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As you read, consider the following: How does each soldier describe the day-to-day reality of the war? What do they have to say about the larger political, military, economic, and social issues of the war? (i.e. secession, slavery, the military strategies of generals, etc.) What are the biggest issues that seem to affect their lives? How are their experiences and perspectives similar and/or different from one another? What can these similarities and differences tell us? How do these documents compare to the secondary source information you have learned about the war so far (in McPherson)? Summarize your findings in an essay of 3-4 pages (750-1000 words), citing evidence from the primary sources, McPherson, and any other outside sources necessary to your argumentsSEE ATTACHMENTS
diary_of_a_confederate_soldier.pdf

firsthand_account_of_the_battle_of_shiloh_written_by_a_northern_soldier.pdf

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from
DIARY
OF A
CONF
EDERATE
SOLDIER
1862–1863
––––––––––––––––––––––– John S. Jackman ––––––––––––––––––––––
John S. Jackman (1841–1912) was an enlistee in the First Kentucky Brigade of
the Confederate Army of Tennessee. Better educated than most enlisted men,
he kept a detailed diary that provides historians with rare descriptions of the
western campaigns of the Confederate military forces. Jackman edited some of
his diary himself after the war; his diary was later edited for publication in 1990.
T H I N K T H R O U G H H I S T O R Y : Recognizing Bias
What factors should be considered in order to assess the accuracy of John S.
Jackman’s observations?
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Dec. 31, 1862 The sun came up clear. The regiment had moved off before I
waked up. Had breakfast. The ambulances and caisons are sheltered in our
ravine. Just as the sun was coming up I heard a yelling over towards Withers’
division, and ran up on the hill to see the cause. That division was charging
across a big field in perfect line of battle, the men yelling and cheering. Soon tho
the Federal batteries opened on them, then the musketry, and I could see his
men falling. Presently they opened fire, and the line was obscured in smoke.
This was, I believe, the grandest scene I ever witnessed, in the military line. I
stood a moment watching the battle, and a stray shell came near cutting me
down. Thinking the ball had now opened in earnest, I “buckled on my armor”,
and started for the regiment. One of the boys was with me. We had to pass over
a long field in the rear of a battery, which was then being subject to a heavy fire.
First, a shell would tear up the ground in front of us; then we would go a little
slow; then a ball would plow up the ground in rear of us; then we would
quicken our pace. When we got to the regiment, it was falling in to march out in
rear of the battery, which was composed of twelve guns and on the hill where
we skirmished the first evening. As soon as the regiment got to the proper place,
a short distance from the guns, [we were] ordered to lie down. Our battery, or
batteries, for there were three parked together, opened fire on the advancing
columns, and the Federal guns replied, firing over the heads of their troops. I
believe, there were 38 cannon playing on us at once. The hill protected us a
little, yet I saw from my position, on the extreme left of the regiment, numbers
of cannon balls strike just in front of the line, and skip over. We were not
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FROM
DIARY OF A C ONFEDERATE S OLDIER
behind the battery more than five minutes, for seeing the numbers that were
being hurt, Gen’l Hanson had the regiment moved off a little to the right, out of
range. In this, we lost about 20 or 30 wounded, but luckily no one killed. We
did not move again during the day. Our company went to get in the trenches, by
the guns, in the evening, but the order was countermanded, and it came back.
Just before sundown, a cannon ball passed through Adjt. C. killing him
instantly. I had just left his side, having been to him to get some tobacco. The
day was cool, though the sun shown out all the time—cold wind from the
North. Lying on the cold ground a good deal during the day, [I] was chilled, and
when darkness put a stop to the stirring scenes, I went back to the ambulance
station, to get by the fire. Dr. B gave me a “drink”, and we spread down
blankets together. Slept well.
