We were on the road again this morning at 6 Oclock marched, out to the Brig. about 4 miles and haulted to draw rations to last us three but did not have time to issue them before we had to fall in again. I was not very well so I got my Knapsack and gun into the ambulance. We passed through the town of Williston a station on the Branchville R. R. We marched very steady today we must have marched about 20 miles and went into camp about 5 PM about 1/2 mile from the Edisto river.
Today we have our first foreshadowing of the demon that will torture young Pvt. Brown out of the service, although it will take him until 17 March for a doctor’s diagnosis. As we know, disease took more men than bullets from both Union and Confederate armies. Many enlistees, especially from isolated rural communities, were hit with strange diseases as soon as they hit training camp, never making to the battle field.
The worst source of sickness was basic dysentery, accounting for about 45,000 Union deaths and 50,000 Confederate deaths—the link between health and sanitation was just becoming well known. Other virulent diseases included typhoid from contaminated ford or water, pneumonia, malaria, tuberculosis, measles and smallpox.