6th New York Independent Battery's Civil War Newspaper Clippings
Our Army Correspondence.
Letter from Rev. E. R. Keyes.
HEADQUARTERS 6TH N. Y. ARTILLERY,
About 6 miles S. W. from Hagerstown, Md.
July 13, 1863.
To THE EDITOR OF THE REPUBLICAN:
Our incessant marching and countermarching during the past fortnight, while they have furnished me material enough for several letters to your paper, have also quite unfitted me for writing anything for the public eye. Our regiment now forms a part of the grand army of the Potomac, and moves as a part of the complicated machine. This is far from being so agreeable as our former isolated regimental life; but we are learning to adapt ourselves to our new circumstances as it becomes good soldiers to do. We are in the third army corps, third division, and third brigade. Gen. French commands the corps; Gen. Elliott, the division; and Gen. Morris, the brigade. According to the present disposition of our forces, our corps is held as a body of reserve. If a general engagement is brought on here, we shall doubtless act in this capacity.
We left our camp on the Monocacy at Frederick Junction on Saturday, July 4th, at 8 p. m., and marched in a heavy rain till about 10 p. m. The route of our regiment lay through Frederick, thence to Middletown, thence to Crampton's Gap. When we arrived within about three miles of the Gap, we learned through our scouts that the enemy's pickets were between us and that point; so about 10 p. m., we turned aside into an open field and rested for the night. The naked ground was our bed, the stormy heavens our shelter, and the rain pattering upon our silent upturned faces, our baptism. There was at least one to whom the rite was attended with special grace. With the early dawn we resumed our march, and reached our destination without seeing anything of the enemy. The pickets referred to were probably only a few scouts. It was at Crampton's Gap that one of the battles preliminary to the great battle of Antietam, took place last September. The enemy were strongly posted and inflicted severe loss upon our forces under Gen. Slocum; but the people there say that when our men charged upon them with the bayonet, they broke and ran up the mountain like sheep. Some of the houses at the eastern base of the mountain were pierced by countless balls.
On Wednesday evening the 12th corps under General Slocum came to relieve us; and early on Thursday morning our regiment marched to a point near South Mountain pass, or Turner's Gap, to rejoin the brigade. We remained there all day, Thursday, and saw the main body of the Army of the Potomac march past us. It was a spectacle never to be forgotten. Almost interminable columns of infantry and cavalry, and a train of artillery that was seven or eight hours in passing, besides lines of army wagons, ambulances, &c., filling every road as far as the eye could reach, gave me an idea of what an army is and of the exceeding difficulty of moving it with anything like the rapidity which many at home would exact.
About 8 p. m., just as we had got our tents up and were preparing for a good night's rest, an order to march came, and we were soon on the road. We proceeded to Fox's Gap, about two miles south from Turner's and crossed the mountain at that point. About 11 p. m., we halted for the night, and lay down in the open field. On Friday we marched to Keedysville and camped for the night, but with no tents as usual. On Saturday we marched to the position we now occupy, in front of the enemy.
I desire to bear testimony to the courage and cheerfulness with which the men of this Regiment have borne the hardships of the past two weeks. Their marching qualities are improving every day; and there is not the least doubt but that they will do their duty when they meet the enemy. Our officers also share the toils and privations of their men. Col. Kitching is an example to us all in this respect. He is untiring in the discharge of his duties and in his devotion to the welfare of his men. He often has no better accommodations than the humblest private in his command. Men will follow such a leader.
As I write with pencil, please see that the printer does not deal too badly with my English.
Very truly yours,
E. R. KEYES.
COMPANY K, 6th N. Y. ARTILLERY,
ARTILLERY RESERVE, Army of the Potomac,
March 17, 1864.
MR. EDITOR—Having recovered from a protracted indisposition, I again resume my pen, to inform your many readers and friends of our Company what we have been doing, and what we are now doing.
On the 5th inst., a grand Ball was given by the Regimental officers, and held in a large and spacious tent, erected especially for the occasion. It was attended by most of our field and line officers and a number of invited guests; among the number Colonel H. S. Burton, commanding Artillery Reserve, was particularly noticed. He was accompanied by his Staff, and all expressed themselves well pleased with the entertainment. The wives of some of our officers, and two daughters of the Hon. John Minor Botts graced the affair by their presence, and lent additional eclat to the occasion. The affair was very ably managed, and great credit is due to the management for their indefatigable exertions for the comfort of their guests. The music was excellent, and discoursed some very lively and patriotic airs, and forcibly reminded your correspondent of the times past, when he used to "trip the light fantastic toe" our good old country ballrooms.
