Civil War Newspaper Clippings

The Regiment in Splendid Condition
Correspondence of The Detroit Free Press.
We have just moved camp into a piece of finely timbered land, where the dense foliage protects us from the hot sun. The weather is quite warm but very pleasant. The health of the regiment is generally very good. There are quite a number of convalescents coming back from hospital, and occasionally a new recruit-- two the other day. The new silver instruments for the band have just arrived, and from our present camp the enemy's pickets can hear it play. The boys think now they can make music that will entice the rebels to desert and join the Fourth.
We have been lying in camp nearly three weeks, doing picket duty one day and other guard duty the next. If the rebels do not give us a lead soon, we shall have to call them out. It won't do for the Fourth Michigan to lie in camp; they don't know how to do it. I send you Regimental Order No. 112, assigning certain non-commissioned officers and privates to the roll of honor. I have no doubt it would gratify their friends at home to see the order published. We cannot do too much for the brave boys; they deserve all the encouragement and credit they receive. The following is the order:
April 17, 1863.
General order, No. 19, Headquarters Department of the Cumberland, dated February 14, 1863; having provided for a regimental roll of honor, the following non-commissioned officers and privates have been duly selected in accordance with the provisions of said order, and are hereby announced as entitled to that distinction. They will compose the regimental roll of honor for this regiment:
Company A—Hiram D. Treat.
Company B—Guy C. McIntyre, Robert Boyce.
Company D—Daniel Donahue.
Company E—Thomas H. Peabody.v Company F—Smith Randolph.
Company I—Herman W. Grant.
Company K—Lauren H. Ripley.
Company L--Silas Stauber.v Company M—James D. Dawson.
Company A—-Geo. H. Simons.
Company B—Theodore Sanford.
Company C—Edgar A. Crane.
Company D—Wm. Prindall.
Company E—Calhoun M. Burch.
Company I—Elias Pierce.
Company K—Alvin Fox.
Company L—Perry Davis.
Company M—Reuben A Ray.
Company K—Geo. R. VanEtten.
Company A—Joseph Corbet, Gilbert Cotay, George Miles, Robert L Reynolds, Thomas Kelly.
Company B—Albert Babcock, Chester Barber, Patrick Hawley, David B. Skinner, Simon Voght.
Company C—Wesley T. Barker, Gideon P. Niles, Chas. E. Richard, Renselar Riggs, Abram J. Sebring.
Company D—John Stewart, James Place, Thos. Collason, Henry S. Baker, Caleb W. Horton.
Company E—Charles Fuller, George Lane, Martin Stancliff, Dewitt C. Carr, George M. Rose.
Company F—H. Wilcox, E. W. Nichols, John Rapp, O. B. McLouth, Wm. True.
Company G—Aaron M. Chase, Jeremiah P. Craig, Martin Cloonan, John A. Skinner, Geo. W. Van Sickle.
Company H-Augustus Grawn, Charles Hall, Johnson Saur, Samuel Van Etlen, Augustus Wegel.
Company I-Mason Brown, Charles Craig, Jerome B. Heath, David Parker, Leonard Wing.
Company K—William Wood, Alanson Barron, E. K. Roberts, Jessie Davenport, Robert Day.
Company L--Chas. L. Knight, James Holdworth, Samuel Martin, Lyman R. Warren, Benjamin K. Colf.
Company M--Homer Atkins, Geo. Dunbar, H. J. Gibney, P. Hammiston, Nelson Taylor.
The Lieutenant Colonel commanding desires to impress upon the minds of the non-commissioned officers and privates now comprising the regimental roll of honor, that for misconduct or falling below the proper standard, they may at any time be stricken therefrom. He sincerely hopes that this distinction which their fellow soldiers and the officers of the regiment have thought fit to confer upon them, may urge them to exercise all their energies in the performance of their duties, and thus enable each to become truly proficient in all that constitutes a good soldier.
By order of Lieutenant Colonel
J.B. PARK, Commanding.
Levi B. Griffin, Adjutant.

