Civil War Diary
of William Owen, Co K., 86th NYSV


November, 1863



Nov 1. Fell in line about 7 AM and 
marched about 6 miles & joined our brigade
at Bealton Station. Prayer meeting sermon 
by 2nd U.S. Sharpshooters chaplain.

Nov 2. Stayed in camp near ___ ___. Went 
in the woods and cut a load of wood.
Wrote letter to my parents. Read letter 
from ___.

Nov 3. Stayed in camp all day. Drew five 
days rations. Evening attended prayer
meeting. Had a good time. The Lord is 
with us. One soul testified that he had
found the savior.

Nov 4. Stayed in camp. Had inspection 
at 9 AM. PM wrote letter to Corpl
Miserva. At Battallion Brigade drill 
by Gen Ward from three till five. 
Eve. attend meeting.

Nov 5. Stayed in camp all day. Battallion 
drill in the forenoon. Brigade drill
afternoon & evening attended experience meeting.

Nov 6. At Brigade drill in the afternoon, 
in evening attended prayer meeting. The 
Lord is with us & who can be against us. 
O that were a better Christian.

Nov 7. Fell in line at daylight, marched 
ten miles & crossed the river at Kelly 
Ford. Sharp fighting, several Rebbel 
prisoners taken, the Rebs fall back.

Nov 8. Fell in at 8 AM, marched about 
five miles and bivouacked at Brandy
Station. Cannonading all day. The Rebs 
falling back. 1300 prisoners captured.

Nov 9. Stayed in the woods at Brandy 
Station untill 6 PM. Fell in, marched
about two miles and bivouacked in the 
wood. Had a good nights rest, all which
we are in debt to our maker.

Nov 10. Moved a few rods & put up tents. 
A ___-the rest detailed for picket.
Wrote letter. Weather clear & cold.

Nov 11. The detail for picket returned 
to camp; got orders to put up winter
quarters. Evening had a prayer meeting 
with the boys of our ___ company.

Nov 12. The boys all busy building 
winter quarters & wrote letter in AM.
Evening had a little prayer meeting.

Nov 13. Stayed in camp all day. 
Washed some clothes & received a letter from
friend Prescott. Evening attended prayer meeting.

Nov 14. Stayed in camp at Brandy Station 
all day. Very warm & pleasant weather.
Orders to not be troubled about winter 
quarters just yet.

Nov 15. Rainy & wet. Heavy cannonading 
commenced about 7 AM in the direction of
Culpepper. Orders to be ready to march 
at a moments notice, did not march.

Nov 16. Grand review of our Corps (3rd) 
by Maj Gen French, commanding with
staff and some foreign officers. 
Evening attended prayer meeting.

Nov 17. Remained in camp all day. 
Read, prayed and meditated upon many things
attempting the destruction of the soldier in camp.

Nov 18. Detail of 75 men of our Regt. 
to build corduroy road.

Nov 19. The day of the great celebration 
at Gettesburg. Evening attended prayer
meeting.

Nov 20. On Brigade guard. Rained some 
through the night.

Nov 21. Company drill in the AM. 
Rained hard most all day.

Nov 22. Sunday morning inspection ten AM. 
Attended meeting at the sharpshooters
in the PM. Evening attended prayer meeting.

Nov 23. Stayed in camp all day. 
Inspection of arms & ammunition by Colonel
Priggins. Eve received orders to be ready 
to march at 5 PM.

Nov 24. Rainy & wet, all packed up & ready 
to march before daylight. Still raining 
at 7 AM, fell in line, marched a few rods. 
Order contermanded, returned to our old camp.

Nov 25. Company drill in the AM in the PM 
stayed in camp. Evening attended
prayer meeting.

Nov 26. Fell in line at 7 AM, marched ten 
miles. Crossed the Rapidan at ___
Ford just dark & stopped for night.

Nov 27. Fell in at 7 AM , marched about 
6 miles. Went into battle about _ PM.
Fired 40 rounds, lost five men of my Co(K) 
wounded. drove the Rebs back some
south & held our line through the night.

Nov 28. Fell in a little before light, 
followed the retreating enemy all day
hard ___ all the AM. Rained hard, 
very mudy, marched ten miles.

Nov 29. Stayed in the woods closed in 
mass all day. Skirmish firing all day.
Cannonading towards night. Orders that 
we should charge the rifle pitts at 5
PM.

Nov 30. Fell in at 7 AM. Battle opened, 
heavy firing of the artillery. Our Regt
went on the skirmish-line, drove the Rebs 
half mile, lost two men wounded. Fell
back & resumed our position of the day before.


Maintained by Sue Greenhagen. E-mail: greenhsh@morrisville.edu