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Confederate diary entry for Jubal Early’s occupation of York

1861 centre square

North Carolina soldiers from Jubal Early’s division of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia marched through York’s streets from June 28 until June 30, 1863, preceding the battle of Gettysburg. They camped in the army barracks at the old fairgrounds, as well as in the two market sheds in Centre Square (above in this photo from the blogger’s postcard collection) and in the U.S. Army Hospital on Penn Common.


Private Emanuel Arthur Patterson enlisted in 1862 in the 57th North Carolina (Hoke’s Brigade). In the early summer of 1863, the brigade, temporarily under the command of Col. I. E. Avery following Hoke’s wounding at Second Fredericksburg), marched into York County, Pa. Here is Patterson’s brief account, courtesy of the North Carolina Digital Collections.

“The whole army moved across the Shenandoah into Winchester and had a terrible battle. We captured the town, [Maj. Gen. Robert H.] Millroy’s commissaries and 1100 prisoners, from there we started to Gettysburg, wadded the Potomac near Shepardstown Md.

We continued the march for several day passed Gettysburg going on to York Pa. Early’s division entered York on Sun. The people were going to church and children were heard saying to their parents “Why papa I thought the Rebels had horns, where are they?” The soldiers pointed their bayonets at them and said “Here are our horns.”

The Yankees left the town and we took charge of their barracks and spent the night there we were treated unusually kind one woman brought me a pair of socks and something to eat.

We moved back twenty miles to Gettysburg and entered the memorable battle…”