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Lenox (Massachusetts, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
d A. A. G. U. S. Vols., September 16, 186; died at Keedysville, Md., September 29, 1862, of a wound received at Antietam, September 17. William Dwight Sedgwick was the only son of Charles and Elizabeth (Dwight) Sedgwick, and was born in Lenox, Massachusetts, June 27, 1831. Till the age of fourteen years he was brought up almost entirely at home, when his father sent him to Illinois to spend a summer with a farmer who was a relative, and who then lived in a log-house. Here he learned and perome personal knowledge and experience of labor, he could not have a proper sympathy with laboring men. He spend one year at a French school, and one in a boys' school taught by Rev. Samuel P. Parker, in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and finished in Lenox his studies preparatory to admission into college. After leaving college, he spent one winter in a law-office; then went abroad and studied a portion of his profession at Heidelberg, Gottingen, and Breslau. He was abroad about seventeen months.
Illinois (Illinois, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
1851. William Dwight Sedgwick. First Lieutenant 2d Mass. Vols. (Infantry), May 25, 1861; Major and A. A. G. U. S. Vols., September 16, 186; died at Keedysville, Md., September 29, 1862, of a wound received at Antietam, September 17. William Dwight Sedgwick was the only son of Charles and Elizabeth (Dwight) Sedgwick, and was born in Lenox, Massachusetts, June 27, 1831. Till the age of fourteen years he was brought up almost entirely at home, when his father sent him to Illinois to spend a summer with a farmer who was a relative, and who then lived in a log-house. Here he learned and performed every kind of farm-work of which a boy of that age is capable, and confirmed a constitution originally excellent. His father believed that, without some personal knowledge and experience of labor, he could not have a proper sympathy with laboring men. He spend one year at a French school, and one in a boys' school taught by Rev. Samuel P. Parker, in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and
France (France) (search for this): chapter 15
ould deserve our fate, in such a case, and for very shame could only wish to be buried in the ruins our want of faith had involved us in. For my part, if my country is to perish, my hope is to perish with her. I could not wish to survive the downfall of what I regard as the world's hope. Should America cease to be a first-class power, and be broken up in contemptible little fragments, what would you think would become of England? How long would it be before she would lie before the feet of France? What would become of the surplus population of Europe? What chance would be left to Germany and Italy in the struggle for eventual freedom after the failure of the grandest experiment of a free government that the world has known? Utter discouragement and dejection would fall upon the friends of freedom everywhere, should the North now yield to the entreaties of those who say, Do not persist in this war, for you will be only shedding blood to no purpose. In accordance with these prin
Hannover (Lower Saxony, Germany) (search for this): chapter 15
ession, and would have done honor to it, had not, from the moment of the outbreak of the war, the destiny of his country occupied his mind so powerfully that only with difficulty could he turn his thoughts to other matters. He felt irresistibly drawn to become active in the great national struggle; and this last year and a half of his life, with all its new and most interesting, but often sad and terrible, experiences, did much to ripen and elevate his character. He married, in 1857, at Hanover, in Germany, Louisa Frederica Tellkampf, daughter of Professor A. Tellkampf of that place. From his letters to his father-in-law at the beginning of the war we can best learn the earnest and intense interest which he took in the destiny of his people, and the motives that decided him to leave his profession and family to offer his services to the country. In reply to the warning of Professor Tellkampf, not to engage himself in the war, and before the former knew that he had joined the arm
Headquarters (Washington, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
fe cheerfully, if need be, could I but die in the full faith that the final result of the contest would be to plant the system our fathers founded more firmly, and purified from the canker that has corrupted it and endangered its existence. Headquarters, December 26, 1861. War with England seems to me not unlikely, though I have been very slow to believe in it. If it comes, we must bid good by to the hope of a speedy peace, and every man who can will have to turn soldier. Were it not foyourself to feel unnecessarily anxious about me. I shall do my duty, but I shall not commit any folly of bravado, and shall survive this war unless Heaven wills otherwise; in which case we shall all be ready cheerfully to submit ourselves. Headquarters, &c., Fair Oaks, June 11, 1862. dearest mother,—I had your sweet letter, written after you had seen Mr. Laflin, day before yesterday. It gave me a lively impression of the far greater anxiety, and consequent suffering, entailed by war up
