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[88] The harder the duties, the more contented they seemed to be, like men determined to perform the most disagreeable duties cheerfully, forgetting self in patriotic desire to benefit their country. On the 16th of July, the regiment, leaving Companies D, E, I, and M, who had enlisted for three years, behind, marched into Fort Monroe, where, by order of General Butler, they gave up their rifled muskets for old smoothbore muskets, and five rounds of ammunition and four days rations, embarked on board of steamer “Cambridge,” at four P. M., and left for Boston about five P. M.; arrived at Long Island, Boston harbor, about daylight. July 19, disembarked at Long Island about ten A. M. Reported to the Adjutant-General of the State. Was mustered out of the service of the United States July 23, 1861.

The Fourth Regiment arrived at Fortress Monroe on the morning of April 20. The adjutant of the regiment writes, ‘At daybreak, the long low lines of the fort were visible. Anxiously the regiment watched as the boat lay off and on, until at sunrise they saw the old flag unfolding from the flagstaff. The men were quickly landed, and, amid the cheers of the little garrison, marched into the fort.’ This was the first loyal regiment in the war that landed upon the ‘sacred soil of Virginia.’ The adjutant continues, ‘Hardly was the regiment well in quarters before their labors commenced. The fort was found to be almost unarmed on the land side, and ill supplied with material of war. For several weeks the men were employed mounting heavy guns, unloading vessels, storing provisions, and keeping guard. General Butler arrived about the middle of May, and took command of the Department of Virginia.’ On the 27th of May, the Fourth Regiment, in conjunction with a New-York regiment under Colonel Bendix, and a Vermont regiment under Colonel Phelps, took possession of Newport News, and made an entrenched camp. Here the regiment remained, there doing the usual camp duty, until the 9th of June, when ‘five companies were detailed, with a portion of the Vermont and New-York regiments, to make up a detachment to join one from Hampton, to start at one o'clock the next morning to attack Big Bethel, a position held by the enemy about twelve miles from Newport News. Of the battle of Big Bethel it is needless to go into details. Its unfortunate result ’

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