From the 10th Illinois.
Editor Whig & Republican: Having a little spare time, and believing that at least a few of your readers would be glad to hear something from the 10th Illinois Infantry. — I will try and let you know what we are doing and the feeling generally on the "Conduct of the War."
Our regimental organization dates April 27, 1861, hence our term of three years expires about one year from the present time. Thus we have the advantage of the "three months service," which is as it should be, for the regiment was not disorganized, but the time for which the men enlisted having expired the officers, still holding their commissions, were sent home to recruit, which took some time, and it was not till late in the Fall that the regiment was filled up.
We were then quartered at Mound City, Ill., where, under the command of Colonel, now Brigadier General J. D. Morgan, of Quincy, we attained the discipline and proficiency in drill which procured us the compliment from five Brigadier Generals at one time, of being the best regiment they had seen, and also a very favorable notice in the New York Tribune.
Since leaving that place in February, 1862, we have been moved about the country considerably. We took a leading part in the action before New Madrid, also at the capturing of the prisoners below "No. 10" from there went down the Miss. to Fort Pillow and back again, then up the Tennessee river, and were on the right of Gen. Pope's army during the advance on Corinth and the evacuation of that place by the rebels. Thence we were marched to Tuscumbia, Alabama, and at the disorganization of the army of the Mississippi, then commanded by Gen. Rosecrans, were sent to Nashville to reinforce the feeble garrison that the traitor Buell had left for its protection where we arrived on the 14th day of Sep. 1862. Since that time we have been in or about Nashville, and now constitute the garrison of Fort Negley, which has been under our special protection ever since we first came here, with the exception of a few weeks at Stone River.
During the time of the "blockade" we stood the privations and hardships rendered necessary by the scarcity of provisions without a murmur, but being of the sort who believe that traitors have no rights which loyal men are bound to respect, we "went down" on the secesh citizens, if I may be allowed the expression, till communication was opened, when as all good soldiers should do, we quit such practices — with some few exceptions.
Shortly after Gen. Rosecrans came here we were sent out to Stone River for a short time, but were recalled by him for the garrison of this place. Gen. Mitchell was given command of the Post, and Gen. Morgan of the troops, who amount to about 12,000 consisting of one Division of Infantry of 3 Brigades, of which the one we are in (Col. Smith's of the 16th Ill.,) is the 1st.
The regiment when it was at its highest numerical strength, was 900 and some odd. Its aggregate now is 666. The remainder have either died, deserted, or been discharged. Co. C, which reported an an aggregate of 93, now numbers only 62, and of that number only 43 do duty in the company, the others being on special duty or sick.
We see but few papers here, not having the facilities for getting them that we had at home, and a great many are what are called "conservative" organs or, as we term them "d—d traitorous, cowardly sheets," that will have a long account to settle with the noble men they have assailed in their absence, and by opposing the Administration, have lengthened the war, and have kept us from our homes, and are now doing all in their power to destroy the confidence of the people in the Government, and by insidious letters and articles are trying to get the soldiers to desert or become dissatisfied, or anything that can aid them in their plans to destroy the Union.
But the soldiers are not fools, neither do they accept everything for truth that may be written, but are just as attentive to the signs of the times and read what few papers we get more attentively, and think more seriously than ever before, and more than the people of the North are aware of.
You have seen the resolutions which have been passed by the soldiers in every Department and from every State. These resolutions are all, so far as I have any chance for knowing, heartily endorsed, and "union or Death" is now the watchword of the army.
We will agree to no compromise with traitors nor to any peace unless the rebels lay down their arms and submit to the Government unconditionally.
We heartily endorse the remarks of Gen. Butler made before the Union Leauge of New York. We can see that slavery has been the root of all this trouble, and are determined to support the Government in any and every measure it may see fit to adopt with regard to that kind of property. The "Union as it was" can never be restored, and we want one that can not be broken, based on the only solid foundation, the "mud-sills" of society.
The army is a great place to get abolitionized, and if the Copperheads of the North were, (as we hope they soon will be) drafted and made to serve against their friends, a short time would suffice to make them think as we do, that the arming of the Negroes is one of the best measures the Administration can adopt. The cry of unconstitutionality can scare no one, neither can the soldiers be duped by it to any great extent.
We have had a treat in the shape of a good Union speech from Edward Everett delivered before the Boston Union League, and published this morning in the Nashville Union, which contains some stinging rebukes to the Copperheads, and throwing the blame where it really belongs, on the leaders of the Southern rebellion.
By the way, speaking of the Nashville Union, it is one of the best and most loyal papers in the Union, and is noted for its firm and unflinching adherence to the government here in this benighted land of Dixie. It is like a stray beam of sunshine in stormy weather, doing all who see it much good. It is also one of old "Roseys'" firmest supporters, and is hailed by all the soldiers for both of these good qualities, for we are all enthusiastic in favor of "Old Rosey."