Following the American Civil War Sesquicentennial with day by day writings of the time, currently 1863.

Post image for The Color Guard, A Corporal’s Notes, James Kendall Hosmer.

The Color Guard, A Corporal’s Notes, James Kendall Hosmer.

March 11, 2013

The Color Guard, A Corporal's Notes, James Kendall Hosmer

March 11, Wednesday. —I was sitting in the chaplain’s tent Sunday evening, complimenting him on his excellent sermon, which he had just preached in the sutler’s tent to a congregation of men sitting on molasses barrels, and boxes of almost every thing. Every moment, a bearded face was thrust in at the door with, —

“When does the mail come?” or, “When does it go?”

Presently in comes the sergeant-major. “Two items of news.”

Complimentary corporal becomes mute. Chaplain turns. Inquirer at the door, or rather flap, of the tent, listens attentively.

“First, the ‘Nashville’ is taken.” (Intelligence received with due patriotic joy.)

“Second, orders to march have come at last!”

We expect to march: but hours go by, days and nights go by; and now here it is Wednesday noon, and we are still at the old ground, —knapsacks packed, canteens filled, rations ready. Our shelter-tents came yesterday. They are simply pieces of cotton, about five feet square, with buttons and button-holes on the sides, so that they can be connected. We are expected to get the necessary stakes from some fence or forest, wherever we may be. Each soldier carries one of these squares of cotton cloth. Four of us expect to go together. At night we shall button up our house, and be comfortable.

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