A Fat Man In Battle - During the Bull Run battle an order was given to lie down and load, and only rise when in the act of firing. During the hottest of the conflict, Capt. Taw observed a man standing while loading. "The fact is Captain," said the man addressed, "I am so plaguey fat that if I lie down to load it takes too long to get up again." The captain turned away with a smile, and left the fat man to choose his own method of fighting.
A man named Horsely, from Sumter County, Tenn., one of the Rebel prisoners at St. Louis, is sixty three years old.
During the bombardment of Port Royal a shot from the enemy terribly shattered one of the legs of a seaman named Thompson, while he was at the helm. The brave man, taking his knife, severed the tendons of the limb, and throwing the member away, continued at his post until compelled by weakness to be carried away. As he was born away he cried out, "I set the compasses", as calmly as though he was not suffering from his terrible wound. Thompson is now rapidly convalescing at the Naval Hospital at Brooklyn. He has served his country twenty years on various ships, and now his hopes are so buoyant he desires to procure a cork leg so that he may be fitted for duty. It must be a privilege to help such a man.
A young lady named Mary Cook was lately discovered in soldiers attire in the 2nd Kentucky Cavalry, near Mumfordsville. She stated that she resided in Breckinridge County, Ky. Her father was a clergyman, and after his death she taught school in Hardin County, where she and three other young ladies agreed to adopt male attire and join the army. They divided two and two, but Marys companion backed out and she went alone. One of the other girls, she says, is a lieutenant in a Kentucky infantry regiment, and takes good care of her companion, keeping her in her tent as a servant. She insists that they were only influenced by a love of adventure.
On Monday night last a soldier, belonging to the Third New York Volunteers, entered a Baltimore oyster saloon and swallowed a half bushel of the bivalves and nineteen glasses of ale! When leaving he remarked that he "felt better."
Two Maryland girls, 18 and 20 years old respectively, were arrested in Washington on Wednesday, in soldiers uniform. They said that they had been in the army some time, and one of them was at the battle of Bull Run. They were admonished by Gen. Wadsworth and sent to their homes in Hagerstown, Md.
A Camp of Females Captured at Island No.10 - One of the features of the deserted Rebel camp was a peculiarity which we have not met with heretofore. On a beautiful hill, surrounded by beautiful groves, budding wild flowers, and the accompanying charms of a rural retreat, we found a bevy of nymphs encamped and enjoying a soldiery life in real earnest. There were twelve or fifteen of them, of different ages, but all young, and more or less fair to look upon. They sat around the camp fire, and cooked their breakfast, a little disheveled and rumpled, as might, perhaps, be expected, in remembrance of the scenes of excitement they had passed through, but yet as much as composed , and as much at home, as though they had campaigned it all their lives. There was a stray lock of hair dangling here and there, an unlaced bodice granting cheery glimpses of vast luxuriance of bust, a stocking down at the heel, or a garter with visible downward tendencies - all of which was attributable to our early visit. There were all the marks of femininity about the place. The embowering trees were hung with hoop skirts, and flaunting articles, which looked in the distance like abbreviated pantaloons. A glance at the interior of the tent showed magnificent disorder, Dimity and calico, silk, feathers, and all the appurtenances of a female boudoir were visible. It was a rara avis in terra - a new bird in the woods. These feminine voyagers were real campaigners. The chivalry of the South, ever solicitous for the sex, could not resist the inclination for its society, and hence the camp of nymphs by the river side, in the embowering shade, et cetera. I will not say much for their fair fame, or for the good name of the Confederate officers, whose baggage was mingled in admirable confusion with the rumpled dimity and calico, whose boots and spurs hung the hoop skirts and unmentionables, and whose old hats ornamented the tent poles or decked the heads of the fair adventuresses. It was a new feature of war.
A Persistent Recruit - S.H. Hill, a young man about eighteen years of age, who has just returned from New Orleans, where he has been a waiter for an officer in a Vermont regiment, enlisted in Northampton a few days ago, but was rejected by the surgeon in consequence of having a stiff finger. He was told by the surgeon that if he would have the finger taken off he would pass him. The finger was accordingly removed, and the plucky young man has reenlisted.
