Reflective Essay: The First Vietnam War

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She didn't know they were coming; none of them did. There was no warning; no way to predict their arrival. The only greeting they received were the shots of rifled-muskets and the sound of lead bullets whizzing through the air. The smell of gunpowder quickly became noticeable. The navy coated men around her jumped into action, but were slowly being overtaken. The only attempt she could make to detach herself from the shouts and screams surrounding her, was to focus on the soft rushing of the bubbling river nearby. The land was serene with spring. Tennessee was ablaze with bright sunshine, fragrant flowers, and lush, spring green vegetation. In camp along the banks of the Tennessee River at Pittsburg Landing, the soldiers of Major General Robert Campbell’s Union Army of the Tennessee were lounging …show more content…

The woods were filled with "Johnny-jump-ups," - wildflowers that carpeted the ground in a river of color. Army nurses, and the only females in camp, Lauren Williams and her friend Sara Moore had their small, shared tent set up right along the beautiful Tennessee River. The men busied themselves amidst the land; camping, cooking, and training. The Union army was at ease. Compared with what was to come, this scene could not have been more ironic or more tragic. A sudden Confederate attack in force in the early morning hours caused half-awake Union troops to flee their camps. The battle broke full force at daybreak Sunday, April 6th. At sunrise Lauren heard the thunder of distant musketry. The long roll had called the regiment out, and they did not know what an hour may bring forth. Pickets had been driven in, and skirmishing was going on at the front. Distant musketry and the rumbling of artillery past Lauren’s tent gave the situation a look of reality which she had not dreamed of an hour

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