from the February 26th, 1863 edition of The Detroit Advertiser and Tribune,
page 4, column 4.
of Col. Stevens - Action of the Regiment Thereupon - Agreeable Proceedings.
of the Advertiser and Tribune.
Camp on Stone River, Tenn..
February 17th, 1863
Col. Stevens came up to the regiment to bid us good bye, and met with a cordial
reception from both officers and men, with whom he is most deservedly popular.
The following parting words of Col. Stevens were read on dress parade:
21st Regiment, Mich. Infantry
Camp Near Murfreesboro, Tenn.,
February 15th, 1863
and Soldiers of the 21st Mich. Infantry:
becomes my unpleasant duty to resign my command of this regiment.
Owing to the constant and arduous service to which, for the past
twenty-two months, I have been subjected my health has failed to
such an extent that I find I am no longer able to endure the hardships
of the field.
is no one who regrets this separation more than myself, but with
me the demand, is imperative, and I must submit.
connection with this regiment has been one of the happiest periods
of my life. I have always been proud to say I belonged to the Twenty-First.
There are few, if any, better regiments in the field or service,
while your reputation for drill, discipline and good conduct under
fire, is well known and history will accord it credit on its brightest
pages. The tattered folds of your flag-its shattered staff and the
wounds of its gallant bearer, attest how nobly you met your country's
foe. Although many of our companions have fallen, fighting bravely
in the field, and many by the long and terrible marches we have endured,
and our regiment is decimated to a small number, it only adds more
glory to the "Spartan Band" that are left standing shoulder
to shoulder, for the maintenance of our glorious Union, and to avenge
our brave comrades, who have died like heroes but are not forgotten
by us or their country. Let the mottoes "Chaplin's Hills" and "Stones
River" be emblazoned on your colors, and let them never be
defiled by the touch of traitorous hands, A bleeding country bids
you put forth, all your energies; that dear old flag, disgraced at
Sumpter, bids you rally and press forward beneath its cheering folds,
until this terrible rebellion is put down, and peace again restored
to this once happy land.
have already proved your valor at Chaplin Hills and Stone River,
while the heroes of Michigan rank foremost among those who have gone
forth in the defense of their country. The bloody fields of Shiloh,
Williamsburg, Fair Oaks, Malvern Hills, Antietam, and Fredricksburg
will testify; be not, then disheartened, but in the words of the
immortal Warren, let your motto be, "Where duty calls you there
they will find you." While thus separating myself from you,
I feel proud assurance in saying that I leave you in the hands of
those who have been "tried and found not wanting," and
I trust you may yet be led to brighter deeds of fame.
you may all be preserved to again enjoy your homes, amid peace and
prosperity I bid you farewell.
Col. 21st Mich. Infantry.
parade, a meeting of the officers was called, by Col. McCreery, and the following
resolutions were unanimously adopted:
A. Stevens, Colonel of the 21st Michigan, has been compelled, on account
of the precarious condition of his health, to resign his commission, we,
the commissioned officers of the 21st Michigan Infantry, respectfully tender
to him and to the public, the following resolutions, in expression of our
regard for him as an officer and a man, and our regret that the state of
his health should compel him to retire from the service.
That in his military career Col. Stevens has displayed all those qualities
which mark the good soldier and efficient officer. Among the first to sunder
the strong and enduring ties of home, he rushed into the foremost ranks of
his country's defenders, actuated by the loftiest patriotism and the noblest
ambition. Faithful and efficient in the discharge of all duties consigned
to him, quick to comprehend and swift to execute the most dangerous movements;
cool, collected and brave to daring, in the hour of imminent danger on the
field of battle; in camp, the rigid, energetic and uncompromising disciplinarian
and able administrator, no detail of soldierly duty, however insignificant,
escaped his attention and watchful eye.
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