The Rondout Freeman says among the recruits at Camp Samson is a simon-pure Indian. He is connected with the New Paltz company. "Tom" is death to all deserters, having been successful in bringing several back to camp. "Tom" has visited Rondout several times, in the capacity of "high chief" over a band of performing "red men".
Joseph Miller mentions an Irishman who enlisted in the Seventy-fifth regiment so as to be near his brother who was in the Seventy-fourth.
Elias Howe Jr., whose income is a quarter of a million a year, carries the daily mail from Washington, seven miles, to the camp of the Seventeenth Connecticut regiment, in which he is a private.
A family of eight brothers by the name of Taylor, in Rennsselaer County, have all enlisted for the war.
Thomas Stewart, aged 92 years, of East Newtown, Ohio, was private in the 101st Ohio regiment, and took part in the battle of Perryville, where he was complimented for his bravery and soldierly bearing. He has four sons, two grandsons, and three sons-in-law at present in the army. He was born in 1770 at Litchfield, Conn., where his father now resides, aged 122.
The Tenth Legion contains one old patriot, sixty three years of age - a Mr. Bocraft, from the town of Monroe, Orange County. He handles his rifle with the elasticity of a youth of sixteen, and is called the "boy of the company". He leaves behind twenty six grandchildren. He has enjoyed the blessing of liberty and free government too long not to know their true value, and is now willing to lay down his life, if need be, in their defence.
C.W.Merrill, 19th Massachusetts, a drummer boy who was saved from death during one of the recent battles on the Rappahannock by the pocket testament given him by his mother, in which a bullet buried itself harmless, has been presented with an elegant pocket testament bearing the autograph of the President.
Among the passengers of the Cossack was a lad twelve years of age, named Jolinson, who ran away some time ago, and followed a Rhode Island regiment to the seat of war for the purpose of seeing his father, to whom he was devotedly attached. He accompanied the regiment to Front Royal, Roanoke, and Newbern, and was in the midst of several battles, from which he came out unhurt. Being successful in his search, he returned in company with some wounded Rhode Island men, and went with them to the Hospital on Broadway. The Massachusetts Military Agent gave him a pair of shoes, another gentleman gave him a pair of trowsers, a third presented him with a coat, until he had a new outfit, which he much needed, as his clothes were almost in tatters.
A soldier named Thayer, of Salem, who was at Bull Run, Mill Spring and at Forts Henry and Donelson, passed through North Adams on foot last week. His arm was torn in pieces by a grape shot, and seven bullets were located in various parts of his body. On account of his wounds the pain of riding in the cars was so great that he could not stand it. He said in conversation that he had been fighting a year and three months, but had been unable to find out whether it had been "for more territory, negro emancipation, or $14 a month".
An old fellow recruiting for the Eigth Regiment somewhere in Grant, Ky. refused to be sworn in to the service until he was granted permission to go barefooted wherever the regiment went. He has not worn a shoe for eighteen years, and when this fact became known, he was told that he could go barefooted as long as he thought he could stand it. The old fellow's feet are said to be perfectly callous and almost proof against cold, rough roads, or anything enmity with shoe leather.
The Madison Patriot says a volunteer from that place, in a letter, thanks his father for giving him crooked, or bow, legs, saying that on the day before he had narrowly escaped losing both his legs, a cannon ball passing harmlessly through the space occassioned by the "natural crook" of the legs. Everything is for the best.
The Hudson Gazette says Walter Miller of Taghkanic, a private in Capt. Post's Company, accidently shot off the forefinger of his left hand with a revolver Tuesday last. Miller, we understand, has been twice before shot accidently. He says he is bound to go to war at all events, and it is very evident from the hair-breadth escapes he has had that he was not born to be killed by bullets. Miller will pass through the campaign, although perhaps not unscathed. He has "smelt powder" and says he rather likes it.
A corporal belonging to one of the New York regiments gave birth to a fine boy a few days since. She has served two years in the ranks without any suspicion of her sex. They are now in the hospital.
A member of Anderson's cavalry got into the habit of playing fisherman in all the small ponds of the neighborhood, using a bent pin for a hook, and whenever he got a bite he would pull up and exclaim, "That's a fine fellow." The "boys", seeing him in his strange pursuit, often inquired "What luck?" and his answers were always as if he were satisfied with the result of his labors. Everyone came to the conclusion that he was suffering under a hopeless mental derangement, and he was consequently discharged. After he received his discharge he remarked to the surgeon, "I have obtained what I was fishing for."
