James Edward Richardson
While on the Burnside Expedition off Hatteras we encountered
one of the worst storms ever known on that perilous coast. A part
of our Regiment was on an old river boat the Louisiana and it was
greatly feared she would not be able to outride the storm. This
was but a foretaste of what we endured while on the Island. And
many of our boys found a last resting place on that sandy shore
from exposure and lack of provisions by way of fuel, tents, etc.
General Williams the officer in command not having made any arrangements
for us. I can truthfully say I enjoyed most of my Army life, although
I encountered many hardships and saw much that brought a great
deal of sadness to my heart in the loss of my brave comrades in
battle each man of my company was my friend and I trust found
me the same to him. I will mention a few names who were especially
near to me, first my brother Justin S. Richardson, Thomas Todd,
Charles Thurston, Thomas Whitney, John Osgood, George A Whitney,
not omitting every man in his command and trust. I may be pardoned
if I add this letter written by Capt. Hanscom to my wife which
was one of his many tributes of appreciation for the men in his
"The Letter" - I had the honor to command Co. K.
6th N.H. Vet-Vols. During the time from the Rappidan to Petersburg
and I cannot say to much in praise of the Co. as awhole, but I
would like to speak of one who always did what he thought was
his duty under all circumstances. I have reference to my orderly
Segt. Jas. E Richardson a whole souled brave man. At Spottsylvania
May 12, I was standing back of this line of battle when he came
back to me saying his gun was so foul it would not discharge.
I told him to take out the nipple and put in some powder he dropped
on his knees and commenced to do the same, my attention was called
from him for a moment by a flank fire from our right, when I looked
for him I saw him on his hands and knees and blood pouring out
of his mouth. I stepped to him helped him up and looked to his
wound and told him the ball had gone into the corner of mouth,
knocked out some teeth and passed out the other corner, I had
no idea he was so terribly wounded. I directed him to the Corps.
Hos. as near as I could and told him to come leave his musket
which he would not do, he left me as I supposed - a short time
afterward someone touched me on the shoulder.