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Octave Bruso Diary: Week of December 18, 1864

Note: This is one week’s worth of diary entries of Octave Bruso, who participated in the Siege of Petersburg as a member of the 50th New York Engineers.1

Sunday December 18, 1864

Pleasent day. Inspection at 9 A.M. recieved a letter from Mary Bruso in the Evening. A Salute of 100 Guns fired at Petersburg in the morning in honor of the Nashville Victory.


Monday December 19, 1864

Rainy in the forenoon + pleasent the rest of the day. Wrote to Mary Bruso. Did not feel very well in the morning but felt better the latter part of the day. Recieved a letter from my dear Wife informing me of the death of my friend Martha Lapp.


Tuesday December 20, 1864

Cool + Pleasent Day. Wrote to my dear Wife. Went to work in the forenoon at the Observatory near Fort Welch. Went out in the woods in the afternoon to get some poles for Street Corduroy.


Wednesday December 21, 1864

Bad Day. Rained most all day. Went out to get some wood in the Evening. In Camp all the rest of the day.


Thursday December 22, 1864

Cold + windy Day. Worked all day at the Observatory near Fort Welch.


Friday December 23, 1864

Pleasent + Cool day. Washed in the forenoon. Was taken with the chills and was pretty sick all the afternoon. The Doctor came to see me in the Evening. Took some Powder + a mustard Bath.


Saturday December 24, 1864

Beautiful Day. Felt better Today. Left for the Hospital at two o’clock P.M. Arrived there at 4 P.M.


  1. “1864 Diary of Private Octave Bruso, 50th NY Engineers, Company E” edited by Tom Bauerle, Buffalo, NY, 2010.
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