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John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment 39 1 Browse Search
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John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 1: the call to arms. (search)
companies, the last to arrive being the Boston Tiger Fire Zouaves, and my story from this point will include the regiment as well as Company A. One day in August we saw a military man looking over the camp. We soon learned that it was Colonel Hincks, who had just returned from three months service with the 8th Massachusetts. In a few days he was assigned to the command of the 19th and from that moment what had been a uniformed mob became a regiment of soldiers. With him came Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux, who had been captain of the Salem Zouaves, and soon after Maj. Henry J. How. One of the Salem Zouaves was assigned to each company as a drill-master, and we soon saw that our three months drilling had been worse than useless, as we had to begin over again, and it was hard to teach old dogs new tricks; but the Zouaves won our respect and every man was anxious to do his best. Very soon a change took place in the line officers,--a Zouave was commissioned in nearly every company.
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 2: our journey south. (search)
downy pillows are, but so hard that I believe the imprints of those stones are on me yet. At Meridian Hill we began active drilling. The duties of the field officers were divided, Colonel Hincks taking charge of the battalion drills, Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux the manual, while Major How had the instruction of the guard. We were encamped on the side of the hill, and marching in battalion drill was very hard, yet from early morn till dewy eve we were executing company or battalion movements.ny it was a grand sight to see these extra duty men in line. Fowler, the wagoner, had not seen his musket since it was given him at Lynnfield and knew nothing of the manual, neither did Uncle Burrill, who was regimental mail carrier. Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux came down the line and the men threw up their guns for inspection. Fowler had watched the men on his right, and when his turn came threw his gun up in fair shape. The colonel took it, looked at the musket, then at Fowler. What do yo
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 3: battles of ball's Bluff and Edward's Ferry.--experiences at Darnestown and Rockville. (search)
the floor. The people shouted, Hold Malinda! Oh, Lord, hold Malinda! The spirit has got Malinda! Oh, Lord, hold her! but none went near her. This was too much for Ben. He rushed to the front, sat on her and held her down. This brought Malinda and the rest to their senses and the meeting soon closed. We enjoyed the pleasures of Rockville but a short time after our detail joined the company, as we were ordered back to camp. A new company, recruited in Salem and commanded by Capt. Chas. U. Devereaux, a brother of our lieutenant-colonel, had joined the regiment. They were given the letter H and nicknamed the Lapstone light infantry, old Company H being disbanded and the men transferred to other companies. March 1, by order of Colonel Hincks, I assumed the duties of first sergeant, and of all the trying positions I have ever filled this was the most so. If any one thinks that the life of an orderly sergeant in active service is an amiable one let him try it. When the men are
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 4: our first campaign.--battle of Fair Oaks. (search)
rritt (referring to the condition of the company) said, Ben, I am astonished. Well, said Ben, it is not my fault; I have been on guard, but I will get just as full as the rest as soon as I find the stuff. When the time came to march all were in fair condition, and before we reached Bolivar Heights, as good as ever. As it was the first offence the men were let off with a lecture from the captain, and as the opportunity was never again presented, the offence was not repeated. With Captain Devereaux, who joined us at Muddy Branch, came more recruits, and the regiment was now full, Company A having had for a few days one hundred and two enlisted men, several of the old men were discharged, bringing us down to the required number. A fine band was attached to the regiment, and having become very well drilled in the manual, our dress parades were almost perfect, and were witnessed by nearly all the soldiers and citizens in the town. March 24 we received marching orders. Crossing
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 5: battles at Peach Orchard, Glendale and Malvern Hill. (search)
ould I relate one or two of the little dialogues between Captain Merritt and Boynton. Our regiment had a peculiar drill in the manual. It was formulated by Colonel Devereaux, and is nearly what is used by the army to-day. After loading we stood with our little finger on the head of the rammer until the order was given to shoulde we found many of our wounded. Colonel Hincks was on a stretcher, and as the ambulances were full he was carried a long distance before one could be found. Captain Devereaux was also badly wounded and had to be carried. We started with the body of Major How in a blanket as we had no stretchers, but being so very heavy we were fo second lieutenants, and I was one of the number. I was assigned to Company I, Capt. J. F. Plympton. By a misunderstanding between Colonel Hincks and Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux, First Sergeant Driver and myself did not receive our commissions until August, although we continued as acting second lieutenants, the two commission
