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[297] his country, but acquiesced without a murmur in the wish of his parents that he should finish his college course.

Three days after graduating, finding that he could not immediately obtain a commission, he enlisted in the Thirty-third Massachusetts, and was appointed First Sergeant. The regiment left Lynnfield in the fall of 1862, and was encamped for some time near Alexandria. Arthur found the position of First Sergeant to be no sinecure. He writes:—

I am not so content with my position as not to envy the leisurely lieutenant, who is not continually harassed with applications for everything that is missing or lost in the company, and with request to be “passed out” for wood and water. He is not like the orderly, between two millstones, the captain and the men, subject to be scolded by the one and grumbled at by the other, though I have no right to complain on that account, for my position is not more uncomfortable than that of most of the orderlies, but, on the contrary, generally a pleasant one.

In another letter he says:—

I am on pleasant terms with the men; laugh and joke with them freely, and yet they obey my orders readily, form line promptly, and seldom grumble at my punishments.

Again he writes:—

Every one is after the orderly. Nothing is heard but “Orderely!” “Sergeant!” &c., whenever I am near. I have run myself into real training trim, and feel as active and light as a squirrel. I have a good deal of fighting to do, answering complaints and composing difficulties, but I rather like it. It is an intellectual exercise which agreeably varies the physical. In truth, I am in the best health and spirits.

Arthur's previous gymnastic training was here of great advantage to him, and enabled him to endure fatigue and hardship. The October weather was getting cold and stormy. He writes:—

We left Alexandria, and taking the cars for about eighteen miles, camped over night on a hill without shelter, and drenched through as we slept by a pouring rain. I turned out at three A. M., with one or two others, built a fire and waited for day; at

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