[Special Correspondence of the Sunday Mercury.]
SIXTY-SECOND REGIMENT, N. Y. S. V.
CAMP TENNALLYTOWN, D. C., March. 8th.
Anderson Zouaves All Ready–Wild with Joy for a Trip to Dixie–The Name of the hero of Sumter not Forgotten–Another New Soldier Paper.
It was my intention to have kept you posted in all matters of importance regarding the Anderson Zouaves, but we have been kept in a continual state of excitement for the past two weeks, owing to orders having been received to prepare ourselves for an instant march ; and, although we as yet remain here, still we are packed up, and ready to start at an hour’s notice.
Our men are perfectly wild with joy to think that we should have the good luck to see some actual service in the field, for we have lain so long here that we were under the opinion that we were to be kept in charge of the chain of forts at this place to protect the Capital of our beloved country. Although it is one of the most particular points around Washington (as it was by this way the rebels intended to attack the Capital), still we could gain a name which would strike terror to the hearts of the Southern foe. With such leaders as Col. J. Lafayette Riker and Major Oscar V. Dayton (who, by the way, is called by the boys “Little Put”), we cannot fail in making our mark. All we want is a chance to meet the enemy, and we will show them that the name we bear has not been forgot, and the attack upon Fort Sumter has yet to be avenged by the Anderson Zou-Zous.
We have just issued the first number of the Anderson Zouave, and I send you by post several copies, to show you what your brother-typos are about in the army. Of course, you must excuse this our first attempt in the newspaper line ; and it is our intention hereafter to make this as useful an organ of its kind as possibly can be, and an instructor for officer and soldier alike.
But I must close this, hoping the next time I write I will be able to furnish the readers of you valuable paper an account of how the Anderson Zouaves behave on the field of battle.
Letter to the Sunday Mercury, March 16, 1862.
(Note: This letter was most likely written by James L. Shields, the Sergeant Major of the regiment at the time, however, it is also possible it could have been written by James L. Silvey, a 19 year old private in Capt. Edwin P. Davis’ Co. D – John Tierney)