Five girls in male attire arrived at Louisville the other day, in a party of 300 rebel prisoners.
A singular romantic adventure was summarily ended the other day by the Provost Marshall. Two girls - one sixteen and the other two years older - were discovered in the disguise of teamsters, in which capacity, it was afterwards ascertained, both of them had served upwards of six months. The oldest was from Cincinnati; and a reliable gentleman who says he knew her family, stated that the fair teamster had very respectable family relatives, and that she had been brought up under the best influences. The girl herself, who had sadly degenerated from her early respectability, replied that she "didn't care a d-n. I went for a soldier and I am bound to be a soldier. I can drive a mule team in bully style. That's who I am. Don't you like me?" The erring soldieresses were sent to Louisville.
Old Joe McD. of the 150th Regt. N.Y.S.V. was arrested for stealing a goose, and in defense Joe says "the darned rebel goose was hissing at the American flag and I arrested it for treason." Joe was ordered to take the old gander to his quarters and get fat.
Mrs. Frances Louisa Clayton called at the Provost Marshalls office in this city Thursday with letters from officers, to procure a pass to her home in Minnesota. Mrs. Clayton enlisted as a private with her husband, in a Minnesota regiment, some two years since. She was in Rosecrans army, and did full duty as a soldier nearly a year before her sex was discovered. While in the army, the better to conceal her sex, she learned to drink, smoke, chew and swear with the best, or worst, of the soldiers. She stood guard, went on picket duty, in rain and storm and fought on the field with the rest, and was considered a good fighting man. At the battle of Stones River, while making a charge her husband was instantly killed by a ball, just five paces in front of her, in the front rank. She charged over his body with the rear line, driving the rebels with the bayonet; but was struck with a ball in the hip, and conveyed to the hospital, where her sex was of course discovered. On recovering sufficiently to travel, she was discharged on the 3d of January last, and sent North. On the way between Nashville and Louisville, a guerilla party attacked the train and robbed her of her papers, money, & c. After reaching home and recovering from her wounds, Mrs. Clayton started for the army again, to recover the papers belonging to her husband; but was turned back to Louisville and ordered home. By mistake her pass carried her to Kalamazoo instead of Chicago, and she was compelled to apply to the Provost Marshal; who sent her through this way. She is a very tall, masculine looking woman, bronzed by exposure to the weather, and attracted universal attention by her masculine stride in walking erect and soldierly. Some soldiers, following her rather too familiarly, Thursday evening, she drew a revolver and promptly scattered the escort. She was recognized as an old aquaintance by the keeper of an eating house on M street who knew her before her marriage, and heard of her disappearance when her husband enlisted and who provided shelter for her Thursday night.
Suicide of a Female Soldier - A few days ago a young woman nineteen years of age arrived in Cairo with the 14th Iowa Regiment, dressed as a soldier. She performed her duties and answered to the name of "Charlie", and conducted herself in all respects the same as though she had been a man. On Saturday evening she attended the theater where her sex was discovered by the keen glance of the Provost Marshal. She was not however, arrested, as a promise was given that she would resume her proper attire. But the next day the secret oozed out, and the boys in the camp gathered around her tent to have a peep at her. The Colonel getting wind of the affair, sent an adjutant to investigate it, but the poor girl, ashamed of being exposed to a thousand eyes, and afraid of punishment, took up a revolver, and placing the muzzle at her heart, fired, and instantly fell dead on the open parade ground. An inquest was held, but no clue could be obtained of her real name, family, or the cause of her singular conduct.
A Pennsylvania girl has been serving as a soldier in the army of the west for ten months, says that she has discovered a great many females among the soldiers, one of whom is now a Lieut. She has assisted in burying three female soldiers at different times, whose sex was unknown to any but herself.
