Detailed Minutiae of Soldier Life in the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865

Detailed Minutiae of Soldier Life in the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865

Detailed Minutiae of Soldier Life in the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865

Detailed Minutiae of Soldier Life in the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865

Synopsis

This Civil War classic of soldiering in the ranks debunks all the romantic notions of war. Like his Northern counterpart, the Confederate soldier fought against bullets, starvation, miserable weather, disease, and mental strain. But the experience was perhaps even worse for Johnny Reb because of the odds against him. Never as well equipped and provisioned as the Yankee, he nevertheless performed heroically.

Excerpt

By Brian S. Wills

For weeks the army remained in camp. The routine of drill, sentry duty, and other activities droned on tediously. The hours passed so slowly that even the usual diversions such as letter writing and card playing took on an almost oppressive monotony. Finally word filtered through the chain of command to prepare three days' rations and a sense of excitement shuddered through the ranks.

Early the next morning came the marching orders, and although few knew where they were going, virtually all welcomed the break in routine. But the contentment subsided as the column stretched across miles of alternately dusty or muddy roads, through the humidity of sweltering summer days or into the chill of autumn nights. Then, when the plodding foot soldiers thought they might go on forever, came the faint rumbling of distant thunder, over the clank of accoutrements and the thump of marching feet. Word again filtered through the ranks to close up and the pace quickened.

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