26 March 1863

Frankfort, Kentucky
March 26th 1863

Brother Albert,

I received a letter from you yesterday saying that you had not received a letter for two weeks. I think some of the mail has been lost for I have not received as much mail as I ought for some time back. But I wrote you about the first of the week or the last of last week which you have probably received before now.

We have just got over another scare about another rebel raid ¹ and I suppose they have been fighting at Danville and maybe they are now for all I know.

We have now moved our encampment up on the hill in the rear of the fort. The regiment moved yesterday morn early. I was out on picket at the time and did not have the fun of pulling up stakes and moving in a rain storm which of course I consider a very great loss. The men are at work on the fort. ² They—the citizens—were scared almost to death yesterday, They were picking up their duds and “printing out” but the Colonel said, “hold on.” The depot was full of such but Col. Jack [John Casement] would not let the train go out. All the ammunition in the arsenal is loaded onto the cars ready to be sent to Louisville if the rebs come. We have two field pieces in the fort already. But after all, I do not think that the rebs will give us a call this time.

If I have a chance to go home between this and fall, I shall improve the opportunity for truly I would like to see you all and your house &c. but I think the married men ought to go home first. After they have had their turn, then I will pitch in.

Fenner [Bosworth] ³ & Hen have not gone home yet and for ought I know, will not go right away. We are all well and hearty and can eat all that we can get.

I would like to give you a description of the fort that we are building. I will try and mark out the shape.

[sketch]

You see the shape is [    ] and is not easily described on paper. In the front towards the city, there is first a stone wall and an embankment about 5 feet high and 8 feet thick. This is right on the brow of the hill. The embankment on the other side is about ten feet thick and eight feet high. On the inside is a platform or shelf about three or four feet wide for infantry to stand on to repel an attack. On the outside of the embankment there is a ditch 8 feet wide and five feet deep. See engraving.

1–inside of fort
2–shelf for infantry
3–embankment of dirt
4–cedar brush 2 feet thick and projecting over the side of the ditch about 18 inches. The other end buried in the embankment,
5–ditch.

You will get but an imperfect idea from this I am afraid. I understand that it is going to be mounted with 12 guns. Six 32-pounders & six 64-pounders.

Tonight I received a letter from you and Minerva. I will answer them as soon as I can find time. Write often to your brother, — Lyman

sketch


¹ In his diary, Sgt. William Chapman of Co. H, 103rd OVI, wrote on 25 March 1863: “Have been up to Frankfort today to headquarters. The excitement is abating and the Rebels are retreating in the direction of Mt. Sterling.”

² Lyman is describing Fort Boone—an earthen forts built on Fort Hill overlooking the city of Frankfort.

³ Fenner Bosworth was 37 years old when he enlisted in Co. D, 103rd OVI in August 1862. He rose in rank to sergeant but was reduced to ranks in April 1863. He again rose in rank to sergeant but was reduced to ranks in January 1865. He mustered out in May 1865. He was Lyman B. Hannaford’s brother-in-law. Fenner married Jane Hannaford about 1853.

IMG_4802
What the Fort Boone Earthworks look like today.
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