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A BATTLE sometimes becomes a na- sion. This Island, to the south of the tional landmark, when it is in itself a harbor, was jealously guarded by the defeat. If it was so at Bunker's Hill on rebels. It was, in fact, the key to the 17th of June, 1775, so was it also at Charleston itself. Fort Wagner on July 18, 1863. Not The 54th had been in service for a only was this the first experiment with month on the coasts of Georgia and colored troops on the part of the United South Carolina, but the evening of July States, but at that moment the action 9th found us steaming up the Stone seemed like a great breakwater against River in procession, on one of the thirwhich the waves of past barbarism and teen boats which had conveyed General future civilization shattered themselves Terry's command to its destination. The in vain.

placid waters reflected the gorgeous What one man can see, must always hues and fantastic forms of the clouds be very little; but it seems to me that which filled the western sky. The disan intelligible account of this battle is tance showed the mantling trunks of still needed for the common reader, the forest-pine—the foreground was a John A. Andrew had organized the flat, green marsh. A tortuous channel Massachusetts 54th, and sent it into compelled the boats to move in single the field, and in return the rebel Con- file. The Pawnee and a monitor were at gress promised every white officer of it least three quarters of a mile in adthe halter. In this regiment I was vance. Every now and then they only too proud to serve.

threw a shell into the woods. The To a proper history of the assault, an transports followed, crowded with understanding of the previous condition troops, and gay with flags. of the men is necessary. General Gil- Morning found us anchored at a more had already got possession of the point where the rebels had filled the southern end of Morris Island, To pre- river with obstructions. From the vent the enemy from using his whole mast-heads, we caught our first view of force where it would tell the most, Sumter and the city, lying about five General Terry was ordered to James miles away. All day long we heard the Island, in the hope of creating a diver- heavy booming of guns, and clouds of

Intered, in the year 1809, by O. P. PUTNAX & sox, in the Clerk', Odce of the District Court of the U. 8. for the Southern District of X. I.

VOL. IV,-49

white smoke rose above Sumter. We dark, earnest faces waiting for the order obtained our footing without loss, and which should set them face to face with our lines were drawn completely across death. Two days after, many of these the Island, about two miles from the men lay lifeless on that field, still frontlanding. Here we bivouacked for a ing the foe. week on the old cotton-fields.

A little to the rear was Stevenson's Our picket-line, at a considerable dis- Brigade with the encampment behind tance in advance of the bivouac, could it. Shell and canister were tearing be seen by the rebels at Secessionyille, through the trees, when we saw the towards which a broken forest and John Adams, a whilom East Boston patches of bare sand stretched away. ferry-boat, run up the river on our right We could see their works, and hear the and open bravely on the left flank of jocose shouts of their men as they the rebels. The Pawnee was already moved about,

busy on their right, and the whole force On July 16th, the picket-line was began to fall back. We were ordered formed on the left by a detail from the forward, and as we filed into and up 10th Connecticut Infantry, and on the the road met the ghastly procession of right by our own companies K, H, and stretchers bringing in the wounded. B, commanded by Simpkins, Russell, Drops of blood oozed slowly through and Willard. Just before day, those of the canvas, and from one litter, arms, us not on duty were roused by a single stiffened in their death-agony, starkly musket-shot. Two or three followed, appealed to Heaven. We pushed forthen a volley. In an instant the men ward to the position occupied by our sprang to their feet, and all down the picket-reserves in the morning, and as line the clash of arms and the cries of soon as the new lines were formed, par“ Fall in," "fall in," resounded. The ties were sent out to bring in the dead fire of musketry in front rose and fell, and wounded. The broad trail of the now in spattering shots, now in rattling retreating rebels was strewn with tovolleys, and the bank of field-gung kens of their hurried march. Here and showed that the rebels were in force, there a conical pit showed where our A gleam of light was kindling along shells had burst. the gray East, and down the road to Around the ruined house, which the right of my company, straggled a served as a station for the picket-refew wounded men, one of them sup- serves, the men of the companies on the porting a shattered arm.

line were fighting the battle over again. A new line was now ordered fifty Captain Simpkins, a pleasant smile yards behind our bivouac; my own lighting his handsome face, mourned company was stationed beyond this quizzically over a ragged tear in his road, and separated from it and the rest trousers, and two holes in his rubber of the regiment by a dense thicket of coat. While he chatted, one of his own young trees. The fire continued, and men came along. It was hard to detect the enemy having pushed forward its the African taint in the straight, brown artillery, shelled this road vigorously. hair, blue eyes, and light skin of PriSome fragments of shell fell near us, vate Field. His recruiting-officer once doing no injury except to clothing. asked him why he did not pass himself My men were now for the first time off as a white man; and his surprised under fire; their officers stood behind inquiry, “How can I?" showed how them; and after the first shock the little he was conscious of his Angloheads of the negroes were carried as Saxon blood. His blouse had just been stifily as our own. We saw little of this cut open by a bullet, and Simpkins fight. Climbing a tree, showed only said as he passed, “ Field, I am delightthe wide salt-marsh and clouds ofed with your bearing to-day.” Another smoke, but the line itself was interest. private was exhibiting a fine meerschaum ing. It was connected and perfect, the picked up where a rebel officer had

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