150th Shiloh: Friday morning

150TH SHILOH….. Friday morning, con’t

All of us had rolled our gum blankets and tied them to our packs or wore them as blanket rolls across our bodies. Since we were on the march and almost immediately getting ready to go into battle, we couldn’t go through the machinations of getting them out and wearing them to protect us from the rain. So everyone just started getting wet. Thank heavens it wasn’t a heavy downpour.

After our battalion of four companies had stood in a column of fours for about 15 minutes, while our skirmishers went forward to find the enemy, we finally moved out; climbed a hill; and was ordered into a column of companies, which put all four companies one right behind the other starting with the first company and then the second company, the third company and fourth company. Almost immediately we were ordered into battalion battle line. The first company continued straight ahead while the second company came up on their left. The third company then came up on the second company’s left and the fourth company came up on the third company’s left until there was one big line of four companies about 125 men with the soldiers shoulder to shoulder stretching about 50 yards long. We were halted and another battalion of about the same number of men was on our right.

The generals and their staffs were roaming the area discussing how to move forward. One of the generals riding a white horse must have been portraying Nathan Bedford Forrest because he looked just like him. Once we were in the correct position to move to attack. This general spoke to the men. His speech was uplifting and exhorted us to send the enemy to the nether regions. We all cheered; had a prayer; and moved out.

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About Civil War Reflections

Vernon has been a Civil War buff since childhood, but had been inactive in Civil War history for over two decades. However, in the early 1990s his interest was rekindled after watching Ken Burns’ “Civil War Documentary” on PBS. He particularly became interested in the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg) and decided to learn more about this epic struggle.
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