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 men, ‘Boys, I am a Massachusetts man and I know you will fight for the honor of the State.’ Calling out the color-bearer he said, ‘If this man should fall, who will lift the flag and carry it on?’ Colonel Shaw standing near, took a cigar from between his lips and said quietly, ‘I will,’ amid loud applause from the men.1 The storming party advanced, fully visible, along three-quarters of a mile of sand, under a sharp fire for two hundred yards. Decimated on the way by this, they reached the ditch, descended into it, crossed through three or four feet of water and mounted the slope. Colonel Shaw, with both standard bearers, reached the parapet, when, just as he was shouting ‘Forward, Fifty-fourth,’ he fell dead, shot through the heart. Capts. C. J. Russell and W. H. Simpkins were killed at almost the same time. For some reason, never fully explained, there was an interval before the other regiments of the brigade came up. Of course the 54th was driven back,2 and the loss of eighty killed showed what the struggle had been; the national colors were brought away, and Sergt. W. H. Carney, who bore them, was twice severely wounded. Sergt. R. J. Simmons, Corp. Henry F. Peal and Private George Wilson were also especially complimented in the report3 of Lieutenant-Colonel Hallowell, who was left in command, though himself very severely wounded; the latter soldier (Wilson), when shot through the shoulder, had refused to fall back without his captain's permission. Three officers were killed and eleven wounded, most of them severely. When driven from the fort the regiment was drawn up in line, seven hundred yards from it, under command of Capt. L. F. Emilio, ninth captain in the line, all his superior officers having been either killed or wounded. Subsequent attacks were made by the rest of Strong's brigade, especially by the 6th Connecticut and 48th New York, but with similar repulse, General Strong himself receiving a wound from which he ultimately died. Colonel Putnam's brigade, with the 7th New Hampshire
2 ‘Victims of a plan in which regular approaches were overlooked, weak points neglected, a proper hour disregarded; to whom reinforcements were not sent, nor a path levelled for them with artillery; nor finally was the commanding general (as all agree) where he could either know or direct their advance, their management or their defeat.’ （Gordon's War Diary, p. 188.) Compare Cowley's Leaves from a Lawyer's Life, pp. 88, 93. Maj. J. W. M. Appleton's paper in Putnam's Magazine, N. S. IV, 9. Gordon's War Diary, pp. 188, 198. General Seymour's report is in Official War Records, 46, p. 345.
3 This brief and manly report is in Official War Records, 46, p. 362. The report of the Confederate general, R. S. Ripley, in which he speaks of the 54th as ‘sent to butchery by hypocrisy and inhumanity,’ is on p. 370. In a curious Confederate list of ‘Abolition prisoners captured near Charleston, S. C., July 11-19, 1863,’ one prisoner is credited to the 150th Massachusetts (p. 392). Some interesting answers to questions as to the military qualities of colored troops may be found on p. 328.
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