Lieutenant Alexander Douglas could it no longer. The cries stirred him to action.
Douglas had been born on Christmas Day of 1833 in South Carolina, a land that was first settled by the English in 1670. Early Americans battled Redcoats there in the Revolutionary War, and later, in 1865, Union General William Tecumseh Sherman burned two thirds of the beautiful city of Charleston. But I digress
Before the war, Douglas had been an attorney and had served as editor of the Spartanburg Express. But today he was a far cry from that world.
It was a hot day in July, 1863, the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg. Douglas was in command of an ambulance corps.
Peering out from behind the fortification where he lay, Douglas spotted the source of the pleas: a Union soldier lying in the open field between the Confederate and Federal lines.
Douglas rallied four of his men. Together they dashed out into the open where the wounded enemy soldier pleaded for help.
Shots rang out, but somehow none of them found their mark. The five brave men reached the wounded man, lifting him onto a stretcher. The firing stopped as the Yankees realized what the Rebels were doing. Douglas and his men carried the wounded man back to the Confederate lines where he could get water and treatment.
Douglas was on the fields of battle for two more years, and was there with Lee’s Army at Appomattox in April of 1865. And this despite his own battlefield wound sustained a year a year after Gettysburg.
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