previous next

[259] out by war. I have nothing to say of the supply which I can furnish, but I am vividly impressed by the demand. The calling needs a whole man, and it exacts very much of him. Self gets thrown into the background. It straggles out of the column, and is picked up, if at all, very late, by the rear-guard.

This letter closes with the words, ‘If anything happens to me, remember I meant to do my duty.’

A month later, after giving a schedule of a day in camp, he says:—

One day treads closely on another, and variety is always at hand. Here I give you the prose of it, the treadmill without the song. But there is poetry in it, too. There is a sentiment which gives the impulse to this duty and hallows the effort. I have been to Washington, and I return with a sort of desperate, teeth-set determination to do all I can in the sphere of my duty. It seems to me that the country wants active, busy, self-forgetting endeavor.

After writing earnestly of the need of improvement in discipline and organization, throughout the army, he says:—

But out of this nettle I pluck one flower, namely, that I can be of service; and it cheers me to hope, that, by active and constant endeavor, I may, perhaps, do my small mite towards organization and efficiency. I wish I could do more. To will is present with me.

Judge Gray, in the remarks from which we have already quoted, says of him:—

To those who really knew him, his warmth of feeling was not less remarkable than his purity of principle and strength of character. None but his intimate friends knew how much of his time was taken up in acts of kindness and charity. From the time he became a soldier, he was devoted to the care of his men, both as a matter of military judgment and of right feeling; in this, as in other things, showing how his intellect and his heart worked together.

Did these limits permit, there could be furnished from his letters many illustrations of the interest he took in everything which could promote the comfort of the men. A few extracts must suffice. On August 3d, ‘in bivouac on Maryland

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Maryland (Maryland, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Horace Gray (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
August 3rd (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: