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From The Siege Of Yorktown

From The Siege Of Yorktown image
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Camp Virn:i.i) Scotr, Va., ) April 2&h, 18(32. $ De ar BuüTiiEn : - Once mbrc it rains; it commenced last evening, mij Iiu-h ket t tip quito i stea jüy ver t-im-e. For nnue we ;iru iijKiek. The puncho cents which wero furttished uson HulTs iïi'l, umi ■ a!ly called rubber, were Dijthing nioro than the poorost kind o! cloth, glazed. This glazing w.i9 but a slight proioetion ' ngainat the rain, for in lü'rocn minutes ufter it oommeneed to ruin, water wotild loak throügb tbetn, ;t:il it only took a half daysrain to muke thenj unDomfortuble things to lie in. I3ut thi.s was not the worst of it. The cold weather crack ed the g'nzing of most of thern, and it almost entirely disappeared from the cliüi after a iittle use, ', leaving nothing hut a thin Bubstanee, I wind] is no protection against tlio min. Many a morning, sinco wb have buen on this marcli, and beon under tho ;iecossity of using our ponoboea lor tante, lavo we waked up in tho moniirig and , 'otindour blankéts and dothing wet ihrougb, and oursolves lying in a f-jw ncbesof water. These ponchóos were dondemned by governmunt boforo we cft Hall's Hill, and we were irjformed bat we would have othor and better ones in place of thern. They carne on Thnrsday, and ihaokd to them, and the ooft t ion of our camp, we found ouraalves dry, and tho tent cleor of water Lfiis morning. They are made of stout inen canvas. Our camp is now situated n Iiistojic ground; ground inado memorable in the revolutionary war. It is not the fi:'st tinie that armios havo confrontod each other here. We nre oaropod iniide of earlh worka wbioh were probably tlirown up at tho tirae of tho occupation of Yorktown bv Oornwallis, The wörk of building bridge, and of throwing up intreochments or breast worlcs, necessary in the opor:.tio:is agaiost Yoi-kiown, is fincly progressing. Tbe rebels trouble U8 but little, but occasionally they tr.ako a sally. - On Thuraday night the pioketa saw them leave their ÍDrtifioations in foroe, when they feil qnietly back to their ieserve, wbioh lorined, ready to meot tlie rebuls. Thoy were soon scen approaching, and were allowcd to como on nntil the buttons of their coate could be plainly scen through the darknoss, when tho corntnand was given, ' Fircí' " Charge!' a deadly volley was poured into thoir ranks, anti a charge made upon upon them, and they vvero driven back to thoir intrench ments. I boliave the loss of tVie rebelo in Ihis operstion was s:xty kilied, wounrded and prisoners. Thoir objefct in this advaoco was t() got possession of and spike sDme heavy piceos of artillar y that were being placed in position. The worka tliat are being thrown up facing the enemy are extensivo, and are to be mounted with vory heavy guns. These guns have to be tratuported six miles by land, and tho road over whieb they have to be haulod, is truly described in the following articie: " Ishall Deer be able to make any human being roa'ize what a desperate road it is that leads frcSTT) 8hip Point to the place vvhereGen. McGlellan's head quarters were pitched. I recalled all that I had ever read oí the road from Baliiklava to the front of Sebastapol, over vvliich tho Freoch and English armies fitst drew their stores aod wtjge guns. That was nniversally conceded to be tho worst road ever soen, an;l tlio Eiigüsh language, and probablv tho French, were oxhausted in desenbing it. But this road must have been worso than that. This road crossed frequent uloughs, over which poles had been tlirown crossways, to mako a corduroy road. But theimmenae rains hnd so saturated the soil, that every thing was soft, Uireo feet doep by the pluminet, and the poles floated iu mud ;h ihey would in water. ïhey wonld turn under the horses foet, and tlir;w them down, oatch in tho wagon wheejs, and torment where they wero design ed to help. llore and thoro a oleared place on tho roadside would bo seon, an old field or heatner, which wonld tempt the thoughtless tea meter or liorseman aside. But sorrow ior all such. The smooth surface corered a treacherous quicksand. Tho wagons would pi un go in to their hub?, froui which no horse or mulo power could extneato them ; arul the mounted Dorso would Struggle with euuh desperate contortidna as nearly Ui dislócate his limbs and unseat his rider.-. Bis miles had we of tliis road. It wa a sea of sand, boundleas and fathómless. We might have added endleSs, f we had beato 'required to go beyond tho miles. Wagons woro stuck fast along iho whole lino of raarob. Males werd seën sitting down on thoir hannuhos ín tho mud, bu ried to theit bellios in ruad, lying down on tbeir sides in the mud, falling (!.l:iintrid in their traces. Teamsters slashed, t.hrashed and sworo - and sworo, slushed and thrashed. - It was of no avail, for notliing short of omnipotence cuuld draw an army's routino tlirongh ttiat st)'gian box. - The dry wind and the sun, that seemod to havo bidden tho earth íarewell, were tho only eource of liope for feeding the grand anny of tho Potomac. I did not reach (ion. MeGlollan's camp till 2 1'. M. It waa eomewhat improved írom Mr. Washburne'8 desoription, but yet only a vastmuddy bull pon n appeorance. Gen. MoClellan was absent rcconnoilering near Yörktown, and selecting a sito for a new camp." Gen. McClellan ís in his saddle almost constuntly, superintonding tho worka and mountiog the guns. He intends to take this place, and to do it wiíh as little loss of liío a9 possible. - As it is strongly fortified and we!l defended, not only by mon but by nature it will be redueed by a regular siego. On Friday ovoning, at parade, and order was rcad fro:n Gtu. declarlng Yorktown to be in a state of siego, and calling tho nttention oí tlio brBcers to the articiüs of war on siegec. Ono dny last week Gapt. Wood, of the Michigan -i-th, was shot by öne of his own rnen whilo out on picket. I believc that ho had boon to 0110 of the outer post?, and mi liis return to the reserve, lt i' b-.-yoii'l y; i;iu of ji.-ku'.!, w:is laken lor a rebel, nnd one of' his owb inca ílint li'un. He died tho best u:iy. Mvndai), April :lst. - It in cpld nnd rainy. Yon need un', look, lor active operátiooa ngfifost Yofkfown beiuro the firat of Muy, ;is thoro is m good deal of work to bü done bufore it can bc succussiully uss:iilbd. Riciiakdsqn and Lovelano, ol tho Micliigan 4ih, wr n camp thia tnorning. 4th boys all ivdl,


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