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This biography is from HEROES OF ALBANY, by Rufus W. Clark, D. D.

Lieut. William H. Pohlman
From Mrs. Mary Scudder Pool

William H. Pohlman was born in the Island of Borneo, January 10th, 1842. He was the only surviving son of the late Rev. Wm. J. Pohlman and Theodosia R., missionaries of the American Board of Foreign Missions to China. His parents were devoted to the sacred cause of extending Christianity among the heathen.

His paternal grandfather, Daniel Pohlman, was a man distinguished for his earnest piety, his gift in prayer, and his deeds of Christian benevolence.

He was also a nephew of the late Rev. John Scudder, who went to India as a missionary in 1819, whose memory is warmly cherished in that country, as well as in the churches of America. Indeed, William's ancestors, for several generations back, were distinguished for their piety, usefulness and high social position. Dr. Nathaniel Scudder and Col. Philip Johnson were the grandfathers of his mother. The former, an eminent and beloved physician, was unintentionally shot in the Revolutionary war, and was, it is believed, instantly killed. Dr. Scudder was an intimate friend of Mr. Prime, the grandfather of the Messrs. Prime, the distinguished editors of the "New York Observer." As a token of affection for his friend, Mr. Prime named one of his sons Nathaniel Scudder.

Col. Philip Johnson fell a victim to his country's cause, in the fatal conflict on the 27th of August, 1776. Like his descendant, he was a zealous and courageous patriot.

The father of William, the Rev. William J. Pohlman, the devoted missionary, when he offered himself to the American Board, said to them: "Appeals press home upon me from all quarters. Three worlds unite in urging me on. Heaven, earth and hell beseech me to go forth to the help of the Lord against the mighty. The heavenly host are looking with intense interest, to see whether the command of Christ is obeyed by me. Multitudes, ready to perish, call me to make known to them the gospel of Jesus. Oh, then, send me, send me, send me. For necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel to the perishing heathen."

Willie's mother, Theodosia R. Scudder, was the youngest sister of the Rev. J. Scudder. She devoted herself, in her youthful days, to God's service. Her paternal grandfather was a man of fervent piety, remarkably gifted in prayer, and rich in good words and work.

While the Rev. Mr. Pohlman was in India, he lost his beloved wife by death, and found it necessary to send his children, William and Mary, to this country, to the care of a favorite aunt, Mrs. McClure. Perhaps there is no trial so severe to a missionary as to part with his children. Willie was then three and a half years old. The ship being detained at Java Head two weeks, the father desired once more to look upon his loved ones, but the second parting was more trying than the first. WilIie hung around his father's neck, weeping and wanting to go back to his Amoy home, and the dear father had to untwine those gentle hands, and go back to his desolate home to see the empty crib and the vacant chair belonging to the little ones. His only source of comfort was the mercy seat. He writes at this time: "I can add my testimony to the tens of thousands of God's people as to the all sufficiency of the grace of God, andcthe comforting influence of the holy spirit, under the most trying circumstances, and in times of the most bitter grief and anxiety of soul."

The children arrived safely, and were tenderly cared for by their father's favorite sister. Under the religious influences of Mrs. McClure, William was hopefully converted to Christ, and devoted himself to the foreign missionary work. He united with the North Dutch Church of Albany, at present under my pastoral care, and he continued his membership with this church up to the time of his death.

Having completed his preparatory studies, he entered Rutger's College, New Brunswick, N. J., in the tall of 1859. He very soon became a great favorite with the students, and was beloved and esteemed by all who knew him.

William was quietly and successfully pursuing his studies, preparatory to the ministry, when the first gun from Sumter aroused the people to arms. He felt that his country needed him, and for a time there was a struggle as to whether he had best go on in his course of preparation, or enlist in defence of his country. He presented his case in fervent prayer to Almighty God, and after a certain period thus spent, he saw clearly that his duty was to fight for his adopted country. Had anything been wanting at that time to fan into a flame the fires of patriotism in the breasts of any of the sons of Rutger's, it was when the venerable and noble President Frelinghuysen, with his own right hand, which has since forgot its cunning in the grave, raised the banner of freedom on the college green, and under its waving folds, his voice rang out in clarion tones for freedom, and law and right. Said he, "we must fight; there is no alternative. The rebellion must be crushed; and then we shall once more become a happy and united people."