May 30th, 1863.
Mr. Editor: Here we are again at Potomac creek station; we are "buggered" about considerable, if I am not confoundly mistaked, and we generally go thirty miles before we get anywhere. Yes, us "sogers"—militia men--volunteers—all sorts—half a dozen of one and six of 'tother. I saw Lt. A. Schutt day before yesterday, and took dinner with some of the old 20th; Lt. Schutt is a "perfect brick!" A whole team and a hoss to let, and wapper-jawed bull-dog under the wagon! The 20th is spilin' for another fight; But they look upon gouging and scalping as irregular practices. It would do your heart good to come out here and just see this rotten country they brag so much about, where everything seems to want repairing—people, houses and all. However, they are trying to straighten things out. You know we must not throw away our lives; its against scripture and the constitution;—fight when you may and retreat when you must. After marching here from Dumfries, a distance of 19 miles, I looked as smiling as a basket of chips, at the thought of getting thirteen dollars a month and found—dead. I'm not much cut however; not a bit of it. I am made of cast iron, gutta percha and horseshoe nails. I feel like a Norwegian bear.— I'd like to be hugging everybody. Why, I'm a trump card—the king of hearts—the ace of spades—though I look more like a high-heeled Jack. I'll be dog-goned if I don't deserve to have my statue made out of California gold and set up in Kingston forever. I am not afraid to take the responsibility.— I "jest reconnyter" these secesh "varmints" a bit, and then if all is right, drop a shot accidentally, no harm in that--and then if it don't astonish Johnny Reb. some, sink me in an alligator swamp. I was born expressly to make a noise in the world, and my humble assistance in blowing up the Copperhead Confederacy will probably fulfill my "manifest destiny." Although the situation is rather exposed. Thunderation sight worse than the prairies; there aint no tall grass to lie down and play possum in, and a fellow would have right small chance for his life if he happened to be with those chasseur- de-southerners with their confounded shot and mining guns. There "mought " be a chance of a feller of my size "giving up the ghost" in double quick time. But what's a baker's dozen of Rebs. worth among one Yankee, who was cradled in a bee-gun, nursed by a prairie wolf, and weaned on buffalo humps and streaks of lightning? I can jump higher, squat lower, lie flatter, dive deeper, stay down longer, and come up farther, than any mortal man on the four quarters of the globe.
The Rebs., the sanguinary miscreants!— They're a darned sight worse than the copper- colored Indians, who leave a man the last bit of tobacco he has in the world; but the Rebs.--their religious principles have been deplorably neglected; and this is no dream but real "flesh and blood," done up in Regimentals, at a total disregard of cost. I must shortly avast heaving; I'm built partly on the stub and twist principle; yet I'm neither of brass nor iron—not quite invulnerable. Although 23 months in the service, I will not desert. My honor is dearer to me than life itself. I will remain here till my term of service expires or fall in my country's service! "That's what's the matter."
More anon.
Troop G, 4th N. Y. Cavalry.

June 8th, 1863.
Friend Bradbury: It is night, and no sound meets the ear but a few plaintive notes of the whip-poor-will. Moonlight and there is no visible trace here of utilitarian civilization to mar the primitive beauty of the scene. I consider it a good time to write you a few lines, and I don't intend to be crusty about it. I have just eaten an upperten supper, composed of venison steaks, rashers of ham, crisp corn-cakes, fresh butter-- and delicious honey was also abundantly provided, while my coffee was well tempered with maple sugar and rich cream;— it was apparently filled with milk; and one of our boys declared, with emphasis, that the cow which gave that milk must have been fed on brandy cherries. The letter finished, I shall retire to my couch. Sweet sleep.--when every passion is controlled and every pain quieted—when every unchained soul soars at will on rapid wing.
I should be happy if our Regiment should be detailed to do provost guard in Kingston, and live there;—not bad quarters, eh? I could then say in truth, safe! safe!
Yesterday the cars went by our camp with a couple hundred of haggard, troubled-looking, secesh prisoners. Deeply do they regret not having espoused boldly the just cause, in which case they would have had the satisfaction, at least, of thinking that they had acted like men. But now that hope is quenched, and who but themselves are to blame? Now their own duplicity has woven its spider-like web over their very existence. They were a woe-begone looking set of men, and looked very "solemncholy." As they are getting good grub in our lines, they think they had better stay some length of time, if not longer, and enjoy our hospitality, instead of Rebel kicks and cuffs. What a pity that my early education often makes me err terribly; solely in consequence of this honorable trait, I will have to "halt" the column and give the command "Sit at ease."
Yours, as solemncholy as ever,
Troop G, 4th N.Y. Cavalry.

