Foreword to the Diary of Nelson Peter Dolbeck by Anita Dolbeck (2002)

npd

Nelson Peter Dolbeck in his later years

Following are entries from the Civil War journal of Nelson Peter Dolbeck.

I feel I have gotten to know the 25 year old Nelson by meticulously keying his journal into a “reader friendly” format. I have purposely transcribed it exactly as he wrote it with his punctuation, spelling, grammar, occasional misuse, omission, or double use of a word. By reading exactly what Nelson wrote, the reader can get a feeling of his state of mind at the time, whether feeling well (or “smart”, as he often says), or whether sick, tired, or dispirited, or whether rushed or having leisure time.

One can tell that Nelson loved to write. He had beautiful handwriting on some pages, compared to hard to read words on others. He “drew” beautiful capital letters to write the dates for each entry and many times first words of sentences. Sometimes in haste he ran his sentences together, probably to get all his thoughts down in a hurry.

Some of the original pages had holes in them or pieces torn off or worn off the edges, so I used ——- to indicate what was missing or illegible. I didn’t make many assumptions unless it was apparent what a partially discernible word was. Some pages were so light that I had to use a magnifying glass to see the writing at all.

Some time ago when my father in law, Merrill Whitcomb Dolbeck, had the journal, he read the pages into a tape recorder; and a typewritten copy was prepared. At that time some pages of the journal were lost. Those entries appear here as Merrill deciphered them. I had no chance to compare the typewritten version with the original pages as I did with every other entry. The lost entries are August 22 through August 29, 1861; and in 1862, March 28 through the first March 30 entry (listed as Saturday); April 13 through May 3; part of May 5; June 4 through June 14; and part of July 7.

In the journal Nelson quite often mentions getting letters from Louis, Cliff, E.S.H.; and Julia. Louis Boudrye was his friend and close in age uncle; Cliff was his brother; E.S.H. was Ellen Susan Hayford, his future wife; and I don’t know who Julia was. His pal through all this was Moses Boudrye, close in age, his uncle, and brother of Louis.

To picture where Nelson fits in the family tree – his father was Gabriel, his son in our line of heritage was Albert. Nelson married “Susie”. Ellen Susan Hayford was one of 13 children, and Nelson and she had 13 children together. The children were:

Albert 2/7/65

Alfred 7/7/66

Alice 8/10/67

Alma 5/31/69

Alvin 12/11/71

Infant not named 8/3/73

Allan 9/9/74

Almond 10/75

Alva 5/29/77

Alta 5/12/78

Allen 4/20/80

Louis 9/25/81

Clayton 5/1/85

Of a personal nature, Nelson was 5’8″ tall, of light complexion, and had grey eyes and brown hair. He was born on April 30, 1836, in Franklin, Vermont. He was married on November 24, 1862.

This journal ends abruptly on July 19, 1862. I don’t know if there is more that was lost or if Nelson just stops writing. It seems unlikely to me, with the pleasure he takes in writing, that he would not have stated an “ending.” Interestingly, he states on July 16, “I sent four letters to Cliff, (being part of my journal) and requesting him to send me a box.”

According to copies of the company muster rolls and other documents, Nelson joined the Army on May 1, 1861. He was a private in Company C, N. Y. Infantry. On June 30 he transferred to Company B, Anderson Zouave Regiment. On December 31, 1861, his is listed as being in Company B, 62nd N.Y. Volunteers, N.Y. Infantry. On the May-June 1862 rolls, his is listed as 8th corporal; and on a special muster roll dated August 18, 1862, he is listed at a rank of 7th corporal absent without leave since August 17. On the September-October rolls he is absent without leave again and shown a rank of private. He was dropped on the November-December rolls.

Notes from the Pension Office, War Department, on March 23, 1883, state;

Deserted October 21, 1862

Arrested July 5, 1863, sent to Albany, NY

Again Deserted September 23, 1863, at Cedar Run, MD

Surrendered under President’s Proclamation May 8, 1865, at Albany, NY

Honourably Discharged May 19, 1865, by reason of surrender from desertion under President’s Proclamation

Charge of desertion no longer stands against him but cannot be expunged (Application for removal was denied.)

Received a pension of $12/month (At age 70 the monthly pension is $20/month… Records show him being denied the $20 on his 70th birthday because of a discrepancy in his date of birth. One record shows his birth year as 1837, but he claims that was in error and that it should have been 1836. We don’t know if he received the increase the following year or not.)

Nelson lived in Hague from 1865-1867 and in Ticonderoga after. He died on September 20, 1920, at the age of 84.

Anita Dolbeck (November 2002)

Editor’s note – please find the latest transcription of the Diary at:

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id399.html

 

Our Jackets Was Dark Blue (August 9, 1861).

npd

Nelson Peter Dolbeck in later life

From the Diary of Neslon Peter Dolbeck

Our Co. got their Uniforms this morning. I was disappointed in not getting leggings. The Uniform we got was a large baggy pair of light blue trousers with elastics in the bottoms. Our jackets was dark blue, flowered off with red tape. We got two caps, one, dark blue regulation cap, the other, a red Zouave cap with a blue tassle and we got one shirt, one pair of socks. My first work after getting dressed was to get a furlough for four of us to go home. I went to Capt. Hubble but he said he would not give out so many so he wrote me one; but when I told him that I did not want mine alone, he said he would have nothing to do with it. So the next and only thing I could do was to see the Col. So, the first chance I could get I crept into the Col.’s quarters and persuaded him after reminding him of the promise he had made me, to give three besides myself each a furlough to go home. The Col. was in a great hurry to leave, so he only signed his name to the blanks and told his assistant to fill them out for me. The assistant was also in a great hurry to get his breakfast, it being then after 10am, so, I told him I could fill them out and he told me to go to work. The work did not last me long, neither did I set down the date the furloughs should be returned. I wrote one for Henry Ostryer, one for James Shanes, one for Rob’t Hogle, and one for myself. We got aboard the Major Anderson with glad hearts. We landed at Peckslip foot of 10th St, N.Y., then went to our boarding place kept by Mr. Spiker, and got a good hearty dinner. After dinner went down to East Broadway and tried hard to get tickets on our furloughs, but failed, and with hearts not so light, we went down to the wharf and tried several other places and still failed in our endeavors. At last we went down to the foot of Jay St. and succeeded in getting tickets. We was now all happy, and we went down below took a berth without leave or license, and laid ourselves away for the night on the Hudson River.

Courtesy of Nelson Peter Dolbeck’s family.

Transcription by Andrew Lausten.

Private Salmon H. Lyman, Co. H.

easthamptonmemorialtowerandtabletsalmonhlymancoadetail.jpg.w560h747

Salmon H. Lyman’s name is included on the Memorial Stone on Easthampton’s Old Town Hall.

Salmon H. Lyman enlisted as a Private in the 62d  NYSV at New York. He was one of three, (possibly four) Easthampton men to enlist in the Anderson Zouaves. P.W. Lyman states that Salmon H. Lyman, Albert S. Gove and Richard Goodsell all who enlisted in Co. H. (though the memorial stone above places him in Co. A.). Lewis S. Lyman Jr also enlisted in Co. H and may be a relative of Salmon H. Lyman and an Easthampton man.

P.W. Lyman states is his book, History of Easthampton, that Salmon H. Lyman was the;

“…son of Dennis Lyman, (and was) one of the first to volunteer, was the first to fall. In the first summer of the war, when the soldiers were rallying to the standard, he went to New York, joined the regiment known as the Anderson Zouaves, was home once on a furlough, spent one winter in camp, started out with McClellan on his Peninsular campaign, and fought at the battle of Williamsburg; soon after which be was taken sick, and removed to New York, where he died. His remains were brought to his home, where they were buried with military honors, on the 18th of September, 1862.”

P.W. Lyman states that Salmon H. Lyman served for about one year, then took ill and died. He served with McClellan in the Penisula campaign and fought at the Battle of Williamsburg.

Easthampton honors it’s fallen Civil War soldiers with a handsome bell tower and white Italian marble tablet on the southeast side of the Easthampton’s Old Town Hall. The pentagonal tablet is on the lower east face of Victorian Italianate style bell tower which was designed by Charles Parker and completed in June 1869.

The marble tablet features three small crosses and two small columns. It is inscribed with the soldier’s name, company, regiment, and the cause, place, date and age of death.:

EASTHAMPTON
1869.
ERECTS THIS
TOWER A MEMORIAL
TO THESE HER SONS WHO
DIED FOR THEIR COUNTRY
DURING THE GREAT REBELLION

MAJ. GEN. GEO CROCKETT STRONG
Major in U.S. Army and Maj.
General of Vols. A student
at Williston Seminary. Entered
West Point from this Cong. Dist.
in 1853. Graduated third in the
class of 1857. Received a mortal
wound leading the assault on Fort
Wagner. Died July 30th 1863 AEt 30

KILLED IN BATTLE

William Hickey, Co. B, 31st Mass. Inf.
at Camp Bisland, La, Apr. 13th, 1863: AEt 17

Daniel W. Lyman, Co. K, 52nd Mass. Inf.
at Port Hudson, La June 14th, 1863: AEt 20

Charles Tencellent, Co. A 7th Conn. Inf.
at Olustee, Fla, Feb. 16th, 1864: AEt 26

Roland S. Williston, Co C, 2nd Mass. Inf.
at Culpepper C.H., Va. Aug. 18th, 1862; AEt 27

DIED PRISONERS OF WAR AT ANDERSONVILLE, Ga.

