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[109] Beckwith gives his personal experience.

We stacked our traps and left a guard over them. As soon as it was light our batteries opened, and the Johnnies replied showing that they were on hand ready for business. They threw a shot just over us, and we got it and examined it. It was a fine piece of English workmanship, nicely varnished and evidently of recent manufacture. We heard that General French had advanced, and found Mine Run too deep to ford, and that he had given up the attempt, and we went back to our original position. When I got my knapsack from the pile it had been opened, and with other things my diary was gone. I mourned its loss greatly because it had a full account of the events in the regiment.

That night I was wakened and detailed to go on picket. Barr and Baldwin were also on the same detail, and we went out and relieved some fellows who were nearly frozen, lying in the skirmish pits without fire, and with very little to eat. As soon as daylight came several shots in our front and bullets flying close to us, gave warning that our foes were alert and knew our exact position. So without fire, all through that cold winter day, watching for an advance, and dreading an order to drive their skirmishes, we lay there and suffered, and hailed with joy the friendly darkness of night, which permitted us to rise up and stretch and pound ourselves to restore our chilled circulation. Finally at midnight orders came to march silently, and assemble on our left. We were so benumbed that we could scarcely move. At last we reached the road and began moving toward the river. I kept along with the column until we came to what appeared to be a tannery which had been burned and was still a great mass of embers. Seeing it I made a beeline for it, and the way I soaked up heat was a

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Mine Run (Virginia, United States) (1)
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