Dancing commenced at 9 o'clock, and "all went merry as a marriage bell," until the "wee small hours" admonished them that it was time to prepare for the duties of the day, and all marched out in couples to the tune of "Home, sweet Home." As balls were the principal feature in the army this winter, and as one had been held at almost every Corps, Division and Brigade headquarters in the army, our officers resolved not to be behind, and that they were not, any one who witnessed the affair on the 5th inst., will readily acknowledge.
On the 7th inst., a general review of the Reserve Artillery took place on a large open plain near Brandy Station, Va. The line was formed at 10 A.M., with the 6th New York Artillery on the right, (post of honor.) After the whole line had passed in review, the 20 and 32 pounder batteries went through the exercise of loading and firing, changing direction, &c., and elicited great praise from the spectators. It is almost unnecessary to say that the Regiment confirmed the good reputation it has always held. Each man vied with his comrade in his appearance and drill, and was rewarded for his efforts by the reviewing officer (Col. Burton) expressing himself well pleased with the appearance and evolutions of the Regiment. It is but justice to those who compose this Regiment to say, that wherever we may have been stationed, or who may have been our commander, we have always been held in high estimation. It certainly must be an honor to our gallant little Colonel to command such a Regiment, and have such flattering encomiums bestowed upon him by superior officers. The 8th Senatorial District may also be proud that she has sent such an organization into the field.
We have been honored with a visit from our worthy Representative in Congress, Hon. WILLIAM RADFORD. He remained here two days, and during that time visited all the men's quarters, which he pronounced as very comfortable and scrupulously clean.
A few days ago an order was issued from Army Headquarters that all women should leave the army. This looks like business, and we long for the time when active operations will be resumed. We feel confident that Richmond will be ours before the 4th of July; and now that this gallant, though heretofore mismanaged army, is no more to be commanded and guided by blundering blockheads at Washington, the people may look for good results—victories, not defeats. Lieut.-Gen. Grant is to superintend the first movement of this army, and under his guidance can the people doubt that we will be successful?
Recruits are arriving here every day in squads of from 20 to 50, and the opinion is that we will be filled up to our maximum standard before the commencement of active operations.
Our Captain, Frederick Shonnard, who has been home since the 1st of January on recruiting service, has been promoted to a Majority in the Regiment, and it is considered a deserved compliment to a well deserving and meritorious officer. His head-quarters are in Yonkers, where he is prepared to enroll any "able-bodied young man," without encumbrance, who can muster courage enough to forget his sweetheart, into the service of the United States for 3 years, unless—sooner killed.
Now all you counter-jumpers, and "bounty jumpers," here is a chance. Apply to Maj. Fred Shonnard;
His office is in Yonkers, and he's ready now to pay the very highest bounty if you'll enlist in Co. K.
Au Revoir, AMERICUS.
SING SING, THURSDAY MAY 26, 1864.
JOSEPH J. CHAMBERS, Editor.
THE SIXTH NEW YORK HEAVY ARTILLERY, a fine body of men, raised in the counties of Westchester and Rockland, is attached to the army of the Potomac, and on Thursday the 19th inst., for the first time went into action. The particulars of the fight, as we gather them from the special dispatch from the New York Herald correspondent, are these:
On Friday the 18th a change made in the disposition of the troops, left several heavy artillery regiments on the extreme right of the line. These consisted of the first Massachusetts, Colonel TANNOTT; Fifteenth New York, Colonel ACKERMAN; Second New York, Colonel PALMER; Sixth New York, Lieut. Colonel TRAVIS, commanding, and a battalion of the Fourth New York under the command of Major ARTHUR—the whole under command of Colonel Kitchen, of the Sixth New York. On the 19th inst., at 4 o'clock P. M., the rebel corps of Gen. EWELL attempted to get possession of the Fredericksburg road, cut off our communication in that direction, and capture our supply train in the rear. In all these objects the rebels were foiled by the brave and determined resistance of the regiments enumerated. At the first onset our men withdrew across an open field, and made a stand on the edge of a pine woods. From this position, several desperate charges of the enemy failed to drive them. It was thought best at length to make a charge on our own side, and the assailants were driven back with considerable loss in killed and wounded together with five hundred prisoners left in our hands. This brilliant victory accomplished by troops for the most part never before under fire, received the commendation of Major General MEADE in a special order issued on the morning of the 20th. The order states that these troops "henceforward will be relied upon as were the tried veterans of the Second and Fifth Corps, at the same time engaged.'' We regret to find in the list of wounded the names of Lieut. Col. Travis, of Peekskill, and Lieutenant Horton R. Platt, of White Plains, both brave and efficient officers. Colonel TRAVIS was struck by a minie ball in the groin, the ball just passing through a bag of tobacco, which circumstance doubtless saved his life. Lieutenant PLATT was mortally wounded by a ball which struck him in the shoulder, and taking a diagonal direction lodged near the spine.
