3_The numberless graves and uncounted suffering

May 14, 2019 - Comment

3_The numberless graves and uncounted suffering Image by Jim Surkamp Abe & Henrietta – 2 Full Measures of Devotion (1) by Jim Surkamp Following the story with images numbered in sequence in the story: Made possible with the generous, community-minded support of American Public University system, offering a quality, affordable, online education. Interpretations in civilwarscholars.com

3_The numberless graves and uncounted suffering
camping 8 person tents
Image by Jim Surkamp

Abe & Henrietta – 2 Full Measures of Devotion (1) by Jim Surkamp

Following the story with images numbered in sequence in the story:

Made possible with the generous, community-minded support of American Public University system, offering a quality, affordable, online education. Interpretations in civilwarscholars.com videos and posts do not in any way reflect modern-day poilicies and positions of American Public University System. More . . .

VIDEO: Abe & Henrietta: 2 Full Measures of Devotion (1) by Jim Surkamp TRT: 9:12
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POST: Abe & Henrietta: 2 Full Measures of Devotion (1) by Jim Surkamp
civilwarscholars.com/?p=12928 2056 words.

This is an account of how in October, 1862 along the Potomac, war would touch hearts and extinguish lives all around, leaving undying thoughts of a world beyond and ahead. Lincoln decided in his journal the night before going to Antietam and Harpers Ferry that the war was in some diviner hand.

1_Lincoln_Lee_Full_Measures_Devotion

Abe & Henrietta: 2 Full Measures of Devotion by Jim Surkamp Click here. TRT: 9:12.

2_This is an account of how
This is an account of how in October, 1862 along the Potomac, war would touch hearts and extinguish lives all around, leaving undying thoughts of a world beyond and ahead. Lincoln decided in his journal the night before going to Antietam and Harpers Ferry that the war was in some diviner hand.

3_The numberless graves and uncounted suffering
4_loveable mirthful story teller and jokester
The numberless graves and uncounted suffering when he actually was beholding it, stilled his usual protective facade of the loveable mirthful story teller and jokester.

5_He seemed again haunted by death
He seemed again haunted by death, inseparable from the death-memory of one he called his “great passion.” The war he ushered in was, indeed, troubled equally on all sides. Henrietta Bedinger Lee, married to Gen. Robert E. Lee’s first cousin, was, as

6_Lincoln was approaching the area
Lincoln was approaching the area, stunned from surveying the countless wounded in every house and corncrib across the river in her very nearby Shepherdstown, Virginia. She too would write before Lincoln had left the scene: “There are many, many graves – what a season for Reflection and Self-examination this mortality should bring.” And from her own raw heart-wound, wished: “How I wish they could catch and hang him.” He being – Lincoln.

7_Thursday_October_2nd_cool
8_Gen. McClellan’s shared Maryland headquarters
9_at the Philip Grove Farm
10_Grove Farm, not far from the Potomac
October 2nd, 1862, late in the afternoon at Gen. McClellan’s shared Maryland headquarters at the Philip Grove Farm, not far from the Potomac and Shepherdstown:

11_The evening was well planned
The evening was well planned, staged, provisioned and plenty-fun, thanks to Lincoln’s gift of mirth.

Wrote one later:

12_there had been erected a beautiful pavilion
13_a long table laden with luxuries of every description
Adjoining the General’s marquee there had been erected a beautiful pavilion, under which was stretched out a long table laden with luxuries of every description, bottles of champagne in silver ice-coolers, a profusion of delicious fruit, and immense bouquets of flowers. – Von Borcke, p. 193

14_Two military bands relieved each other in furnishing music
The cavalcade returned after dark, and the chiefs went to dinner in the General’s mess tent. Two military bands relieved each other in furnishing music for the feast . . .

15_When it came to jokes and stories, Lincoln always had another one:
When it came to jokes and stories, Lincoln always had another one:

16_Dear Dad
“Dear Dad – Do come out here, for almighty mean men get office here.”

17_they named locomotives after fleet animals
“In Illinois they named locomotives after fleet animals, like the “Antelope.” I reckon the one in Harpers Ferry we could call “Scared Virginians.”

“How did you do it? they asked me. It was too big to haul out, too knotty to split, and too wet and soggy to burn . . . Now, I’ll tell you how I got rid of it, I plowed around it.”

18_I got rid of it I plowed around it

Wrote Federal officer David Hunter Strother:

19_Peals of uproarious laughter at the President’s hard jokes
Peals of uproarious laughter at the President’s hard jokes filled up the intervals. I had neither ridden nor feasted with the party, and I went to bed long before their jollity concluded.

20_Lincoln slept in a tent

21_and rose at sunrise waking up his pal

Lincoln slept in a tent and rose at sunrise, waking up his pal, Ozias Hatch to get his own unchaperoned look at the army,

22_which he found, like its compact commander was well-fed
Lincoln_Tent_McClellan_loc_gov
which he found, like its compact commander, was well-fed, sedentary and also vast – all to his disliking. Lincoln kept a

23_count of the number of encamped relaxing men
count of the number of encamped relaxing men, giving him a grand total of 88,095. It appears Lincoln wanted some independence from McClellan partly in order to get a bona fide count of his under-utilized Federal army.

Hatch remembered:

24_Hatch remembered:
“Early next morning, I was awakened by Mr. Lincoln. It was very early — daylight was just lighting the east — the soldiers were all asleep in their tents. Scarce a sound could be heard except the notes of early birds, and the farm-yard voices from distant farms. Lincoln said to me, ‘Come, Hatch, I want you to take a walk with me.’ His tone was serious and impressive. I arose without a word, and as soon as we were dressed we left the tent together.

25_He led me about the camp
He led me about the camp, and then we walked upon the surrounding hills overlooking the great city of white tents and

26_sleeping soldiers. Very little was spoken between us
sleeping soldiers. Very little was spoken between us, beyond a few words as to the pleasantness of the morning or similar casual observations. Lincoln seemed to be peculiarly serious, and his quiet, abstract way affected me also. It did not seem

27_meeting here and there a guard
a time to speak. We walked slowly and quietly, meeting here and there a guard, our thoughts leading us to reflect on that wonderful situation.

A nation in peril — the whole world looking at America — a million men in arms — the whole machinery of war engaged throughout the country, while I stood by that kind-hearted, simple-minded man who might be regarded as the Director-General, looking at the beautiful sunrise and the magnificent scene before us. Nothing was to be said, nothing needed to be said. Finally, reaching a commanding point where almost that entire camp could be seen — the men were just beginning their morning duties, and evidences of life and activity were becoming apparent — we involuntarily stopped.

28_This is General McClellan’s body-guard
The President, waving his hand towards the scene before us, and leaning towards me, said in an almost whispering voice: ‘Hatch — Hatch, what is all this?’ ‘Why, Mr. Lincoln,’ said I, ‘this is the Army of the Potomac.’ He hesitated a moment, and then, straightening up, said in a louder tone: ‘No, Hatch, no. This is General McClellan’s body-guard.’ Nothing more was said. We walked to our tent, and the subject was not alluded to again.” – Browne, pp. 529-530.

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