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The above letter requires explanation. The Fourteenth Regiment referred to was composed, in great part, of men of Irish birth. At the beginning of the war, Colonel Thomas Cass, of Boston, proposed to raise an Irish regiment for the three months service. He had been long and favorably connected with the volunteer militia of Massachusetts. His request was granted, and the regiment was raised; but, before its organization could be completed, information was received from Washington that no more three months regiments would be accepted. Coincident with the request made by Colonel Cass, an offer was made by Dr. Smith and others, of Boston, to raise a second Irish regiment, which they were pleased to designate ‘the Irish Brigade.’ This regiment was to be commanded by a person by the name of Rice, who was not a citizen of Massachusetts, although he was here at the time, and, so far as the writer knew, of no military experience whatever. This regiment was also raised, but was not accepted, for the same reasons that Colonel Cass's regiment was not. When the call was made for three years troops, a very large proportion of the men composing the two regiments agreed to enlist for three years; and both were sent to Long Island, Boston Harbor, until their organizations could be completed, and the regiments accepted by the Government. The
1 The disbanded old Fourteenth Regiment.
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