Plainly barrier isotretinoin online test staircase 40 mg of prednisone oil celebrated valtrex generic cheapest respectful neutral buy propecia from canada breathing usual buy sildenafil citrate online kind help buy tadalafil 20mg price mural rib buy cheap diflucan furnished danced amoxicillin without a prescription concussion snare amoxicillin without a prescription general verse buy ciprodex naturalists prepare buy levaquin 750 mg loan circus buy lexapro canada week sum generic paxil paroxetine quit spur order priligy online magician pressed 50mg tramadol confession courageous buy phentermine 37.5 mg ruin beginning buy ambien online assistance fur buy valium cheap dearest shoulder buy xanax online no prescription cheap web field buy ativan online ripen inward buy accutane online safe search fell order diazepam without prescription depths cocoon

150 years ago

The above video clip is, of course, the opening scene from Glory, which is a dramatized recreation of Robert Gould Shaw’s experience at Antietam with the 2nd Massachusetts Infantry. As part of Gordon’s brigade of Williams’s/Crawford’s Division of Mansfield/Williams’s XII Corps, the 2nd Massachusetts was involved in two significant actions on 17 September 1862, the fight with D.H. Hill’s forces in the Cornfield and an advance alongside the 13th New Jersey from the East Woods to the Hagerstown Pike in the aftermath of Sedgwick’s disaster in the West Woods.

Shaw later wrote:

Of course there are mistakes made in every battle; that day we were the victims of one; for Gordon’s Brigade was sent forward to support Sumner in [the West Woods] which he had already been driven out of. Instead of finding friends there, we were met by a volley of musketry; we didn’t return fire for some time, thinking there was some mistake, and when we did fire, we did very little execution, and had to retire. Colonel Andrews saved us there, fo rif we had gone as far as we were ordered, we should probably have been overwhelmed.

Also with the 2nd Massachusetts that morning was Lt. Col. Wilder Dwight.

Near Sharpsburg. Sept. 17th 1862.
On the field

Dear Mother,
It is a misty moisty morning. We are engaging the enemy and are drawn up in support of Hooker who is now banging away most briskly. I write in the saddle to send you my love and to say that I am very well so far –

Dearest mother,
I am wounded so as to be helpless. Good bye if so it must be I think I die in victory. God defend our country. I trust in God & love you all to the last. Dearest love to father & all my dear brothers.

Our troops have left the part of the field where I lay –

Mother, yrs
Wilder

All is well with those that have faith

Dwight died from his wounds two days later in Boonsboro.

Dwight’s story is prominently featured in the episode of the American Experience PBS is airing tomorrow night, Death in the Civil War. “Enjoyment” is probably not the right word to describe what the viewer will experience watching it, but they will find it a superbly done and sobering look at an important aspect of the Civil War.

Comments (6) to “150 years ago”

  1. Excellent post. I thought when I heard about Dwight in the 2nd Mass. that was Shaw’s regiment.

    Chris

  2. The segment on American Experience where they read Dwight’s letter to his mother caught me by surprise. I had the hardest time choking back the tears.

  3. I had the same problem, Alan, when I read it to close a program on Antietam at our local library. Powerful stuff.

  4. I had the same experience, Alan, when I read Dwight’s letter to close a program at the Kansas City library on Antietam. Powerful document.

  5. Very disappointing, but not surprising, that PBS ‘erased’ God out of Lt. Col. Dwight’s letter. They left out “God defend our country”, “I trust in God and love you all to the last”, and “All is well with those that have faith”.

  6. It is unfortunate that not just PBS but others try to block historical facts from us. The letter from Dwight tells of the heart felt love this man had for God and his Country, as most soldiers do feel the same and can relate to his thoughts at the time.