Among the first to respond to the call of his country, was the much loved William Pohlman. He enlisted as a private in the First New Jersey Regiment, Co. G, May 28th, 1861, to serve three years. He served with his regiment until January 1st, 1862, when his peculiar qualifications pointed him out as fitted for something better, than the mere ordinary duties of the camp. Upon the formation of the Signal Corps, he was therefore transferred to that efficient arm of the service. He performed with great ability the duties incumbent upon him, in all the campaigns that followed until January 17th, 1863, when he was promoted to a Lieutenancy in the Fifty-ninth Regiment New York State Volunteers, and shortly after was appointed Acting Adjutant. Though a stranger to the regiment, his goodness of heart and firmness of spirit soon made him friends and admirers, and it was not long before they learned to love him, and to anticipate great things from the brave and noble boy. Not one of the thousands who have laid their lives upon the altar of their country—now alas drenched with so much precious blood—was ever actuated by purer motives or more lofty patriotism.

Having joined the Army of the Potomac, Mr. Pohlman participated in its campaigns and battles, from the time of the disastrous battle of Bull Run to the fearful engagement at Gettysburg. Just after the battle of Bull Run, he wrote to a favorite cousin the following letter:

Arlington Heights, July 29th, 1861.
Dearest Cousin—You need not have made so many excuses for not answering my letter before, for I always know that there must be some good reason when my friends do not immediately reply to my missives.

I meant to have written to you when I last wrote to Theodore, but we received such sudden orders to march, that it was impossible.

May be that I shall yet be spared to see you, but the chances are rather the other way. There is going to be a terrible war, Rosey, dear, and thousands of souls will be sent to their last account before its close. If you could hear the women of the South talk; if you knew that kind and affectionate wives sent their sick and feeble husbands to the war; if you knew that sisters put the musket into their brothers' hands, and bid them God speed; if you could see the dark eyes of striplings gleam at you; you would wonder where and when would be the end. God alone can foresee the sequel. We have already had a sample of what kind of fighting will be required in this conflict, and although our men fought like brave and noble men, they had to give up. Every inch of ground from here to Florida will have to be overcome with force of arms. Our First Regiment was the reserve heretofore, and consequently it is not improbable to suppose that we will be the advance now; if this should be the case, it will be a miracle of grace if many of us return to our friends. I am not now writing, cousin dear, either to frighten you or to make you feel bad, but simply to show you how the case stands, so that you may be prepared for the request I am going to make. I doubt not that you, as well as many others of my friends have been surprised at the step I have taken in coming to this war; that I should have left such a good, dear sister as Mary, to take up arms in defence of my country. Although many of my friends blame me for doing it, I can truly say that I did it from a sense of duty, and was perfectly conscientious in all I did. God knows that I love Mary, although it may seem otherwise, and I would give all I am worth for her good. I know that her whole life is wrapped up in me, and if I should fall it might be the means of killing her. May God forgive me if I should be the means of breaking not only her heart, but also the heart of mother. Now, Rosey, dear, I have always felt as if you were my sister and it seemed so natural to think and speak of you as one of our family. Shall I ask too much of you, when I ask you to be a sister to Mary; to comfort and cheer her if I should fall, and if it should break her heart, will you, if possible, be with her at the last? You may think it very strange that I should write you such a letter and make such a request; but I can't help it. I have been thinking of this matter a great deal lately, and I wanted to share my burden with some dear one whom I could trust. You have been the first one and only one to whom I have imparted my feelings, but who could so sympathize with a sister placed in such circumstances, as one who also has a brother in the army. I have been trying to find the Twenty-seventh New York, but as yet have not succeeded. When I do find it, I shall make the acquaintance of your brother and give him your message.

Now I must stop, so give a kiss to the baby and ever remember me as one who loves you.

July 30th. —Please give lots of love to Ed. Thank him for his kind letter to me. I meant to write him a good long letter to-day; but I feel very unwell, and I can hardly keep in any position.

Lieut. Pohlman wrote frequently to his beloved sister, and his letters are so graphic and full that they furnish the best account that we can give of his military life. The following are extracts from them:

Arlington Heights, July 31, 1861.
Our regiment was too late for the Bull Run fight; but we had plenty to do in guarding the retreat of our flying army. If we had been two hours earlier, we might have turned the tide of battle; for it was only the reinforcements of the enemy which gained them the victory. It was such a defeat as I hope will never again happen to our army.