From Gideon.
July 25th, 1863.
Friend BEACH:—The weather is so intensely warm that I have little ambition to write letters. There is but one word that will express the disagreeable condition of the atmosphere, viz., muggy. Yesterday was the most sticky day that I ever have experienced. There is only one sort of animated life that seems to thrive, namely flies. These are more plentiful than the locusts of Egypt, and their impudence and persistency are without parallel. I have invented a fly trap. The plan is a simple one and the destructive qualities of the machine are wonderful. I sprinkle a couple of spoonfuls of sugar on a board; surround the same with the contents of several cartridges; then invite the boys into my tent, cautioning them to be very still. After awhile, the flies settle upon the sugar. The next step is to light a cigar, the coal on the end of which held at arm's length explodes the powder. The flies are blown up, of course. Their dead carcasses cover the floor, while many of them are seen crawling about with their wings singed off. I believe that my trap will be very successful.
I mentioned above, that yesterday was a terribly hot day. For the benefit of the drafted men, I will mention a little episode. We had, at 10 o'clock, inspection of the Regiment. The boys were reviewed by two Colonels, both Regular Army officers, and one Lt.-Col., Wm. H. Seward, Jr., son of our distinguished Secretary of State. In the morning, the weather was "muggy;" towards noon, the sun came out, its rays being fierce enough to "fry the brains in a man's skull," as Sancho Panza would say. The soldiers formed in line of battle with knapsacks on; and stood there waiting for the inspecting officers, for more than an hour. When they came, they immediately ordered the men to their quarters to throw off their knapsacks. The line being again formed, the battalion was brought to a right face , and gallantly marched to Longley, a distance of five miles. The heat was frightful and the dust was suffocating; yet the men moved with precision and regularity.— Now and then one would fall out, being overcome with heat. There were several of them sun struck. Even the officers were overcome, and some of them had to return in an ambulance. The column arrived home at the fort in the afternoon, exhausted and dispirited; wearily dragging themselves along; their clothes soiled; their brasses tarnished, and their shoes filled with sacred soil. Now let me recommend to conscripts that they should join the Fourth Heavy. This is the "best regiment in the service," like every other regiment. We have delightful times. We dig in the fort, and we stand guard every other day. Besides this, we go patroling in the night, thus getting, on an average, three nights' sleep out of every seven. The fact is, we are "gentlemen soldiers" of the "band-box" description. The Fourth Heavy is by all means a good regiment to join. Sergeant Nate S. Wood will tell how it is, if he ever reaches Orleans County; and whatever statement he makes, can be considered as perfectly reliable.
The truth is, it is better to serve in some branches of the service than in others; but soldiering is agreeable nowhere. Yet it is quite as agreeable for the "first class young men" who skedaddle to Canada, as for those who joined the army long ago. It will not surprise the northern people to know that the draft is popular in the army. When our stay-at-home friends come down, we will welcome them with cordiality; and we are all profoundly impressed with the justness of the law which brings them, whether it is " constitutional" or not.
I trust that my venerable and patriotic friends at home will have good luck in organizing their "home guard." Should there be a riot in the beautiful village of Albion, (which God forbid,) they may be enabled to render important assistance to their country. I cannot see how they can do much more than this; although the spirit they manifest is quite commendable. 

