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Report of Gen. O. O. Howard Commanding 2d Div. 2d Corps, dated Dec. 19th, 1862 to Corps. H. Q. ‘I think the Seventh Michigan Regiment, also the Nineteenth and Twentieth Massachusetts, deserve honorable and public mention for gallantry in crossing the river and securing a foothold in the town of Fredericksburg on the evening of the 11th instant.’ The crossing of the river in the boats gave rise to one of the poems written during the war by George H. Boker of Philadelphia. They leaped into the rocking shallops—
Ten offered where one could go;
And the breeze was alive with laughter
Till the boatmen began to row.
And many a brave, stout fellow
Who sprang in the boats with mirth
Ere they made that fatal crossing
Was only lifeless earth.
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