This sad intelligence will cast a deep gloom over the large circle of relatives and friends to whom Lieut. PLATT was endeared. For a long time office attorney for Messrs MILLS and COCHRAN, of White Plains, he won in the business relations of life the entire confidence of the community, and by his genial disposition and affable manners, gained the esteem of all who knew him socially.
Annexed we give a list of the remainder of those wounded in the action, belonging to this regiment:
Jeremiah Mahony, Company A.
J. Young,.................... " "
Corp. John J. Secord, " B.
John Smith,................ " "
James H. Vasseaterx,.." "
J. Dexter,....................." "
F. Martin,................... “ "
S. Elverin.,.................." "
Wm.S. Bristol,.... " D.
Lieut. Justin D. Crosby, "
Corp. C. Harvey,........ " "
T. Hinchey,.................." "
W. Silley,....... " "
S. Waterbury,..............." "
Wm. Thompson,.........." F.
David Poeser,.............." "
J. C. Rockwell,..........." "
Corp. J. Forsyth,........." "
D. McLeoud,.............." "
M. C. Rourke,.. ... " "
Chas. Height,............ " G.
Frank Gordens,..........." "
Andrew Johnson,........" "
Sergt. Wright Hart,....." "
P. H. Halstead, ..........." "
A. B. Trowbridge,......." "
Capt. H. B. Hall,........." "
1st Lieut. Amos P. Cross, "
T. Campbell,..............." "
Sergt. Paul Miller,.......'' “
E. Wilkinson,........ " "
John H. Wallace, ….. “ “
P. Kover, ………….. “ “
J. Burke, …………… “ “
S. Ryan,..................... “ I.
Eugene McComb,….. " “
T. Remington,.............. " K.
N. Campbell................ " "
N. Conklin ................. " "
C. C. Mulford,........... " "
G. Wheeler,................ " "
A. Allen,.................... " L.
H. Ferns,.................... " "
Jas. Mowatt,.............. " "
J. Ackerlan,............... " "
S. W. Daily,.............. " M.
Fredk. Quackenbush,.. No Company named.
H. A, T. Telford,............" " "
T. R. Miller,.................. " " "
From the Battle Field.
IN THE FIELD BEFORE PETERSBURGH,
June 23, 1864.
MR. EDITOR—Considering the gross amount of business on hand to be disposed of this summer, Uncle Sam cannot afford his nephew sufficient time to write you a lengthy epistle, but for the benefit of all concerned, I send a complete list of the killed and wounded in our Company (K, 6th N. Y. Artillery,) to date:
1st Lt. H. R.Platt, May 19, Spottsylvania C. H.
Serg't Orlando Vreeland " "
Private Thomas Hunt, " "
" Stephen Tubbs, " "
" Robert Koerner, " "
" Wm. G. Dickey, May 30, Grove Church.
" Dennis McCarty, " " "
" John Schepler, " " "
" Ward C. Martin, " " "
" John Heath, " " "
“ Christian Rowe, " " "
Capt. W. O. Scribner, leg, badly.
Serg't Fred. Devoe, leg, 3 times, slight.
Corp. H. H. Devoe, badly 3 times, by shell.
" John Daly, (Ginger) leg slight, doing duty.
Private Martin Moran, shoulder, slight, on duty.
" Michael O'Rourke, arm, slight.
" H. H. Conklin, leg, serious.
“ O. D. Conklin, head, slight.
" Thomas Rhodes, leg and shoulder, badly.
