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 Posted: Thu Nov 30th, 2006 03:07 am
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Dale
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HI,

I have just received a box of correspondences from, Louis West Froelick, of N.Y.C.  He was a writer for the N.Y. Sun Newspaper and sent stories home to the paper.  His letters are interesting!  He talks about Bull Run and other tales.  He writes on July 1, 1861, while aboard the PHILADELPHIA " We started in N.Y. on the 21st of April in the steamer CUYLER, our reg. (71st)numbered 1,ooo men and the vessel being very small, not calculated for more than 400, caused us to be well packed together, we had hardly room to turn.  After a pleasant sail we arrived at Annapolis, from there we marched 28 miles and took cars to Washington, being the third regiment that passed through that part of Maryland."

He enlisted into the 71st regiment and was in D co.  He was stationed at Washington Naval Yard and did patrol and ferry service for other troops.  He recalls, " the N.Y. Fire Zoauves were brought by them to Alexandria and his company marched with them to Marshal's House and were before it when Colonel Ellsworth was killed."

There are many stories.  He writes," ..I will commence from the time my 71st left the Naval Yard on Tuesday July 16th,  1861,at noon....  Mother just informed me that she sent you a SUN Paper containing a letter of mine which will carry you to.." five miles beyond Fairfax".  From that point I will continue, "  we remained in this camp three days, it was pleasantly situated on a hill side and our bowers of rails and bushes formed a good protection from the sun; fortunately no rain troubled us while we were there.  On Sunday morning at 2 o'clock we were ordered to fall in for the march.  The day previous, 3 days rations of crackers and salt pork had been put in our haversacks, but no time was allowed for breakfast, or indeed any other meal on that unfortunate day.  At 11:30 the battlefield was reached, the men though encumbered with blankets, haversack, canteen, and ammunition went in with a run.  After maneuvering a short time, the 71st with the R.I, and N.H. reg'ts, took a position on the edge of a hill at the foot of which was a wood in which the enemy was posted.  The battle had  commenced before we entered the field, the last 5 miles of the march had  been through a dense wood through which nothing could be seen, but the thunder of the guns could be heard a long distance from the field and some cannon shot fell near our ranks before we reached it.  as soon as we were in position the fire was opened on the enemy., the men on delivering their fire would fall back from the brow of the hill, lay on the ground and load, then forward and fire: by this means - falling back and laying on the ground, the worst of the fire of the enemy went over our heads.  At one time two Alabama reg'ts attempted to charge up the hill, but we met them with such a galling fire, that the few that did not fall retreated in quick time to the woods.  During the fight the rebels showed an American flag, this caused us to hold our fire for awhile, but,  discovering the trick we peppered them the more for their villany.  ... the story continues..." then Gen Burnside, the commander of our Brigade, rode along the line saying" the day was ours", but soon afterwards a large re-enforcement of the enemy appearing, the order to retreat was given, this was done in good order by our reg'mt and a few others, but many were broken up and mixed together, looking like a mob..."

There is a lot more and I have many questions!

Anyone interested in coming to the aid of a New York novice?  My first post

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