William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan
Finding aid for
Charles E. Shryock Journal, 1861-1862
James S. Schoff Civil War CollectionFinding aid created by
Mary Parsons, June 2009, and Meg Hixon, August 2011
Charles E. Shryock journal
Shryock, Charles E., 1819-1902
The Charles E. Shryock journal recounts Shryock's experiences in the 51st Regiment of the Virginia Militia during the first year of the Civil War. Colonel Shryock described camp life, related the regiment's movements, and reported war news from other units stationed in northern Virginia.
The material is in English
William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu
Access and Use
The collection is open for research.
Copyright status is unknown
Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.
Charles E. Shryock Journal, James S. Schoff Civil War Collection, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan
Charles E. Shryock was born in September 1819, and lived in Stephens City, Virginia, his entire life. In June 1861, Shryock mustered in the 51st Virginia Militia as a colonel, and commanded F and S companies. After being mustered out a year later, on June 13, 1862, because of his age, Shryock returned home to Virginia and worked as an undertaker in Stephens City until his death on March 16, 1902. Shryock married twice, and had at least two daughters: Laura (b. ca. 1847) and Luella (b. 1860).
Collection Scope and Content Note
The Charles E. Shryock journal (62 pages) contains entries on Shryock's experiences as a colonel in the 51st Regiment of the Virginia Militia during the first year of the Civil War. Shryock described camp life, related the regiment's movements, and reported war news from other units stationed in northern Virginia. He began his journal on September 17, 1861, with a summary of his experiences since July 3, 1861, when his regiment was mustered in for service in the Confederate Army. The remainder of the volume, entitled "Brief notes on the life and experience of a soldier," covers September 6, 1861-January 16, 1862, through a series of nearly daily journal entries that provide updates on his regiment's locations and experiences just south of the Potomac River. Though Shryock focused primarily on facts, he occasionally offered his opinions on the war, and predicted that future historians would glorify the Battle of Manassas, "the effect of which, will be felt till the 'crack of doom' by every vendor of wooden nutmegs north of Dixie" (September 17, 1861). Other entries center on news of Confederate and "Yankee" troop movements in northern Virginia, where the 51st Virginia Militia was stationed, and document the day to day existence of southern soldiers early in the war. Shryock occasionally reported recent skirmishes and "the Enemy's" movements, and kept detailed notes on the location of his own unit. Of particular interest are Shryock's notes on a meeting with the Union Army near "Dam No. 4" on September 26, 1861; he described the skirmish in great detail, explaining how the weather conditions negatively affected their cannons; the attempt ultimately failed, and Shyrock and his unit were not able to destroy the canal as planned.
- Confederate States of America. Army. Virginia Militia Regiment, 51st.
- Virginia--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
- Virginia. Militia. Regiment, 51st.
- United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
- Winchester (Va.)--History.
Additional Descriptive Data
"Col. Chas. E. Shryock Dead." Richmond Dispatch. March 18, 1902.