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[233]

‘Two hundred thousand men in blue’: marching up Pennsylvania Avenue, in May, 1865 Bret Harte's poem sounds the note of sorrow amid the national rejoicing at the splendor of the Grand Review. Those who never returned from the field of battle, or returned only to die of their wounds, formed a greater host than that which marched from the recently completed Capitol to the reviewing stand in front of the Executive Mansion. In the Federal army 110,070 were killed in battle or died of their wounds; 199,720 died of disease; 94,866 died in Confederate prisons; other causes of mortality bring the total up to 359,528. The estimates for the Confederate losses are less definite; but probably 94,000 were killed in action, 59,297 died of disease, 4,000 died in prison, and other causes would probably bring the total up to 250,000. Over 600,000 lives were therefore lost to the country by the necessities of warfare. When it is remembered that not only thousands of homes were cast in gloom but that most of these men were young, the cost of the war is apparent.

 

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