Diary Preface - Diary Part II - Diary Part III - Diary Addendum - Haskell Home Page.
May 5, 1775 -- August 31, 1775
(Born July 1, 1754 - Died January 12, 1829)
May 5th, 1775. -- At Newburyport, enlisted in the American army under the
command of Capt. Ezra Lunt.
May 8th, Monday. -- This morning our company was called together. We chose our sergeants and corporals. In the afternoon Mr. Parsons gave us a discourse suitable to the occasion from Judges 7th and 20th.
May 9th, Tuesday. -- We are getting in readiness to march to Cambridge.
May 10th, Wednesday. -- This morning we were paraded at town house. After attending prayers at Mr. Cary's meeting-house and taking leave of our friends, we set out on our march. We took refreshments at Rowley, at night we put up at Ipswich.
May 11th, Thursday. -- Public Fast! We set out at five o'clock in the morning, took breakfast at Beverly, attended public worship in the forenoon. Mr. Hitchcock gave us a suitable discourse from Psalms 56th and 3rd; set out at noon; took refreshments in Danvers; put up at night in Lynn.
May 12th, Friday. -- Set out in the morning; took our breakfast in Mystick. We arrived at Cambridge at half after 11 o'clock; took our quarters at Bolin's (a tory) house.
May 13th, Saturday. -- This morning we were ordered on guard at Inman's point. In the afternoon had orders to hold ourselves in readiness to meet the enemy; had an alarm; the larger part of our army marched down to Charlestown; the alarm proved false.
May 14th, Sunday. -- In the morning were relieved from guard. In the afternoon attended public worship in the meeting house; heard Mr. Noble from Ex. 32 chapter 7 to 12th verses.
May 15th, Monday. -- In the forenoon I went to Charleston; were called together on the common in the afternoon; after attending public prayers were dismissed.
May 16th, Tuesday. -- This morning, between one and two o'clock, we were alarmed, preceded to our alarm post immediately; the alarm proved false.
May 17th, Wednesday. -- A pleasant morning; the whole army was paraded in the afternoon on the common; in the evening about nine o'clock we espied a large fire in Boston.
May 18th, Thursday. -- Warm weather; no remark today.
May 19th, Friday. -- We removed from Bolin's to Wigglesworth's.
May 20th, Saturday. -- I went to Watertown to see some canon and mortars that were brought in; this afternoon there was a man whipped and drummed out of the army for stealing.
May 21st, Sunday. -- Attended public worship, heard Dr. Langdon, in the forenoon from Isaiah 26:11; in the afternoon from Chronicles 15:14.
May 22nd, Monday. -- Today a party of the enemy came out and landed on Grape Island, near Weymouth, in order to take some cattle off the island. Our people in Roxbury discovered them. A number went over on the island and beat them off without the loss of a single man. Set fire to a barn and destroyed it with the hay, and brought the cattle off at night. I went on guard at Lechmere's Point.
May 23rd, Tuesday. -- Came off guard this morning. Were paraded on the common in the afternoon. Heard prayers.
May 24th, Wednesday. -- All still in camp. No remarks.
May 25th, Thursday. -- Attended prayers night and morning. Our army is in high spirits.
May 26th, Friday. -- Fine weather. This evening about 300 of our people went down to Chelsea to prevent the enemy from taking the cattle off Nottle's Island.
May 27th, Saturday. -- Today a party of the Massachusetts and New Hampshire forces, about 600, went over to Noddle's Island to bring off some cattle. The enemy landed on the island, and pursued our men till they got back to Hog Island, at which time an armed schooner, belonging to the enemy came to their assistance, and to prevent our people from leaving Hog Island - which she could not effect. Our people put a heavy fire of small arms upon the barges. Capt. Foster came with two field pieces and began to play upon the schooner, which soon obliged them to quit her. She then caught on Winnisimot ferry ways. Our people set fire to her and burned her to the water. We saved all that was not burned. We took four pieces of cannon, a number of swivels and some clothing, and brought all the cattle off both islands. In the engagement we had not one killed, and but three wounded, and those not mortally.
May 28th, Sunday. -- This morning, held ourselves in readiness to assist our men fighting at Chelsea, which detained us from public worship. In the afternoon heard Dr. Langdon from John 3:16-17.
May 29th, Monday. -- This day, a quantity of the spoil taken at Chelsea was brought to Cambridge. In the evening saw a large fire, supposed to be in Boston. Had a report that 1000 men would come out; held ourselves in readiness to meet them.
May 30th, Tuesday. -- This day, the remainder of the cattle taken off the island were brought to Cambridge.
May 31st, Wednesday. -- This day, the new Provincial Congress met at Watertown, before whom the Rev. Dr. Langdon preached a sermon well adapted to the occasion from Isaiah. 1: 26. Joseph Warren, esq. was chosen president and Mr. Samuel Freeman, secretary.
June 1st, Thursday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
June 2nd, Friday. -- This morning a man belonging to Haverhill hung himself in a barn. A number of men with artillery went about their business-private.
June 3rd, Saturday. -- This morning our men at Chelsea took a barge with two men near Deer Island; took two men and 400 sheep, and a number of cattle from off the island. In the afternoon the army were all drawn up on the common, when two men were whipped, and one drummed out for stealing. In the evening the barge that was taken was brought to Cambridge on wheels.
June 4th, Sunday. -- This morning attended public worship at Cambridge; heard Mr. Cleveland of Cape Ann, from Isaiah 1st; 21, 22 and 23. In the afternoon went to Watertown; heard Mr. Woodward of Weston from Psalm 126: 5.
June 5th, Monday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
June 6th, Tuesday. -- Today General Putnam went to Charlestown, and exchanged six prisoners with General Gage, and brought our men to Cambridge.
June 7th, Wednesday. -- This morning I rode down to Roxbury; went down to the lower sentinel, attended prayers on the common in the evening.
June 8th, Thursday. -- A very dry season. This morning a bad woman was taken up in camp, in the afternoon was doused in the river and drummed out of town.
June 9th, Friday. -- This morning our regiment was paraded. We had an alarm; heard that 1400 of the enemy were landed at Noddle's Island.
June 10th, Saturday. -- Today our people at Chelsea went over to Noddle's Island, set fire to a building improved by the enemy for a store, and laid it in ashes. Those that lay near by fired on them several times, but did no damage. There is now no building left there.
June 11th, Sunday. -- This morning was on guard. In the afternoon went to Watertown. Heard a sermon from Luke 12: 20.
June 12th, Monday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
June 13th, Tuesday. -- Dry warm weather. In the evening had a refreshing shower.
June 14th, Wednesday. -- Today a number of trumpets arrived from Boston, with reinforcement of horse and foot; were ordered in readiness for a battle.
June 15th, Thursday. -- Making all preparations for a battle.
June 16th, Friday. -- This morning I went on guard. In the evening a party was ordered Bunker's Hill in Charlestown to entrenching.
June 17th, Saturday. -- This day begins with the noise of cannon from the ships firing on our men entrenching on Bunker's Hill. The firing continues all the fore part of the day; but one man killed. We were alarmed at Cambridge; heard that the enemy were landing at Charlestown. The army set out. We found the town in flames, and the Regulars ascending the hill; the balls flying almost as thick as hailstones from the ships and floating batteries, and Corps' Hill and Beacon Hill in Boston, and the ground covered with the wounded and dead. Our people stood the fire for some time, until the enemy had almost surrounded us and cut off our retreat. We were obliged to quit the ground and retreat as fast as possible. In this engagement we lost the ground and the heroic General Warren; we had 138 killed and 292 wounded. The loss on the enemy's side were 92 commissioners, 102 sergeants, 100 corporals and 700 privates. Total 994.
June 18th, Sunday. -- Early this morning were employed making cartridges and getting in readiness for another battle. A large reinforcement came in from the country. At noon we were alarmed again. Marched to Prospect Hill which we were fortifying; were ordered to halt and wait for orders from the General. Marched back again; had orders to hold ourselves in readiness to march at the first notice. The enemy kept up a continual firing upon us at Prospect Hill, which we were fortifying. At 9 o'clock in the evening received orders to go down to the hill, march to headquarters. Received new orders to go back to our quarters and hold ourselves in readiness.
June 19th, Monday. -- The daylight comes on with the noise of cannon from Bunker's Hill and floating batteries discharging at us on Prospect Hill which continues all day. The enemy set the upper end of Charlestown on fire. We mounted picket guard.
June 20th, Tuesday. -- On guard this morning; we passed muster in the afternoon; in the evening were relieved from guard.
June 21st, Wednesday.-Pleasant weather. We continued entrenching on Prospect Hill without disturbance.
June 22nd, Thursday. -- Today we were sworn and received one month's pay.
