100 HISTORY OF THE SEVENTY-EIGHTH REGIMENT O.V.V.I.
and not till then. This thing of guarding rebel property, when the owner is in the field fighting us, is played out. This is the sentiment of every private soldier in the army.
Our second day's march brought us within half a mile of Lagrange where we bivouaced for the night, but as usual Company E had to go on picket; we were posted about four hundred yards behind the regiment and inside of other forces. Therefore not being in a very dangerous "posish" we built big fires of rebel rails (which always seem to burn better than Union rails) along our posts. It is reported that our advance drove out of this place about five thousand of the invincible chivalry, and had a skirmish with them at Davis' Mills, which might have been considerable of a fight had the rebels stood their ground.
On Wednesday morning the Seventy-Eighth Ohio and Thirty-First Illinois, and a detachment of the Seventh Illinois Cavalry, with a section of artillery went out on a reconnoisance on the Somerville road. We halted about eight miles out, planted the artillery and put out pickets, while the cavalry went ahead to see about the rebels. They returned in two or three hours with three butternuts, being the result of the trip. Finding no enemy there except the women we started back, and got into camp about dark. When we got inside of our encampments, marching through them to our own, the question was asked at every rod, what regiment? The answer was given again and again, "Seventy-Eighth" Ohio. One fellow when receiving this answer responds in a courteous manner, "damn the Seventy-Eighth Ohio, it is every where."
On these marehes and scouts persimmons and grapes have to suffer. Sweet potatoes and apples are about played out in this country. In places where our army has been encamped a few days it is surprising how all good things disappear.
. The first night of our arrival here, before guards had been posted, the boys went for every thing in the eating line; for they were out of rations and there was no chance to get any till they came from Bolivar. Fresh beef and dead hogs were in good demand.
The Twentieth, Sixty-Eighth and Seventy-Eighth Ohio and Twenty-Third Indiana, constitute the Brigade, commanded by Colonel M. D. Leggett. Since the arrival of new recruits our regiment numbers about eight hundred men. In these parts it is regarded a number one regiment. An order from the War Department was read on dress parade last evening, to the effect that our transportation had to be cut down to four wagons to the regiment, and that our large tents would be turned over to the Quartermaster, and small ones issued in their stead, such as we can carry on our backs. The tents will be just large enough to hold two persons, one to carry the tent, the other the poles, all strapped to the knapsack. What do you think of that? Oh, it is hard times! and would this cruel war were over.
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