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1st Battle of Bull Run (Manassas)
New York Times
Real Nature of the Contest

The Real Nature of the Contest-- Incidents and Auecdotes of the Battle at Bull Run.

Published: August 3, 1861


WASHINGTON, Thursday, Aug. 1, 1861.

Some few well-intentioned, but timid men, who see in the late Bull Run rout an absolute destruction of the prestige of the nation, and who wish to recognize the Confederate States of America, to save any further effusion of blood, should bear in mind that, in the long run, money settles the question in war, as it does in almost everything else. Take the State of South Carolina. She can possibly bring into the held 17,000 men. It costs the American soldier, North or South, or it costs their respective Governments, $1,000 per annum to keep him properly fed, equipped and ready for action. The estimate for the Palmetto State alone will be $17,000,000 a year. Can a State which has only about 350,000 whites bear this expense? Can she raise the wind by State bonds, Confederate States of America bonds, or any other bonds, domestic or foreign? What is true of South Carolina is true of the rebel States. At the North we have more men, more money, and more credit. It is a question of time alone. How long that time may be none but Omnipotence can answer.

Individual instances of heroism and pluck are constantly brought to my notice. In the West Point class of this year there was a promising youth named AMIS. He was ordered to report himself to the artillery branch of the service. Attached to SHERMAN's battery, he won the encomiums of veterans by his nerve and extraordinary coolness, as well as by the accuracy of his aim. In the early part of the engagement a Minie tore through his thigh within a hair's line of the great femoral artery. It went through the other leg, too, -- the latter a mere flesh wound. The right leg bled profusely, but although he was urged to leave the field three different times, he refused. In the meanwhile, two other shots went through the sleeves of his loose blouse, slightly touching the skin at each time, and finally a piece of shell tore away the entire lower part of the skirt of his garment, without injuring him in the least. All this time he was sitting on the caisson bleeding, but still directing the gunners, his only safeguard a handkerchief tied around the wounded leg. At the last retreat he was hurried into an ambulance, faint and weak, but calm and collected. The country must remember this young hero.

Capt. TOM ALLEN, of the Wisconsin Second, when his men were beginning to flee, and when a troop of Confederate horse attempted to seize their flag, shouted out, "BOYS, rally and save your standard." Fifty did so, emptied a good number of saddles, and were saved from disgrace by one cool man. I became acquainted with this officer on the march from Centreville. He was one of the few who brought in his regiment to Fairfax in good style, and bivouacked them in the old Court-house, giving them an hours rest. I saw a young corporal of this regiment at Centreville mounted on a splendid "Black Horse" charger. He came to Capt. ALLEN with tears in his eyes, and said, "Cap, I'd rather be shot than go back to Washington times. Take my horse, and let the avenge this foul disgrace on our flag."

A schoolmaster of the Maine Fourth reached here, yesterday. He reports that up to last Saturday many of the dead were still left on the battle-field. He was wounded in the right breast, but only slightly. When this class of prisoners were sent to Richmond, he pleaded weakness, and was allowed to stay behind, at Sudley Church Hospital. Winning the confidence of the hospital guard, he asked permission to "air his legs," and thus tried his strength. He came back the first day, but the second time he made rapid tracks for the Potomac, and came in just above the Chain Bridge. JASPER.

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