A correspondent of the Boston Journal
gives the following reminiscence of the attack upon the Massachusetts Regiment by the Gorillas of Mobtown :--“There was one man who carried himself so bravely while in the midst of danger, that something more than a passing notice should be taken of him. Two days before that Friday, the Sixth were gathered in front of the State-House
, to hear the parting words of Gov. Andrew
At the end of his remarks, the Governor
presented the regiment with a standard, telling them to see to it that no foe should ever take it from them.
They received it with cheers, and swore to die in its defence.
Poor fellows, they little thought then how soon their mettle would be tested.
Well, when they got out of the cars at Baltimore
, to march across the city, the colors were given to the breeze, and borne aloft in defiance of every foe. The standard-bearer, as noble a fellow as ever wore the uniform of the Old Bay
State, was Timothy Crowley
His two aids were Sergeants Derril
Unused, as, indeed, all our soldiers were, to the rough usage of actual warfare, it would not have been strange if Crowley
had shown some signs of fear.
Indeed, he might have rolled up the colors, which would inevitably call down upon him the hatred of the vast and murderous mob. But Crowley
was not made of such stuff.
He had sworn to stand by his standard, and with him it was either succeed, or die in the attempt.
Pistols were freely fired, but the company saw at their head that standard proudly leading them on. No one who has never been in the service can imagine how the colors of a regiment keep up its courage.
So long as they are defiant, the company have light hearts; if they should be taken away, a strange distrust runs through the whole force.
Well, the troops had lost their band; they did not have even a fife and drum; and so they kept their eyes fixed upon this standard.
Tramp, tramp, tramp — left, left, left — the music of their own steady, measured tread — this was all they had. Crowley
was the target for many a missile, for the mob knew that to disgrace the regiment, it was only necessary to down with the standard.
Paving-stones flew thick and fast, some just grazing Crowley's head, and some hitting the standard itself, marks of which were shown us. And this shows the everlasting pluck of Crowley
One stone — my informant said it seemed as large as a hat — struck him just between the shoulders a terrible blow, and then rested on his knapsack.
And yet Crowley
did not budge.
With a firm step he went on, carrying the rock on his knapsack for several yards, until one of the sergeants stepped up and knocked it off. And, said the chaplain,” Heaven only knows what our boys would have done if that standard had been taken; they never would have recovered from such a disgrace.
“Such a noble act, it seems to me, is worthy of record.
showed himself a man. It was not that impulsive kind of action which we call brave; it was something better.
The soldier who is only simply brave, stands only on the lowest round of the ladder of heroism.
All men may be brave.
was cool; he knew beforehand what the consequences might be; he reckoned all the chances.
He showed true courage
--an element of character which is Godlike; it was not impulse — it was real manliness.” --N. Y. Tribune, June 8