previous next

Full fifteen thousand men,
     The brave, the good, the true,
As captives died in prison pen,
     ‘They died for me and you!’
And shall not truth's indignant tongue
     Declare who did this grievous wrong?

On many a bloody field
     They stood 'gainst leaden hail;
And though at last constrained to yield,
     Their spirits did not quail;
They safely passed their battles through,
     And yet ‘they died for me and you.’

They pined for home, sweet home,
     And for their daily bread;
Alas! assistance did not come,
     And now they are with the dead!
E'en hardened rebels felt their grief,
     And yet could furnish no relief!

The rebel leaders durst
     Not do what we have done,
Though many hearts with anguish burst
     At tales from ‘Anderson.’
For still they let our brave men share
     Their own coarse food and scanty fare.

The sad tale must be told:
     The brave, the true, the good,
While we were busy coining gold
     They died for want of food!
Those fifteen thousand boys in blue
     As victims died—‘for me and you.’

The rebels, in their need,
     Once, twice, and yet again,
Did all that they could do to plead
     For justice to these men;
But deaf, alas! the nation's ear,
     The people's servants would not hear.

Even Davis felt their grief,
     And sent his message forth,
By prompt exchange to grant relief
     To prisoners South and North.
And why, alas! was it not done?
     There was no heart in Washington.

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)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

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.
Jefferson Davis (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: