upon the glowing incandescence as they stood on the crest watching the bright luminary going down. O, setting sun awhile delay,
Linger on sea and shore,
For thousand eyes now gaze on thee,
That shall not see thee more;
A thousand hearts beat proudly now,
Whose race like thine is o'er.
The 17th of September found our command in a line in the rear of Sharpsburg; we are very tired with marching, exhausted with excitement, and savagely hungry. Had we been well fed, and with nothing to do, there were none who could not have lain at ease, and enjoyed the fine view—so rich and gaudy in the autumn coloring—with the fair garden country spreading out all around, looking its best in the sweet morning air. But sentiment could find no place in a man who had nothing but the memory of what he had eaten to fill his stomach, and as we felt our limp haversacks, the sole absorbing thought crossed each man's mind—where is our breakfast, or our dinner, or our supper coming from? The men began to grumble at being forced to fight on an empty stomach, and a long line of famine-drawn faces and gaunt figures sat there in the ranks, chewing straws merely to keep their jaws from rusting and stiffening entirely. Just at this time a cow—a foolish, innocent, confiding animal—not knowing soldiers' ways, came grazing up to our lines; a dozen bullets crashed through her skull, and a score of knives were soon at work, in an incredibly short space of time, quicker indeed than you could skin a rabbit, the hide of the female bovine was pared and cut off, and a ravenous pack of wolves could not sooner have laid bare her bones than did these hungry soldiers. Everything was eaten, even her tail, that was but an hour ago calmly and easily switching the flies from her back. Some soldier skinned it, burnt it over the fire, and picked it clean in a few minutes. There were no cooking utensils in the whole regiment, not a single skillet or frying-pan, indeed our rations of green corn and apples left us but little need for those articles, but something must be done to cook the beef. The soldier is an inventive genius, he can prepare and dress anything, even to making ‘stone soup,’ which by the way happened thus: A hungry looking, lank, angular specimen of the genus Reb, appeared at the farm house of a widow lady—not far from Gordonsville, who was noted for her niggardliness and parsimony. So close indeed,