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The Siege Of Yorktown

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Special Correal malenco of the A Camp Wikfiild Scott, ) May 2ud, 1801, Dkar Brotihir : At 5 o'elock, T;iesday rnorning. April 20th,this regiment tonk up te line of march unrlsr the oommand of Major Welcii, for tlie out posts, to take our turn on picket duty. The looation of' our reserve in a ravine, vrhich rises Qear theiotreoo! rants tha' we worked on hist Sünday. Tiie Midi gao 4tl wbm at. work on them, to day, April 20th. Tbo duy was clelightfiil. Fu every ravine and on every hil'-side aroutid us hy tho oldiora, Tliey tvero out in vei'y strong foros As rny dutias vt:ro not very ardunu?, Boon after we roachod our destiimtion, 1 luid myseit down on the side-hill, which commandod n good view of the W6rka,-apd alto of the surrounding billé and ravine. Alter vtewvog the seenerj awhile, I threw myself down, and f.;ll inío i liglit loep. From tfaiaalnep I tras waköimd by tha booming i' the enemy'a catinon, and a shall cnme sing ing over our ho;i!s ; another and anoiher followed ia quick ucoession, sometimos going ia this, and then in that direotion ; somtimeS birnt!ig in th'e air, and fig;iin striking an;cl bursti) g D the groupd. Ono bmit in the air near us, a pioue of it cuttinji off thu branches if a tree, and then ialling to Ihe ground. Another one, passing over our reserve, struck nnd burst in the side of thohül a short diatanoe, and over the ravine, from us. At tho time this went whistling alnng, a Soldier l:iy on the sido of the bill, ho thought bv the sound that it was coming a little to close to him for comfort, so he rollad o!I the bank intolhe road, faliing some ten feot Ho eseaped the tíholl, but not ' tho dirt whioh iteentflyvng in cvery diractiüri, A íew moments after tlns ' sheil expioded, a üonoral carne riding ' along, hallod and Cquired of Ihe Ma" ( jnr where battery No. 10 . v."as located Tho Mujor informad hiña it was sitúated in the centro of the iutrenchments whioh he poiuted ouf to hiin. Whilo thoy v.eru convereiag a ?hell carne wliitttling filón 2;, and strucfc and expíoded in the sido of tho bilí a the roar of tho:n. The General lamed Lia horse's houd froni henee ha carne. He liad evidently given up hunting for batterv X:. 10, and thought, perhaps, that these qaartere wore getting too hot íor him, us Bhells wcre exploding in tho diection of tho battery as ve!l as in the ear of him. Sheil Wéra now oxplo ling in the d'.rection of th introüohnents, and I turned to tate a view oí hom. On tho intienchmcnts stood a numjer oí men, looking in the direction of tho rebel fort. As snon as they could sea the sinoke frora the enem'y'8 guna hey criad nut " down," when all work eeased, and down the men weot. - Sometiiiies t!io shells exptodpd in ti.e air, r.hnnst clirectiy over tho intrenchmentii ; and somoiimes stnick the etnembnnkment and explodod thrówingllio dirt ten foet in the air, and Bcattering it tik'e pin up'on tüo men in tiie intrenchmenta. I iindersUnd that fi ismal] pioen of shell struck' ono oí tlie raen oí the Michigan 4th on the arm, penetraled thro'.igh his coat and shirt sleevos, bat left lus arm unhurt. Anotlier one bad the handig of a íhovel brokeo off; tvhile nnothcr, who was 1 ing down near the fntrenebnvents aslec'p) lost a part of his bont heel. Eáther nftrrpw escapes, these, bilt a "mi.