from The Webster Weekly Times, Saturday Oct. 26, 1861 (Volume III # 33), 

Blundering Engagement
by J. A. Spaulding, Editor

A repetition of the Bull Run affair, on a smaller scale, was enacted on the Virginia side of the Potomac on Monday.  The engagement was at a place known as Ball’s Bluff, between 1800 Federal and  6000 rebel troops.  The affair resulted in a repulse of our men, who retreated to the river, into which they plunged and were drowned, while others succeeded in crossing in safety, and others still were shot or taken prisoner.

Our loss, in killed, wounded, drowned and prisoners, is little short of 500.  the troops were nearly all Massachusetts and Pennsylvania men, and a large portion of our Worcester County 15th were among the combatants.  The Oxford company were in, and lost their second Lieutenant, B. B. Vassal.  We judge from reports that the Webster company were not in the engagement.  A complete list of the killed, wounded and missing will doubtless bring grief to many hearts in this County.

The easiest name that can be given to the affair is that of a miserable blunder.  The bringing of 1800 men to confront three or four times their number, with no reserve to support, no provisions for a repulse, and a deep and impassible river close in their rear, is but a poor display of the “science of war.”

P. S.  The latest reports at hand indicate that the Webster company, Co.. I. were in the above named fight and the name of “Augustus Remick  wounded in the breast,” is given.


For the Soldiers

A gentleman connected with the Baptist society of this town, recently proposed to furnish yarn for fifty pairs of woolen socks for our soldiers in the Fifteenth Regiment, if ladies could be found to knit them.  The conditions were accepted, the yarn furnished, and we think the socks are now nearly all finished.  It has been suggested that as fifty pairs would supply but half of our men, an effort should be made to double the number.  Have we not some patriotic individual who will make an offer similar to the one made by the person referred to above? 

We doubt not that if the yarn were forthcoming, our patriotic female friends would be ready to transform sundry skeins into the requisite fifty pairs of comfortable and comely  socks for the fifty men of the Slater Guards who must needs be omitted in the supply of from the fifty pairs already provided.  The ladies of Webster have evinced a commendable regard for the necessities of the sick or wounded at the government hospitals; their disinterested benevolence has manifested itself in acts of charity for those whose welfare others should have a special regard and whenever an appeal is made in behalf of our own volunteers, those who have mothers and sisters, or other dear friends to think of them here, we know those who have been ready to administer to the necessities of strangers will be eager to respond to the call of those who have gone from our very midst.


15th Massachusetts VI