Excerpt from new book on the Civil War in York County, Pa.

Jim McClure and I have collaborated on a second volume of stories, anecdotes, and incidents from the residents and visitors to York County, Pa. during the American Civil War. As with the first volume, this contains more than 200 such stories, taken from the letters, journals, and remembrances of the citizens and soldiers from this region as well as from Union and Confederate soldiers who marched through and/or fought in York County.

This book from Colecraft Industries is only $14.95 and is softbound with an index, a map, and more than 40 photographs of York County soldiers and residents, most never before published. It is available from the authors at their various book signings, or from most local booksellers in the York and Gettysburg areas. It will also be available from selected Internet book retailers such as amazon.com. At this time, there are no immediate plans to issue it on Kindle or Nook.

Here is a sample story…

At Camp Suffolk in coastal Virginia, the 166th Pennsylvania’s Samuel Frysinger wrote to his brother Daniel that their biggest battle was not against Rebels, but the dismal elements. After several days of rain followed by a three-inch snowfall, it was again pouring down.

That created problems in keeping the water out of his log hut.

“Our canvas roof is a little too thin,” he complained. “The rain comes through it if it rains hard.” At least the downpours canceled the seemingly endless military drills. But, that yielded boredom. “When the weather is too bad so then we stay in our shanteys and do nothing but going on picket when our turn comes.”

In fact, his messmate Ephraim was then outside in the raw weather. Samuel “pitied the good friend that he had to leave us in our comfortable Shanety and to go out on Picket on such a bad day, but there is no back out, when detail for Picket, but I hope he will be safe back again.”

At least the temporary winter job in the drafted militia paid well. He would receive $135 for his nine months of service, which was “more than I could have made at home.”

His Army experience, he believed, had made him a better man.

“I know if I ever get home again I will never do as I ever done before. I think I know a little more about the world and country then I did when I left home.”[i]


[i] Samuel R. Frysinger to Dear Brother, Feb. 22, 1863, Camp Suffolk, Va., courtesy of Robert Frysinger.

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