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Shields Military Records

William Chapman Shields Civil War Diary (1863 - 1864)


Pages 1 - 5 Pages 6 - 10

Campaign Sketches
Diary Kept by W. C. Shields
in Confederate Service

30th - Wrote a letter to Miss S. M. Carr.  Visited the City Cemetery. 31st - Lay in camp.  Visited camps of Georgia State Troops.

June 1st - Witnessed an affair (a fight) between A. J. Riddle of the Topo­graphic Engineers, and his wife, which resulted in the serious bruising of both parties.  Riddled lived in a few yards of our camp, and being drunk, be­gan to curse and abuse his wife when some of the battery boys rushed into his yard and knocked him down with a brick.  The detachment received orders to proceed immediately to the front.

2nd - Left Atlanta on evening train and arrived at Marietta at 6 o'clock p.m.

3rd - Walked up to the Battle on the front some 15 miles north of Marietta. Received a letter from Sister M. J. Warren containing $20 in Confederate Script.

4th - The Battery moved two miles of Lost Mountain and parked.

5th - Sunday - The battery moved, 5 miles to the right and parked 5 mi. N.W. of Marietta.

6th - Remained in camp all day – at night on camp guard

7th - Battery moved east of railroad 3 miles from Marietta - on picket.  I was appointed the driver of the wheel team of one of the guns.  Not liking the position, I resolved to relieve.  I ran the gun over every log and stump and against every tree we passed.

8th - Battery relieved from picket and moved back in 2 miles of Marietta. 9th - Remained in camp all day.

10th - The battery moved to the front and went into action.  At night returned to old camp near the railroad. Was relieved from driving - received a letter from Aunt N. H. Larison.

llth - Battery moved on Big Shanty and Marietta road and parked near Wyley Roberts' 4 miles from Marietta.  Drew new jacket and shirt.  Sold old jacket to a negro woman for $3.00.

12th - 14th - Lay in camp.

15th - Being sick, got medicine and was excused from duty by the surgeon.  In evening battery moved up to the front and went into action.

16th - Wrote letter to Miss S. M. Carr.  The Battery moved up to the front and went into action.

17th - Wrote letter to Sister M. J. Warren.

18th - Battery moved back at night to same camp - on camp guard.

19th - Sunday.  Heavy fighting all day.  Battery moved position several times. In evening went into brisk action near Canton and Marietta road.  Later Battery moved back in 1 mile of Marietta - went to field hospital to see

Campaign Sketches
Diary Kept by W. C. Shields
in Confederate Service

Seargent (?) John A. Shields of 7th Ala. Cav., whom I learned was wounded. Remained with him till surgeon removed a minnie ball from his shoulder and dressed his wound.

20th - Went to 7th Ala. Regt. Cav. and got cousin John A. Shields mule, think­ing I would ride a while.  Battery went with the Cavalry Corps to the enemy's left flank into heavy action.  Returned in 5 miles of Marietta and camped.

21st - Battery moved 1 mile toward Marietta. 22nd - In camp all day.

23d - Enemy shelled our camp and the battery moved into breastwork on hill nearby.

24th - Was sent on detail six miles to bring wheat in sheaf for forage for bat­tery horses.

25th - Still in breastworks.

26th - Sunday - Lay in breastworks - bought a section of rubber tent cloth from J. A. Gunnels for $10.

27th - The enemy opened fire on us from their artillery which continued four hours, and which we spiritedly returned...two men wounded.  At night the Battery moved 1 mile to rear and parked.

28th - In camp all day.

29th - On camp guard - Drew pants and shirt.

30th - Moved across road into a wood and parked.  Visited 51st Ala. Regt. and 12th Ala. Battalion.

July 1st - Went to Marietta and exchanged howitzer for a rifle gun. Wrote letter to Aunt N. H. Larison.

2nd - Turned J. A. Shields' mule over to Clay Womach to be taken home.  Battery moved back near Marietta.