" J. O'Malley, buckshot wound in leg.
" George Hayer, knee, badly.
" Charles C. Mulford, leg, slight.
" Ira Loan, leg, badly.
" Grant Wheeler, leg and shoulder, badly.
" Isaiah Oakly, shoulder, slight.
" Theodore Remington, arm, badly.
" William Campbell, leg, badly.
" Archibald Hoyt, head, slight.
" Archibald Smith, leg, severe, a prisoner.
" Richard Kemp, leg amputated.
" John Canniff, breast, badly.
" Arthur Attridge, stomach, slight.
" George W. Phillips, head, slight.
" Alfred Conklin, hip, slight.
" Peter Burket, leg, badly.
" Daniel Hugenor, head, severe.
" Thomas Hickcox, arm, slight.
" Talmadge Howell, leg, slight.
" Joseph Mansfield, thigh, severe.
" John F. Mullen, arm, slight.
" _____ Manshow, leg amputated.
" Daniel Smith, hand, badly.
" John S. Smith, head, slight.
" Lewis Hicks, head and shoulder, badly.
" Wm. D. Hennion, 3 times, badly.
" Geo. Higgins, leg, slight, doing duty.
" Jean Claude, wrist and stomach, slight.
" Samuel Treat, knee, slight.
" Chas. Hegeman, abdomen, mortally.
I would state that Orderly Sergeant Fred. Devoe was wounded while gallantly leading a charge on a two gun battery of the enemy. Our Captain having been wounded early in the day, the charge of the Company devolved on him; that he well fulfilled the charge to which he was assigned, the wounds from which he is now suffering bear testimony. For this he was publicly complimented by the Brigade Commander.
William G. Dickey, another of Rockland's heroes, is among the slain—killed on the skirmish line at Grove Church, May 30th. A braver little soldier (he was not 18 years old) never existed, and met death like a hero, with a full conviction of the justness of the cause for which he was contending, and died just as the enemy was driven from the field with great slaughter. Poor fellow, he did not live to hear the victorious shout of Co. K's "Bucks," as they climbed over the enemy's entrenchments. Peace to his ashes.
The above is the list of our Company only; the ratio is about the same throughout the Regiment, 12 companies. That the Regiment has done well and retains the good reputation it has ever held, the following Order from Gen. Meade, issued on the 20th, the day after the fight at Spottsylvania Court House, will bear evidence: "Headquarters Army Potomac,
Orders. May 20, 1864.
The Major-General commanding desires to express his satisfaction with the good conduct of Tyler's Division and Kitching's Brigade of Heavy Artillery, in the affair of yesterday evening. The gallant manner in which these commands (the greater portion being for the first time under fire) met and checked the persistent attack of a corps of the enemy led by one of his ablest Generals, justifies the Commanding General in this public commendation of troops, who henceforward will be relied upon as were the tried veterans of the 2d and 5th Corps, at the same time engaged.
“ By command of Maj. Gen. MEADE.
“ (Signed) S. S. WILLIAMS, Ass't Ad.-Gen'l.
The Kitching Brigade referred to above consists of the 6th and 15th N. Y. Heavy Artillery, commanded by J. Howard Kitching, Colonel 6th N. Y. H. Artillery. Since the opening of the campaign, the Regiment has been commanded, by Lieut.-Col. E. R. Travis, who was wounded in the engagement of May 19th by a ball from a Rebel sharpshooter. (Col. Travis seized a musket from a private and ended the career of one of those miscreants.) Since then the command has devolved upon Major A. A. Crookston, who has led us in every engagement and skirmish, and has made his mark wherever his command was called upon to strike.
I hope to write you again soon. AMERICUS.
The Sixth New York Artillery.
We copy the following interesting account of the Sixth New York Artillery from the Highland Democrat of Peekskill:
The Sixth New York Artillery were recruited mostly from Westchester, Rockland and Putnam Counties. It is made up of young men full of energy and fiery zeal, robust and vigorous—just the material for a successful regiment. In the ranks are the sons of our hardy yeomanry, the farmers, mechanics and the more respectable laborers—those who fear no dangers where duty call, and who stop at no impediments that may be surmounted by patient labor and toilsome efforts. No regiment has gone to the war with better qualities than the Sixth New-York Artillery, and whose officers and men, under the circumstances, have acquitted themselves with higher honors and more determined bravery. Most of the men were recruited in the Summer and Fall of 1863, and have not yet been in the service one year. The officers of the Regiment are Col. J. Howard Kitching, Lieut.-Col. Edward Travis, Major Absalom Cruxton, &c.
