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    Civil War Diary, with Battle of Shiloh Content, Belonging to Furman Morris, Company D, 34th Illinois Infantry. Furman Morris was born in New Jersey in 1837. He moved to Dixon, Lee County, Illinois in 1855 at the age of 18. He enlisted on August 26, 1861 as a private and mustered into D Company, 34th Illinois Infantry. Morris's diary covers his early days in the army from his enlistment in August, 1861 until May 5, 1862. His daily recollections are recorded in a 3" x 4.5" stiff-covered diary. The diary begins with an ominous note on the inside front cover: "Furman Morris / Furman Morris / His book / Camp Nevin Nov. 2nd / 1861 / In case of the death / of the owner of / this book / Please send it to / Dixon Lee Co. Ills. / Box 185". Morris writes of his protracted illness, camp life - "One of the men of Co. B met with a slight accident. He was drawing the ball from his gun the cap being on and the hammer being up. Something hit the trigger and off goes the gun carrying the ball and rammer through his hand without hurting him in the least."; and of skirmishes with the Confederates. Some of his more interesting observations come from the April 7 and 8, 1862 period when the 34th Illinois was engaged near Shiloh. On April 7, he writes, in part: "Daylight start on the river with boats go about 8 miles up the Tennessee River land our troops the fight raging on both sides...it continued raging all day or until about 4 or five o'clock...The dead bodies lay thickly over the ground...it is the greatest battle ever fought on this continent. The rebels have retreated toward Corinth...". Morris ends his diary with a letter intended for his brother in which he writes, in part: "If I fall in battle I hope to meet you in heaven". Sadly, the first page is mostly torn out but the remainder of the diary is quite legible. Included with the diary is a copy of Morris's Certificate of Discharge for Disability. A great diary with much potential for research.

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    December, 2014
    13th Saturday
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