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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.
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