Hodge, Freeman Edward
Age: 19, credited to Johnson, VT
Unit(s): 3rd VT INF
Service: enl 7/10/61, m/i 7/16/61, Pvt, Co. K, 3rd VT INF, dis/dsb 10/25/62
See Legend for expansion of abbreviationsVITALS
Birth: 1845, Hardwick, VT
Burial: Union Cemetery, Amesbury, MA
Marker/Plot: Lot 963-10
Gravestone researcher/photographer: Heidi McColgan
Findagrave Memorial #: 69597504
Alias?: None noted
Pension?: Yes, 08/21/1897, MA; widow Susan A., 03/13/1915, MA
College?: Not Found
Veterans Home?: Not Found
(If there are state digraphs above, this soldier spent some time in a state or national soldiers' home in that state after the war)
Remarks: Son of Freeman O. Hodge
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Union Cemetery, Amesbury, MA
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Freeman E. Hodge
LAMOILLE NEWSDEALER: MAY 9, 1862
CAMP NEAR YORKTOWN, APRIL 21, '62
DEAR MOTHER;-Having a little time I sat myself to write you a few lines. I am well, and hope these few lines will find you the same.
Five companies of our regiment were on picket night before last, of which our Co. was one. We found picketing quite a different thing here from Camp Griffin; here we are in 100 yards of the enemy's works, and there we were 4 or 5 miles. About 8 o'clock p.m., the rebels began to fire by files, commencing on the right, down by the James River, and it passed all along their lines to Yorktown, a distance of 9 miles. What their object was in doing it is mere conjecture, but the supposition is that they were afraid of an attack, and wanted to make us think they were going to make an attack so as to keep us on our guard.
As far as I can learn no one was hurt. They must have used $5000 worth of ammunition all to no purpose. We had got some strong earthworks thrown up within 500 yards of their limes, which we threw up in the night.. It must have astonished them to wake up in the morning, and find us right under their very guns, within easy musket shot. They attempted to bring one of their big guns to bear upon us, but as fast as a man showed his head to work it, crack went a sharpshooter's rifle, and down fell the secesh, never more to rise. But they kept trying and finally got a cartridge into it, but they could not get the hammer out,, and so they blazed away and sent us their cartridge, rammer and shell all together; but their aim proved poor, and the shell fell short and exploded, doing no harm to anyone. They must have lost at least a dozen men in the operation.
Our works are growing stronger every night, and we shall soon have as good a fortification as they have got and then we will be on equal terms with them.
They raised a white flag the 19th, and wanted a chance to bury their dead, and at the same time to give us a chance to get what of our men was left on the other side of the creek. They would not allow us to cross the creek, but would bring our dead over this side. The terms were agreed upon, and they commenced to bring them over. The men and ours mixed up and talked quite familiar. Julian Scott changed buttons with one of the secesh Captains. One of the secesh asked one of our boys what he wanted to make in a charge over the creek, to which he replied. "We did not make any change, we only went over there skirmishing".. "Great God", said the sccesh, "If you call that skirmishing, we never want to meet you in charge".. Our opponents on the 16th proved to be the Tigar Zouaves, from New Orleans; their crack regiment. They were at Bull Run, Ball's Bluff, and Drainsville, and they owned that they never were so badly cut up before.
There loss must have been very heavy, as we could see them carrying men on the stretchers very fast while the truce flag was up. Up to this time, 11 o'clock, a.m. there has not a gun been fired. What it all means is more than we can tell. Some say they have left their works, others that there is a flag of truce up. What it is I am unable to say. I will write you as soon as I find out.
As ever, Yours,
Freeman E. Hodge
Co. K. 3d Reg. Vt. Volunteers
P.S. There is a flag of truce up. What the object is of course we do not know.
Submitted by Deanna French.