise is hushed, and I hear the report of small arms in the direction of the island. There appears to be no order about it. Report says there have been three assaults made on Battery Wagner since dark and that the enemy have been driven back every time. The firing I hear

[Page 41]
is doubtless caused by another assault. Awful thought! Men in the darkness of night engaged in deadly conflict. It is too dark to distinguish friend from foe at the distance of five paces. When will such scenes cease? Oh God of Mercy! be pleased to interpose and stop this war. A little while longer all is quiet. I am in doubt as to which side is victorious. A half hour, more or less, passes, and cannonading again commences. This assures me that we have repulsed the enemy, otherwise the fire would not be resumed. I visit my guard after midnight, and about two o’clock I retire, having committed my all & my country to Him who doeth all things well.

Sunday, July 19.

No firing to day. I suppose the dead of yester-

[Page 42]
day’s fight are being buried. - Heard Rev. Dr. Smyth preach to day. He was very earnest in returning thanks for our victory.

Monday, July, 20.

Comparatively quiet to day.

Tuesday, July 21.

Very little firing to day - went to Mount Pleasant on a visit to the place; also to Capt. T. - Met an old schoolmate - Col. I. D. R. - now Col. of the 61st N. C. Regt. He looks just as he did a cadet a this place ten years ago.

Wednesday, July, 22.

All comparatively quiet again to day. Capt T’s Battalion is disbanded & sent home on the ground, I understand, that there is no use for the men here at present.

Thursday, July, 23.

The bombardment continues firing slow.

Friday, July, 24.

Slow firing still continues. I am on duty to-

[Page 43]
day. Nothing unusual occurs.

Saturday, July 25.

It is rumored that Fort Sumter has been breached but I do not credit it.

Sunday, July, 26.

Heard Rev. Dr. Boyce preach at 2nd Baptist Church. His discourse was calculated to console in times like these. Heavy guns have disturbed the stillness of the day. Alas! that it should be so.

Monday, July, 27.

There are no indications that the siege will terminate soon. The enemy are at work, I suppose, enacting batteries with a view of reducing our forts and fortifications in detail if they cannot succeed otherwise. A slow fire is kept up.

Tuesday, July, 28.

A letter from Lou tells me that her sister has gone home and that she is alone and afraid to stay by herself at night. I cannot

[Page 44]
remain here satisfied while this is the case and must therefore go home and provide for her going to Greenville to remain with her parents. The Provost Marshall’s office is closed, and I shall have to wait twelve hours longer. It is a severe trial to me to have to break-up house-keeping and dispose of my affairs for so indefinite a period. I know it is a small sacrifice compared with what may have made and yet I can but feel a sadness at having to do it, and then perhaps in a few days be ordered back home. It is the uncertainty that makes me feel loth to do it. But such is war.

Wednesday, July, 29. 1863

Obtained my passport this morning, remained quiet during the day, and now am going home.

Thursday, July, 30.

Arrived at home this morning, a half hour or an hour later than I anticipated in consequence of being detained on the road. - Sissie was much elated at seeing me - did not wish me to leave

[Page 45]
her to go anywhere during the day. Alas! how many little ones are left temporarily or permanently without a Father’s care in consequence of this relentless war. Lou though somewhat expecting me was taken by surprise. It is necessary for me to make arrangements for a retracted absence and hence I go to obtain an order for my salary to be paid me in advance.

Friday, July, 31.

Remained about home the greater part of the day making arrangements with a view of sending my family to Greenville there to remain during my stay in Charleston - a very indefinite period.

Saturday, Aug. 1

Attended church conference this evening and was appointed a delegate to the Columbia Association, to convene about the 11th of Sept. Hope circumstances will permit me to attend.

Sunday Aug. 2.

Attended S. school - found with pleasure some

[Page 46]
new scholars, - told the school I should not be there again soon perhaps, but that I should think of them and that they must think of me. - The sermon this morning was calculated to comfort one in my situation. The minister adverted to the fact that whatever may be our lot we may be sure it is well. - Our Heavenly Father having us in his control. - To my surprise Father has arrived. He heard that I was to go down to-morrow and has come all the way to see me before I return. Surely there are few who have such a Father. May God grant to spare him and me for a long time yet, and may I be enabled to act in a manner such as to prove myself worthy of such a father.

