marching orders, we went off to the shade of the woods. I was patient and comfortable, lay down, took out “Korner,” and did not care if we stayed there all day. But we were not so fortunate.
camp near Edward's Ferry, September 29, 1861.I am very well and strong, and need to be to endure the work we are doing now. Last night some of our company went out on picket. We lay out on the tow-path in our blankets and overcoats, and I slept soundly with my cartridge-box for a pillow. At two, shots were heard, and our line jumped up, thinking the enemy were crossing the river. As I did not find myself killed, nor hear that any one else was, I was disposed to lie still and wait for something more. But the alarm had been given, and every man must pack up his goods and be in marching order.
near Edward's Ferry, October 22.I begin to realize the risks and sufferings of war. I cannot well reconcile myself to parting from all I love in the world, but those left behind suffer more. If there is any consolation in the next world, and I believe there is, I shall know it at once. However, I hope for the best, and do not think much about these things.
near Edward's Ferry, October 23, 1861.It is dull, of course. It is not the life I should choose, even in pleasant weather, unless I was a colonel or general, in which case there might be some enjoyment in it; but as a private there is nothing to attract one who has such a home as I have. However, a man will not be miserable unless he has a very sensitive temperament, feels everything keenly, and broods over trouble. Now if I were constituted as you are, I could not endure this life a month; but as I am able to bear disagreeable things, and have a latent relish for a loafing life, I am not at all miserable.
near Edward's Ferry, October 28, 1861.‘We have seen our first fighting. We went over the river on Monday. The colonel or general commanding showed us the position of the enemy, and told us “to go there and see what we could do.” .... Our company have done all the fighting at this place, with the exception of some shells thrown by the artillery. Our men both on Monday and Tuesday were put up close to the enemy, quite unsupported; and this, with their being without food for twenty-four hours and doing nearly all the fighting, has, I find, gained them some credit with everybody. Even General Gorman, who calls the guns great humbugs, gives credit to the men.’
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Ode recited at the Harvard commemoration, July 21 , 1865 .
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