June 23rd, Friday. -- This day we were ordered to Prospect Hill, where we were stationed. Went down, pitched our tents, went to entrenching.
June 24th, Saturday. -- This morning were alarmed by the enemy marching towards our lines. In the afternoon there was hot firing at Roxbury. Two of our men went down to set the enemy's guard house on fire; they both were killed. Three houses set on fire at Roxbury by shells thrown from the fortification, but by the expedition of the people they were put out. We built booths with turf and brush and moved into them.
June 25th, Sunday. -- This day is showery. We drew our tents and pitched them in the orchard below Prospect Hill. In the evening a number of Indians went down to the enemy's sentinel and fire on them. Killed five and wounded one.
June 26th, Monday. -- This morning is pleasant. In the afternoon we struck our tents and moved them about a quarter of a mile, and pitched them on a hill adjoining Prospect Hill.
June 27th, Tuesday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
June 28th, Wednesday. -- This morning were paraded; marched to our alarm post in the fort, where we exercised two hours over the breastwork.
June 29th, Thursday. -- This morning at 3 o'clock, 3 men were punished; one had 79 stripes for challenging his officer, one had 39 stripes for stealing, and one rode the wooden horse for abuse to his officers. In the evening had a hot firing at Roxbury on both sides.
July 1st, Saturday. -- This morning, about 2 o'clock, a hot firing began on both sides at Roxbury, which lasted four hours. We were alarmed on Prospect Hill. Two ships arrived at Boston.
July 2nd, Sunday. -- This day the Hon. George Washington, Esq., Commander in Chief of the united forces in America, arrived at Cambridge. This afternoon had rain.
July 3rd, Monday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
July 4th, Tuesday. -- This morning our people took four horses from the British. In the afternoon a party was ordered to Lechmere's Point to entrenching.
July 5th, Wednesday. -- This morning at 3 o'clock we were turned out. In the morning at 10 o'clock we were alarmed by a firing at Roxbury. Proceeded to our alarm post; was dismissed in one hour; all still.
July 6th. Thursday. -- This day Rev. Mr. Cleveland, our chaplain, came into camp. Attended prayers at our barracks. In the evening a man deserted from our army to the enemy.
July 7th, Friday. -- This morning I was on main guard; were alarmed in the afternoon by a drum beating to arms; proceeded to our post; the alarm being false returned again.
July 8th, Saturday. -- This morning at 3 o'clock our people at Roxbury went down upon the neck; rushed upon the guard; they retreated; our men set fire to the guard house; they made heavy fire upon our party, which was returned; a smart engagement ensued on both sides. Our lines manned for two hours.
July 9th, Sunday. -- This morning our chaplain came and preached in our regiment, from Chronicles 6: 34; in the afternoon from Deuteronomy 23: 9. A flag came from the enemy with a packet from General Lee. A man in a neighboring regiment was whipped twenty stripes for striking an officer.
July 10th, Monday. -- This morning one of the ships fired upon some of our men, who were in the water swimming, but did no harm.
July 11th, Tuesday. -- This day our people at Roxbury made another push upon the enemy's guard in order to set the guardhouse on fire, which they did and received no damage, and brought off one swivel, two small arms, one halberd and a drum.
July 12th, Wednesday. -- This morning our troops at Roxbury went down to Long Island; took eighteen men that were tending cattle on the island, and brought nineteen head of horned cattle and one hundred sheep.
July 13th, Thursday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
July 14th, Friday. -- This day a man at Roxbury was killed by a ball from a floating battery. The enemy are still here.
July 15th, Saturday. -- Exceedingly hot, and has been this week past. We are daily employed in making strong fortifications in different places.
July 16th, Sunday. -- This morning heard a sermon from Ephesians 5:16; in the afternoon from Judges 5: 23.
July 17th, Monday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
July 18th, Tuesday. -- This morning at six o'clock the grand manifest from the Continental Congress was read to the forces, on and about Prospect Hill, which were assembled on said hill, by the Rev. Mr. Leonard, chaplain to Gen. Putnam's forces. On the hill our standard was presented, with this motto; "Appeal to Heaven with American Arms." After it was read Mr. Leonard made a short prayer; then were dismissed with three cheers, the firing of a cannon, and a war-whoop by the Indians.
July 19th, Wednesday. -- Last evening some of our troops went down to entrenching in sight of Bunker's hill. At one o'clock this morning we were called out and manned our lines, as we expected the enemy out upon our party as soon as they were discovered; but they made no stir.
