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[129] not be discouraged, but put up our earnest petitions to the Throne of Grace for a speedy deliverance from this great trouble.

During the siege of Vicksburg, the Twenty-first Iowa formed a part of the Thirteenth Army Corps. Foreseeing the fierce, decisive contest for the supremacy of the Mississippi that was to ensue, Goodrich wrote, just as he was embarking at St. Louis:—

If my life is necessary in dealing the death-blow to this horrid Rebellion, I shall freely, willingly give it up. If I die, it will be with a conviction, as firm as eternal truth itself, that our country will be finally saved. As the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church, so the blood of patriots shed in this war is a guaranty of our country's salvation, future welfare, and prosperity.

April 29, 1863.

I feel that the prayers of my wife and sisters will be answered to the full satisfaction of your souls. Sister Mercy has great faith that I shall be returned to my family in safety. But I feel that it would be wrong to make this a requisite in our prayers. If it subserves God's purposes better that I should die away from the bosom of my family, let us school our hearts to say “Thy will be done.” I know that all will be well, and that the Almighty will prove himself a God hearing and answering prayer. Then may we not leave all to his wisdom, knowing that in his hands all is safe? I know, from bitter personal experience, that it will be one of the bitterest trials to school yourself to submission to the will of God in these hours of danger. Yet we know that his will must be done, even if he sees fit to take my life. Let us pray that this cup may pass away; yet “not as I will, but as Thou wilt.” I will not anticipate evil, but wait for God to develop his plans more fully, and in the mean time exercise implicit faith in his wisdom and goodness. I cannot but believe that all will be well, and that our government will yet be firmly established over all the rebellious territory.


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John Franklin Goodrich (1)
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April 29th, 1863 AD (2)
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