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Entered according to act of Congress in the year 1864, by
in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Rhode Island.
Knowles, ANTHONY & Co., PRINTERs,
A long preface is seldom read, and this shall be brief. It is right that the reader should know how the following letters came to be in print. The responsibility of the deed is less with the author than with many partial friends. They were written amid camp scenes and on the march, under circumstances unfavorable to literary composition, and were intended for private perusal alone. Portions of them appeared in the Providence Journal, and were received with a favor alike unexpected and gratifying. Numerous requests having been made that they should be gathered up as a Rhode Island contribution to the history of the War of the Rebellion, the author, with unaffected distrust of himself, has yielded to the judgment of others. At first, he designed to recast his correspondence, and give it the graver form of historic narrative, but time forbidding, he has exscinded unessential portions, added to it from parts “contraband” to the public at their date, and in notes drawn from official and other reliable sources, has given particulars of movements of which he was not an eye-witness. In the introduction is noted some points of great importance, viewed in their relations to subsequent events. In the Appendix will be found sketches of the Rhode Island infantry and cavalry regiments and batteries, besides other information that may hereafter be convenient for reference. The author has labored under the disad