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1862 July 2: News on the 4th and 20th Wisconsin Infantries and More

July 7, 2012

Following are the smaller articles for the week, published July 2, 1862.

From The Hudson North Star:

THE HUDSON CITY GUARDS. — We are just in the receipt of a long and very interesting letter from FRANK HARDING, dated Baton Rouge, June 12, 1862, and are truly sorry that we cannot give it publicity in this issue.

The 4th Wisconsin has been the hardest kind of service, and they have, as our readers know, performed their duty so well, as to received the highest commendation from their regimental and brigade officers, and in fact from Major General BUTLER.  This severe service and the climate is telling fearfully on the regiment.  Mr. HARDING writes that out of 112 of our noble boys, only 50 are fit for service. — Among those particularly mentioned by him as sick are JOHN VAN METRE, Sargeats [sic] CLAPP and WILSON, Lieutenant WING, Capt. WHITE, &c.1  Our prayer is that they may all be spared to return home.

PERSONAL. — FRENCH THORNHILL2 whom we were informed a few weeks ago was dead, arrived here on Saturday last, safe and well.  He has been for the last eight months with the 8th Wisconsin Regiment, and left it two miles from Corinth, about a month since.  He brought with him a lot of secesh trophies from New Madrid and Island No. 10.

MAJOR OF THE 20TH. — H. A. Starr,3 of Milwaukee, has been appointed Major of the 20th Wisconsin Regiment. — It is one of the best selections yet made in the State.  Major Starr is a thorough diciplinarian [sic], conversant with the rules of armies, has some actual service ;  and for military bravery, determination, and integrity of purpose, the is no better soldier in the State.

DEATH OF COL. WOOD. — Colonel D. E. WOOD of the 14th regiment, dead at his residence in Fond du Lac on the 23d ult.  Thus has the State and Country lost another noble man, and the army a valiant and able officer.

On the bloody field of Shiloh, he and his regiment, as our readers all know, behaved with the greatest galantry [sic].  The hardships and exposures of that terrible battle, was the cause of his sickness and untimely death.  Young in years, he has fallen a victim to this unholy rebellion, but his memory and heroic deeds will be held in grateful rememberance [sic] by his countrymen.

TO VISIT THE HOSPITALS. — Speaker Beardsley, who has acquitted himself so creditably and satisfactorily as the presiding officer of the Assembly, has been appointed by the Governor to visit the hospitals and camps in the western department, where there are sick and wounded Wisconsin soldiers.

Mr. Beardsley is especially well qualified to discharge this duty.  For many years a successful practitioner of medicine and surgery, he has for some time past been engaged in mercantile pursuits.  He accordingly combined the qualifications of a regular surgeon and an active and successful man of business.  Added to these, he is a gentleman of great kindness of heart, and will spare no pains to alleviate the sufferings of our sick and wounded.  The appointment is an excellent one. — Madison Journal.

—The Senate Territorial Committee have reported a bill admitting Western Virginia into the Union as an independent State, under the name of West Virginia.  In addition to the counties in the new State, as organized by the Wheeling Convention, those laying north of Harper’s Ferry and down the Valley of Virginia, are included.  One provision which the Convention is required to add to the new constitution, by this bill, is one declaring all children born of slaves after July, 1861, free for life.  The bill opens with a preamble declaring that an act of the Virginia Legislature of May 18th, 1861, gives consent to the formation of a new State within the limits of Virginia.

— Nearly all the churches in Washington have been appropriated by the Government for use as hospitals.  The Smithsonian Institute, Odd Fellows Hall, and all other public buildings suitable for the purpose are to be taken.  It is understood that most of the wounded will be brought to Washington, and most of the sick sent to New York and Philadelphia.

— The use of the soldiers ‘drill.’  To make a hole in the enemy.

— When the rebels fight, they soon get out of wind.  When they talk, their wind is inexhaustible.

From The Prescott Journal:

The Ladies’ Soldier’s Aid Society will meet at Mr. G. H. NICHOLS’ on Tuesday afternoon, July 8th.  The ladies of Prescott and vicinity are invited to attend.  The gentlemen are especially invited to be present in the evening.

Lt. W. H. YORK4 left here on Monday for Madison, with about twenty men for the 20th Regiment.  He will return for more recruits who could not get ready in time to go now.  Mr. YORK has raised more than any other recruiting officer for the 20th.

1.  John H. Van Meter, Edward A. Clapp, Henry A. Wilson, Isaac H. Wing, and Daniel W. White, all from Hudson.
2.  Samuel B. Thornhill, of Saint Croix Falls, was the surgeon with the 8th Wisconsin Infantry. He was “dismissed.”
3.  Henry A. Starr was commissioned major of the 20th Wisconsin on June 30, 1862, and in December of 1862 will become the lieutenant colonel.
4.  William H. York, from Prescott, was the 1st lieutenant of Company A until October of 1862, when he was promoted to be the regiment’s quartermaster.

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