The 1st Kansas regiment, of which I have spoken before, is encamped near us. One of the members of that regiment, a sergeant, died in the hospital two weeks ago. After death his comrades discovered that their companion, by the side of whom they had marched and fought for almost two years, was a woman. You may imagine their surprise at the discovery. I went to the hospital and saw the body after it was prepared for burial, and made some inquiries about her. She was of rather more than average size for a woman, with rather strongly marked features, so that with the aid of a man's attire she had quite a msaculine look. She enlisted in the regiment after they went to Missouri and consequently they knew nothing of her early history. She probably served under an assumed name. She was in the battle of Springfield, where Gen. Lyon was killed, and has fought in a dozen battles and skirmishes. She always sustained an excellent reputation, both as a man and a soldier, and the men all speak of her in terms of respect and admiration. She was as brave as a lion in battle and never flinched from any duty or hardships that fell to her lot. She must have been very shrwed to have lived in the regiment so long and preserved her secret so well. Poor girl! She was worthy of a better fate. Who knows what grief, trouble or persecution induced her to embrace such a life?
Mary Lippy, a French vivandiere in the Potomac army, followed the French army seven years, went through the Crimean campaign, and has served nineteen months in this war. She is not handsome but interesting, wears red pantaloons, carries a revolver and is a dead shot.
An army correspondant writing from Bealton, Va. says; "A doctoress was here last night, a Miss C- from Maine, good looking, and about twenty five. I should think wears bloomers and rides a horse like a man."
A soldier, for deserting, was sentenced to have his ears cut off. After undergoing the ordeal, he was escorted out of the barrack yard to the tune of the Rogue's March. He then turned, and in mock dignity, thus addressed the band:"Gentlemen, I thank you; but I have no ear for music."
A letter to a person in Brandon, from Ship Island, says that a Vermont private on guard there fell sick one night and was taken to the hospital where the soldier gave birth to a child. The soldier and the young recruit are doing well.
A volunteer named Potter who lost one of his legs while serving in the Army of the Potomac, swam recently from Fort Trumbull to the steamboat landing in Groton, over a mile.
A young girl from Pennsylvania enlisted at Oswego on Tuesday of last week as John Davis. She went to Binghamton and while on the cars her sex was discovered by a soldier who reported her to Officer Farnham. She was arrested by Farnham and is now in jail. She is very pretty and but for her voice, her sex would scarcely be suspected. She had not been examined by the surgeon, and designed to evade an examination by having a man (a friend of hers) examined, and she take the enlistment papers. She is but 16 years of age, very intelligent and extremely modest.
We came across at the Court House yesterday afternoon a man who has probably seen as much military life in the capacity of private as any one can boast of. He gave his name as James Merwin, from Buffalo, and stated that he had been in the United States Regular Army for eighteen years, taking part in all the principal battles of the war just closed. Before the breaking out of the rebellion he was on duty in Texas under the noted General Twiggs and was among the number surrendered by that general to the rebels. Thence he was shifted around from one place to another until he got into the Federal army again. He has been struck by balls seventeen times, seven of which are now lodged in different parts of his body. He has also been taken prisoner a number of times and conversed with Gen. Lee and Jeff Davis. One of his arms, which was shattered by a shell, he now carries in a sling.
Among the prisoners brought from General Grant's army to the White House last week was a woman - a course featured Amazon - who was in charge of a rebel battery when she was captured, and had on an officer's uniform of the United States.
A story is told of a soldier in the Chestnut Hill Hospital at Philadelphia who has not slept in fourteen years.
Swanzey, New Hampshire glories over being the residence of a young man, eighteen years old, who has served three years in the Union army, been in forty three battles and twenty seven skirmishes, had two horses shot under him and during the whole time has not received a single injury nor been absent from duty a single day. His name is George B. Mattoon.
We have lately heard of a queer case of insanity at the Variola Hospital, Natchez, of which Dr. Whitney and all connected with the institution are cognizant. A soldier had been long sick with small pox, but had so far recovered as to be able to leave the institution when he was suddenly confined again to the sick ward with erysipelas. A fit of insanity came over the man and he conceived the idea of burying in a new made grave in the hospital burial place. It had been raining and the vault, six feet by six, had about a foot and a half of water in it. Suiting his action to his thoughts, by some stealthy manner the soldier succeeded in reaching the grave without being noticed by his attendant at the hospital. In this grave he was accidentally discovered by a passer by, his head barely out of the water, body entirely immersed by muddy filth and merely showing signs of life. He had almost completed the work of his insane ideas. The alarm was given, he was resurrected from the terrible plight in which he was then placed, carefully cleansed and dressed in warm clothing, after being saturated inside and out with whiskey, and left by his attendants to rest and repose- no one thinking that he would survive to see the morning's sun. But their expectations were happily disappointed. The morning came and with it the returning of reason and strength to the afflicted soldier. The reaction, produced by his immersion in a watery grave, had possibly proved his salvation. From that time, under good medical treatment and kind nursing, the patient has gradually improved. He is now about to be discharged from Variola Hospital and return with sound mind and body to his regiment at Vicksburg.