July 30th, 1863.
Friend Beach:—The unknown friend from whom I received the bouquet, a few weeks since, has sent me another Tribune. It would please me to discover the perpetrator of this excellent joke. I am sorry that the newspaper did not enclose another nosegay or something, indeed, to counteract the horrible sulphurous fumes of that diabolical journal. The beautiful posies that I did receive are "faded and gone;" the white ribbon which was tied around them has been lost; and the only relic of the delicate gift is the white cotton thread, which I carry constantly about me. Being in an extremity, (the French call it pis aller,) I used it to sew a button on one of my under garments. I regretted the necessity that compelled this sacrifice; but the only alternative was to use a black thread upon a white garment, against which my taste and my judgment revolted.
If the sending of the first Tribune was a joke, the forwarding of the second one was more so. Upon opening the delectable sheet I saw written upon the margin, the following motto: Magna est veritas et prevalibit. Besides this, the following editorial articles were marked: The Draft and its foes; The Draft Constitutional; and What the Rioters are Not. All this would seem to imply in the first place, that the Tribune is a truthful sheet; secondly, that Gideon is supposed to be unfavorable to the draft, and an advocate of its unconstitutionality, and these articles were sent to enlighten him. The articles, of course, give Gov. Seymour a dig; and endeavor to fasten upon "Northern Democrats" the prolongation of the war. These accusations may be true, and I may know but little of the real sentiments of the Democratic masses at home. If Democrats, however, are opposed to prosecuting the war to a successful termination, I am no longer a Democrat. But when I believe this, it will be upon better authority than acrimonious editorial in the Tribune.
I do not doubt that there are those calling themselves Democrats who are traitors at heart, men who are crying peace, peace, when there is no peace; but even this class of persons are better than the politicians of the malignant, abolition school, who call the American flag a "flaunting lie," and who, in order to secure freedom to the negro, are willing to witness the downfall of the Union and the destruction of Constitutional liberty. I thank God that both Copperheads and Woolyheads form but inconsiderable parts. The great middle class are right in their ideas; they are conservators of the law, and they will eventually save the nation, in spite of the malignant bitterness of the enemies of law and order.
Ne quid nimis is a very good motto.— This is evidenced by the history of the times. Had this doctrine been more thoroughly understood and appreciated by the American people, the war would have been avoided; and when once begun, it would not have been prolonged to the present time. Our treasure would not have been squandered; the flower of our youth would not have been sacrificed, and the country would not have been desolated by the wailing of the widow and the cry of the orphan. Medio tutissimus ibis.
To some people Greeley is a god, and his Tribune is the gospel; others seek consolation in the pages of the dirty World. These papers are types of the factions they represent; neither reflects the sentiments of the American people. The former is ethereal, the latter groveling, and both are impracticable. The one violates law, because of its imperfection; the other opposes it because it is tyrannical. The first despises the populace, because they are ignorant; while its antagonist panders to their debased appetites and encourages their brutal instincts.— The Tribune inflames the mob by trampling upon their prejudices, and the World stirs their venom by reckless appeals to their depraved natures.
The Tribune cries "On to Richmond," and our soldiers are sent forward to be slaughtered; the World preaches peace and talks of compromise, and the rebellion takes new heart. Because of the clamor of the one, the battles of Fredericksburg and Chancellorville were fought and lost; by reason of the craven heartedness of the other, the rebels are induced to invade Maryland and Pennsylvania. Thus these two papers, and those of a like class, stir up bitterness and contention, arraying the people against each other; paralyzing the arm of the government; discouraging enlistments and fomenting riots. With these infernals, the administration, and the people must contend, and they will at last, triumph. If the Constitution withstands the shock of these contending factions, and at the same time, prevails over the hosts of the rebellion, there will never be another uprising against its authority.
Let me say a word concerning the riot in New York city. It is well understood that the rioters were of the scum of the metropolis. They pretend to oppose the draft because of its unconstitutionality; when, in truth, they have no more idea of constitutional law than Brigham Young has of virtue. Their theories are as absurd as the amalgamation doctrines of Wendell Phillips, or the Fourierism of Horace Greeley. Their ignorance is appalling; their morals are degraded; they are thieves and robbers and assassins. While they talk about the unconstitutionality of a law, they disregard all law , both human and divine. While they claim that their rights are infringed, they trample upon and destroy the rights of others. Their punishment should be terrible; but how much more frightfully accountable are those who instigated their carnival of crime.
More might be said upon this fruitful topic, but the limits of a newspaper letter forbid it. I again thank the sender of the Tribune, and solicit continual similar. favors. She furnished me with material for a letter. If she is a lady, she undoubtedly wears blue hose, else she never would have sent the Latin maxim. I presume she is an excellent linguist, but if she is not, I would refer her to Worcester's Dictionary for the translation of the Latin and French phrases that I have employed. There is where I got them, and in the course of my investigations, I also discovered the motto that she has quoted. It is a very excellent book. In conclusion, I would really like to know, (as Paddy would say,) whether she is a woman or a man!

