Civil War Louisiana (CWLA)

Civil War Louisiana (CWLA)
CWLA seeks to provide an online resource of any and all material of the Civil War relating to Louisiana with a special interest in the war in Acadiana in southwest Louisiana.

Monday, July 14, 2014

4th Louisiana at Berwick City

A letter to the West Baton Rouge newspaper the Sugar Planter, November 20, 1861, from a member of the 4th Louisiana Infantry. 

SUGAR PLANTER [WEST BATON ROUGE, LA], November 30, 1861, p. 2, c. 5-6
                                                                        Camp Lovell, Berwick City, Nov. 20, '61.
            Dear Sugar Planter:--You have no doubt heard before this of our being encamped opposite the terminus of the New Orleans and Opelousas Railroad at Berwick City.—The position is certainly a very important one and should the war be prosecuted, and the New Orleans be threatened with an attack, our friends at home may rest assured that the Fourth Regiment will do everything that can be expected of it. . .
            We have a pleasant camp so long as it does not rain, for our tents afford little protection against the weather, and the mud I assure you is very disagreeable to us, especially having just come from the sandy Gulf coast.  Col. Barrow intends having barracks built so soon as he can make arrangements for lumber and I hope we shall be made more comfortable by it.
            I am confident it would amuse you to pay our camp a visit.  Imagine your humble correspondent's accommodations for writing:  my knapsack on an empty box for a desk and a cypress board for a seat, with the inkstand lying on the ground.  In the other half of tent lies our bed, made of rough cypress boards.  This is the most important piece of furniture in the tent and answers several purposes, viz:  bed at night, chair sofa or table as the case may be when we entertain company.  In the back part of the tent is a shelf on which are strewn combs, pipes, tobacco, brushes, a few books and a pack of cards.  Could you peep in, dear Planter on evenings when we are entertaining company, you would be amused at the tableau.  The pack of cards may be in use, and in that case the bed answers as table and chairs—one of the bed posts having been removed for the purpose answers as a candlestick; on the shelf, in the background of the tent, you might see a bottle and tin cup, which together with the tobacco and pipes, are all intended for the entertainment of the company, more especially, however the bottle and tin cup.  Our camp has been visited by a great many ladies and I have no doubt that their visit was highly interesting to them for I do not believe that many of them ever saw a soldier's camp before.  Last Sunday our Chaplain performed service in camp and quite a number of ladies were in attendance as well a number of gentlemen. . . .
                                                                                                                                                                            Yours, &c., VIC. 

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Coppens' Zouave Battalion

Coppens' Zouave Battalion
Lt. Colonel George Coppens (seated) and brother, Captain Marie Alfred Coppens.Image sold at auction on Cowan Auctions, for $14,375