We have on these heights a most splendid view of the city and river, with the surrounding country, and it looks so peaceful and quiet that one would hardly imagine it was the seat of war, if it were not for seeing so many uniforms. This war is a dreadful thing, sister, dear! So many orphans left; so many turned out of peaceful and happy homes, to seek shelter wherever they can find it. Then, of all wars, civil and intestine war is the most to be dreaded; where those who were once brothers are now arrayed against each other, seeking to take lives which they were bound to protect and cherish. But then our country and her laws must be sustained at any and every cost, and it will be, as long as there are two millions of men to suffer and die for her. God has never yet let the unjust cause triumph for a long time, and we will eventually come out conquerors.

Fairfax Seminary, August 22, 1861.
Three hundred of our regiment are here sick in the hospital, none of them dangerously ill, however, the prevailing complaint being chills and fever. I have not been aftected in the least, and have been perfectly well ever since I enlisted. We have some splendid rooms for a hospital, being those which were used for the purposes of the students. This cluster of buildings, consisting of about twelve separate houses, was called the Fairfax County Episcopal Theological Seminary. Not only did southerners patronize it, but also northerners, for many of the students were from the north. At the approach of the troops, the buildings were deserted; most of the students, I suppose, taking up arms in defence of secession. The buildings are well furnished and well adapted for the purposes of a seminary. There is a nice little chapel, containing a fine organ. We used the place and instrument last Sunday, and I tell you it seemed so natural to hear the strains of an organ again. There is a large library of religious books in one room. In the same room there is a clothes press full of women's clothing, and on a bed, neatly made up, there lies a black cloak, with a white collar pinned fast, and a breast pin to hold it together whilst the owner was wearing it. It looks just as if the lady had come in, in great haste, and having thrown it off, had fled. This is the way with almost all the deserted houses we find. The occupants seem to have left in great haste and terror. We are about two and a half miles from the enemy's pickets. Every once in a while our pickets meet the rebel pickets, and they exchange the courtesies of peace times, that is, they smoke and talk together just as if they were friends.

Fairfax Seminary, September 5, 1861.
At present we are kept very busy in building forts and breastworks. About three and a half o'clock every morning we have to get up and get our breakfast; then off we march to the trenches and dig from six till nine a. m. At twelve we go in again and work till three. By that time we are pretty well tired out. Our forts begin to present a very formidable appearance, as you may imagine, when I tell you that twelve hundred men work (per day) on Fort Taylor, which is being built by our New Jersey Brigade. The other fort, which the New York, Michigan and Maine boys are building, has three thousand two hundred men working a day on it. We are going to mount some very heavy guns on these forts, when they are finished, with which we expect to give the secessionists a good dose, for they are only two or three miles away from us. They are building a fort just opposite to ours, and with a glass we can see distinctly what the rebels are doing. We scare them often, by making them believe we are going to fire on them. The other day some of our boys got four wheels, and mounting a stove pipe on it, placed it in the middle of the road, about half a mile from the nearest enemy's battery, and then they went through the motions of loading and firing. The rebels were watching us, and it would have made you laugh to see the renowned "Southern Chivalry" take to their heels and run. Very soon they blazed away at us with seven rifled cannons. Then you would have laughed harder than ever to see our boys scatter. But we found out all we wanted to, viz: if they had cannon there or not. Why, for a week we expected an attack at any moment, and our company were kept under arms for seventy-two hours, twenty-four of which were very rainy; but they never came very near us. But the Third Regiment had a skirmish with them, in which they lost three men killed and nine wounded.

Fairfax Seminary, October 8, 1861.
You ask if I am not tired of a soldier's life, and if I am not anxious to return home again. I would like very much to be able to see you all whenever I wanted to, but would never consent to giving up now. I am not sick and tired of a soldier's life, and the charm has not worn off. There are hardships and toils without number; there are weary marches and sleepless nights; there are dangerous watches and midnight alarms; there are times when both food and water are scarce; there are wanting all the refinements of home life; death itself must be looked for at any moment; but, in spite of all these disadvantages, my courage has not failed me, and I am this minute as confident that our cause will eventually succeed, as I was when I first started. Very many rushed into the army without considering what they would have to endure, and, consequently, would give all they possess if they could get free. Thus far I have found nothing different from what I expected.