Col. Kitching entered the service in 1861 as a private in the "Lincoln Cavalry." He is about twenty-six years of age, and is a son of Mr. J. B. Kitching, formerly of this village, now residing at Dobbs Ferry. He has fought for and earned all the honors that his title confers, and is now discharging the duties of Brigadier-General, which meritorious honor will no doubt soon be bestowed upon him.
In April, 1862, while acting as Captain, in command of a company, in one of the forts around Washington, he volunteered to act as Second Lieutenant of a Regular battery before the enemy, rather than remain idle in the fort. This indicates a character determined to accomplish something for the good of his country, as well as for his own advancement. To this courageous temper Col. Kitching adds a disposition to thorougly acquire a knowledge of what is the duty of a soldier. He is a strict disciplinarian, and in this is the secret of the success of the Sixth Artillery. No details of drill but his men are compelled to undergo, until they are expert in every movement. Every moment set apart for exercise is occupied in imparting or receiving instruction in the greater or lesser duties of a soldier. His exactness, his determined industry, his faithful and severe discipline, upon himself as well as upon his men and officers, are the kind of qualities that have successfully wrought out from a private in the " Lincoln Cavalry," a competent and accomplished Colonel, now commanding a brigade of artillery, and winning the applause of all his superior officers.
Lieut.-Col. Edward Travis is a native of this town, is about twenty-nine years of age, and is the son of Mr. Aaron Travis. He entered the service in 1861, if we remember aright, as Captain of infantry, and on account of his bravery at Port Royal, and at the taking of Fort Pulaski, he was promoted to Major. When the Sixth Artillery was formed, he took rank as Lieutenant-Colonel, and at present is the Acting Colonel of the Sixth Artillery, while Col. Kitching is acting as General in command of the brigade of which the Sixth Artillery is one of the regiments. Lieut.-Col. Travis is reputed to be a brave officer. He was wounded in a skirmish near Spottsylvania Court House, about the middle of May, and partially disabled. He was in the hospital only three weeks, when he resumed his command, though really unfit for duty. He shares the honors which the Sixth Artillery have won by their bravery, and of which honorable mention has been made by the commander of his division.
Major Absalom Cruxton is a son of Morris Cruxton, now living in South street, Peekskill. He is about twenty-five years of age. As a young man he was known here as genial, good-natnred and social. As a soldier he has been faithful to perform the duties assigned him, and has won his way to the enviable position he now occupies. He is one of the finest looking soldiers in the service.
Major Shonnard, Lieuts. David Sarles, Wright Gilberts and David Goetschius are better known to the people of this town than to us. Their conduct has not deceived the ex-pectations of their friends.
The Sixth Artillery was engaged on the 18th and 19th of May. Their conduct this occasion displayed the highest qualities of veteran soldiers. Kitching's brigade, including the Sixth, met Ewell's corps in a desperate engagement, This was the battle, we believe, in which Col. Travis was wounded. We are permitted to make an extract from a private letter from one of the soldiers, to his mother, bearing upon this battle, which reads as follows:
" On the 19th inst., near Spotsylvania Court House, our (Kitching's) brigade and Tyler's division were attacked by Ewell's whole corps, and led by the General in person; and although it was the first time we were so actively engaged, and could not be expected to stand as unflinchingly as older troops, still the flower of the Southern army, led by one of their ablest Generals, and outnumbering us five to one, could not force us back one foot.
" Our little Colonel was at his post as usual with a smile and a cheerful remark for all, and a word of consolation for the wounded. Our regiment captured, during the fight, seventy-nine prisoners. They all say that they were addressed by their General before they left, who told them that they were going to attack raw troops, and a victory would be easy and decisive; but they all say they do not wish to see any more such raw troops.
" Our Colonel may well be proud of his regiment, as we are of him as our commanding officer. I wish you could see him once. To see him is to respect him; but to know him is to love him. He is just my idea of a perfect soldier and gentleman. While the shells are flying over us, and the bullets whizzing past us, he will be walking leisurely up and down the line, and if any of the boys should dodge, he will say with a smile, 'No ducking—stand up!' His demeanor and example in battle has made heroes of the meanest cowards." For the bravery of the Sixth on this occasion, the great honor of a favorable notice in General Orders was bestowed. The following is a copy:
" HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC.
