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[55] spare time we had stockaded our tents, expecting to remain until spring; but in army life there is no assurance that you will find yourself in the morning where you lay down at night, and in a few days the army was ordered to pack up. As soon as the order was given it began to rain, and continued several days. We wallowed around in the mud, trying to march, but it was impossible, and all were ordered back to camp, after suffering untold misery for two days. Our next move was to break camp, and locate nearer the town. Here we stockaded our tents, and were comfortable.

Were it not for the sadness felt by reason of the vacant places in our ranks, it would have been the happiest winter I had ever passed. Every night the officers would gather in the adjutant's tent,--which was a Sibley, stockaded some six feet from the ground,--and there hold regular campfires. Stories would be told, songs sung and recitations given. We had our orators and our poets. I remember one night, when seated around the camp-fire, the quartermaster, Tom Winthrop, who had enlisted as a private with me in old Company A, read the following tribute to the boys who had gone on:--

Our fallen braves.

I.

Not in the quiet churchyard, where their fathers' bones repose,
With loving hands to mark the spot with willow and with rose;
Not in the quiet nooks and dells of the old homestead place,
'Mid scenes of boyhood days time never can efface;
But in strange lands we laid them down, in rough dug soldiers' graves,
And far from home and kindred ones they sleep, our fallen braves.


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