The work of missions to which Mr. Pohlman had hoped to devote his life was dear to him even while in the army, as the following extract will show:

Fairfax Seminary, November 1, 1861.
This morning I was detached for extra duty which consisted in packing up the library and curiosities belonging to the Seminary. There are about ten thousand volumes, some of them very old. One book was almost seven hundred years old, having been printed in the year 1200. I worked all the morning, and got the missionary relics and pictures all ready to send off. There were curiosities from China, Africa, Asia, and every other portion of the globe where the missionaries of the Episcopal Church have established stations. Then there were the pictures of all the missionaries who had gone forth from the Seminary. No work which I have had to do has so suited me as that in which I was engaged to-day. Many an old memory came up to my mind, as I looked upon the faces of those who had taken up their cross and labored and died, in their Master's cause, on heathen ground, and I could not but exclaim: "O, what a glorious cause to engage in!

Fairfax Seminary, November 29, 1861.
Thanksgiving day passed in quietness, and, by some wonderful chance, I did not happen to be on guard duty, so I had the day to myself. Our bill of fare was not so very extensive, but then we imagined that we were in some vast eating saloon, and so we kept calling for "bean soup, bread and strong butter," and that best of brewed liquors "water." Then, as no darkies came forth at our summons, we would, forsooth, be our own waiters and help ourselves to the above mentioned dainties. Well, it is a good thing to have a fertile imagination and a good appetite, but every once in a while I got thinking of my last Thanksgiving dinner, and then I had to gulp the food down the best I could. That Thanksgiving day, you remember, I spent so pleasantly at Aunt H.'s house. What changes have transpired since then! Then we were in the midst of peace, and our flag was honored throughout the whole world. Now there are wars and rumors of war. Our national emblem has been disgraced, not by a foreign foe, but by those who ought to cherish and defend it. Many a life and many a river of blood will be required before that stain shall be washed out; and there are many thousand brave hearts willing to cease to beat, if, by this means, our original honor and glory shall be restored. Many may talk about this war soon ending, but, in my opinion, there will have to be more than one hard fought battle before the end comes. Thank God, we are now gaining many victories and are striking the secessionists some pretty hard knocks.

You have, doubtless, heard of our last grand review at Munson's Hill. It was a splendid aftair. The President and General McClellan were present and reviewed us. There were between seventy-five and eighty thousand troops. Our, First New Jersey, regiment has received the name of doing the best marching and presenting the finest appearance of any regiment in both reviews. While we were passing the point where General McClellan, the President and staff were standing, our line was perfect. General McClellan turned to the President and made the remark, "That is it, that is first rate." I tell you we do look finely when we get all our accoutrements on.

Fairfax Seminary, December 11, 1861.
Yesterday the Inspector General gave us a visit. Everything we possessed underwent a strict examination, but no fault could be found with us. I only wish that you could see our regiment and camp grounds. Strangers who have visited almost all the camps around, say that ours is the cleanest they have seen, and that our men look the neatest. The Inspector and Colonel were so pleased with us that they gave us to-day as a holiday.

