and the fine breeze, the idea of going to war struck me with a ten-fold disagreeable contrast.
N-----B-----was quite eloquent on the topic and strongly urged against it. But what's the use?
A man must march when it is his plain duty; and all the more if he has had, in this world, more than his slice of cake!”
On August 10th Lyman
wrote the following letter to General Meade
, in command of the Army of the Potomac:--
As your time is valuable I will write in few words.
I arrived here from Europe
, with my family, some few weeks since; all well.
In your letter to me, dated, Camp opposite Fredericksburg
, December 22, 1862, you were kind enough to say: “I shall be delighted to have you on my staff” ; and you go on to suggest that I should come as “Volunteer aide” with a commission from the Governor
of the state, and getting no pay; only forage for my horses.
I clearly understand that this is no promise
, only an expression of good will.
Therefore I ask you frankly if you are now able and willing to take me as a Volunteer Aide?
I am assured that Governor Andrew
would, for his part, give me a commission.
My military accomplishments are most scanty.
I can ride, shoot and fence tolerably, speak French fluently and German a little, have seen many thousands of troops of most nations of Central Europe
, and have read two or three elementary books.
After all, I fear my sole recommendation is my wish to do something for the Cause.
I will take anything you have to offer.
If you have nothing, perhaps one of your generals would take me on his staff.
[To this General Meade
promptly replied from the Headquarters of the Army of the Potomac.]