Eighth Regiment Connecticut Volunteers

Company A, Inc.

Blizzard Blast Event Report

Blizzard Blast
Southington, Conn.
March 3, 2001
Dear Friends,

While on a scouting mission, a detail consisting of Cpl. B. and Pvts. A., E., M., P., S., and R. happened upon an encamped detachment of the First Maryland Infantry, near a small settlement, close upon a pond. As both sides were equally surprised, and unready for hostilities given the relative calm of the long winter, a tentative truce was struck. We accepted the invitation to partake of their breakfast, and offered to share the victuals that we carried for a later day meal. In conversations, we found that we had much in common, and managed to effect a few trades of coffee for tobacco and other items desired.

After a short time, each group marched out of the camp, and attempted to impress the inhabitants of the settlement with our prowess at maneuvering, manual of arms, and loading and firing of weapons. The youngsters seemed fascinated by the displays, and followed the parties back to the encampment, asking many questions of both sides, with much emphasis on what was being cooked over the communal fire, and many inquiries as to the disparity of uniforms being worn, and the adventures embarked upon by the individuals present. The stories and explanations continued until the young folk were called back for their own meal, and we enjoyed our own lunch, consisting of a venison roast and sausage, a spicy concoction of beef and beans and hot peppers, and a mix of pork and vegetables and rice stewed together.

Our bellies full, we undertook to part company, knowing that should we meet again, it would not be with such amity. The southern contingent marched out first, leaving one guard at the cluster of tents. As we moved out of sight of the guard, we were approached by a corporal of the First Maryland, known to us as Brian, who questioned his attachment to their cause, and threw his lot in with us. Falling into our ranks, he led us by a circuitous route away from the camp, to shelter behind one of the settlement's out buildings. From there, we were able to observe an armed party of Confederates forming up in a fashion to seemed to bode ill for the folk of the settlement. With heavy hearts, we prepared to defend the township, and drive those with whom we had lately shared food and drink back to their camp. Stepping out from behind the confines of the barn, we faced the rebel party and unleashed a volley, doing minimal damage to their line. They fired upon us with the same effect. Each group began to deploy as skirmishers, and advanced, with more casualties occurring. Being outnumbered, we were soon overrun, but successful in turning the attention of the rebel party from the township, whose inhabitants then swarmed about us, preventing further carnage. Under their care, we were able to at last make our way homeward, in hopes of reuniting with the main body of the Eighth once again.

Cor. H. Elwell

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