" The Major-General Commanding desires to express his satisfaction with the good conduct of Tyler's Division and Kitching's Brigade of Heavy Artillery in the affair of yesterday evening. The gallant manner in which these commands (the greater portion being for the first time under fire) met and checked the persistent attack of a corps of the enemy, led by one of his ablest Generals, justified the Commanding General in this special commendation of troops who, henceforth will be relied upon as were the tried veterans of the Second and Fifth Corps at the same time engaged.
" By command of Maj. Gen. MEAD,
" [Signed] S. S. Williams, A. A. G.
" Brigadier-General TYLER. " Commanding Division."
In the battles that have been fought since the last of May, the New-York Heavy Artillery have taken a conspicuous and honorable part. We copy from the New York Times the following:
WASHINGTON, Friday, June 3.
A dispatch from the Army of the Potomac, dated on Tuesday night, says:
" The day before, the Fifth Corps, advancing from Hawe's Store toward Bethesda Church, drove the enemy about two miles. At sunset, while our men were engaged in digging rifle pits, Rhodes's and Early's divisions made an attack on Warren's right flank, causing him to fall back from his first line. The enemy then advanced and charged the second line. Kitching's brigade of heavy artillery was posted there and opened a heavy lire in conjunction with batteries on both flanks, which nearly demolished the rebel column of attack. The enemy fell back in terrible disorder, and left their dead and wounded behind them on the field."
In this engagement Crawford's and Kitching's brigade lost perhaps 200 killed and wounded, and they have buried that number of the enemy's dead, taken over a hundred prisoners, exclusive of over a hundred Rebel wounded left on the field.
And the following from the New York Herald, shows that the conflict was a terrible one and the result glorious:
" So hot was the fire that the house was burned, and all the outbuildings adjacent; but neither battery or men yielded their position. An idea of the severity of the contest at this point may be gathered from the fact that after the fight one hundred and thirty dead rebels were found in front of General Crawford's headquarters. But all the batteries did well and so all the divisions. Colonel Kitching's brigade of heavy artillery—as yet novices in the field—stood their ground with the resoluteness of veteran campaigners. The brigade alone captured eighty prisoners.
" General Warren came upon the ground at the close of the day, and was highly gratified at the result.
" Colonel Christian stated that he had been in all the battles in Virginia with the rebel army, but had never been near such a fire. Colonel Kitching's brigade behaved with great credit during the advance. It lost heavily."
In the recent fight, says the Free Press, in front of Richmond, two boys of Co. L., 6th Regiment, N. Y. Artillery, both from Philipstown, Putnam County, were cut off from the rest of their company, when they were overtaken by a Rebel Captain and five privates. The Captain drew his sword and ordered them to surrender as prisoners of war; at the same time the boys leveled their muskets at the Captain and ordered him to surrender, which he did, and his privates with him, and the boys marched them safely into our camp.
On the 3d of June, the brigade of Heavy Artillery of which Colonel Kitching is in command, took a rifle pit after three and a half hours' hard fighting. In the engagement, the skin of the Colonel's neck had been grazed by a Minnie ball, producing a slight wound and a terrible swelling. The sharp-shooter who performed the deed was taken prisoner. He boldly declared that he had seven fair shots at the Colonel, and if he could only have hit and killed him, he could have died happy.
The friends, neighbors and fellow-citizens of the New York Sixth Heavy Artillery may well be proud of the valiant deeds of their sons, brothers, and friends. Such acts of heroism as they have performed, such effectual service as they have rendered the Union, amply compensates for the care and expense incurred in placing them in the field. May their future history be as brilliant in glorious deeds as the past.
The Sixth New York Artillery.
We copied from the Highland Democrat, last week an account of this regiment, which we understood was incorrect in some particulars. We, therefore give this week another notice of the regiment, from the Peekskill Messenger.
This Regiment was mastered into the U. S. service Sept. 2, 1862 as the 135th N. N. S. V., and in about a month it was changed to Heavy Artillery. Its officers were appointed by the Eighth Senatorial District War Committee, and were as follows: William H. Morris, Colonel; Ralph E. Prime, Lieut. Colonel, Edmond R. Travis, Major. The last mentioned, E. R. Travis, was Captain in the Forty-Eighth, N. Y. S. V., had been in the service a year or more, and was at Port Royal almost from the commencement of operations there until after the capture of Fort Pulaski.
