The 39th OVI and Major Noyes at New Madrid

Transcribed by Larry Stevens

Excerpt from "Roster. Surviving Members of the 39th Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry."
Compiled by Frank Bruner. Co "G." S. Rosenthall & Co. Cincinnati. Ohio. 1893

The regiment received its first baptismal of fire at New Madrid, Missouri, March 3d, 1862. It is true the shells thrown from rebel gunboats and works were not of six pounder gun but of much heavier calibre, and made a hideous screeching noise, the like of which the boys had ne'er heard; their nerves were strung to the utmost tension as they saw that war was about to become a fixed fact. An incident that occurred at the time is worth relating.
The regiment was deployed in column by division and the regimental flag and banner were unfurled, giving the rebels a target for aiming their guns and getting the correct range. They were not slow in taking advantage of same and threw shells and shrapnels, thick and fast. General Pope noticing the colors were unfurled, dispatched a staff officer to furl same - this order was given to Major Noyes who was in command of the regiment, who, straightening himself up in his saddle, and in his sonorious and stentorian voice said: "Furl those colors - furl those colors! Never - never!" At this moment a fresh shower of shells came, and they closer than the others - bursting immediately in front and rear of the regiment - suffuce it to say, the Major at once, without any further ceremony, gave the order to furl "Old Glory."

Web Publishing Copyright © 1999 Larry Stevens

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Last updated August 28 1999