This is the article
written by the Rev. Robert J. Burdette, who was a
Union Soldier. This incident occurred at the Battle
of Corinth. This was found in a book at a library,
and it was taken from the Booneville Banner,
Booneville, Mississippi, in the July 11, 1912 issue
of their newspaper.
The viewpoint of the Union soldier of an incident
that occurred at the battle of Corinth is worthy of
being included in this scrapbook history of Corinth,
as it reveals the physical condition of the soldiers
in gray who fought in this battle.
"We found a dead Confederate soldier lying on his
back, his outstretched fingers stretched across the
stock of the rifle lying by his side. He was one of
the Rogers' Texans. Fifty seven of them we had found
lying in the ditch of Fort Robinette. I covered his
face with a slouch hat and took off the haversack
slung to his neck, that it might not swing as we
carried him to his sleeping chamber, so cool and
quiet and dark, after the savage tumult and dust and
smoke after that day of horror.
"Empty, isn't it?" asked the soldier working with
me. I put my hand in it and drew forth a handful of
roasted acorns; I showed them to my comrade.
"That's all," I said.
"And he has been fighting like a tiger for two days
on that forage," he commented. We gazed at the face
of the dead soldier with new feelings.
By and by he said:
"I hate this war and the things that caused it. I
was taught to hate slavery before I was taught to
hate sin. I love the Union as I love my
mother-better. I think that this is the wickedest
war that was ever waged in modern times. But this,"
and he took some of the acorn from my hand-"this is
what I call patriotism."
"Comrade," I said, "I am going to send these home to
the Peoria Transcript. I want them to tell the
editor this war won't be ended until there is a
total failure of the acorn crop. I want the folks at
home to know what manner of men they and we are
"That was early in my experience as a soldier. It
never changed my opinion of the cause of the
"I was more and more devoted to the Union as the war
went on. But I never questioned the sincerity of the
men in the Confederacy again. I realized how dearly
a man must love his own section who would fight for
it on parched acorn. I wished that his love and
patriotism had been broader, reaching from the Gulf
to the Lakes, a love for the Union rather than for a
State. But I understood him, I hated his attitude
toward the Union as much as ever but I admired the
man. And after Corinth I never could get a prisoner
half way to the rear and have anything left in my
"Oh, I too have suffered the pangs of hunger for my
dear country, as all soldiers have done, now and
then. But not as that Confederate soldier did. We
went hungry at times when rain and mud or the
interference of the enemy detained the supply train.
But that man half starved. That's different.
"Other haversacks we found that night on Corinth
field with a slight ration in them. Sometimes it was
a chunk of corn pone. I used to think hard tack
filled the order for concrete breakfast slab. But
cone pone a week old reconciled me to soft food.
Hard tack for mine."
"So the Southern people loved the states for which
This is signed by the Rev. Robert J. Burdette, a
gallant Union soldier.