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 6: battles of Fairfax Court house, Flint Hill and Antietam. (search)
r killed or wounded. Colonel Hincks was the first to fall, again terribly wounded. Capt. George W. Batchelder was killed, and the command of the regiment and companies changed fast, as one after another officer went down. At the time we were so hotly engaged in the front we began to receive a fire from our left and rear, and discovered that we were being flanked, and must change front to rear. This was done by the 19th Massachusetts and 1st Minnesota. We were now under command of Colonel Devereaux, and were ordered to take a position near a stone wall. We fired as we fell back, holding the enemy until we had reformed our lines, when we again went in and continued fighting until dark, when we were ordered to support a battery. We then had time to count the cost of the battle. Colonel Hincks was reported dying, and we mourned the loss of our brave leader. Captain Batchelder was dead. He had been my tent-mate since I had been an officer, and had rendered me valuable assistance
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 7: battle of Fredericksburg and Marye's Heights. (search)
t one of our men wounded in the street; his name was Redding, of Company D, and when we again reached the street we found him dead,--the rebels having bayoneted him in seven places. The regiment was commanded by Capt. H. G. 0. Weymouth, Colonel Devereaux being very sick in camp. Captain Weymouth went from right to left of the line, giving instructions and urging the men forward. My squad was composed of men from companies I and A. We had reached a gate, and were doing our best to cross n he passed Sergeant McGinnis. What do you ask for your pies? said McGinnis. Twenty-five cents, replied the soldier. I won't give it, said McGinnis. Your colonel was just through here selling them for twenty cents. While at this camp Colonel Devereaux was called home, and we were without a field officer. Captain Mahoney hearing of this felt it his duty to return. Although on leave of absence from the severe wound received at Fredericksburg he reported for duty. As I have before said,
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 8: battles of Chancellorsville, Thoroughfare Gap and Gettysburg.--wounded at Gettysburg and ordered home. (search)
d volunteer for whatever duty they might be called upon to perform. One officer was to go with them, and before the words had fully dropped from the lips of Colonel Devereaux Lieut. Johnnie Ferris said, Please let me be that officer, colonel, and he was accepted. We found it hard to get twenty-five men because all wanted to go, a Robinson and I were lying side by side watching the battle. Some one must go and help them, Jack, said Robinson. At that moment a staff officer rode up to Colonel Devereaux, and then we heard the familiar command, Attention, 19th! We are in for it, said Robinson, and with the 42d New York, we double-quicked to a point where theil December, reporting to the department at Washington and my regiment, by surgeon's certificate, every twenty days. I enjoyed the convalescent period much. Colonel Devereaux, Captain Boyd and Adjutant Hill, with Mark Kimball and several others, had been ordered to Long Island on recruiting service, and I visited them often. I al
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 9: regiment ordered home.--receptions.--my first call upon Governor Andrew.--return to the front. (search)
was so bad that the surgeon ordered me home. Colonel Rice was in command of the regiment, Colonel Devereaux being in command of the Philadelphia brigade. I called on Colonel Devereaux, who was veryColonel Devereaux, who was very indignant to learn that I had been discharged; he said he would see about it, and I knew that meant something. One day the colonel sent for me and said, Jack, I have a letter from Governor Andrewwent to Beach Street barracks, where they were quartered. Almost the first man I met was Colonel Devereaux, who said, What are you here for? My answer was, I wanted to see the boys. Drawing a pap half an hour. But my uniform and equipments are at home, I replied. Can't help it, said Colonel Devereaux, I propose that you command your company in the parade to-day. So I went out, bought a chhree years experience had demonstrated would make vacant places in their thinned ranks. Colonel Devereaux did not return with us, and the regiment was in command of Lieutenant-Colonel Rice. We ha
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 12: experiences in rebel prisons,--Libby, Macon. (search)
rner. We did not touch the bacon. Hungry as we were the smell satisfied us. We went upstairs and sat down to dinner. I ate half my bread, and thinking it unwise to make a pig of myself at my first banquet in Richmond, placed the rest on the window sill, sat down and looked at it, then ate a little more and a little more, until all was gone, and I was as hungry as before. The next day some negroes came in to swab the floor, and among them we of the 19th recognized little Johnnie, Colonel Devereaux's servant. We had left him at White House Landing, sick with fever, when we started on the retreat down the Peninsula in the spring of 1862, and supposed he died in the hospital, but he must have been captured, as here he was. I was near enough to whisper Johnnie. He recognized me and also saw Lieutenant McGinnis, but said nothing. The next day when he came in he dropped some soap near where I stood. He looked as though he was having a hard time of it. Our enlisted men were not