July 20th, Thursday. -- This day is a Fast, appointed by the Continental Congress. Today the light house at Boston was set on fire by our people. Heard a sermon in the morning from Psalms 50:15; in the afternoon from Ecclesiastes 7:14.
July 21st, Friday. -- No remarks today.
July 22nd, Saturday. - This day we discovered the enemy landing of cannon on Charlestown common, and a large number of the enemy drawn up on the hill. At nine o'clock in the evening we were ordered to be upon our arms.
July 23rd, Sunday. -- We were turned out at two o'clock this morning; manned our lines; heard nothing of the enemy. At sunrise returned to our tents. Attended public worship today; heard a sermon in the morning from Isaiah 46: 8; in the afternoon from Luke 7: 31, 32, and 33. After services had some rain.
July 24th, Monday. -- Today all the troops under command of Brigadier-General Putnam, except Colonel Little's regiment, were ordered to march from Prospect Hill, to be stationed elsewhere, their vacancies to be supplied with troops from Cambridge, Winter Hill, etc., under the command of Brigadier-General Green.
July 25th, Tuesday. -- This day two regiments of the Rhode Island forces came from Roxbury and pitched their tents on Prospect Hill, near the fort.
July 26th, Wednesday. -- This morning our regiment was ordered out of the Fort to man the French lines--where we for the future to repair in an alarm. A grenadier, belonging to the enemy's side when on sentry, quitted his post, came over to us, and delivered himself a prisoner to our guards. The whole regiment off duty.
July 27th, Thursday. -- This morning two of the enemy's came over to our guards and were immediately conveyed to headquarters. No duty done in the regiment.
July 28th, Friday. -- This day one hundred men on fatigue out of our regiment.
July 29th, Saturday. -- The whole regiment on main guard.
July 30th, Sunday. -- Last night about one o'clock, a party of riflemen crept within the enemy's sentries, but being discovered, were fired upon, which occasioned a skirmish between them and the enemy's guards. Our party killed seven and took two prisoners; we lost a corporal of the riflemen taken by them. Between twelve and one o'clock we were alarmed and all paraded. There was a cry for volunteers to follow such officers as would head them, when all our company to a man marched out, and some part of all the companies in the regiment. Then we marched to the Fort and grounded our arms to await for orders. The alarm was on account of the enemy beginning to entrench on Charlestown common, and the meaning of the volunteers was to go and beat them off. But they being under cover of their own cannon, it was thought prudent by the general, not to proceed, and by these orders we marched back. Attended public worship in the afternoon.
July 31st, Monday. -- Last night, at 10 o'clock, we were alarmed, marched to our alarm post, were soon ordered back again. The alarm was occasioned by a brisk firing at the lower sentry. The enemy came out of their fort and drove back our sentry. All was soon quiet, and we were ordered back again and turned in. Soon after we were alarmed again with the cry, "Turn out, for God's sake, turn out." We paraded again, manned our lines, and there remained until after sunrise. The larger part of the night, the air was filled with the roaring of cannon and the cracking of small arms on both sides. The riflemen had engaged them on Charlestown common. From two o'clock till after sunrise, killed a number of them and recovered five small arms, and lost not one man. At the same time they were engaged at Roxbury with small arms. Our party set fire to the new light house; killed and took all that were on the island to guard it, which were 43 in number-15 killed and 28 taken. Two of our party were killed by a cannon ball from Bunker's Hill, which kept up a continual firing all day. Between sunset and dark we killed 14 of those that came out to pick up their dead.
August 1st, Tuesday. -- Our troops kept out in scouting parties, firing at them whenever they could see them; had a very hot firing this afternoon; not one of our side hurt; today a number of the enemy were seen carried off dead; at night two of our own men; the flagstaff was raised on Prospect Hill.
August 2nd, Wednesday. -- This morning was all still; had some firing in the afternoon on both sides.
August 3rd, Thursday. -- A hot firing on both sides by spells all day; one of the Indians wounded on Tuesday night died today.
August 4th, Friday. -- Nothing remarkable today.
August 5th, Saturday. -- Our whole regiment on guard. All still.
August 6th, Sunday. -- This morning was relieved from guard. In the afternoon attended public worship; about sunset a number of the enemy landed under cover of a floating battery at Penny Ferry, on Chelsea side; they set fire to a house improved by us for a guardhouse-plundered some sauce; we went down to Temple's wharf and beat them off.
August 7th, Monday. -- This morning we were turned out very early; all the regiment off duty.
