Nonfiction > James Ford Rhodes > History of the Civil War, 1861–1865 > Page 31
James Ford Rhodes (1848–1927).  History of the Civil War, 1861–1865  1917.
Page 31
Iowa, “don’t feel willing to carry old-fashioned muskets to the field to meet men armed with better weapons.” Appreciating the impotence of the Federal government, Massachusetts sent an agent to Europe with money for the purchase of improved arms and New York bought Enfield rifles in England. The governors of the several States begged for accoutrements, uniforms and clothing. There was urgent need of forage caps, infantry trousers, flannel sack coats, flannel shirts, bootees, stockings, great coats and blankets. “The government,” wrote the Secretary of War to Morton, “finds itself unable to furnish at once the uniforms and clothing demanded by the large force suddenly brought into service.” 1  36
  McClellan wrote of his Ohio troops: “I have never seen so fine a body of men collected together. The material is superb but has no organization or discipline.” 2 A captain of the regular army who came to muster a number of these regiments into the United States service, looking down the line of stalwart men, clad in the Garibaldi red flannel shirt (for lack of uniforms) exclaimed, “My God! that such men should be food for powder!” 3 “Good-looking and energetic young fellows, too good to be food for gunpowder,” wrote John Hay of the Sixth Massachusetts! 4 And the same remark might have been made of nearly all the three-months men from every State.  37
  Before the end of April, Lincoln had made up his mind that he had embarked on a long war. The quotas of three-months volunteers were rapidly filled and, as more men came forward, he determined to turn the prolonged outburst of patriotism to account by prevailing upon the late-comers to enlist for three years. On May 3, he increased the army
Note 1. O. R., III, I. [back]
Note 2. O. R., LI, Pt. I, 333. [back]
Note 3. J. D. Cox, B. & L., I, 97. [back]
Note 4. J. Hay, I, 13. [back]


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