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Edward Rosewater, Diary, 1 January 1863, pages 2-4, Rosewater Family Papers (MS-503), American Jewish Archives, Cincinnati, Ohio.
Certainly a new era for liberty, but what will be changed
Edward Rosewater had worked as a telegraph operator in Stevenson, Alabama and Nashville, Tennessee at the start of the Civil War, despite his loyalty to the Union; he restored the Cumberland Gap telegraph wires for the Union Army in 1862 and soon after voluntarily joined the army. After serving various posts he was appointed as a telegraph operator for the War Department in Washington, D.C. for a portion of 1862 and 1863.

Rosewater kept a journal intermittently throughout his life. In his 1 January 1863 entry, he mused about what changes the New Year would bring, and included a lengthy description of a New Year?s visit to the White House, in which he described Lincoln as ?cheerfull.? As almost an aside, Rosewater mentioned seeing the ?Proclamation? of the President which set free the slaves in the states in rebellion: ?[Washington] Star has Proclamation of Prest Substance setting free by his authority as Prest of US & Comdr in Chf of A. & N all slaves in States of La except some parishes named including N Orleans. Miss. Fla Tex. Ala S.C. & N.C. Ark Ga & Va excepting some Districts near Norfolk & West Va. News otherwise unimpt except that Banks had arrived at N.O. superceded Butler.? (pages three through four)

Rosewater later moved to Omaha, Nebraska, where he founded and edited the Omaha Bee and was influential in Nebraska politics as one of the leaders of the state Republican Party. See the Rosewater Family Papers Finding Aid for links to the full text of some of Edward Rosewater?s diaries.

A copy of pages two through four of the Rosewater diary is available in PDF format through the "Download Image" link above.