Two beautiful American Flags were presented by the ladies of Hempstead to Capt. B. A. Willis’ Company on Wednesday afternoon, at 6 o’clock.
Rev. Mr. Moore made a neat and appropriate presentation address, which was happily responded to by Capt. Willis.
Thursday, September 25, 1862
From Co. H., 119th Regt
A friend in Company H, sends us the following letter in regard to the movements of the 119th, and the whereabouts of those Flags. We hope nothing more dangerous will "hit him where he lives" than the Captain’s brief speech, and that the Flags will be brought back covered with glory.
Headquarters Co. H., 119th Regt. N.Y.V.
Camp Plesaner, near Fort Bunker Hill, Md.
September 12th, 1862
Believing you to have no special correspondent in this Camp I thought you would be willing to know what has become of those splendid Flags presented us by the young ladies of your village.
The beautiful Stars and Stripes were placed in my hands with the precaution, "remember the givers," (and I guess I’ll do it!) which Capt. Willis (and he is a trump!) likely thought would hit me where I lived.
Well, I took this banner from the old Turtle Bay Brewery, (our old quarters) and carried it on board the steamer Red Jacket, last Saturday, about 4 o’clock P.M., and landed at Elizabethport about 8 o’clock the same evening.
But I must not forget Staten Island, for its inhabitants showed the (---?) patriotic feeling of any people seen since I left Queens County. Small row boats were constantly (?...pulling out) from the shore of the Island, filled with young ladies and gentlemen, who waved their handkerchiefs and cheered us on our mission, while the shore was completely lined with flags.
It was dark when we got to Elizabethport, consequently I had but little chance to scrutinize the place, but one thing I noted, viz.: the coroner of Elizabethport will never have occasion to render the verdict of "Frozen to Death" until there is a large export of coal.
From Elizabethport to Harrisburg nothing unusual railway transpired, but at this place we received a dispatch stating that the rebels had crossed the Potomac at three different parts, and were marching on Harrisburg. Consequently, we received to halt, and we pitched our tents about 400 yards in front of the Capital of Pennsylvania, and expected to stay here until Stonewall Jackson made his appearance, but early next morning we received orders to strike tents, receive three days’ rations, and march at 9 o’clock, but this order was countermanded and we did not start until 4 o’clock P.M.
We started in a train of twenty-six cars, and when within about twenty-five miles of Baltimore three of the rear cars broke down, injuring several of the passengers, among others the Captain of Co. A. This happened about daylight.
We reached Baltimore 9 o’clock the next morning. He we stayed until about 4 P.M. and then took the cars for Washington, which place we reached at 30 minutes past 11 P.M. We camped on the ground about 500 yards to the left of the Capitol of the United States. Here we stayed until about 10 A.M. the next day, the slung knapsacks and marched about a mile in front of Uncle Abe’s Mansion and stopped on Capitol Hill.
During the afternoon we all marched to the Potomac and went in bathing. At sunset we all started again and reached this place some time during the night.
We have a pleasant camp, situated on a side hill, so that the rains ( and we do have them often) may run off and leave us dry.
The colors presented us at Hempstead are now planted in front of Capt. Willis’ tent, and when we move, if the flags are entrusted still to my care, they shall go triumphantly where ever Co. H. goes.
We have plenty of employment in drilling, digging rifle-pits etc.. The first mentioned employment does well, it suits me, but in trenching, I can’t see it. I rather do my fighting with my rifle than with the pick and spade.
I notice that they have some locomotives in this part of the country as big as they make them. I saw one locomotive named Arkansas (probably some relation to the rebel ram) on a branch on one of the Ohio railroads, with 76 cars, laden with coal. Quite a string.
I remain as ever
A well wisher to, and formerly
A citizen of the Town of Hempstead
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