AUGUST 3D, 1863.
FRIEND BRADBURY - - Weeks have passed away since I last wrote to you. I am still alive and in the "sunny south," thriving by chance, and like a seabird sporting on the shores of the majestic Potomac, in Alexandria-- poor, a "Soger," but nevertheless happy in the present and confiding in the future. I am Orderly Bugler at Head-quarters, having a fine time of it. At all times the Colonel commanding seems so good to me and obliging that I have become his inseparable friend and companion—I know not very well how, or why. Now my heart experiences those contradictory and complicated emotions, which agitate and discompose my existence. I tell you, friend Dan, when this cruel war is over, I will not be fit for much more than a cook's-mate's minister to read Psalms to rats. That is according to army regulations. I begin to experience the want of sweet companionship; although I enjoy unrestrained liberty, I have no devoted attendant to seek me and bring me back to the bosom of my home—not even a dog to warn me of danger, for it "lieth at my door." Yet I never experienced harm. I have wandered over the mountains and marshes without a guide and without a watch, and sometimes with no other couch than the moss-covered rocks or some marshy swamp, with mosquitoes formed in line of battle on my left and center. Yes! grey-backs, too—so help me Bob. I dine sumptuously. In short, I lead a free and joyous life, without incurring more risk or feeling more emotion than might be experienced by an old man of my age. If you want me to write, give me a clear surface, and that too of a good quality. If it be too hard, I can make no impression on it; if too soft, I shall destroy it at the first stroke. In short, although I acknowledge the extraordinary talents of the young correspondent of the Argus, in a letter I told the worthy shemale, with some temper and ironical humility, at the end of her first lesson, that her method was not adapted to a pupil so far advanced, and that a Master could only embarrass and retard the natural progress and invincible development of so superior an organization. More anon.
Troop G, 4th N. Y. Cavalry.

Ferd. Rosenbergr, Co. F— wounded and prisoner.
Robt. Brown, Co. F—killed. 
William Kennelly, Co. F— wounded.
Isaac Campbell, Co. F—head.
E. Reeve, Co. K—right elbow.
Pat. Smith, Co. K—head.
Wm. Finnigan, Co. E—head.
Sergt. Geo. Tindle, Co. C—abdomen.
Chas. Fetterlechner, Co. A. head and side. 
Thos. Marshall. Co. F-neck.
Thos. Grady—right shoulder
Wm, Kenly, Co. F—sabre cut on head and hand.
Corp. Ryan, Co. F—neck.

Military Matters in New York.
Colonel Canola, who has been in this city some short time recruiting for the Fourth New York cavalry, was yesterday presented with a fine and valuable charger, prior to his resuming his duties at the head of his company in the field. Colonel Cesnola has been exceedingly successful in the recruiting service in that arm of it most demanding reinforcements in the field, and on his departure for his regiment, now stationed at Fairfax Court House, Va. in a few days, will take with him one hundred young, active men. The Colonel's friends remembering past associations, and hoping for him a successful soldier's career, subscribed among themselves $400, the sum paid by them for the charger they yesterday presented to him.

Capt. Halleck Mann, of the 4th New York Cavalry, positively asserts that his severe wound through the breast was inflicted after he was dismounted by a saber blow in the face, and after he was on the ground. The proof is abundant that in the recent cavalry fights the Rebels sabered and shot many of our men after they were captured. In no previous collision have they manifested such implacable hate.

On Monday evening last, we were the willing witness of an enthusiastic reception of one of the brilliant heroes of the war, Capt. Mann, of Milton, in this county. As the steamer Mary Powell, on her way up, neared the Milton dock we observed a large crowd on it with flags waving, and hurraing and ladies swinging their handkerchiefs. As the gangplank was thrown out and before the gallant Captain reached the dock, he was taken and carried to the four-horse carriage in waiting to convey him to the village and his home, amid the heartfelt congratulations of his friends and neighbors. Capt. Mann enlisted in the 1st New York Cavalry in 1861, and served in that regiment until last fall. Last winter he was appointed a captain in the 4th N.Y. Cavalry. A correspondent of the New York Tribune, giving an account of the Aldie cavalry fight, says:
" An individual case of daring brought to my notice was that of Capt. N.H. Mann, of the 4th New York, who, finding his squadron hesitate in a charge, plunged alone into the enemy's ranks. The result was a sabre gash in the cheek, a pistol shot in the shoulder, and a killed horse; but the men were inspired, and rushed to victory.

