Sunday, June 8, 2008

Civil War drummer boys did more than just play the drums

A mention of the Civil War drummer boy often evokes images of a young lad banging out a rhythm as his regiment marches into battle. But the Civil War drummer boys did much more than just play the drums. In camp they were often used as orderlies for commanding officers. And in battle they helped to care for the wounded. Below, David Auld, drummer for the 43rd Ohio Volunteers, recounts his experiences helping the wounded at the Battle of Corinth. Auld writes:

While watching these battle lines so grand to look upon, but so terrible to think of when you remember the frightful waste of human lives they caused, the call came; "Bring the stretchers, a man hurt." Myself and Demas took the stretchers to look for the man, he was pointed out to us and proved to be Bradford (our older brother) who had been struck by a shell in the left shoulder while lying on the ground in line waiting for the first assault just opening. More...By his side lay James W. Conger, whose clothing was stained by his blood. We were little more than children and the shock to us can be better imagined than described. Demas and myself lifted him to the stretcher just as Col. Kirby Smith and Adjutant Heyl were shot from their horses a few steps away We carried him to the shallow ditch by the railroad a few rods to the rear, where the temporary field hospital was located, as it offered a slight protection to the wounded from the deadly hail of bullets that fell about them coming from all directions except the rear We then placed him in an ambulance still alive and conscious. We bid him goodbye and never saw him again. He only lived a short time and occupies an unknown grave.

23 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi. I am doing an essay on Boys in the Civil War and I really found your information helpful. Thanks for writing such an article especially when such information is scarce on the internet.

Anonymous said...

as the comment before me.... I am doing a presentation and a report on Civil War Drummer Boys. As an 8th grader it helped me a ton! Thanks so so so much!

Lilo said...

i also am doing a research paper on drummer boys, lol. thanks so much for the info. please let me know if you have any other sources, it would be very helpful. thanks :)

Anonymous said...

Woah, I too have the same situation as the second commenter.

Anonymous said...

hello people

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Thanks, I needed information on Civil War drummer boys as well and this articale gave me mose of the information. Thanks! :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this.
I am also in 8th grade and writing a paper about drummer boys.
If anyone had other books of info please comment here.

Anonymous said...

I too as well would like more information (ex what calls did they make, the notes that were used in the march,and the communication notes if possible. If I find anymore info ill try to post here.

Anonymous said...

I appreciate your blog my students will be using this to do research on drummer boys in my 8th grade Communication Skills Class.

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I liked this post very much as it has helped me a lot in my research and is quite interesting as well. Thank you for sharing this information with us.

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Anonymous said...

This was very new info to me that drummer boys help the wounded! All of the other sites have told me different! Thanks for the extra info, I'm doing an oral report on Drummer Boys in the Civil War :)

Anonymous said...

I had to do a report on the civil war and after reading you website I just HAD to do drummer boys. THANK YOU!!!

C. More Butts said...

i like CHICKEN and WAFFLES!!

Anonymous said...

Hi my name is Kirstain Kunard i am looking for phrases that drummers would say...if you cn help plz send m a message on facebook thanks so much

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Allie Harris said...

Thanks a bunch the info you gave helped me a lot alnong with many others and i am as well in 8th grade and i am doing a job as an Investigator for my litericy circle group and was researching drummer boys and your info helped me the most out of any other website. Thanks again! BYE!

Sallie Olson said...

I was amazed when I read my family tree and found out that my Gr, Gr, grandfather was a drummer boy in the civil war. He joined a the age of 13 and was wounded at the age of 16. He was discharged "because of minority" and sent home. He died 75 years ago, being the last surviving man who served in the civil war from Frewsburg,NY. I cannot imagine either of my boys going off to war at such a tender age!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks alot this too helped me in a civil war project

Anonymous said...

i already knew all that. pshh i could've done this..

Anonymous said...

wth, does the drummer boy die?!?!?!

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Hey i am also doing a report on drummer boys in the civil war and this helped a lot thankyou!