Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 27 – June 2, 1863

27th Wednesday  rather a cloudy damp day & evening, I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ about sick with a cold.

28th Thursday  rather a cloudy rainey day I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home at 8 ½ and went to bed about 9 ½ nearly sick.

29th Friday  a rainey day with a heavey shower between 6 & 7, I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ nearly sick with a cold.

30th Saturday  A cloudy rainey day the ground verry wet. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ nearly sick, Russequie got home Army.

31st Sunday  rather a cloudy damp morning with a shower about 10 then cleared off more pleasant. I did my choars was at home all day nearly went to office & Hoyts fixed my calf paster & cleaned out celler choared round etc came home & went to bed about 9 nearly sick.

June 1st Monday rather a fine day but cool, I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ and went to bed about 9 ½ tiard & nearly sick.

2nd Tuesday  rather fine cool weather some cloudy, I did my choars was at the office all day & in the evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ tiard & about sick. Russequie went to Chicago about this morning.”

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Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 20 – 26, 1863

20th Wednesday  rather a fine day. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½.

21st Thursday  rather fine weather for the season. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½.

22nd Friday  rather a fine day & evening. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ went to bed about 9 Wm & Caroline went to S Willsons & stayed all night.

May 23rd Saturday  rather a fine day & evening. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 9 & went to bed after 10 about sick. Wm & Car came back from Willsons H Gould & family came up & stayed all night & went to the Shows at tavern got home a little after 12.

24th Sunday  rather a fine day but some cloudy. I did my choars was around home the most of the day a choaring went to the office 3 times called at Hoyts in evening came home at 9 & went to bed about sick, Wm McNelly, wife, David & the girls were here, Gould went home about 3, Wm McNelly went home about 4, David & the girls stayed all night.

25th Monday  rather pleasant morning but showerey afternoon. I did my choars was at the office all day & in the evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ nearly sick, Wm & ? Dalton started back between 12 & one [in margin] William started for Galatine.

26th Tuesday  A cloudy damp day & rained some. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ nearly sick with a cold.”

Biking Along the Old Chicago, Aurora and Elgin Train Line

As Warrenville and area residents take part in the Warrenville Bike Rodeo this Saturday, the Warrenville Historical Society remembers the electric trains that used to run along the Prairie Path; originally posted in 2011.

After a decades-long struggle to acquire access to the ever-expanding train lines out of  Chicago, Warrenville got its railroad in 1902.  The Chicago, Aurora & Elgin Railroad (CA&E) made its way through Warrenville and brought with it visitors from the Chicago region and the ease of rail travel to Warrenville residents.  Warrenville’s public high school students used the CA&E train to get to school in Wheaton, using a monthly ride ticket given to them by the School Board.  The train made four stops for Warrenville students-Williams Road, the downtown depot, Winfield Road, and Wiesbrock Road.

Warrenville CA&E Railroad station

Warrenville CA&E Railroad station

Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 13 – 19, 1863

13th Wednesday  rather fine weather. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home at 8 ½ & went to bed at 9 ½.

14th Thursday  fine weather but cool.  I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed 9.

15th Friday  fine weather but cool, I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed 9 ½.

16th Saturday  a fine day but cool. I did my choars was at the office all day & in the evening came home 8 ½ went to bed 9 ½.

17th Sunday  A fine cool morning & day, I did my choars was at home all day a choaring working in the garden fixing fences etc call at Hoyts before 8 came home 20 minutes to 9 wrote some & went to bed about 9 ¼ nearly sick.

18th Monday  rather a fine day & evening. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ tiard & nearly sick Wm & wife came from McNelly.

19th Tuesday  rather a fine day & evening. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½.”

Hiram E. Leonard Diary, May 6 – 12, 1863

6th Wednesday  A cold morning with snow on the ground & water frozen a little I did my choars was at the office all day & in the evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed 9 ½.

7th Thursday  rather more pleasant & growing warmer I did my choars was at the office all day & eve came home at 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½ tiard & nearly sick.

8th Friday  rather a fine day & evening I did my choars was at the office all day & eve came home at 8 ½ & went to bed at 9 ½. Wm Wray got home when stage came 11 ½ (I did my choars eves) [in margin] Wm Wray got home on furlow.

9th Saturday  rather a fine warm day, I did my choars was at the office all day packed things for soldiers afternoon came home at 8 ½ & went to bed about 9 ½, Mr McNelly & wife were here & went back at 4.

10th Sunday  some cloudy in morning but fine warm day, I did my choars was at the office till near noon fixing box & ________ & marking box for soldiers came home fixed fence worked in garden etc wrote some was at Hoyts in day & evening came home & went to bed at about 9 Will & Roll went to see Graves.

11th Monday  rather a fine day & evening. I did my choars was at the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed 9 ½.

12th Tuesday  fine weather for May. I did my choars was the office all day & evening came home about 8 ½ & went to bed at 9 ½ nearly sick went to McNellys.”

Warrenville and the American Civil War: May 1863

The Warrenville volunteers who were making trips home during the early part of 1863 had an often long journey back to Warrenville from their various camps in Kentucky and Tennessee.  A walk to the nearest train station, followed by a train ride to Chicago would get them close, but since Warrenville did not have a railroad through the community at the time, they then had to choose either a stagecoach ride, a train ride to Wheaton or Turner, present day West Chicago, on the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad or in 1863 a new option of riding the new commuter train service offered by the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad that went from Chicago to Naperville.  On May 8th William Wray arrived back in Warrenville on leave from the 105th Infantry by stagecoach.  He headed back to war after resting at home for 17 days.

Taken from the Warrenville Historical Society’s program “1863 in 48 Minutes” that was held on January 27, 2013.