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[150] to run through more peril than Baltimore could have offered.

There seemed but little enthusiasm in Philadelphia. A city that washes every morning with soap and water is not easily roused into excitement. The Quaker placidity still prevails, and when you add to this the majestic stolidity on the German element, it is not wonderful that the Capital of the Keystone State should not be uproarious. Still let me do Philadelphia justice. I understand that the people were out in large numbers to see us enter, but our delay disappointed them, and they went home. During our stay a lethargic decorum prevailed. The prim beavers of the citizens were glossy and self-possessed. We came and went without a reception or demonstration.

There was one peculiar difference that I noticed existing between the Massachusetts regiments that we met in Philadelphia and our men. The Massachusetts men — to whom all honor be given for the splendid manner in which they afterwards acted in a most trying situation — presented a singular moral contrast to the members of the Seventh. They were earnest, grim, determined. Badly equipped, haggard, unshorn, they yet had a manhood in their look that hardships could not kill. They were evidently thinking all the time of the contest into which they were about to enter. Their gray, eager eyes seemed to be looking for the heights of Virginia. With us, it was somewhat different. Our men were gay and careless, confident of being at any moment capable of performing, and more than performing, their duty. They looked battle in the face with a smile, and were ready to hob-nob with an enemy and kill him afterwards. The one was courage in the rough; the other was courage burnished. The steel was the same in both, but the last was a little more polished.

On April 20, at 4.20, P. M., we left the Phil. adelphia dock, on board the steamer Boston. The regiment was in entire ignorance of its destination. Some said we were going back to New York, at which suggestion there was a howl of indignation. Others presumed that we were going to steam up the Potomac — a course which was not much approved of, inasmuch that we were cooped up in a kind of river steamer that a shot from the fort at Alexandria might sink at any moment. We, however — to make use of a familiar expression--“went it blind,” and the faces did not smile the less because our object was unknown.

It was on board of this steamer that “Joe” came out. You, of course, don't know who “Joe” is. Well, you may rest contented, because he will always remain “Joe” to you. I may, without transgression, however, give you his typograph. I will put him in position, level the lens, and — here he is. Imagine a well-built young fellow of about 21, with mercury instead of blood in his veins, ever on the move, with a sort of quaint, joyous humor seething from him, as if he was always at boiling point. Joe's two specialties, like a winnowing machine that I once saw, are work and chaff. During the evening on board the steamer he distributed himself generally about, with a merry word and a joke for every one. What number of bad puns he made, or what horrible conundrums he made, my exhausted and horrified memory refuses to recall; suffice it to say, that laughter and good-humor followed in his wake, as the white foam smiles astern of some sharp little cutter going before the wind.

The first evening, April 20, on board the Boston, passed delightfully. We were all in first-rate spirits, and the calm, sweet evenings that stole on us as we approached the South, diffused a soft and gentle influence over us. The scene on board the ship was exceedingly picturesque. Fellows fumbling in haversacks for rations, or extracting sandwiches from reluctant canteens; guards pacing up and down with drawn bayonets; knapsacks piled in corners, bristling heaps of muskets, with sharp, shining teeth, crowded into every available nook; picturesque groups of men lolling on deck, pipe or cigar in mouth, indulged in the dolce far niente, as if they were on the blue shores of Capri rather than on their way to battle; unbuttoned jackets, crossed legs, heads leaning on knapsacks, blue uniforms everywhere, with here and there a glint of officers' red lighting up the foreground-all formed a scene that such painters as the English Warren would have revelled in.

I regret to say that all was not rose-colored. The steamer that the Colonel chartered had to get ready at three or four hours notice, he having changed his plans, in consequence of the tearing up of the rails around Baltimore. The result was that she was imperfectly provisioned. As the appetites of the men began to develop, the resources of the vessel began to appeal. In the first place, she was far too small to accommodate a thousand men, and we were obliged to sleep in all sorts of impossible attitudes. There is an ingenious device known to carpenters as “dove-tailing,” and we were so thick that we had positively to dove-tail, only that there was very little of the dove about it; for when perambulating soldiers stepped on the faces and stomachs of the sleepers, as they lay on deck, the greeting that they received had but little flavor of the olive branch.

Notwithstanding that we found very soon that the commissariat was in a bad way, the men were as jolly as sandboys. I never saw a more good-humored set of men in my life. Fellows who would at Delmonico's have sent back a turban de volaille aux truffes because the truffles were tough, here cheerfully took their places in file between decks, tin plates and tin cups in hand, in order to get an insufficient piece of beef and a vision of coffee. But it was all merrily done. The scant fare was seasoned with hilarity; and here I say to those people in New York who have sneered at the


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