Thur. Jany. 1st, 1863.—All quiet to-day. Both armies seem to be taking a
“blowing spell,” after the hard fighting yesterday. Turned my gun over to one
of the infirmary corps, they having to take arms.—
Friday Jany 2d.—Raining in the morning. Back at the ambulance train nearly
all the time. All quiet until about 3 P.M., when Bragg ordered Breckinridges
division to charge over Stone River, at Rosecranz’ army! All the brigade went
into the charge, save our regiment, which was left to support the batteries, and
hold the hill, heretofore mentioned. The rain stopped just before the charge
was made. Hanson killed.—
Jany 3d.—Rain pouring down all day long. At the regiment part of the time,
helping dig in the entrenchment. Late in the evening, having “got wind” that the
army was going [to] fall back that night, I went into town to see [his brother
William] at Dr. S’s. Soon after getting in town, the rain came down in torrents,
and continued all night long. Went to the Medical Purveyor’s office, and there
found [William], Dr. S., and Dr. P., medical director of division. They had been
on the field and had gotten things nice to eat and still had some on hand. Not
having eaten any thing but “dough” for a week, I enjoyed a good supper. Wrote
home, giving the letter to Dr. P. to mail, as he was to be left with the wounded.
Troops marching back, through town all night. Slept with [William] before a
huge fire in the office.
Jany 4th.—Up before daylight: The Dr. having a spare horse, I was to ride.
We mounted just at daylight, and rode off through a pelting rain. All had left
before the dawn. We overtook our regiment 5 miles from town, on the
Manchester pike, acting as rear guard. Being mounted, Col. H. sent me ahead
to turn back an ordnance wagon.…In riding by the infantry, sometimes I would
splatter mud on them, and often expected to be bayonetted. In the after part of
the day the sun came out hot. Evening came up with the wagon train, camped
near Manchester. Not having been on horseback for so long, this ride of 30
miles tired me almost as much as if I had walked.
Jany. 5th.—The wagon train started on for Tullahoma. Got five, or 6 miles
on the road, and ordered back to Manchester, where arrived after dark. Raining
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The Americans © McDougal Littell Inc.
FROM
DIARY OF A C ONFEDERATE S OLDIER
after night. Slept with [William] on a pile of hospital comforts, which caught fire
and could hardly be put out.
Jany. 6th.—In the morning the regiment came up. The train being again
ordered towards Tullahoma, I kept with it on “my horse.” When we got as far
as we did before, the wagons of our regiment were ordered back to
Manchester.…Just after dark we found the regiment in camp near town. I
dismounted and resigned my steed to the Dr. That night my Mess did not put up
the tent—we slept on it. Late at night I waked up with something heavy on my
face. I found it to be an old gander, quietly roosting on my head, which some of
the boys had brought into camp—I presume he saw that I had no feathers under
my head, and concluded to put some on top, instead of underneath. I thanked
him, by flinging him against a stump, hardby.
Now commences another long siege of inaction. Nothing much to vary one
day from another—a routine of camp duty, from one weeks end to another.…
Source: Diary of a Confederate Soldier: John S. Jackman of the Orphan
Brigade, edited by William C. Davis (Columbia, S.C.: University of South
Carolina Press, 1990), pp. 69–71.
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The Americans © McDougal Littell Inc.
FROM
DIARY OF A C ONFEDERATE S OLDIER
T H I N K T H R OU G H H I S TO RY : A N S WE R
Several factors should be considered when assessing the accuracy of Jackman’s
observations. Jackman writes in more detail about times when the regiment was
moving or in battle and very little about more ordinary details of camp life. Jackman’s
unemotional tone makes his account of the December 31st battle believable. It is
important that he focuses more on recording events than on offering opinions in the
diary entries. Also of note is that these diaries were edited by Jackman himself and
later by others before being published in their current form.
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Firsthand Account of the Battle of Shiloh Written by a Northern Soldier
Digital History ID 403
Author: Edgar Pearce
Date:1862
Annotation:
Under the Anaconda Plan, Union forces in the West were to seize control of the Mississippi River while
Union forces in the East tried to capture the new Confederate capital in Richmond. In the western
theater, the Confederates had built two forts, Fort Donelson along the Cumberland River and Fort Henry
on the Tennessee River, which controlled the Kentucky and western Tennessee region and blocked the
Union’s path to the Mississippi.
The Union officer responsible for capturing these forts was Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885), a West Point
graduate who had resigned from the army because of a drinking problem and who was working in his
father’s tanning shop when the war began. In February 1862, gunboats under Grant’s command took
Fort Henry and ten days later, Grant’s men took Fort Donelson, forcing 13,000 Confederates to
surrender.
