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Experience Of A Father In An Attempt To Visit A Dying Soldier Son

Experience Of A Father In An Attempt To Visit A Dying Soldier Son image
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[Dr Thomas Irish, of this city, has fnrnislied us the following letter addressed to Gen. RpsKCEAHS, detailing his experiences il an attempt to visit his siek son at Nashville 'L'imiii. - Ed. Argus.] Deak Sir : - It is only to serve a bloeding country that I give this briof history of my travels and obaervations, in an attemptec journey to Nashville, Tenn., for the purpose of seeing, and if possible removing a sou sick and dyiog in Hospital No. 5. I started from Ann Arbor, Michigan, on the morning of Deo. 23d, 1862, with a recommend frora the city authorities, and from othcr officials of Michigan, together with tho Governor's reoommend. Tho af'ternoon of Dee. 23d, I arrived in Louisvillo, same evening saw Gen. Boyle, told him my business, and showed liim my papers. He said that he could not give me a pass to Nashville, and advised me to sce Surgeon Hed, and sce if my son could not be removed to Louisville, as tliia could easily be aecomplished in case my son was able to be removed. I immediately sent a dispateh to the Hospita1, and found that he was not able to be removed. I again went to Gen. Boyt.e's and showod him my auswer from the Hospital. He then told me that I could not have a pass, that it was strictly agaiust your orders, I asked him if that that objeetion would be removed by gotting your consent, or order for a pass, he said yes, I sent a dispateh to you, and received your order for a pass to see my son. Immediately I repaired to his charters, was refused admittauce, serrt in word of the circumstances, and he said cali tomorrow, and for three days my petition was rejected, without allowing me in his presonce. I had observed ladies passing and repassing. So I got a lady to go with my petition. She gained admittance and presented my petition, togother with your order for a pass, ho said to her the order was just and true, acknowledging its authority, but that he could not give any passes that day, but said teil your friend to cali around in a couple of days and I will attend to him. I callod accordingly, he said to-morrow. It was to-morrow and {o morroio until the flickerng camp of life with my son went out forever. From the 23d of December, until the 3d of Jan. 18G3, I prayed to see my son, a volunteer in the Ninth Michigan Infantry, begging for ono last ook on his ouly parent living - his Mother long since, I hope and trust, in Heaven. The 3d of Jan., at 12 M., I received notice of my sou's death which took place on the 29th of Deo., 1862. I immediately loftthe city in disgust it the treatment received at the hands of Gen Boyle. Could you havo seen and heard the pleadings of wives with that oold, uufeeling man, for a pass to ,hc;r dying husbands ; mothors and fathers in tears plcading for one last look on all that was dear to them in life, you vould bavead pity. Could they have )een pern.ittcd to see their dying friends, the sacrifice made in good f ai tb. for a distraotcd and bloeding country would ïave boon tolerable. Thcy as well as I went home, wounded and bleeding at every porc, somo maniacs I fear forever. And think you that this is eucouraging ,o the friends of good goverument, to send their sons and husbands to tho care and keeping of such inhuman offieors. I may be wrong in my present state of 'eelings, if so remove the wrong by removing the causo. That duch uien should bave places oí trust and power is a burning shame and disgrace to this Nation ! and I assure you, General, with such men as are in the field directing the affairs of the Nation, to a certain extent, we will never succéed in onding this war honorably. They mako it an unuecessarv waste of blood and treasure. 13 c patiënt a littlo longer wliile I give you my observation in and around Louisville. I spont not less than 10 days in the place. I observed that the house where I put up contained a largo nuinber of what appoared to bo military officers, and who seeined to be without busmess. True, they wero engaged to somo extent in discussing '. ho merits of a cigar, with their heels higher than their heads, with an occasioual doclaration of what they would do with Morgan and Gompauy, when thcy got hold of them. It is astonishing, General, how these persons towcred after giving vent to their bothouse, pont up patriotic fealings in favor of immediately erusliing out the damuable robellion. I toon discovcred who and what I had to deal with, and coucludcd that I would , have sorao tune to stay in the place. I was a stranger there, and had a desire to soe and learn the strength and beauty of the place. So I eommencod on Main Street, traversed its length, visiting its places of public resort. I continued that kind of critieism until I visited all of the principal streets in the city, and found that this more than waste of time by the olficers prevailed all over the city, not a place of public resort in that city without its quota of officers. I chanced to observe in the presence of one of this vast numbors, that I thought the city unprotected agaiust an attack from Morgan. He seemed wonderfully indignant, called me a rebel, and deinanded of me in an authoritative manner, a roason for my language. Said he, we have some four thousaud troopa to guard the city, sufficient to eat Morgan and Company up. Very likely, said I, good soldicrs and true, and if thoy had officors to direct would bc an efficiënt forcé against a wily enemy; but you, sir, will hardly fiud an officer in camp, on duty, above an Orderly, and by the time they eould be looked up the city might be sacked and burned, and you, sir, said I, are, togethcr with thousands of others, the jw-bone of the rebel Ass, and are used as auch to divide anddestroy our army 1 In these times that try men's souls every man should be at hls post of duty ready to act at a moment's warning. My observations are, that everywhere fho common soldier is becoming disheartened and disoouraged, on the account of the diladaly of the officers. Thoir opiuions are freely and openly givon that this war is designedly protracted by an unprincipled set at the expense of the lifo and blood of the oommon soldier, and tbat with such feelings they could not fight. In every Camp and Hospita) this feeling is expressed to some extent, from the eonvalesceut, from the sick couch, and the glassy-eye, from every nook and corner where soldiers are congrogratcd, from Detroit, Michigan, to Lexington, Kentucky. All through Indiana and Illinois, the same feeling prevails, that the lives of the soldiers are bartered for a paltry sutn or sums of moncy to be made by an unprincipled set of scoundrels by protraeting this unholy war in the name of humanity. That this is the feeling to a very great extent I verily believe. What can be done ? The enemies of a good government, of our common country, inherited )y us from the blood of our Fathers, are at this time legión and incrcasing every day. What is the matter ? Who can teil ? The best governmcnt uuder the sun, crumbling to atoms. Who wil!? Who can grasp the Pillars and save the Templo. My God! my God! must it be that the day of National grace is gone forever. Thomas Ikisii.