United States (United States) (search for this): chapter 15
rary expectation. These are the sentiments of many who have said and still say, that if the government could put down the Rebellion and hang Jeff Davis and the other Rebel leaders, they should like to see it done. Thus you see how the matter strikes the Southern mind, among those who deplore secession and declare it unjustifiable. I am led to think this feeling will be pretty universal,— Many men of many minds. We are drilling here, under a pledge to obey any call made on us by the United States authorities, to resist attack or rebellion here. I am longing, as I never should have thought to do, to join the Massachusetts Volunteers. Perhaps I may not be able to hold myself in, if matters come to the point of actual war. I'm very sure that I would rather die in battle twenty times, than have Washington captured, or than that the North should now yield her principles to accommodate those of the South. At the same time I cannot avoid feeling grief and distress in the knowledge th
Darnestown (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
an have Washington captured, or than that the North should now yield her principles to accommodate those of the South. At the same time I cannot avoid feeling grief and distress in the knowledge that so many people I esteem, and could agree with on every question of morality, except in these proand anti-slavery issues, are quite as capable of being aroused to enthusiasm on the side of this monstrous wrong as any of us at the North on the other side. God send us a good issue! camp near Darnestown, September 12, 1861. . . . . How do people that you meet talk about the war? Does Northern spirit and determination seem to you unabated, and do you see many signs of an increase of the desire to see slavery abolished? I pray God that it may come to that. Not that I would have total and immediate abolition declared; but I want a policy adopted and persevered in which shall look to the speediest abolition possible. camp Sacket, October 24, 1861. . . . . My faith does not be
Berkshire (United Kingdom) (search for this): chapter 15
ar to be one of emancipation, and be supported as now by the great mass of Northern men. . . . . The number of people about here, where they ought to be and probably are as well educated and intelligent as in most parts of the South, who can't read, is really astounding; and I should need to have great faith in a person's accuracy to believe what I have seen, did he relate it to me,—not having seen it myself. I asked a man to-day,—of about the mental calibre by nature of our sensible Berkshire farmers,—how it was possible that he and so many others were so ignorant, and that their children were brought up in the same way. He said they never had a chance to get learning, —that there were no free schools, and they could not afford to send their children to any others. I asked if he knew many people about here who could read, and he answered, There a'n't many sure. But I did not need his assurance of the fact; for though the country is not thickly settled, and I only see those w
Yorktown (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
racticable, the success of our cause is assured, which milder means will fail to bring about. I should be glad to have the war last ten years, if it must, so that its end may leave slavery in its death-throes. And I do not propose to abandon the cause while life and strength are spared me; for I believe it to be a holy one, and devised of God, however much unholiness mingles with it, as it mingles with everything involving the joint action of masses of men in this world. camp near Yorktown, Virginia, April 13, 1862. . . . . For myself, I have no presentiment that I shall fall; and if I do, it will be Heaven's will. If I should lose a leg or an arm, I should not consider that I had made any too great sacrifice to the country's cause; and I hardly feel as if I should regret it. . . . . I am delighted, dear mother, that you do not allow yourself to feel unnecessarily anxious about me. I shall do my duty, but I shall not commit any folly of bravado, and shall survive this
Keedysville (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 15
1851. William Dwight Sedgwick. First Lieutenant 2d Mass. Vols. (Infantry), May 25, 1861; Major and A. A. G. U. S. Vols., September 16, 186; died at Keedysville, Md., September 29, 1862, of a wound received at Antietam, September 17. William Dwight Sedgwick was the only son of Charles and Elizabeth (Dwight) Sedgwick, and was born in Lenox, Massachusetts, June 27, 1831. Till the age of fourteen years he was brought up almost entirely at home, when his father sent him to Illinois to spend a summer with a farmer who was a relative, and who then lived in a log-house. Here he learned and performed every kind of farm-work of which a boy of that age is capable, and confirmed a constitution originally excellent. His father believed that, without some personal knowledge and experience of labor, he could not have a proper sympathy with laboring men. He spend one year at a French school, and one in a boys' school taught by Rev. Samuel P. Parker, in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and
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