Col. Morris took command at once after his appointment. He is a son of Gen. P. Morris, and at the time of his appointment, was on the Staff of Brig. Gen., now Major Gen. Peck. Col. Morris possessed all the elements of a good soldier and capable efficient officer. He was a good tactition, as is proved by the fact that he is author of a work on military tactics which has become very popular and considered the best work of the kind extant. Col. Morris was in command some six or eight months and during that time the regiment was made all that it could be by mere drill and discipline. At the end of this time he was promoted to the position of Brigadier General.
During most of the time that Morris was Colonel, J. Howard Kitching was acting as Lieut. Colonel, in place of Ralph E. Prime, who had been appointed to that position but had not yet reported for duty; being on duty as Captain in the Duryea Zouaves. Prime, soon after reporting, resigned, being nominated Brigadier-General and, upon the promotion of Col. Morris, Kitching was promoted to the Colonelcy, E. R. Travis to the position of Lieut. Colonel, and A. A. Crookston was made Senior Major.
This regiment, as thus officered, was connected with the Army of the Potomac in June 1863, and has participated in all the marches and hardships of that Army since that date.
During the last six montes Col. Kitching has been acting as Brig. Gen., and the Regiment has been under the command of Lieut Col. Travis and Maj. Crookston, who by their bravery, efficiency and gentlemanly deportment, have gained the confidence and affection of both officers and men.
This Regiment was actively engaged, for the first time, on the 19th of May last near Spotsylvania Court House. That day Ewell's Corps of rebel veterans, in an attempt to get at our wagon trains, met the brigade to which the Sixth Artillery is attached, and so stubbornly did they hold their ground and so bravely and successfully did they fight that gen. Meade issued the following order:
HEADQUARTERS OF THE POTOMAC.
The Major-General Commanding desires to express his satisfaction with the good conduct of Tyler's Division and kitching's Brigade of Heavy Artillery in the affair of yesterday evening. The gallant manner in which these commands (the greater portion being for the firs time under fire) met and checked the persistent attack of a corps of the enemy, led by one of his ablest Generals, justified the Commanding General in this special commendation of troops who, henceforth will be relied upon as were the tried veterans of the Second and Fifth Corps at the same time engaged.
" By command of Maj. Gen. MEAD,
" [Signed] S. S. WILLIAMS, A. A. G.
" Brigadier-General TYLER.
" Commanding Division."
This regiment has been several times engaged since, and in every instance exhibited metal of the most approved character. We hope soon to hear of the promotion of E. R. Travis to the Colonelcy, the duties of which he has for some time been discharging with so much credit; in which event A. A. Crookston would succeed to the Lieut. Colonelcy, a position for which he is well fitted. We hope to hear, too, of the speedy re-call of Capt. Bassett to his place at the head of his company, with the members and officers of which he is deservedly popular.
Arrest of Deserters.
Charles Hudson, of Co. I, and William H. Youmans of Co. K, 6th New York Artillery, both belonging to Haverstraw, were arrested as deserters a few days since at Angola, Orange County, New York. The former deserted in
March last at Maryland Heights and the latter in February last at Harper's Ferry. They were both sent to Governor's island to be returned to their regiment.
Adjutant Charles Leonard a Prisoner.
Intelligence has been received of the wounding and capture, by the rebels, of Adjutant CHARLES LEONARD, of the 6th N. Y. Artillery. We are unable to give the particulars as to when and where he was taken prisoner, as we get our information from reports about town. Adjutant LEONARD is a son of Hon. Moses G. Leonard, of Rockland Lake, the ex Provost Marshal of this District.