3rd - Sunday - Army falling back.  Battery moved 1/2 mile through town and took position in the yard near a residence near the railroad.  The enemy's battery took this position 1/2 mile from us and opened fire, which we returned very spiritedly.  The family living in the house where we took position, left their home and took to the woods, leaving everything behind.  The soldiers entered the dwelling and smokehouse and helped themselves to everything they wanted. Heavy firing continued for an hour or more, when the battery limbered up and fell back three miles and parked.

4th - At 12 o'clock battery fell back 1 mile and camped.  Wrote letter to Miss S. M. Carr.

Campaign Sketches
Diary Kept by W. C. Shields
in Confederate Service

5th - The army fell back across the Chattahoochee River.  Battery left camp at daylight and crossed the river at Pace's Ferry, on a pontoon bridge. At 10 o'clock a.m.  Went two miles on road toward Atlanta and camped.  At night I was sent back on detail to river to work on fortifications.

6th - Lay under fire in fortifications at river all day.

7th -  Still under fire in fortifications.  Just at dusk the enemy made an attempt to cross the river and opened a concentrated fire from 30 pieces (?) on Wiggins' battery.  The fire was terribly grand but effected nothing, as we were too well fortified to be driven off.  At least no shot and shells plowed the earth in front of our battery.

8th - Lay in breastworks all day.

9th - Moved back on road 1 mile.  Visited 51st Ala. Regt. and 12th Battalion.

10th - Sunday - At night on camp guard.

11th - In camp all day - in evening went 1 mile to camp of 51st Ala. Regt.

12th - In camp - received a letter from Aunt N. H. Larison.

13th and 14th - In camp.

15th - On camp guard.

16th - Called on Gen'l. Wheeler and asked for a furlough to go home and mount myself and return to my regiment.  Gen'l. Wheeler referred me to Col. Kirkpatric of the 51st Ala. Regt.  Went to Col. Kirkpatric and made application for dis­mounted furlough for 15 days.

17th - Sunday - Order read, relieving Gen. Johnston from command and placing Gen. Hood in command of the army.  Battery moved out by Buckhead to 5 miles of Atlanta and camped.

18th - Fell back in 6 miles of Atlanta.

19th - Moved down on railroad l ½ miles east of Atlanta.  Bought mess of cabbage for 50c.  In evening moved down in 1 mile of Decatur and went into action near Atlanta and camped.  Drew pair shoes.

20th - In morning moved out into position - moved nearer railroad into action. At night moved into town and camped - First shell fell in Atlanta just after dark.

21st - Moved out near Fairground Hospital.

22nd - General effort along the right wing of the army to drive the enemy back off the railroad.  Heavy fighting from 9 o'clock a.m. till dark.  Wiggins' battery was in action all day.  Several men wounded.  Camped at fort 1 mile east of Atlanta.

Campaign Sketches
Diary Kept by W. C. Shields
in Confederate Service

23rd - Moved near Female College.

24th - Moved out in front of breastworks to right of small hospital and went into position.

25th - Sunday - Worked in throwing up redoubt for our section.  Under fire all day.

26th - An order was issued by Gen'1. Hood commanding, that all dismounted cavalry and supernumerary artillerymen should be sent to infantry, and fearing that I would be one of that class, and my dismounted furlough not having been approved, I decided to go home, mount myself, and return to my regiment, the 51st Ala. Cav.  So just after dark, in company with Joseph A. Gunnels and Jas. A. Box, of Ala., I left my battery entrenched in position, just on the front in face of the enemy, some 2 miles east of Atlanta, intending to go home. We went out by FairGround Hospital to McDonough Road, thence to railroad, thence down railroad to East Point by 10 o'clock.  Slept 3 hours, then on in a S.W. course through woods and across fields.

27th -

{end of diary notes sent to me}

Pages 1 - 5 Pages 6 - 10

Submitted by: James Shields. See Notes about W. C. Shields Biography, Campaign Sketches and Family Record

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c. Susan Shields Sasek