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[291] and curiously locates the color guards ‘close by at the N. W. corner of the barn.’

Why the color guards should be posted at the N. W. corner of the barn, (south of the pike), while the colors were north of the pike, is a question that would puzzle a Philadelphia lawyer. They could not have been ‘close by’ the colors, for the barn is 50 yards away from the pike in a direct line, and how could the color guards protect the colors 100 to 120 yards away?

In this version of H's story, the recapture must have taken place south of the pike; and, strange as it seems, he now believes that it was our color guards who got the flag; which flag, whether State or National, he does not say. It is strange that the enemy should take only one flag when they could just as easily have picked up both; strange, that if it was my men who recaptured ‘the flag,’ as H. now believes, that they should bring it to him; strange, that when ordered to take it to Col. Dwight with H's compliments, that they were sent back to the rail pile again, for there is where they were an hour or so after, as is proved by affidavits, corroborated by Confederate reports; strange, that not one man of the Color Company (nor of the regiment as far as I could ever learn), knows anything personally about such a capture, recapture and return of the colors; strange, that the force of the enemy that stole down on our left, (as H. says), struck our colors and carried them along south across the pike, is not mentioned in any official report on either side, not even in that of his own; strange, that in the spring of 1906, H. should consider this flag question so profitless that he resolved not again to make mention of it in anything he said or wrote, but that in the following fall we find him down in Porto Rico, revamping the recapture claim with added emphasis to Capt. Gamble, and giving it a sort of a stage setting to make it more impressive.

Strange it is, that H. wants my brave boys turned down—they, who were so faithful to their trust, and who, after being so shamefully left to their fate, gave such a splendid account of themselves, exhibiting the highest qualities of the American soldier, and adding renown to their regiment; strange, indeed, that it did not strike H. how unreasonable was such advice, which,

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Ralph E. Gamble (1)
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