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Little Toddling Zouaves [15 June 1861]

Little Toddling Zouaves

[15 June 1861]

 

The Civil War in America. The Illustrated London News, June 15, 1861.


NEW YORK, May 24. 

 I could easily believe myself to be in Paris or some other city devoted to military display, instead of New York, the commercial emporium of the North. From morning to night nothing is heard but the sound of the drum or the martial strains from trumpet and bugle, as regiment after regiment passes on its way to the seat of war through streets crowded with a maddened population. All trade is at a standstill. Store after store down Broadway has been turned into the head-quarters of Anderson's Zouaves, Wilson's Boys, the Empire City Guard, and hosts of corps too numerous or too eccentric in their names for me to recollect. Verily, a cosmopolitan army is assembled here. As one walks he is jostled by soldiers dressed in the uniforms of the Zouaves de la Garde, the Chasseurs Pied, Infanterie de la Ligne, and other French regiments--so great, apparently, is the admiration of our cousins for everything Gallic. I must confess I should prefer to see more nationality. In justice, however, to the men, I cannot do otherwise than express my unqualified approval of the material out of which the North is to make her patriot army. Many of those I have seen marching through the streets appear already to have served in the field, so admirably do they bear themselves in their new roles. The very children have become tainted with the military epidemic, and little toddling Zouaves, three and four years old, strut, armed to the teeth, at their nurses' apronstrings. As I write I have a corps of chasseurs composed of all the small boys in the hotel exercising and skirmishing in the corridor outside my room; the shrill words of command from the juvenile Colonel pierce through and through my ears, and distract my attention terribly.

F.V.

NY Military Museum – Civil War Newspaper Clippings

 

62nd NYSV in the Civil War Press. Anderson Zouaves – Research