MS - 027: Michael Moyer Co. C 173rd Pennsylvania, Civil War Diary
Processed by Leia Dunn
Born on February 28, 1836, Michael Moyer was 26 when he enlisted into Company C 173rd Pennsylvania Volunteers. He had been living in North Anville, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania when the draft was enacted on October 16, 1862. Soon after, he was approached by Henry Steckbeck, who was willing to pay Moyer $500 to be his substitute and serve his nine months in the war.
The 173rd spent most of their time stationed at Camp Veile by Tanner Creek in Virginia, where Michael Moyer had a variety of jobs. He served as a picket to guard the boats, camp, and telegraph from rebels; acted as an orderly for the Adjutant; kept watch on a boat that ran from Norfolk, Virginia to North River, North Carolina; went on a recruiting expedition, and participated in provost guard duty to prevent drunkenness and the smuggling of whisky in and out of Norfolk. On May 30, 1863, he was appointed corporal.
When he wasn't drilling or on dress parade with his company, Michael Moyer wrote to his father and his brothers Phillip, Christopher, and Henry (who was serving in Company G 148th Pennsylvania Volunteers and is listed there as John H. Moyer), and his sisters Kate and Lizie. He also wrote to his wife and daughter, Lizie (named after his sister) and corresponded with Henry Steckbeck.
Scope and Content Notes:
The Civil War diary of Michael Moyer contains most of the movements of the 173rd Pennsylvania Regiment, from their enlistment on October 21, 1862 to their abrupt orders to move out of Camp Veile on July 10, 1863. Moyer comments often about the weather, company drilling, and letters he wrote or received. He also notes the death of four men who died at Camp Veile from typhoid fever during their stay, one was a drummer boy. He also mentions hearing cannonading at Fort Suffolk and Fort Monroe on occasion and receiving news of the fighting in Fredericksburg.
In the back of the diary is a listing of the distances traveled by the regiment during the campaign and a poem to Michael Moyer from Henry Steckbeck.