Services of the Fourth New York Cavalry.
A correspondent, who has been a member of this regiment from its formation, sends us the following account of its services. The regiment has been lately mustered out of service, its time having expired.
" The Fourth New York State Volunteer Cavalry was raised and mustered into service as a regiment on the 29th of August, 1861. It entered the field early in September of that year, under command of Colonel C. Dickel, who remained in command until June, 1862. He was succeeded in September 1862, by Colonel Louis Palma Di Cesnola, recently commanding Second Brigade First Cavalry Division, to which his regiment was then attached.
" The regiment has never been a day absent from the scene of active operations: it served with credit under Fremont, Rosecrans, Sigel, Pope, Stoneman, &c., as many flattering encomiums bestowed on it by these commanders can testify. Starting with a numerical strength of seven hundred men, and having added to it at various times from nine hundred to one thousand recruits, it numbered scarcely one hundred men for active duty when discharged—the deficiency being accounted for by loss in action, deaths from wounds, &c. It performed much arduous and hazardous service scouting and reconnoitering, being invariably successful, and seldom suffering any loss.
" At Strasburg, Va., on 1st June, 1862, a small portion charged on the rear-guard of "Stonewall" Jackson's retreating army, comprising the Fourth Virginia (Black Horse") and other cavalry, and caused a vigorous stampede, which horses and men were too exhausted to follow up.
" At Cross Keys, Va., the regiment opened the battle in skirmishing order, and afterwards rendered itself conspicuous by its determined resistance to several charges made on Schermer's battery by the rebel forces; a resistance which was successful in saving the battery from capture, besides inflicting severe chastisement on the enemy, and killing the rebel General Ashby. Continuing with the army during Pope's retreat, the regiment performed meritorious service by bringing up the rear, destroying bridges, &c., in the face of the enemy's advance, and having several severe skirmishes.
" At Manassas (second Bull Bun), co-operating with the First Michigan cavalry, it made the only cavalry charge during the battle, under the direction of the late General John Buford. This was successful in checking the enemy's advance and saving many thousands from being captured. At Kelly's Ford, on 17th March, 1863, much credit was awarded to the regiment for its conspicuous gallantry. At Aldie, on 17th June, while a portion of our cavalry was driven back and nearly captured, the regiment opportunely arrived, and by a spirited charge turned apparent defeat into a glorious victory for our arms, and completely r o u t e d the enemy, and cutting off nearly one hundred men, with a battle-flag - all of whom surrendered and fell into the hands of the First Massachusetts cavalry….
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Secretary of War, resulted in having the order rescinded on 6th January, 1864, on the ground of " meritorious service."
" The order did not, discouraging and unjust as it was, alter the true soldierly qualities of officers or men, as both regimental and brigade commanders can attest.
" At Trevillian Station, on the 11th and 12th of June, the regiment was engaged in the hottest part of the fight, losing heavily in officers and men, but taking upwards of one hundred prisoners, arms, equipments, &c. On the 11th, after driving the enemy for nearly three miles, a portion of the regiment charged and recaptured Trevillian after General Custer had been forced to retire, holding the position until reinforced.
" On the 29th of July the regiment, detached on a reconnoissance, reached White Tavern, four miles from Richmond, and was several times cut off from the brigade; but by careful manoeuvring escaped without the loss of a man, and brought in several prisoners.
" At White Post, near Newtown, on 11th of August, the regiment again opened the fight, and stubbornly contested the advance of the enemy for five hours, until reinforcements arrived.
" At Front Royal, on 16th August, the regiment (numbering at this time one hundred and fifty men) charged on a regiment of Wickham's brigade, which was driving our skirmishers, capturing in the charge the veteran battle-flag of the Third Virginia cavalry, besides many prisoners. In this charge Captain Mann, while gallantly leading his squadron, was killed—having been shot through the heart. A series of charges were afterwards made in concert with the Sixth New York cavalry, on Cobb's Legion of infantry, which had crossed the river and deployed on our left, resulting in the capture of their battle-flag (which fell to the Sixth New York), and from two hundred and fifty to three hundred prisoners. The total number credited to the regiment in this short but spirited-engagement were twelve officers and one hundred and nineteen men, and the entire affair was characterized by the division general as 'superb.' 
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