A Civil War Surgeon Chronicles the Closing Days of the War. Civil War Surgeon's Diary of Dr. James Thomas Ghiselin. Dr. Ghiselin was a surgeon in the U.S. Army from 1855-1875. He served primarily in the Southwest Territories, but was transferred in January of 1865 to General Sheridan's command in Virginia.

    The diary begins on January 14, 1865 with entries thru January 19. Daily entries begin again starting on February 28, 1865 and end on May 3, 1865. The March 26 entry states that Dr. Ghiselin joined General Sheridan on the James River across from Aiken's Landing. The diary is an accurate account of Grant's final campaign, ending with the surrender of General Lee at Appomatox Court House on April 9, 1865. (see E.B. Long, The Civil War Day By Day: An Almanac 1861-1865)

    Dr. Ghiselin was the surgeon assigned to General Sheridan's Cavalry during this campaign and the diary entries include descriptions of the engagements on a daily basis. Detailed descriptions are highlighted of the battles of Five Forks, Amelia Court House, Sayler's Creek, and the attention to the wounded involved, including Confederate prisoners. The diary includes a first-hand entry of the surrender and Union celebration at Appomatox. The diary also mentions General Custer and other Union officers' actions during the campaign.

    The diary is a period, leather-bound 6" x 3" pocket notebook with approximately 200 pages of which 50 have entries in a legible hand. The entries are all in pencil and are generally in very good or better condition. Included with the diary is a pass issued to Dr. Ghiselin dated November 30, 1864, allowing him to travel to any station or depot in the Middle Military Division by command of Major General Sheridan, signed by E.B. Parsons, Provost Marshal. Also included is a one-page handwritten note to Dr. Ghiselin dated April 1, 1865, informing him of 50 wounded men left in a house for his attention.

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    Auction Dates
    December, 2006
    1st-2nd Friday-Saturday
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