Adjutant Stearns (1862) 21st Massachusetts, Killed at the Battle of New Bern
Adjutant Stearns (1862) 21st Massachusetts, Killed at the Battle of New Bern
Adjutant Stearns (1862) 21st Massachusetts, Killed at the Battle of New Bern

Adjutant Stearns (1862) 21st Massachusetts, Killed at the Battle of New Bern

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[Stearns, William Augustus]. Adjutant Stearns. Boston: Massachusetts Sabbath School Society, (1862). [8360]

Publisher's green pebble cloth, boards blindstamped, spine in gilt, 4 x 6 inches. Fine stipple engraved portrait of Stearns in uniform, with facsimile signature & tissue guard, engraved by Hezekiah Wright Smith. 160 clean pp. Back board and rear paste-down show old moisture contact that has left portions of the paper and cloth raised (see pics). Very good. Hardcover.

The life of Frazer Augustus Stearns (1840-1862), who was killed at the battle of New Bern, North Carolina; a Union victory led by Brigadier General Ambrose Burnside. Stearns was an adjutant in the 21st Massachusetts regiment, which fought at New Bern until their ammunition was spent. This narrative is composed using the numerous letters written by the young man during his life. He had been a student at Amherst College during the great revival period of 1858, which greatly impressed him. In an effort to recover his health he sailed on a ship to Bombay in 1860 - where his elder brother was set up in business - which was remarkably successful in its purpose. After two months in India he returned home. After the disaster of Bull Run, he enlisted in the Union Army and following training was commissioned 1st Lieutenant of Company I, in the 21st Regiment of Massachusetts Volunteers. He was stationed at Annapolis until the year end of 1861, then shipped to South Carolina near the beginning of 1862. Wounded in the taking of Roanoke Island, he was mentioned in the report of Lieut. Col. Maggi for his brave service, a report echoed in the New York Tribune. Stearns' own account of the battle, related in a letters home, is herein reproduced. His last letter home was dated March 9; he was killed on March 14th.

William Augustus Stearns, D.D., born at Bedford in 1805; graduated at Harvard College, 1827; inaugurated President of Amherst College, 1854. An orthodox Congregationalist.