Entry by Cornelia Peake McDonald, September 26, 1862

    Source citation
    Cornelia Peake McDonald, A Woman's Civil War: A Diary, with Reminiscences of the War, from March 1862, ed. Minrose C. Gwin (New York: Gramercy Books, 2003), 71-72.
    Date Certainty
    Transcription adapted from A Woman's Civil War: A Diary, with Reminiscences of the War, from March 1862 (2003), edited by Minrose C. Gwin
    Adapted by Don Sailer, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following transcript has been adapted from A Woman's Civil War: A Diary, with Reminiscences of the War, from March 1862 (2003).
    Sept. 26th - Two months since I wrote a line, and oh! the sorrow they have left me. They have taken away my flower. My sweet blue-eyed baby has left me forever. I saw her fading out but never dreamed that she was dying. Though for many nights I have sat with her in my arms soothing her restlessness, the day time would come and bring smiles and happy looks, and I had not a thought of danger.

    After a time the smiles were all gone, and the little face was sad and grave.

    Just as if her soul had tasted
    Drops of death’s mysterious wave.

    Her head drooped and her little round limbs grew thin, and her eyes followed me wherever I went. Then I held her night and day and I clung to her as if I could not give her up.

    One evening as the sun was going down I held her in my arms, and as she breathed out her little life her eyes were fixed in my face with the shadow of death over them. The children stood around sobbing. The little breast heaved and panted, one long sigh and all was still; her eyes still fixed in my face. Ah that fearful shadow! How I saw it flit over that lovely countenance, withering all its bloom and leaving its own ashen grey to remain forever…

    For days after she left me I felt as if my heart was dead. Nothing could interest me and it was vain to try to occupy myself with any thing. All seemed unreal, as if it was slipping rapidly away. The world was a dream, and a troubled, sorrowful one. Eternity appeared so near that earth and its concerns were being absorbed in its light…
    How to Cite This Page: "Entry by Cornelia Peake McDonald, September 26, 1862," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College, https://hd.housedivided.dickinson.edu/node/34728.