Death of a Hero

waltwhitman-1851bI wonder if I could ever convey to another–to you, for instance, Reader dear–the tender and terrible realities of such cases, (many, many happen’d,) as the one I am now going to mention……..Stewart C. Glover, Co. E., Fifth Wisconsin–was wounded, May 5, in one of those fierce tussles of the Wilderness–died May 21–aged about 20. (He was a small and beardless young man–a splendid soldier–in fact, almost an ideal American, of common life, of his age. He had serv’d nearly three years, and would have been entitled to his discharge in a few days. He was in Hancock’s Corps.)……..The fighting had about ceas’d for the day, and the General commanding the brigade rode by and call’d for volunteers to bring in the wounded. Glover responded among the first–went out gayly–but while in the act of bearing in a wounded sergeant to our lines, was shot in the knee by a rebel sharpshooter. Consequence, amputation and death……..He had resided with his father, John Glover, an aged and feeble man, in Batavia, Genesee Co., N. Y., but was at school in Wisconsin, after the War broke out, and there enlisted–soon took to soldier-life, liked it, was very manly, was belov’d by officers and comrades……..He kept a little diary, like so many of the soldiers. On the day of his death he wrote the following in it:

a Union hospital
a Union hospital

To-day, the doctor says I must die–all is over with me–ah, so young to die. On another blank leaf he pencill’d to his brother, Dear brother Thomas, I have been brave, but wicked–pray for me.



from Memoranda During the War, by Walt Whitman, 1875

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