Corps, then located in Virginia
, south of Washington
When on the march to cross the Potomac
, it was met by General Slocum
, who was a friend of Col. Franchot
, and by his influence the regiment was reassigned to the Sixth Corps.
It was by this unexpected meeting of two old friends that in going to the front the 121st was “put into one of the choicest brigades of the army; and we were marched out by way of the Tenallyville road, to, and through Rockville
, and by Darnstown and Sugar Loaf Mountain
, and joined the brigade commanded by Gen. Joseph J. Bartlett
, with which we remained till the war ended.”
By all accounts this march to the front was unnecessarily severe.
On the first day it was continued until late in the evening, and the men were too weary even to eat, and as they had left their knapsacks behind and had not yet been supplied with shelter tents, the night was spent most miserably, and in many cases the health of the men was so shattered that they never recovered from the effects of their excessive fatigue and exposure.
Many subsequent marches were longer and more difficult, but they were made under experienced commanders, with the men more inured to exercise, and with facilities to better take care of themselves.
The ambition of Col. Franchot
to report at the front as soon as possible, led him to resume the march at 2 A. M. the next morning, thus giving the men only three hours for rest and sleep.
Many who had not been able to keep up on the previous day, were deprived of even that scant period of rest.
We, in our inexperience, clung to our knapsacks, blankets, overcoats, rubber blankets, and all the trinkets and ‘whatnots’ we had brought from home, and these made