Of Co. A, 27th Mass. Infantry:-

Alvin W. Clark, Nov. 20th, 1864; AEt 24

Oliver A. Clark, June 27th, 1864; AEt 23

Rufus Robinson, July 12th, 1864; AEt 29

Ezra O. Spooner, Aug. 13th, 1864; AEt 18

Fredrick P. Stone, Jan. 10th, 1865; AEt 20

Of Co. F 54th Mass. Infantry

Charles Rensellear AEt 21

DIED OF DISEASE

Clinton Bates Co. K, 52nd Mass. Inf.,
at Baton Rouge, La., July 22nd, 1863 AEt 25

Augustus M. Clapp Co. A, 3rd Ohio Cav.
at Nashville, Tenn. Mar. 9th, 1863 AEt 16

James H. Clark Co. H, 2nd Mass. Inf.
at Alexandria, Va. Aug. 14th, 1863 AEt 22

Chauncey R. Hendricks, Co. B, 31st Mass Inf.
at East Hampton Sept. 11th, 1862 AE 41

Daniel Kane, Co. K 37th Mass. Infantry
at Fredricksburg, Va. Dec. 15th, 1862 AEt 17

Elisha C. Lyman, Co. A, 27th Mass. Infantry
at newbern, N.C. Dec. 28th, 1863 AEt 23

Henry Lyman, Co. A, 27th Mass. Infantry
at Newbern, N.C. Aug. 5th, 1863 AEt 31

Salmon H, Lyman, Co A, Anderson’s Zouaves
at Davis Island Hospital, Aug. 25th, 1862 AEt 22

Herbert W. Pomeroy, Co. K, 52nd Mass. Inf.
at Plaquemine, La. Jan.28th, 1863 AEt 18

Lewis P. Wait, Co. K, 52nd Mass. Inf.
at East Hampton, Nov. 2nd, 1862 AEt 22

Charles L. Webster, Co. K, 52nd Mass. Inf.
at Baton Rouge, La. July 19th, 1863 AEt 23

easthamptonmemorialtowerandtabletsalmonhlymancoaoldtownhall.jpg.w560h747

Easthampton’s Old Town Hall.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id364.html

References:

Lyman., P.W. (1866) History of Easthampton. Trumbull & Gere. Northhampton. pp. 111 – 131. Google Books.

http://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WMM750_Memorial_Tower_and_Tablet_Easthampton_MA

He is an Italian (September 12 – November 6, 1861)

hntFrom “Washington during the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865” documents daily life in Washington, D. C., through the eyes of Horatio Nelson Taft (left), an examiner for the U. S. Patent Office. Below are Horatio’s mentions of the Anderson Zouaves. 

Thursday September 12, 1861

This has been a delightful day. I was at the Pat office and at the Treasury Dept, did not see Mr Chase. The fight near the Chain Bridge yesterday proved to be only a rather severe skirmish, two of our soldiers killed. Went with Julia after dinner up to Camp Cameron to see the “Anderson Zouaves,” visited the Head Qrs, the old (“Madison House”), with Capt Meeks. Capt Lafarta (sic) of the French Zouave Company was very polite. He is an Italian. 1500 Cavalry passed our door last evn’g. Long trains of army wagons pass all day, 4 horse teams.

Sunday September 15, 1861

A hot day…Went to ch[urch] in the morning with Julia & one of the boys and heard Dr Smith, church well filled. Wife went in the afternoon. Chas & Sallie were up to dine with us. Walked with Dr D. & Chas up to Camp Cameron to see the “Anderson Zouaves.” Saw Capt Lafata of the Co of the French Zouaves. He is an Italian. Came down to tea and went over to Camp Anderson to hear the music of the “Regulars” Band, it was fine.

Friday October 4, 1861

Another hot day. Much as yesterday “danced attendance” at the Treasury most of the day without seeing the Sec’y. It has been Cabinet day and he much engaged. Think some of getting a room for compounding various medicines and articles for sale with the assistance of Chas — Must do something to make some money, if possible. Julia has been out to the Camp of the “Anderson Zouaves” with Capt Mew. Prof Low[e]s Balloon was high up over “Dixey” this evening. Heavy guns have been frequently heard over the River.

