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I hev deserted, and am now a soljer uv the Confederacy. Jest ez
soon ez our regiment struck Suthrin sile, I made up my mind that
my bondage wuz drawin to a close—that I wood seeze the fust oppertoonity
uv escapin to my nateral frends the soljers uv the sunny south.
Nite before last I run the gard, wuz shot at twice, (reseevin two buckshot
jest below the hind buttons uv my coat,) but by eggstrordinary
luck I escaped. Had infantry bin sent after me I shood hev bin taken,
for I am not a fast runner, but the Commandent uv the Post wuz new
at the biznis, and innosently sent cavalry. Between the hossis they
rode, and the stoppin to pick up them ez coodent stick onto ther flyin
steeds, I hed no difficulty in outrunnin em.

At last I encounterd the pickits uv the Looisiana Pelicans, and givin
myself up ez a deserter from the hordes uv the tyrant Linkin, wuz
to wunst taken afore the Kernel. I must say in this conneckshun
that I wuz surprised at the style uv uniform worn by the Pelicans.
It consists uv a hole in the seet uv the pants, with the tale uv the
shirt a wavin gracefully therefrom. The follerin colloquy ensood:

“To what regiment did yoo belong?”

“776th Ohio.”

“Volunteer er draftid?”


“Yoor name?”

“Nasby, Petroleum V.”


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I notist all this time the Kernel wuz eyein my clothes wistfully. I
had jest drawd em and they wuz bran new. Sez the Kernel:

“Mr. Nasby I reseeve yoo gladly ez a recroot in the grand army
uv Freedom. Ez yoo divest yoorself uv the clothes uv the tyrant,
divest yerself uv watever lingrin affecshuns yoo may hev fer the land
uv yer nativity, and ez yoo array yerself in the garb uv a Suthrin
soljer, try to fill yer sole with that Suthrin feelin that anymates us
all. “Jones,” sed he, addressin his Orderly, “is Thompson dead

“Not quite,” sez the Orderly.

“Never mind,” sez the Kernel, “he cant git well uv that fever;
strip off his uniform and give it to Nasby, and berry him.”

I judgd frum the style uv the uniforms I saw on the men around
me, that I wood rather keep my own, but I sed nothin. When the
Orderly returned with the deceest Thompson's uniform, I groaned
innardly. There wuz a pare uv pants with the seat entirely torn
away, and wun leg gone below the knee, a shoe with the sole off, and
the straw he had wrapped around the other foot, and a gray woolen
shirt. Sez the Kernel:

“Don't be afeerd uv me Nasby. Put on yer uniform rite here.”

Reluctantly I pulled off my new dubble-soled boots, and I wuz
petrified to see the Kernel kick off the slippers he wore, and pull
em on. I pulld off my pants—he put em on, and so on with every
article uv dress I possest, even to my warm overkote and blankit.
Sez the Kernel:

“These articles, Nasby, belongs to the Guvment, to which I shel
akount fer them. Report yoorself to-wunst to Capt. Smith.

Ez I passed out the Lootenant-Kernel, Majer and Ajitent pulled
me to wun side, and askt me “ef I coodent git three more to
desert.” Wun glanse at ther habillyments showd why they wuz so
anxious fer deserters.

I candidly confess that Linkin takes better care uv his soljers than
Davis does. The clothin I hev described. Instid uv reglar rashens
we are allowed to eat jest whatever we kin steal uv the planters, and
ez mite be expectid we hev becum wonderfully expert at pervidin, but


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ez the Pelicans hev bin campt here three months, the livin is gittin
thin. Yet a man kin endoor almost anything fer principle.

Petroleum V. Nasby.