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Battlefield Dead

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  • hartshje
    ... Mark, I m sure someone in the group is quite knowledgeable concerning the aftermath of battles, and taking care of the dead and wounded. My own knowledge
    Message 1 of 12 , Sep 2, 2003
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      --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Peters" <mark-peters@m...>
      wrote:
      > I hope that local lore is correct, in this case. I'll try not to
      > be too judgemental, but it seems somewhat repugnant to only bury
      > one's own dead, and leave the bodies of the opposition to the
      > elements, when not in any danger from attack.
      >
      > In fear of being too morbid, I trust respect was generally shown to
      > the dead and treatment was accorded to the injured of both sides,
      > during the length of the conflict. Other than the odd (much
      > written about events), atrocities seem to have been the exception,
      > rather than the rule.

      Mark,

      I'm sure someone in the group is quite knowledgeable concerning the
      aftermath of battles, and taking care of the dead and wounded. My
      own knowledge is somewhat limited, but I think that what usually
      occurred with burial was that the victorious army would try to
      indentify its own dead and give them individual burials, but most of
      the enemy's dead usually ended up in mass graves. Since the battles
      occurred in the South (with a few exceptions), a lot of the
      Confederate dead were claimed by their families and transported back
      home. The sheer number of dead meant that many times overworked
      burial parties didn't always do the best job at digging graves, as I
      have read accounts of remains being rooted up by wild animals, or
      exposed by heavy rainstorms. Further, I believe that after the war,
      most of the dead ended up being re-interred in formal cemeteries.

      Joe
    • Daniel F. Giallombardo
      Morning all, I m away from my books, but if memory serves, Joe s summary is correct. Generally speaking, and I stress generally speaking, the enemy dead were
      Message 2 of 12 , Sep 3, 2003
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                                            Morning all,
            I'm away from my books, but if memory serves, Joe's summary is correct. Generally speaking, and I stress generally speaking, the enemy dead were given a mass burial. Long and wide trenches were dug and with less ceremony than practicality and celerity [most of the time] the dead were tossed into it.
            Wounded were treated by medical staff, but after the wounded on one's own side. Hope this is helpful---Dan

        hartshje wrote:

        --- In civilwarwest@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Peters" <mark-peters@m...>
        wrote:
        > I hope that local lore is correct, in this case.  I'll try not to
        > be too judgemental, but it seems somewhat repugnant to only bury
        > one's own dead, and leave the bodies of the opposition to the
        > elements, when not in any danger from attack.
        >
        > In fear of being too morbid, I trust respect was generally shown to
        > the dead and treatment was accorded to the injured of both sides,
        > during the length of the conflict.  Other than the odd (much
        > written about events), atrocities seem to have been the exception,
        > rather than the rule.

        Mark,

         I'm sure someone in the group is quite knowledgeable concerning the
        aftermath of battles, and taking care of the dead and wounded.  My
        own knowledge is somewhat limited, but I think that what usually
        occurred with burial was that the victorious army would try to
        indentify its own dead and give them individual burials, but most of
        the enemy's dead usually ended up in mass graves.  Since the battles
        occurred in the South (with a few exceptions), a lot of the
        Confederate dead were claimed by their families and transported back
        home.  The sheer number of dead meant that many times overworked
        burial parties didn't always do the best job at digging graves, as I
        have read accounts of remains being rooted up by wild animals, or
        exposed by heavy rainstorms.  Further, I believe that after the war,
        most of the dead ended up being re-interred in formal cemeteries.

        Joe

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      • GnrlJEJohnston@aol.com
        In a message dated 9/3/2003 10:14:46 AM Eastern Daylight Time, ... At times, a truce was requested to pick up the dead and wounded from a battlefield. The
        Message 3 of 12 , Sep 3, 2003
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          In a message dated 9/3/2003 10:14:46 AM Eastern Daylight Time, ParrotheadDan@... writes:

          Generally speaking, and I stress generally speaking, the enemy dead were given a mass burial. Long and wide trenches were dug and with less ceremony than practicality and celerity [most of the time] the dead were tossed into it.
             Wounded were treated by medical staff, but after the wounded on one's own side. Hope this is helpful---Dan

          At times, a truce was requested to pick up the dead and wounded from a battlefield.  The request may be honored or rejected according to the Commanders.  For example:  Beauregard requested a truce in order to retrieve the dead and wounded from Shiloh battlefield, but the request was denied and was told that burial procedures were already being taken care of.  Yeah - thrown in trench.  Other times, the truce was honored and the wounded and dead were able to be retrieved.  Yet again, at Resaca, many Confederates were buried in a very shallow grave where they fell, only to be reinterred later on shortly after the battle by a daughter of a plantation owner and reburied properly at the Confederate Cemetery that can be seen today.

          JEJ
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