FUNERAL OF LIEUT. DAVID HAMEL.—Lieut. David Hamel, of Company H, Sixth Heavy Artillery, who was mortally wounded on the 19th of May, at Spottsylvania Court House, died at his late residence, in Morrisania, on Monday last, and his remains were, on Wednesday, conveyed to Cypress Hills Cemetery for interment. The regiment to which the deceased was attached was stationed on the extreme left of the Army on the morning of the 19th of May, when they were attacked by the Rebels under Gen. Ewel, who was endeavoring to cut off the supply-train. Captain H. B. Hall, of Company H, was acting as Major at the time, and had charge of a battalion, while Lieut. Hamel was placed in command both of Company D and his own company. He was rallying his men to charge upon and drive back the enemy, at the time he was shot and felled to the ground; but recovering himself, he again pushed boldly to the front, and stimulated his command to push onward, when, overcome by faintness from loss of blood, he again fell, and was carried off the field. Upon examination of his wound—in the left arm, and, as was supposed, a flesh-wound on the left side—the surgeon pronounced his injury not of a serious character; and the deceased firmly believed that he would be able to return to active service in less than a fortnight. Obtaining a short furlough, he came home to see his family. He arrived at Morrisania on the 30th ult., able to walk about, though somewhat weak from loss of blood, apparently. in good spirits, and full of hope of a speedy return to the Army. The anxiety of his friends induced them to call a prominent surgeon to examine his wounds, and then the discovery was made that the ball which wounded his arm must have penetrated his body. Lieut. Hamel died in three days after his return home; and on a post-mortem examination being made by Dr. Norton, of Morrisania, the ball which caused the death of this brave and gallant soldier was found to have destroyed one lung, and hah lodged under the other.
The deceased was well and intimately known to us. He was, as a man and a citizen, highly esteemed and respected by all who knew him. And a braver, more earnest, or a more devoted soldier was not to be found in the Army. The company of which he was lieutenant was raised in the town of Morrisania, through the exertions of himself and Major Hall (who was badly wounded in the thigh at the same time lieutenant Hamel received his wound), and the men all testify to the good qualities of their late commander. The Fire Department of Morrisania, of which the deceased was a member, together with Company A, Seventeenth Regiment, N. G., attended the funeral of Lieutenant Hamel, on Wednesday last, and the most marked evidence of regret and sorrow for his untimely taking off was exhibited by his numerous surviving friends.
In addition to Lieutenant Hamel, we undestand that some three or four privates of his company were killed, and quite a number wounded. Among the killed are Mr. Hutton and Mr. Sanguinette—two very worthy men. Major Hall's wound is improving slowly, but he is considered entirely out of danger.
The citizens of Morrisania propose to get up some kind of public entertainment for the benefit of the families of deceased soldiers from that town killed in the recent battles.
Traitors and Copperheads.
A disbanded volunteer, of Co. F, 6th Artillery, riled at the scandalous libels of the Tribune and other black journals upon the "drunken Copperheads
in uniform" who cheered McClellan at Utica, has out in rhyme, and we must say that his production, as a first effusion, is good. The true spirit is to be found in his verses, even though they may be imperfect in construction. Moreover, they represent, in our humble belief, the sentiment of returned volunteers almost en masse:
They say that we are traitors
To our country and our home,
And as such we should be branded
And suffer a traitors doom.
Some somewhat modify the term,
And give another name:
They say that we are Copperheads,
Yet deem the sense the same.
Now, who are traitors? let us ask,
And who are Copperheads?
The echo answers, quick as flash,
All those not wooly heads.
Now what's the difference? let us see—
Whoever's not a fool—
Between a common Copperhead
And a head with curly wool.
The one's our nation's currency,
With a wreath upon her side,
A head, inscribed with Liberty,
Which is our nation's pride.
The other is a "What is it"—
Half monkey, half babboon,
With hardly sense enough to know
A green cheese from the moon.
What makes them call us Copperheads,
And as traitors stigmatize?
Is it because we sigh for peace,
Or ask for compromise?
No! 'Tis because we're getting sick
Of sacrificing men,
Led on by demagogues and thieves
To fill a slaughter pen.
Then let us drop all this harangue,
Let minor questions be,
This war's not waged for party strife
Or to set nigger's free;
'Tis waged to save a Union,
For which our fathers bled,
And I never heard the question asked
Were those fathers Copperhead?
Nor did the Glorious Washington,
In the time of doubt and fear,
Ask a Colonel how he voted
Ere he made him a Brigadier.
But the question--is he competent? Was all he wished to know,
If so--here's your commission—
Deal death to every foe.
Now let our good old Abraham
Look the war square in the phiz,
And for the Union as it was,
The Constitution as it is;
Then we will all shake hands together,
And to the war will go,
And plant our flag on every hill,
From Maine to Mexico.