Woman's Work in the Civil War: A Record of Heroism, Patriotism and Patience

By L. P. Brockett; Mary C. Vaughan | Go to book overview

MARY DWIGHT PETTES.

TO one who was accustomed to visit the military hospitals of St. Louis, during the first years of the war, the meeting with Mary Dwight Pettes in her ministry to the sick and wounded soldiers must always return as a pleasant and sacred memory. And such an one will not fail to recall how she carried to the men pleasant reading, how she sat by their bed-sides speaking words of cheer and sympathy, and singing songs of country, home, and heaven, with a voice of angelic sweetness. Nor, how after having by her own exertions procured melodeons for the hospital chapels, she would play for the soldiers in their Sabbath worship, and bring her friends to make a choir to assist in their religious services.

Slender in form, her countenance radiant with intelligence, and her dark eyes beaming with sympathy and kindness, it was indeed a pleasant surprise to see one so young and delicate, going about from hospital to hospital to find opportunities of doing good to the wan and suffering, and crippled heroes, who had been brought from hard-fought battle-fields to be cared for at the North.

But no one of the true Sisters of Mercy, who gave themselves to this service during the war, felt more intense and genuine satisfaction in her labors than she, and not one is more worthy of our grateful remembrance, now that she has passed away from the scene of her joys and her labors forever.

Mary Dwight Pettes was born in Boston, Massachusetts, in the year 1841, and belonged to a family who were eminent for

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