previous next

[424] his fifth and final wound, had said: ‘I know your pluck and toughness are almost unequalled. After seeing you fight through Glendale with such a wound, . . . . I feel that you can bear anything.’ While, however, his praise was in the mouths of all his brother officers, and especially of his own men, who from that time idolized him, Patten seemed unconscious of having done anything worth mentioning.

As for that injury which his commander called ‘such a wound,’ he made light of it,—never would have mentioned it had it not been necessary. But, in truth, he had succumbed at Harrison's Landing, and they had sent him North among the wounded. Instantly on arriving at Annapolis he hastened to discharge a duty which had been weighing on him during the passage; and, with characteristic modesty and self-forgetfulness, wrote this letter, of which the first five words and the last two sentences seem, in the original, to have been written some time after the rest:—

in Hospital at Annapolis, July 5, 1862.

dear—— , —I write to you sad news, for I know not how to write directly to the——. I telegraphed to-day to Dr. Walker, but very briefly. Jimmy [Lowell] was mortally wounded, in just the same way as Putnam, only more severely, in the fight last Monday afternoon. When I came in from the field, I found the brigade surgeon and the two regimental surgeons dressing his wound. He was entirely free from pain; and, while perfectly aware of his situation, was cheerful and quite talkative. He could not be moved, and we had to leave him behind in a hospital, in charge of one of our surgeons. Of course, as we evacuated that night, the enemy has possession of the hospital. The battle was about a mile and a half, I should think, from White Oak Swamp. As Jimmy fell, knowing at once that his wound was fatal, he said to some of his men, who stopped a moment to assist him, “Never mind me, men; go forward.” . . . . Colonel Palfrey has his sword. They would not let me take it, as it was then quite uncertain whether I could take care of it, and moreover I felt very uncertain whether I should escape the hands of the Rebels. I forgot to say that such was the nature of Jim's wound that Dr. Hayward said he could not live through the night.

You must either tell this to the family yourself immediately,


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)
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.
Presidents Walker (1)
William Putnam (1)
Colcord Patten (1)
Palfrey (1)
Nathan Hayward (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.
July 5th, 1862 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: