MS - 042: Lt. Sylvester Crossley, 118 Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, Company H (Corn Exchange)
Processed by: Christine M. Ameduri
Purchased September 2002 from Charles Apfelbaum.
Sylvester Crossley was twenty-two years old when he was mustered into the 118 Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, Company H, in Philadelphia, PA on August 2, 1862 and was wounded at the battle of Fredericksburg in December of that year. His Compiled Military Service Record (CMSR) confirms that he was promoted to 1st Sergeant in January of 1863, was detached from his regiment between July and November 1863 for recruiting service duty and was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant in January 1864. He was captured on June 2, 1864 while on picket duty near Mechanicsville, VA and was a prisoner until February 14, 1865 when he and four other officers escaped from Marion, GA. He writes in his diary, "Leave camp...and make my escape with Captains Getman, Porter and Johnson...and Lt. Smith...We spend the night in hard travel through a sleety cold rain." On February 20th he writes, "We came across a fire, which for a while we suppose to be Rebel pickets...but, God be thanked, we find to be our own men." He was honorably discharged in April 1865.
Scope and Content Notes:
This diary/journal consists of entries that Sylvester Crossley kept between December of 1864, his sixth month as a prisoner of war in Marion, Georgia, and May 15, 1865, about three months after his escape. It is a first hand account of his day to day life in a southern military prison camp, his experiences while an escapee and eventual return to his unit.