August 8th, Tuesday. -- This morning three companies of riflemen armed, arrived here; one of them went down to the enemy's sentries and killed one of them and came off without harm.
August 9th, Wednesday. -- This day a man in our regiment rode a wooden horse, for leaving his post when on sentry.
August 10th, Thursday. -- The riflemen are continually picking off the enemy's sentries.
August 11th, Friday. -- All still; nothing remarkable today.
August 12th, Saturday. -- It is a very wet season; all the remarks I have.
August 13th, Sunday. -- This morning I went on guard; in the forenoon 2 shallops armed with swivels and small arms, lying in Mystic river, near Penny ferry took on board a number of soldiers and went over to Chelsea, we suppose, in order to land; some of our troops, as soon as they were in small arm shot of the shore fired briskly upon them, and they returned the fire with swivels; there was a hot fire for some time, at length we beat them off; we sustained no loss on our side; we killed 15 of the enemy and wounded a number more.
August 14th, Monday. -- This morning at ten o'clock was relieved from guard; nothing remarkable today.
August 15th, Tuesday. -- This morning all still; in the afternoon had a hot firing at Roxbury on both sides; the upper ship fired upon our rangers at Lechmore's Point; we have not heard of any damage.
August 16th, Wednesday. -- Today the sentries fired at each other all day; an express came from Cape Ann for men; a number of riflemen marched off; one of the riflemen was shot thro' the back by accident, but not mortally wounded.
August 17th, Thursday. -- Last night one of the picket guard was killed by one of our sentries, who hailed him, but he gave him no answer. The pickets doubled tonight.
August 18th, Friday. -- The enemy keep a continual firing at our guards and fatigue men at Roxbury. Had a heavy shower; we got very wet in our tents.
August 19th, Saturday. -- This morning one of the enemy swam out of Boston over at Lechmore's Point and delivered himself to our guard. All still in this part of the camp.
August 20th, Sunday. -- This morning attended public worship. Some firing at lower sentries. About sunset were suddenly alarmed; went immediately to our lines; stood there till dark, and then retired to our tents.
August 21st, Monday. -- Our sentry and the enemy's keep a continual firing at each other.
August 22nd, Tuesday. -- This morning I went on guard; at 9 o'clock had orders to keep a strict lookout; we doubled our sentries; all remained still.
August 23rd, Wednesday. -- This morning at 10 o'clock was relieved from guard. Nothing remarkable.
August 24th, Thursday. -- We expect the enemy out every day, and have for a week past; all still.
August 25th, Friday. -- This morning three ships arrived at Boston and were received with a proper salute. In the afternoon four of the enemy belonging to a floating battery swam away from her and came over to us at Prospect Hill. They were fired upon from Bunker's Hill, but received no damage.
August 26th, Saturday. -- This day we are getting in readiness to go down to Ploughed Hill to entrenching at night. About 2000 went down, a part to work, and a part for a covering party; no stir tonight.
August 27th, Sunday. -- At sunrise the covering party marched off; the fatigue men were relieved. Continue entrenching, and not in the least disturbed till 3 o'clock, when the enemy began to cannonade us from Bunker Hill and floating batteries, which continued all day. The sentry engaged with small arms most of the day. We had three men killed and one wounded by cannon balls on Ploughed Hill today. We sunk a floating battery belonging to the enemy, and disabled another with our cannon at Temple's wharf. Our sentry-riflemen and Indians, killed and wounded a number of the enemy today.
August 28th, Monday. -- No firing this morning on either side. Our men keep at work on Ploughed Hill. In the forenoon we were alarmed; marched up to the fort; grounded our arms; soon after were ordered to go back and refresh our selves, and then parade on the hill again-which we did, and then lay by our arms until sunset, then marched back; 97 men were drawn out of our regiment to go on fatigue at Ploughed Hill tonight. We had 1 man killed at Ploughed Hill and one of our company wounded by a musket at the lower sentry.
August 29th, Tuesday. -- This morning I was ordered to Ploughed Hill on a fatigue; it being rainy we did no work. Kept a guard in the Fort. We had five shells and a number of cannon balls thrown among us today, but hurt none of us; at night we were relieved.
August 30th, Wednesday. -- This morning is thick weather and rainy. The storm continued all day. None of the men hurt at Ploughed Hill today.
August 31st, Thursday. -- Continues thick and rainy today, which is uncomfortable weather for us in our tents. The enemy all still.
Diary Part II
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