cover of book

A Union Soldier in the Land of the Vanquished: TheDiary of Sergeant Mathew Woodruff, June-December, 1865
by Mathew Woodruff
University of Alabama Press, 1969
Paper: 978-0-8173-1257-2

"Mathew Woodruff was a frontiersman by adoption, [and] as a sergeant in the 21st Missouri Infantry, he participated in all the major campaigns of the western theater.  In June 1865, following a furlough home, this veteran of twenty-two rejoined his regiment for occupational duty along the Gulf coast of  Mississippi and Alabama. The journal spans the remaining period of 1865 only, yet it is a unique and revealing chronicle of life in the victorious federal forces."  Civil War History 

"The brief daily entries, with all the misspellings and grammatical mistakes, present an insight into the frustrations and pleasures of a peacetime soldier.  There are a wide range of topics covered:  Woodruff's duties as first sergeant, discipline problems, hunting and fishing trips and social activities.  Beyond the soldier's immediate experience, the reader gets an outsider's view of a southern city during reconstruction."  Alabama Historical Quarterly

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