Wednesday November 6, 1861

A cool, cloudy, misty day. It is now pretty well known that the great fleet landed near Charleston S.C. Much anxiety is felt to hear direct from it. No new[s] today. J.C. Fremont is removed from the command of the Army in M.O. Genl Hunter takes his place. The 60th NY Regt arrived and passed up Mass Ave just before dark. It appeared in first rate condition. No news from Rosecrantz today. Capt Meeks of the Anderson Zouaves called last evening. He was well mounted and has command at the Chain Bridge. I was at the Pat office awhile. Julia has caught a severe cold.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id208.html

Also see:

https://www.loc.gov/collection/diary-of-horatio-taft/about-this-collection/

 

Zoozoos Eat Up the Dinner (October 12, 1861)

unioneagleOrdered to move camp to “Riverview”, a high point about three miles from our present position, and complete an extensive earthwork which had been some time building. Four hundred men were detailed to clear up the ground. The Anderson Zouaves had moved from the place the day before, and there was no trouble in finding the camp, as we could smell it long before we could see it. The farmers living near the camp did not seem to regret the departure of the Zouaves from their vicinity. One lady who lived close by, said she frequently had dinner all prepared for her family, when a party of zoozoos would march in, cooly sit down to the table, eat up the dinner, and as cooly get up and marchout, without as much as a “thank you”.

Excerpt from the history of the 10th Massachusetts Infantry.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id255.html

Private William F. V. Lewis, Co. E

pvtlewis.jpg.w180h305William F.V. Lewis was born May 9, 1842 in New York City. He enlisted May 1, 1861, and served as a private in Company E and was mustered out on August 30, 1865, at Ft. Schuyler, New York, after participating in many of the major battles fought by the 4th and 6th Corps, Army of the Potomac.

On October 1, 1873, Mr. Lewis, now a licensed State Engineer, married Catherine Eagan, an Irish immigrant 11 yrs. his junior, and they had two sons, William F.T. Lewis and Frank A. Lewis. Frank who died in the service of the US Army at Luzon, P.I., July 31, 1901. Willie, a New York telephone repairman, also predeceased his father, a victim of cancer in 1930. He and his wife, Julia A. Cummings, also had two sons, Robert, a New York telephone repairman, and William F., a construction worker, who served in the Philippines as a USN CB in WWII.

William Lewis’ NY Identification Credentials for the 1913 Gettysburg Reunion. Lewis appears on the left, back row in the photograph above at the Reunion.

William F.V. Lewis was a member and officer of the George Huntsman Grand Army of the Republic Post #50, Department of New York, and both sons were Sons of Veterans members. He attended the 50th Anniversary encampment at Gettysburg, July 1913, and was residing in Ridgefield Park, New Jersey, when he died (November 5, 1934) at age 92. He is interred in Calvary Cemetery, Woodside, New York.

Article and photographs contributed by William Lewis.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id17.html

Corporal Otto Brockhouseur (Brockhouser), Co. F & Co. H.

unioneagleIn the history of the Great Rebellion, immigrants wanting the full benefits granted to citizenry of the U.S., enlisted in the Federal Army of the Republic.  According to historians such as Bruce Catton, Shelby Foote, Henry Steele Commager and James McPherson , this would be a fast path to becoming American citizens and approximately 12% of all Union Forces were of Germanic descent.  Among these was Otto Brockhouseur born in 1840 to Gotlib and Margarete Brockhouseur in Prussia in 1840. Gotlib left Prussia with Margarete, son Henry (17) and Otto (15) from Bremen, Germany and arrived in New York City on October 26, 1847.  According to records, Gotlib worked as a laborer, Otto was employed as a butcher, and Henry was employed as a grocer.

On June 30, 1861, Otto Brockhouseur enlisted with the 62d New York Volunteers and was mustered into Co. F on  July 3,  1861.  He was transferred the same day to Co. H.  According to his enlistment record, he was 5’2’’ tall, dark brown hair, hazel eyes and with fair complexion .

He re-enlisted as a veteran on January 1st  and was promoted to a full Corporal on June 3, 1864.  Apparently he received no serious wounds and was mustered out with the rest of the Regiment on August 30, 1865.

It seems that Otto was bitten with the gold and silver “bugs” and by 1867 he was living in California where the state census has his occupation listed as a miner.  Between 1867 and 1876, Otto searched for gold and silver moving between California and Nevada.  He became a naturalized citizen in 1880, and his first known recorded California voter’s registration was signed in 1886. He later registered to vote in California in 1892 and had, as an identifying feature, a scar over his right eye. The 1900 Federal Census has him living in Plumas County, California, with his marital status was “Single.”  Gold had been found in the region the 1840s which started a rush which lasted until the early 1900s.

No information of any kind could be found regarding the death of Otto Brockhouseur or where he might have been laid to rest.  It was not unusual for small mining communities not to maintain these types of records once the town began to lose population.

If anyone has any additional information regarding Otto Brockhouseur of the 62d, please contact the author at the research website.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id2.html

Research article by Joe Basso.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id341.html

We Raised Our Colors Beat Our Drums (August 28, 1861)

acwoodscoe

Alfred Covell Woods

Headquarters Camp Cameron, Washington, D.C.

My Dear Aunt,

As it is rather rainy and wet this morning and I am excused from drill. I can think of no better way of improving my time than in directing my thoughts towards home well knowing that you will be glad to hear from me. I am seated in my tent on my knapsack with my cartridge box in my lap for a desk as independent as a king. Quite a fancy way of writing so you must excuse me if I do not do this paper justice situated as I am.

I arrived at camp on Rikers Island after leaving your place the following Sabbath1 afternoon after spending over half a day with Mr Sawtell. Found our regiment making hasty preparations for their departure which took place the Wednesday following at 6 o’clock P.M. We took the boat2 for Elizebethport N.J. without stopping at N.Y. City at all. When we arrived at “E” we took the cars for Baltimore passing through Reading and Harrisburg, Penn when this side of Harrisburg our engine was thrown off the track by a rail in the track being misplaced about nine o’clock at night. I suppose by some of the rebels although there was union guards along the road to protect it. There was Southerners living near there and it was very dark so it is not known whether it was them or not. Fortunately the train was going very slow so that none was injured. We immediately after starting the next morning loaded our arms having learned that the southerners were calculating to mob us in Baltimore (they thinking that our pieces were not loaded.)

When we arrived there we got off the cars and formed in a line of Battle. The crowd began to gather around when one of our men accidentally shot off one of his hands which disclosed to them that we had loaded guns, they finding we were so well armed, did not attempt to molest us. We stood in line about half an hour when we found we had got to march two miles through the city in order to take the cars for Washington. ln marching there we raised our colors beat our drums and Hurrahed for the union just as much as we were a mind to. When we got to the depot a sad accident occured. Our men were allowed too much liberty and the foolish fellows went right to some grocery and bought liquor in which poison was administered so that two of them died in about an hour.

We arrived in this place Friday night about 9 o’clock. Went once prepared to encamp for the first time right out in open air on a gravelly hill near by. We awoke in the morn to find ourselves almost wet through with dew but very much refreshed from our tiresome ride. Never slept better in my life. We are now quartered at Camp Cameron, the most pleasant situation around here and the quarters of the Seventh Regiment [7th New York State Militia was stationed at Camp Cameron May 2-23, 1861] when they were here. we have plenty of water (two good springs) and everything that we could expect. My eyes are some better so I feel well contented and happy although I often think of home. Our payroll is being made out today and the calculation is I believe that we will be paid off Monday next. our company is expected as the left wing to take the leading column in the next Battle.

We are to have the new minnie muskets. We were to have enfield rifles but these are supposed to be better than them.

Well, my dear Aunt, it is clearing off and I guess l shall have to drill after all so please excuse me for this time and I try and do better the next. Give my best respects please to all of our folks, Mr. Trimble and all others who are kind enough to enquire. I wrote to Mr Trimble’s folks yesterday. Oh! how is your health?

Now please write me particularly every illness as I shall be anxious to hear from you all and shall look for a letter soon. I will now close by bidding you adieu. I may never see you again but I will now close hoping for the best and remaining your affectionate nephew,

 Alfred C. Woods

P.S. Please direct as follows

Anderson Zouaves

Camp Cameron

Washington, D.C. Company E care of Capt Riggs

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id206.html

Margaret Larkin, Washer, Co. C.

unioneagleMargaret Larkin is listed as having served in Company C., 62d NYSV as a “washer”. She may have been the wife of Patrick Larkins, who served in Companies C and B of the 62d. Though the surnames are slightly different, contemporary Army records are notorious for numerous misspellings in muster records and index cards.

http://andersonszouaves.tripod.com/id363.html

See: ZOUAVE! December 2007. pp. 1-2.

http://andersonzouaves.tripod.com/zouave/