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Sword Over Richmond
01-20-2014, 08:11 PM (This post was last modified: 01-20-2014 09:17 PM by Gene C.)
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Sword Over Richmond
Sword Over Richmond - An Eyewitness History of McClellan's Peninsula Campaign by Richard Wheeler

Full of quotes from letters and accounts from both sides on the war. For example this quote from a letter to his hometown newspaper by Chaplain A. M. Stewart, "One poor lad of our regiment, overcome with wet and weariness, took a congestive chill, and presently died. We dug a hole among some pine bushes, into which the water ran as fast as the dirt was lifted out. His companions rolled up the lifeless form in a blanket, laid it down among the mud and water threw in a few pine branches, then covered all up with earth. A torrent of rain was falling at the time. Wet and chilly, I tried to say a word appropriate to his messmates. Gloomy funeral. War is a barbarous thing."

In the same letter Stewart has this to say about tobacco, "The filthiest of all living animals is man. No brute, so called, has ever yet become so debased as to chew or smoke tobacco. Three-fourths, perhaps, of our regiment either chew or smoke--many do both, and this is a sample of all other regiments in the service. . . More than ten days since, the stock of the weed on hand became small . . . till finally all the treasury notes of Uncle Sam sufficed not to buy a single plug. Then what an outcry; what peevishness, what complaints and irritability! They were certainly the worst-used soldiers in the universe. Uncle Sam was a humbug; the sutlers were all a set of rascals and swindlers . . . In this almost mutinous condition of affairs, our sutler, after nearly a month's absence came up. The supply of luxuries brought along consisted principally in a limited supply of chewing and smoking tobacco. This was distributed as equitably as possible though the regiment Then what filth and nastiness! What chewing, spitting, squirting, and whiffing! The nerves were all speedily quieted, the irritability soon gone, and a more contented set of men it was not easy to find. What strange freaks this fallen humanity of ours does exhibit!"

McClellan certainly had an attitude, several interesting quotes from his letters home to his wife. It was an interesting read, with quoted sources noted.
I'd give it - 4 out of 5 stars ****

So when is this "Old Enough To Know Better" supposed to kick in?
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02-21-2014, 07:47 AM
Post: #2
RE: Sword Over Richmond
Love the tobacco story Gene- never heard anything like it. Man , what the boys in uniform endured.

Bill Nash
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