Things in this neighborhood remain quiet. There is not much excitement, except when we go out on picket duty. Our company just came in on Saturday. We were outside, and only about one mile from the rebels, who have lately made some daring and successful attacks on our pickets. Our pickets were doubled, and the utmost watchfulness and caution enjoined. We wanted to have a little brush with them, but were disappointed. When we returned, it was only to prepare for a review by Gov. Morgan. He looked natural, and as noble as ever. What a good thing that New York has such a man at the head of affairs during this time of discord and rebellion. The old Empire State has done nobly in the cause of freedom and constitutional rights; and if there should be need of more aid, I am sure New York would he equal for the emergency. Last Friday afternoon our whole division was drawn up to witness a military execution. This is the first time I ever saw anything of the kind, and it was a very impressive scene. The prisoner was a cavalryman, who had attempted to desert to the rebels with very correct and valuable information concerning our pickets. He fortunately did not succeed in his designs, but was arrested by our troops. After a fair trial, he was condemned to a speedy and terrible death, at the hands of his own comrades. The procession passed along the lines in the following order: 1st, Provost Marshal; 2d, music of the cavalry; 3d, the firing party (consisting of twelve men and a Sergeant); 4th, coflin in a wagon; 5th, prisoner and Chaplain; 6th, escort of cavalry. As the solemn train moved slowly, each regimental band played, in succession, the dead march. The prisoner was deathly pale, and I think he fully felt his situation. At last, the spot was reached, the coffin was placed upon the ground, the prisoner, blindfolded, sat upon his own coffin. The executioners stood twelve paces from him. The silence of death reigned amongst the thousands drawn up to see the scene. A volley of carbines broke the stillness, and all was over. Thus die all traitors.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps.
January 1, 1862.
You have, very likely, heard before this, that I have been detached from my regiment and company and am now a member of the United States Signal Corps. We came into camp on Monday afternoon, and have been very busy ever since getting our camp fixed up in style. Soon everything will be settled, and I think I shall like my new business very much indeed. We have a beautiful situation for a camp on the summit of Georgetown Heights. A splendid view is stretched out on every hand. Our duty consists in warning friends of the approach of friends in the time of an advance movement or in time of battle. Then we hold conversations with each other, at the distance of miles, by means of flags during the day, and torches at night. On every expedition, both by land and sea, a number of our signal boys go.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps,
January 21, 1862.
The winter campaign has commenced—"merrily goes the ball." The secession forces in Kentucky have been defeated, and we rejoice in a splendid victory. Uncertainty and anxiety pervade our whole camp. Here we are away from our regiments and companies. The army is under marching orders, and we know not when or where onr respective regiments will move, and if a fight comes off, we cannot be with our comrades in the deadly strife of arms. We have no chance of striking a blow at a rebel for our cause. We are, of course, doing a very great service to the United States, but then one does so hate to be away from comrades in the hour of danger.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps,
February 2, 1862.
We get along finely in our new camp. The signals are being learned rapidly, and soon we expect to be of some service in the war. Every day parties of us are sent into Virginia to practice with flags, by means of which a conversation can be kept up at the distance of miles. We are beginning to learn how to take care of horses, which is a good thing at least. How I wish that you could look in upon me some day just about dinner time. You would, no doubt, laugh heartily. Sleeves rolled up, face flushed, a large knife in one hand and a frying pan in the other, from which the odors ascending inform the spectator that a beefsteak is going through the culinary process. You can't imagine what a nice cook I am. I can give steaks the most finished touches, potatoes and onions a fine brown turn; fishes, omelets, &c., &c., undergo scientific processes. In every thing that I turn my hand to, I always think of my dear sister, far away. Yes, in times of danger and in times of rest and quiet, during the long and tiresome march, during the death-like silence of my lonely picket tour, amid the roar of cannon, amid the scenes of distress and anguish, amid the dead, dying and wounded, my thoughts have ever turned to you, my dearest earthly friend. Though far away from you, enduring hardships and privations for my country's honor, surrounded by rough and rude men, yet, still, I have my thinking moments, and many a kind thought for home and home scenes. Ah! how can one forget the kind, good wishes, the heartfelt and sincere prayers of an only sister? Though years intervene, separated by oceans, yet thought knows no hindrance but death. It traverses distance, is undimmed by age.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps,
February8, 1862.
Glorious good news has just arrived; another important Union victory in the south. Fort Henry taken. This will lead to important results. The roads are yet impassable in this direction, consequently artillery is at a stand still. When the roads are better an advance is expected.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps,
February 25, 1862.
Nine of our Lieutenants and twenty-two privates left early this morning. They took their baggage with them, and are going to join Hooker's Division on the upper Potomac, near the rebel batteries. When any of the corps leave camp in that kind of style, you may soon expect a fight. It is a common report that the batteries, extending for a distance of five miles, are to be attacked. Another large detachment is to leave in the course of a week, as I think something is going to happen.

How did Washington's birth day pass on in Albany? I spent mine by standing guard, in all the rain, for it was a very unpleasant day. You know we are situated on the very summit of Georgetown Heights, and thus occupy a position which can be seen for miles from both sides of the river. Well, Major Meyer thought we ought to have some kind of display; so, as soon as it became dark, the hill was illuminated with scores of lights, sky-rockets, &c., &c. The night was very misty, and, consequently, I fear the big show could not be seen a great distance. There were, besides the fire works, the usual attendants of singing, speechifying and eating.

Camp of the U. S. Signal Corps,
March 6, 1862.
We are constantly employed now, having one hundred and thirty horses to take care of every day. Then there are camp and guard duties to perform, and we have to drill both in the saddle and out of it. How you would have laughed at my maiden efforts at horsemanship; but I am getting bravely over my timidity, and can manage a horse finely. This is quite a feat when you understand the properties and virtues of a Government horse. You have to watch every motion, or you may get a sly kick or a tremendous bite, and when in the saddle, look out for breakers ahead, or you may find yourself on the ground rather sooner than you expected.

