New Soldier: Henry H. Hitchcock

Written on:May 22, 2010
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Of the New York 12th Infantry.  June 1, 1861, he writes:

Things look very warlike here. Down town you see nothing but soldiers, soldiers, soldiers. I see that the Volunteer force now amounts to 300,000. This is beside the regular army and the impression seems to be that the president will call for about as many more when congres meets. By the way, that body will convene Thursday you know and I am looking with great anxiety to their position for there we shall either have peace or war in earnest I think. My idea s that Jeff is sorry he has got his foot in now that he sees that the North are so united and that instead of a divided North and a united South he has a divided South and united North. But this thing will ruin Virginia that’s settled. The blockade and having the seat of war on her territory is ruining that state very fast. Some of our officers were over in Virginia yesterday. They went to Alexandria and so on beyond toward Fairfax Court House, They went horseback and went within 12 miles of the courthouse. They say that the whole country is dead, negroes running away – business dead and that Alexandria is like a desert only that it is full of soldiers. They saw a man who had deserted the Confederate army and joined ours. He was from a South Carolina Regiment. He said they were very much dissatisfied and were going home, that they thought the Virginians were cowards and that they would go home and defend there own state and let Virginia go.

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