A young girl at Brooklyn, New York was seized with the idea that like Joan of Arc she was born to lead her country’s armies. She enlisted as a drummer boy in a Michigan regiment hoping to rank up to the chief command. She was shot at Chickamauga and telegraphed her father: “I expected to deliver my country, but the fates would not have it so. I am contented to die. Pray, papa, forgive me.”
Florena Keyser, a young Miss of sweet sixteen was brought to Wheeling on Sunday evening and confined to jail. She resides in Hardy County and was employed by Gen. Harness to act as a spy. The General offered her $200 and a good horse, saddle and bridle if she would spy out and report the number of men, position, etc. at Greenland Gap. The offer was accepted and Miss K. and another young Miss set out on their journey. Miss Kyser was captured near Burlington by Col. Mulligan who sent her to jail. The other girl escaped with all the information they had gained.
A man in Kentucky was exempted from the draft on the grounds that it took too much to feed him. It is the case with many that they have more stomach for rations than they do for fighting.
Henry O'Connor, Esq., of Muscatine, Iowa, District Attorney,
and reputed to be one of the best lawyers in the State, joined the first company
that was raised in that place after war broke out, as a private. -
He was with the First Iowa at the battle of Wilson's Creek, and fought like a Turk. On returning home he was offered a commission - any he might choose in a regiment. But his reply was, "D--n your commission; all I want is a gun." That's the kind of a man for you.
Among the recruits that came to us during the first year of the war was a man named McNutt, about 35 years old, and his twin sons, DeWitt and Delane, about 16 years old. They had a tent by themselves, kept aloof from the rest of the boys to a large extent and hence had a very indifferent idea of the "eternal fitness of things" in the army. The old man had false teeth and the hardtack was a source of great annoyance to him on that account. He very often importuned the orderly sergeant (then D. M. Evans, who was afterward adjutant of the regiment, became Major in the 20th N.Y. Cavalry and came home its colonel, and is now editor of the Aberdeen Daily News, S.D.) who was often much amused at the simplicity of the old man and his unsophisticated boys. One day before he learned that the proper name for the food he was vainly trying to masticate was hardtack he called up the sergeant and said to him "See here Mr. Evans, those soda crackers are the goldarndest hardest ones I ever seen, can't we make a 'require' for some that are a little softer on account of my teeth?" The boys consulted their father with true filial obligations in all matters questionable with them. It seemed never to occur to them that they were subject to company and regimental officers, but the order of the day was "Dad shall we do this?" or "Dad do you care if we do so and so?" They were continually getting themselves into disputes and little troubles on account of the consent of "Dad" to do certain things when it was contrary to regular orders. The elder McNutt was as unconscious of violation of military discipline as the boys. If he did not wish to do duty his wishes were thought to be sufficient, "he was old enough, he ought to know." One day we were all ordered out for battalion drill. It looked like rain. The orderly gave orders to fall in. We all formed in line. Roll was called, "all present and accounted for" only McNutt and the twins? Hurrying to their tent he called out:
"Come, come! McNutt fall in, and your boys, why are you not out there?"
Both boys in chorus replied: "Dad said it looked like rain and we all might stay in today."
"Oh nonsense, fall in here and be lively about it, the whole company is waiting for you!"
Slowly the old man crawled out and as deliberately looked up at the sky and held up his hand for the first drop to fall in it and drawled out. "No, no, Mr. Evans, it's all right for you fellows to go out and get wet if you want to, but it's certainly going to rain and we better stay in today - go on and never mind us."
It took some minutes for the wise and good-natured sergeant to explain to the father and two sons that such a state of things was not admissible, but that as soldiers they had no preference in the matter and only had to obey orders. It was only by good discipline that the company was kept from uproarious laughter as the three recruits took their place in the ranks.
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