Monday Aug. 3.

My family left this morning for Greenville. Our little one did not wish to go and leave “Papa.” She tried to get out the window of the car to me. May God bless them all and permit us to meet again! Father & I were out attending to business a good part

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of the morning. In the afternoon I locked up my house bade good-bye and left for Charleston. The cars are crowded which with the warm weather makes it uncomfortable. At Branchville, I bid father goodbye, and here a number of the passengers leave the train to take the other road. Still I am too much crowded to sleep much. About 4 ¼ o’clock I arrive at the Citadel - all appears to be quiet. I have seen two rockets - but know not what they mean.

Tuesday, Aug. 4.

Take a long walk in the city to see my father’s factor with a view of paying him some money for father. Every thing appears to be comparatively quiet. The citizens seem to care very little for the demonstration that is being made against the city.

Wednesday, Aug. 5.

I am on duty as officer of the day. Have a guard stationed at four points besides the Citadel. Except an artillery duel between the fleet and our batteries the day passes quietly. While going the “rounds” after midnight I met a man just from battery

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Wagner, who represents the discipline there as very bad. Commissioned officers too drunk to know what they are about, the men tardy in rallying to their posts when an alarm is given. He thinks it will be no better until some of the officers are tried and shot for drunkenness. This may be an exaggerated statement but I have no doubt that there is ground for complaint against the discipline.

Thursday, Aug. 6.

The aspect of affairs remains unchanged.

Friday, Aug. 7.

To day as yesterday, there appears to be nothing new so far as military operations are concerned. - In accordance with orders from the Chairman of the Board of Visitors, the examination of the Citadel cadets began to day. I am informed that they all with singular unanimity failed to recite in the departments of Math. & B. L. & Ethics, decisive evidence to my mind that there was a tacit under-

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standing not to recite. Such is the nature of boys, they cannot or will not appreciate the conduct of those who are older and wiser than they.

Saturday, Aug. 8

I am on duty to day for one of my colleagues, whom I consented to oblige. - In passing a lot of watermelons to day I imagined the price of them and was informed that I could have my “choice for four dollars or any other for three.” I replied that I would rather have four dollars and walked on the maifest surprise of the owner.

Sunday Aug. 9.

Though somewhat weary from being on duty last night I went down to the First Baptist Church where I heard a good sermon by Dr. Winkler, the pastor. His text was in St John’s Gospel 5th Chap. 23d verse. He showed that we should honor the Son by a diligent service, by a universal service and by a constant service.

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While in church I felt very much at home. The choir sang a tune that is very familiar and which was to me very appropriate. In the afternoon, I read the Confederate Baptist. The day having passed quietly and pleasantly away I returned with a thankful heart that I have enjoyed one more quiet and peaceful day of rest. Alas! that it should ever be otherwise.

Monday, Aug. 10.

The fore part of the day is comparatively quiet. In the afternoon late the firing is more rapid than for some days past, & continues during the night.

Tuesday, Aug. 11

I am on duty and find it very warm. There is very little firing in the fore noon, but in the latter part of the day it becomes more rapid just as it did yesterday. It continues during the night and about 4 ½ A. M. the shelling becomes still more rapid. I visited my guards about this time & stop for a short time on Broad Street

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to listen to the whistle of the shells in their flight. What a state war brings us to! People here seem to care very little about the firing. May God grant that they may not yet have to care for it! I feel that if the city is saved it will be by His mercy and not because of human prowess or ingenuity.

Wednesday, Aug. 12.

I am feeling somewhat despondent since I heard that the enemy fired into one of our boats at Fort Sumter’s wharf early this morning. For some time past we have had to send troops & supplies to Morris Island at night. And now it seems that communication with Sumter is dangerous in the day time. Moreover they have been using the Drummond light for a night or two past and by that means have rendered communication almost impracticable save in small boats. A deplorable condition of affairs indeed. The populace are beginning to cast about

Citation

Patrick, John B., 1832-1900, “Journal of John B. Patrick, April 19, 1863-August 12, 1863,” The Citadel Archives Digital Collections, accessed June 16, 2024, https://citadeldigitalarchives.omeka.net/items/show/789.