Did not get our Cincinnati Gazette today, but received dispatches which state that Alexandria was taken by federal (i.e. government) troops, but with the loss of Col. Elsworth of the New York Zouave regiment, -- a gallant young officer, who is much lamented. He was I believe, an Illinoisian, had visited the Crimea and on his return taught a company in Chicago the Zouave drill, then went to New York city where he enlisted the fire-companies for the same service. The pranks of Elsworth's Zouaves in and about Washington have supplied many newspapers items. They saved Willard Hotel from being destroyed by fire. At Alexandria it was Col. Elsworth who took down the secession flag and run up the Stars and Stripes. Soon after he was fired upon and killed by a concealed foe, who is reported to have been discovered and immediately put to death. The Zouaves threaten to take a terrible revenge. Twelve thousand troops have been sent into Virginia. The war has begun. God give success to our armed hosts. A company of troops from Clarksburg, Va., went up to Wheeling today to get their arms to fight for the Union.
Julia refers to Col. Elsworth (correct spelling is Colonel Elmer Ellsworth) who formed a Zouave unit and toured with it in 1860, challenging other military units to drill competitions.
|Cover on Harper's Weekly, May 26, 1861|