At the first battle of Bull Run I had received permission from General Winfield Scott to accompany the Union Army as an observer, along with several other Congressmen. Tourists came out with picnic baskets to watch the proceedings. As we approached the Confederate Army and saw their pickets along Bull Run Creek and their position upon the hill, it did not look good. The first day of battle was a dreary and disappointing draw with both sides drawing heavy casualties. When I saw a corporal and five enlisted men retreat I ordered one of the men to give me his rifle. As the tourists began to flee, I did not retreat! I ran into the thick of it firing on the enemy and doing all I could to rescue the wounded soldiers. Smudged with soot and blood, I knew right then and there where my loyalty lay, with the Union! I decided that day to become a soldier and fight to save this great nation!


7. Battle of Belmont