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John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 1: the call to arms. (search)
Long before daybreak, with his first sergeant, McNamara, he would turn out the recruits, and as we lay in our tents we could hear him calling, Left! Left! McNamara, tread on that man's heels! It was not very long before we had the required number of 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
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 2: our journey south. (search)
After quiet was restored our men cleared the tables and the rations were brought in, consisting of mouldy soft bread, boiled salt pork and very poor coffee. Colonel Hincks being informed of our treatment found the officer in charge and gave him religious instructions. We received nothing better that night, but the next morning w 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 sidtill the men had been to the spring and investigated was order restored. The next day a square was formed and a short but impressive address was delivered by Colonel Hincks which had the desired effect. On Sundays at this camp we were marched out by companies, seated in the shade and the Articles of War were read to us by our
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)
vement To the rear by the right flank pass the defile. At last Colonel Hincks became discouraged, and throwing down his sword said, Let everyo the colonel and was sure one of his negroes was in our camp. Colonel Hincks sent for Sergeant McGinnis of Company K and ordered him to assiolonel, and the citizen told his story with tears in his eyes. Colonel Hincks turned to McGinnis and said, Sergeant McGinnis, is this true? ing his beat in front of the colonel's tent, wet to his skin. Colonel Hincks came out and Mike said, Colonel, will you allow me to speak a wing been on guard all night. The colonel laughed and retired. (Colonel Hincks had edited a Know-Nothing paper whose motto was, Put none but Athem as prisoners. It required all the energy and courage that Colonel Hincks possessed to have them released. The next day we picketed the 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
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 4: our first campaign.--battle of Fair Oaks. (search)
but as Company E, commanded by the brave but impulsive Captain Mahoney, was fired upon, he ordered the men to charge the works, and would have done so had not Colonel Hincks recalled him. Like a true Irishman that he was, he did not propose to be fired upon and not fight. The regiment behaved splendidly under fire; when the musketry was the hottest the clear voice of Colonel Hincks was heard. Change front, forward on first company! was the order, and it was executed as correctly as on drill. We lost the first man killed in this skirmish. Andrew Fountain of Company D, Captain Wass, and several of Company K were wounded. We went into camp and began tt we could have marched into Richmond in five hours, as we were only a few miles from the city. Just as we were ready to make the final charge an aid came to Colonel Hincks and said, You are ordered to fall back. What for? said the colonel. Don't you see we have got them on the run? But the order was peremptory and back we w
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 5: battles at Peach Orchard, Glendale and Malvern Hill. (search)
cheering began on our right. An aid rode down the line and gave orders to Colonel Hincks to have the regiment cheer. What for? said the colonel. I do not know, wters from dear ones at home,but we threw them into a pile, and the voice of Colonel Hincks was heard: Forward, double-quick, and we moved across the field and enteredible fire we changed front. Our brave Major How fell, never to rise again; Colonel Hincks was supposed to be mortally wounded and was carried from the field; Lieut. er experienced. When we arrived at the road we found many of our wounded. Colonel Hincks was on a stretcher, and as the ambulances were full he was carried a long dassigned to Company I, Capt. J. F. Plympton. By a misunderstanding between Colonel Hincks and Lieutenant-Colonel Devereaux, First Sergeant Driver and myself did notued as acting second lieutenants, the two commissioned by recommendation of Colonel Hincks not being assigned to duty. It was impossible to obtain officers' unifor
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 6: battles of Fairfax Court house, Flint Hill and Antietam. (search)
ced in three lines of battle, over walls and fences, through fields, under a terrible fire of artillery. The regiment was growing nervous but did not break. Colonel Hincks halted us, put us through the manual of arms, ending with parade rest. Having become steady, we moved forward to a strip of woods, and came upon the enemy stt and shell, volleys of musketry greeted us,--and our men fell as grain before the scythe. One-half of our officers and men were either 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 aftelines, 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
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)
equipments and reported for duty. I found that the paper read: So much of General Order No. 492 as discharged First Lieut. John G. B. Adams, 19th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteers, is hereby revoked, and he is restored to duty without loss of pay, provided the vacancy has not been filled, evidence of which he must furnish from the governor of his State. We were given a reception and dinner in Faneuil Hall; Governor Andrew, not being able to attend, was represented by our old commander, General Hincks. From Boston we went to Salem, where we were royally entertained, and then broke ranks with orders to report at Wenham in thirty-five days. While our receptions were grand, and showed that our hard services were appreciated, our joys were mingled with sadness. Everywhere we met friends of the boys who did not march back with us, and our eyes were often filled with tears as we clasped the hand of father, mother, sister or wife of some brave boy who had marched by our side, but now sle
John G. B. Adams, Reminiscences of the Nineteenth Massachusetts Regiment, Chapter 11: battles at Totopotomoy Creek and cold Harbor. (search)
ew that we should be unable to resist the charge, as we were only a skirmish line. I lay on the works by the side of Captain Hincks. Both of us had muskets, and resolved to make the best fight possible. The rebels came in over the works at our lef at the same time advancing in front. We waited until the skirmish line came so near that we could get a good shot. Captain Hincks said, What is it, Jack; Richmond or legs? I said, Legs. We covered our man, fired and fell back. The rebels came ofor a time. From the 9th to the 12th the firing was constant day and night; men were killed every hour in the day. Captain Hincks was severely wounded while lying in rear of the works. The duty was very hard. One-half the men must be on guard duhe first line of works before Petersburg, and relieved a division of colored troops commanded by our old colonel, now General Hincks, who had been fighting all day. This was a great day for some of us. It had been said that the negro would not fight,