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Battles are won through the ability of men to express concrete ideas in clear and unmistakable language.-- Brigadier General S.L.A. Marshall
Private Amos E. Hardy6672 Reads
I am at present at the Soldiers Rest Home, Bangor, Me. In the Year 1865.
I enlisted July 19th 1862 in the town of Hampden, Penobscot County, State of Maine. I was then 19 years of age and consequently a minor. My parents, being loyal people, they gave their consent to my enlisting. I enlisted in Co. F, 18th Regt Maine Vol. Infantry and we were rendevouzed at the County Fair Grounds near Bangor City.
On the 21st of Aug we were mustered into the United States Service to serve for the period of three years unless sooner discharged. Aug 25th being Sunday we started for the seat of War then at Washington, D.C. We arrived there on Monday, Aug 28th. We immediately marched to Fort Wagner on the South side of the East Branch of the Potomac River. We remained there some few days and part of our force was ordered to Fort Baker, an earthwork in range of, and similar to, Fort Wagner. After remaining there some few days we we ordered to the northern and eastern defenses of Washington. We proceeded to Fort Massachusetts and after being there one night Co. F & I were ordered to Fort De Pullez a small redoubt and garrisoned by Co’s B & I of the 113th NJ Infantry. From this time forward we performed Fatigue and Garrison duty at that place untill we were ordered to report at Headquarters of the Regt at Fort Gaines. We were drilled for service there and expected to go to the front and even started once but our marching orders were countermanded and we returned to our old Camp ground. Meanwhile, winter coming on and we commenced to build our tents upon stockage but before we could complete our labor we were ordered to Forts Alexander Franklin & ----, on the north bank of the Potomac. We were transferred into the Heavy Artillery and the Regt received the name that it now bears that of the 1st Regt Me Heavy Artillery.
We remained in the defenses doing Fatigue and Guard duty until May 15th, 1864 when we started for the front some 1,800 strong. We arrived at Spotsylvania on the morning an the afternoon of the19th we received our fire and in the battle on that we lost some 200 of our men. I was wounded near the close of the battle in the right thigh by a Minnie rifle ball and was carried to the rear. My wound being a slight flesh wound I was put into an Army wagon and sent to Fredericksburg.
I was then sent to Washington and and arrived there in the same Steamer that carried us to the Front, Belle Plains, some ten days before. I was just 21 years of age on that day and I was ordered to the Columbian Hospital and from there I received a furlough of thirty days to go to my home in Maine. When my Furlough had expired I returned to My Hospital and went through from Baltimore to Washington on the first train that went through after the raid around Washington. About the first of September I rejoined my Regt. at Petersburg and while there was in several small skirmishes in front of Fort Hell. On the 1st of Oct the Third Division of the Second Corps to which my Regt belonged was ordered to the extreme left of the line and advanced towards the South Side Railroad in a reconnaissance of the Enemy’s position. It was about noon of the 2nd our skirmishers found the Enemy and skirmishing became quite lively. We advanced toward the Enemy’s position, and were ordered to fix Bayonets at one time and we advanced at the double quick, but finding that we were getting into a tight place we about faced and fell back to swamp or run and laid down to shelter ourselves from the Enemy’s shell which were flying quite at random. While lying in thus one of the Enemy’s Batteries gained our extreme left and commenced to shell us down the line. They had fired around 50 rounds of shell, many of which burst around and amongst us, when one burst directly in front of me (I was at that time sitting with my face towards the Battery) and killed one man instantly wounding one mortally one slightly and tearing my shoulder all to pieces. I cried out with pain and asked to be taken to the rear. I supposed I had received a mortal and all that I asked for was to be carried into the shade and there left to die but the men who took me to the rear were humane men and declared that they would see me out of it and so they did carrying me some three miles upon a stretcher for three miles or more untill we came to an Ambulance train where I was sent to Warrens headquarters a distance of five miles. When we met the train there were two or three Surgeons with it and I was the first wounded man that come along. They said that they could do little for me and they did not offer to do any thing to slow the flow of blood for I was bleeding freely at that time. When I arrived at the Hospital I was taken out of the Ambulance and laid upon the Amputation table.
Cloroform was given immediately and when I awoke I put my left hand around for the other not finding it as I expected. I knew it was gone and for a moment I was overcome by my feelings and my pain forgotten. Then another feeling took possession of me and I felt doubly bitter against those traitors who had caused this my misfortune. Soon however my ----- pain compelled me to let bitter thoughts alone and to think of my condition. I though I was better off than some who were missing both arms and sometimes sight.
That night I did not sleep much nor did I suffer as much as one would suppose. In the morning I was removed to an Ambulance and started toward City Point C---. We rode over an old cornfield and the jolting of the Ambulance caused the li---- upon the Arteries to get loose and it commenced to bleed very freely. I was taken out of the wagon and laid upon the ground my should opened the Arteries taken up, the wound re sewed and I nearly died ---- into the C--- and that night I stayed at City Point Hospital. Next morning I was put into a Hospital Steamer and sent to Beverly N.J. to the Hospital at that place. From there as soon as I recovered I was Furloughed Home and at the present time I am in the Hospital at Bangor, Me. My term expired and I am a citizen once more.
Such is the true History of Private Amos E. Hardy’s Military Experience
When the call for 200,000 men was made in the summer of 1862, I enlisted as a Private in Co F, 18th Regt. Maine Volunteer Infantry. My parents resided in Hampden Penobscot Co. and I went with the quota of that town. We were mustered into the Service of the US Aug 21st and immediately started for Washington, then the Seat of War. Upon our arrival there we were ordered into The Defenses of the City and we were stationed at different Fortifications untill the Regt was transferred into Heavy Artillery when we were permanently stationed at Fort Sumner on the left bank shore of the Potomac and about six miles above Washington. We remained there untill May 1864 when we were ordered to the Front then at Spotsylvania Va. On the 19th of that month we received our first Baptism of fire from Ewell’s Veterans and lost in killed and wounded 386 men. I was wounded in the right thigh and immediately sent to Washington, and from thereI received furlough of 80 days and went home. At the expiration of my furlough I rejoined my Hospital at Columbian Hospital and in August I rejoined my ----- at Petersburg and occupying that part of our works known as Fort Hell. While there I was engaged in several picket skirmishes and then on the 1st of Oct 1864 we were ordered down on a reconnaissance near the Southside Railroad and while we were advancing upon the Rebel works I was struck by a piece of shell from one of their Batteries and my right arm so badly mangled near close to the shoulder that amputation was necessary to save my life.
Note: Private Amos E. Hardy Enlisted July 19th 1862 in Co F.
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