Narratives are personal stories that help enrich the reader’s understanding of a time period, person, place, or event. These are first-person views of history taken from personal recollections, memoirs, diaries, and oral histories.


Information included in this section is not fact checked by the Encyclopedia staff. The author of the Narrative is entirely responsible for its content.


From the diary of Platt Armstrong, 26th Iowa Infantry, after the battle of Arkansas Post beginning January 15, 1863:
Jan the 15 "It commenced raining last night and is raining yet. It is very disagreeable weather. "
Jan the 16  "This morning we are all covered with snow and yet it snows. We suffer today. Today the boat has started down the river. 3 o'clock we have stopped to go ashore and kill some beef. We have got 5 and we go still in the night."
January the 17 "This morning the weather is cold and clear and we lay at Napoleon with 4,000 new recruits. The town is deserted and the boys is tearing up everything they can.  Beef cattle and sheep is coming in (from) every direction. Here is a marine hospital belonging to the north. It is the only building of note here. It is a town situated at the mouth of the Arkansas River."
Sunday Jan the 18 "This morning quite pleasant but cool. Here we are yet at the mouth of the Arkansas River. The water is rising. I have got the bowel complaint this morning."

Platt Armstrong was my mother's great-grandfather. My mother and her cousin transcribed Platt Armstrong's diary. The original handwritten diary is presently the property of the Lakes United Methodist Church in Lake View, Iowa. I edited this excerpt from the transcription by correcting the spelling and adding punctuation. I was searching for information about Napoleon, which Platt spelled "Napalion," and was fascinated by the verification of the town being used as firewood during the snowstorm.



Kimble Klinzman
Titonka, IA