prisons; and more than one example exists of voluntary surrender by surgeons in order that they might not be separated from their sick and wounded.
Even those in the comparative shelter of hospitals—especially those placed near to the immediate theatre of the war, had by no means light duties to perform, nor were unexposed to the dangers of the battlefield whilst in attendance upon the sick and wounded.
They also were quite within range of shot and shell.
Shells passed frequently over the South Carolina
hospital at Petersburg
One struck within a few feet of the fourth ward, another entered the ninth, and a third passed through one of the tents provided to relieve the hospital—over—crowded with the sick and wounded.
Before it became no longer tenable and was evacuated, the surgeon had to distribute the amputations—including also two resections of the shoulder—among his five assistants; and the whole of three entire days and nights, without cessation, were required to complete the work.
Batteries like Wagner
, it is no exaggeration to say—were ofttimes wrapped in a gloom more sulphurous and fiery than that of Phlegethon
or of Tartarus
—made more terrible by the crash of those bolts of steel, impelled with vengeful fury, which rained upon them by day and by night.
The defence was so desperate and destructive that the troops and their medical attendants had to be frequently relieved.
were scarcely more endurable.
These facts are mentioned to show some of the reasons which justify us in recalling at our annual meeting the events of the past; that our associates and those who come after, may know how the medical department comported itself in the trials of that great and bloody war, which to many of us in memory seems now but a dream of the past.
In our opinion no sufficient tribute has ever been paid to the matchless organization of the medical department of the Confederate army as presented by the surgeon-general
's office; and we regret that more has not been said and earlier, in order that before the death of that incomparable officer, Surgeon Samuel Preston Moore
, he may have learned how much his services were esteemed.
A native of Charleston
and a man trained in the army, with all its ideas of discipline, its rigidity and its formality, he may have contracted certain habitudes which deprived his manners—not of the repose
‘which stamps the caste of Vere de Vere
,’ for of that he had enough and to spare—but of that softness and suavity which are used in representative democracies and in all non-military communities.