Saturday, November 13, 2010

Laundry Day

Today at Brandy Station: November 13, 1863

Sometimes, as I look over the events of a certain day, the mundane appears. For soldiers, life was hurry up and wait; days, weeks and maybe months between action -- then brief moments of shear terror. Those moments are what most remember.

But what is captured in the diaries and letters, is the mundane, day-to-day survival of the private. Their diaries tell of what they did, or what was important to them that particular day. It will never make the regimental histories, but nonetheless, doing laundry was an important part of life.

Today, in the diaries and letters, the simple, quiet life emerges.

141st Pennsylvania: "[I] had Dandy [Graves’ horse] shod all around."

4th Michigan: "Jimmy Washed Clothes"

86th New York: "Washed some clothes..."

91st Pennsylvania: "...continued occupying quarters at Mountain Run...'

49th New York: "[no] mail today."

20 Indiana: "I done some extensive patchwork on my pantaloons to day, as indeed it was getting about time."

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