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Joseph E. Shaw Collection
38th New York Volunteer Infantry
joseph Shaw Letter 3
Donated by Robert Gritman

Sunday June 23rd, 1861

Dear Ed, 

Since writing yesterday, I have found more news for you.  In my letter yesterday I said we expected to be called out soon and sure enough last night Capt. McQuaide came to us and gave us each 8 cartridges and told us to fall in as we had to go out.  So we loaded and marched out on a scouting expedition.  They did not let on what we went out for so we did not know whether we would have a fight or not.  We went out in the country some way but did not see anything.  So we returned.  I suppose the Officers only got it up to try the men.  One man in my Company put the ball in first another did not know how to uncock his gun.  On our way we passed a great many of out Sentinels and one who was hid in a bush waited until we got within a few yards of him and then without challenging he cried Halt and when the Colonel and Capt McQuaide and Lieutenants went to see who he was he raised his gun and took aim on them.  Norris was on the right of the file and he jumped in front and brought his gun to an aim and in a minute more he would have fired but the Captain stopped him in time or else that sentinel would have gone under, as there were three or 4 more of us with our guns already.  I’ll tell you this is an exciting kind of life it is a great deal better than hunting buffaloes or setting type moreover notwithstanding school teaching.  Nevertheless being a vagrant.  Give my love to all and show these letters to Mother so she will know I am well.

                                    With love
                                    J. E. Shaw



New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs: Military History
Last modified: October 17, 2011

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