letter E. Captain Mahoney
was an energetic officer and anxious to drill his men. Long before daybreak, with his first sergeant, McNamara
, he would turn out the recruits, and as we lay in our tents we could hear him calling, “Left!
, tread on that man's heels!”
It was not very long before we had the required number of companies, the last to arrive being the Boston Tiger Fire Zouaves
, and my story from this point will include the regiment as well as Company A.
One day in August we saw a military man looking over the camp.
We soon learned that it was Colonel Hincks
, who had just returned from three months service with the 8th Massachusetts.
In a few days he was assigned to the command of the 19th and from that moment what had been a uniformed mob became a regiment of soldiers.
With him came Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux
, who had been captain of the Salem Zouaves
, and soon after Maj. Henry
One of the Salem Zouaves
was assigned to each company as a drill-master, and we soon saw that our three months drilling had been worse than useless, as we had to begin over again, and it “was hard to teach old dogs new tricks;” but the Zouaves won our respect and every man was anxious to do his best.
Very soon a change took place in the line officers,--a Zouave was commissioned in nearly every company.
Company A retained Captain Stanwood
, but lost both lieutenants, C. M. Merritt
, who had been an officer in the 8th, being made first lieutenant, and Isaac H. Boyd
, who had enlisted as a private, second lieutenant
On August 27 we were ordered to strike tents and prepare to march.
That night, for the first time, we slept on the ground, with only the blue sky for shelter.
The next day