Grant and some 42,000 men then proceeded south along the Tennessee River. A Confederate force of
40,000 men, under the command of Beauregard and Johnston tried to surprise Grant before other
Union forces could join him at the Battle of Shiloh. In two days of heavy fighting during which there
were 13,000 Union casualties and over 10,000 Confederate casualties, Grant successfully pushed back
the southern forces. By early June, Union forces controlled the Mississippi River as far south as
Memphis, Tennessee.
A first-hand account of the Battle of Shiloh, written by a northern soldier, follows.
Document:
I received your letter last Sunday morning and will freely admit that I was very much pleased to see that
you had really devoted a whole sheet to your unworthy brother away down South in Dixie and in the
midst of Secesh [the Confederacy], but although it is a[n] exciting fact, it is here that we are in the midst
of Secesh [Confederates] for they lay all around us in the shelf of death, and now only a few rods from
[us are]…over 250 dead bodies and all secesh, we did not bury Union men & rebels together at all…. A
great number of them were killed on Sunday & when I rode on the field on Friday last dead bodies could
still be seen lying round in the brush. It was an useful 24 hours work, but thank fortune now all is quiet
and we still sit …in our own beds…. But…we know not at what time the hole may open again in all its
fury. We are directly in the advance, but now they have moved hosts of our army to the front and we
are back of the center, and cannot be surprised as we were before….
He [the enemy] will at least make a desperate resistance, if he does not make another attack himself, he
is said to have an army of 120,000 at his command, but he may not hold this number, 5 rebel deserts
that came here a day or two ago say there he used all the eloquence he was master of to get his men to
make an advance on us again but was unable to get his men to come up to fire. If this is true than it
shows that his men are sensible to the last, for the probability is great they will get whipped most
outrageously, if they do try again, for we are the conquerors, and they are whipped and disheartened….
We are flushed with victory and they are disheartened by defeat, they were too confident on last
Sunday evening a week ago, when Beauregard telegraphed home that this was a second Manassas [Bull
Run], that the Yankees fought with stubbornness, and with the bravery of despair, but the southern
blood was too much for them, and that the Federals were completely whipped, in the next morning, he
would take and kill the whole of the Federal forces….
[Confederate] General Beauregard is an able General, or he would not have caught us in the way he did
before. I can’t help admiring him as a military man, though I do wish someone had been lucky enough to
shoot him. However Sidney A. Johnston [sic], who was the Commander in Chief was killed, and I have
stood over his body….
I have rode over this field and through the dead…when the stench was so intolerable that my company,
and old soldiers at that, had to throw their dinners all overboard, and that on horseback too….I had
human bodies for my landmarks from Monday till Friday night, and by that time they were so bloated
that you could hardly tell what they were, and Union men at that…literally torn all to pieces, heads gone
and bodies cut right in two….”
Copyright 2016 Digital History
As you read, consider the following:
•How does each soldier describe the day-to-day reality of the war? What do they have to say about the
larger political, military, economic, and social issues of the war? (i.e. secession, slavery, the military
strategies of generals, etc.)
•What are the biggest issues that seem to affect their lives?
•How are their experiences and perspectives similar and/or different from one another? What can these
similarities and differences tell us?
•How do these documents compare to the secondary source information you have learned about the
war so far (in McPherson)?
Summarize your findings in an essay of 3-4 pages (750-1000 words), citing evidence from the primary
sources, McPherson, and any other outside sources necessary to your arguments.
Your essay should include:
1.An introduction in which you introduce your topic and present a clear thesis statement.
2.A series of paragraphs that present evidence that clearly supports your thesis. Introduce each
paragraph with a topic sentence. Each paragraph should contain only one topic.
3.A conclusion in which you restate your main points and thesis.
4.All quotations and paraphrased information must include in-text citations APA or Chicago/Turabian
format.
Use the following links for help with research and writing:
•Excelsior College Library Research Guide – History
(Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
•Excelsior College OWL – The Writing Process (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
Use the EC Library resources to properly cite your work:
•Citing Sources (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
•Plagiarism & Copyright (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.
Compose your work in a .doc or .docx file type using a word processor (such as Microsoft Word, etc.)
and save it frequently to your computer. For those assignments that are not written essays and require
uploading images or PowerPoint slides, please follow uploading guidelines provided by your instructor.

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