-s is as good as a tnile," I bolieve. One 'i the men of tho New York 44tb was killed by the explosión óf a sholl, ntul his dtkqth is a warningto every one never 'o l'ow hare they are hol wimted, and espeijiully wïiero they are strictly ordered not to go. His regiment was 011 piükot ; he left the reserve and went up to the ititrenohmonts ; ho was ordored to leave there, and tho oidor had to bo repeated eeverul times betore he obeyad ; hethen slowly ed awav, to i'ülracu nis steps to the reserve, but wus too luto; i she)l carne along, explodud, a piuco gtruok him on the hoad and killed 'mm instantly. He was tlio only one killed or vyotinded during our twontyfour hours louron pieket, tbúugh the rebela were firing altnost continuaÜy. Late in tho aflenionn the scène changad. The workmen lefc the trenchos and rolumcHl to tbeir cnmp, and tho pickct guardia look possession ol' Ihem. Tiie N. Y. 4-lth and part of thi-j regnnont look posseselon of purallal No. 1, wiiile thü rest of this rogiment t.ook possoslon of paraüol No. 2 VVhen we were at wovk on Suoday last, there was but ono intrencbment running to York river; but Mondny night tliey etarted anotlxsr, considerably ncaror tho fort than tlio first, nnd parnlk'l witb i!; and thís now extended more than twö-thirdi across. Toward nigbt it was announoed to Company A tliat as foon fis it was daik enóugb, thay, in cornpany wiih soino of.t'uo-lllh N. Y , were to be sent out sotne distanco in of the workü, and deployed f rom right to eft, until they mot and joined anotlier cotnpany of guarde from a regiment on the aft, thuM luakÍDg a i-ham of men [rom our fortificatioo that ron ainng on the !' ft to York Riveron thoright. Darkiess soon set in, and in singlo file we eft tho intronebmunts. got our distance 'rora them, derJoyed, threw oursi 11 it npon the ground, our laces towarda tfce enemy's fort, and onr eyos atrained to sec if we could discover njthing ia the dim distunoo. Soon Ihfough the darkneM we snw a flash oí íire frora !lie enemy's works; then soundcd thcvoice of the sentinel on the fortificationy we liud just leit, giving the short comrnand, "down," then for B moment alJ was Htill, when csrae the report oí a cunnon, and the whietling of the shel] BB it passed over our heads ; soon tfaere was another report, the shell had exploded, and égain all was still. Oor yes woro once mora fixed on the w rks of the enemy. Perhaps half an hour passed by. when there waa agaiu a fla-.h, a rej.ort, a short whistle, than a piunge, a u hizzing along ths ground,. exactly in iront ol u-', then a bound, and then another whiz, and on t came, nearer and 'nearer. By the sound we were in a tight placo, exactly in the road of that traveler, it might explode, or rol! over us ; there was no help, no use try ing to dodge, so down went our beada cl :s.) to the ground, and on came the 8'rangor. Somothing lay in its path, it hit it, boundud, over ov heads it went, anl striking the ground some diatanco boli;i 1 us, went wbizzlng along on ita couvse. We were safe, and once moro our attention was direoted to the fort. It was not long before anolher flash was seen, and again a shell whis'led over our heads, and this was kept up, with short intervals Le tweer: the discharges, all night. It waa a beautiful sight - and one that I could not holp but admire - to seo the ühell pass through the air, carrying a train of fire with it, and se-nding forth a j 't of flame as it explodd. At daybreak word was passed along the line to fall back to the fortifioations and simultaneouMly the whole line roe; ind without drawing the fire oí tho 'ort wo reached the shelter of out .vorks. Soon alter reaching theui we (rara relieved, and took our rnaxoh for amp, which we reaohed sta vcry ear3' hour in the morning. During the firing on Tuesday a piece f shell, weighing two pounds, feil in Dur camp, which demónstralos the iact Lhat we migbt bo eaaily shelled out of ;t. On ray way to camp, on Wednesday merning, I met Sergeant Eiciiauusom, of the Michigan -lili, who gave 1110 the good nevvs of the capturo of New Orieans. Aria Arbor boys in tho 4lti all weU, This regiment was paid off on Monday, for January and February, and was mustered for pay on Woduesday, for March] and April, but wlien we sliall eet paid is anothor ques'.ion.


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