Yesterday our whole corps was turned out to attend the funeral of one of our poor fellows, who was killed by one of the horses. Poor boy; he was a German, and had not a friend in this country. He was killed in the performance of his duty, and had a soldier's funeral. The excitement in our camp is, and has been, great; great is not strong enough, it is intense. We have every thing packed and ready to start, at half an hour's notice. Some great move is to be made on the Potomac, and the services of the Signal Corps will be required. Some of our boys went off about a week ago, and many more leave to-morrow. McClellan gives the orders and we obey. I wish you could see our outfit. First and foremost, each Lieutenant has two men to accompany him, one of whom carries a copper canteen, which holds one gallon of turpentine. He also carries a canvass haversack, which contains the necessary trimming instruments. The other one carries a long sort of bag, in which are the flags, pole, torch and lance. We are armed with Colt's best navy revolvers, and have a large Bowie knife, which is so made that we can slip it on the end of our pole, and thus use it as a lance. The Lieutenants carry the best kind of marine glasses. Imagine us rushing through the country thus accoutred. We seem to attract universal attention wherever we go.

Fairfax Court House, Va., March 16th, 1862.
After an eventful week, I find time to send you a few lines, so as to let you know that I am in perfect health, and never felt better before in my life. It is now about three o'clock in the morning, and I take the chance of sending you this, as I don't know when I can write again. We leave at six o'clock to go we know not where. Without bloodshed we have the rebel stronghold, and "Manassas is ours." Our signal boys have been busy night and day. and I am very tired and sleepy. Been up almost all night. I have a splendid little horse, which I call Charlie. He has already done much in the way of traveling, and can begin to count our journey by hundreds of miles. If Charlie feels as willing to do his duty to his country as I do, all will be well.

Steamer "Knickerbocker," Chesapeake Bay,
March 24, 1862.
We are far out in the Sound, with vessels on every side of us. One looking upon the scene would think that these vessels were laden with happy pleasure seekers. But appearances are ofttimes deceitful. Instead of being crowded with a happy, thoughtless throng, there are stern and stout men, loyal hearts, anxious to offer their all a sacrifice upon their country's altar. We see determination written on every face. We hear sentiments drop from their lips, rather detrimental to the interests of rebeldom. I am connected with Gen. Porter's Division; so whenever you hear of him, and the troops under him, you may know that I am somewhere around. Our present destination is Fortress Monroe; I know not where we go from there.
Afternoon.—Land, ho! The renowned Fortress is in sight, and active preparations are going on previous to disembarkation. We are busily engaged in signaling, so I must stop now.
Fortress Monroe.—Here I am at last. I have always had high expectations concerning this stronghold, and they have all been realized fully. It is a beautiful place. I have been not only all through the fort, but also through the town of Old Point. We are truly getting South, for the trees are budding, and many are in blossom. There are lots of flowers, and I have heard more than one feathered songster singing beautifully. I have had a good look at the Monitor (termed by the rebels "the cheese box''). A queer looking craft she is. I have also seen the top works of the "Cumberland" and "Congress," and the rebels and their fortifications on Sewell's Point. We are ordered to saddle up and go, so farewell for the present.
Hampton, Va.—Seated in the midst of the ruins of this once beautiful little town, I am going to inscribe a few lines to you, my darling sister. Every' moment we expect to go. Our horses are all saddled, and everything is in readiness. Report says that our destination is Great Bethel, which the rebels are evacuating as speedily as possible. My little horse is as lively as ever, notwithstanding rough knocks. He and I took a stroll through the village this morning, and he took it into his head to run away with me. Well, I gave him the rein, and away we tore along at a mad pace through the fields. Fences don't trouble him much; over he goes. Field after field was passed, where remains of rebel camps were to be seen, but just like themselves, among the things that were. Charlie, my horse, got tired after a while, and we took a slower pace back to the village.

Little Bethel, Va., April 3, 1862.
Our present camp, or rather bivouack, is in the midst of a thrifty peach orchard, many of whose trees are in full blow. The ruins of burnt houses still surround us, and I suppose will continue to be with us as we go further into the secesh territory. What an enemy we contend against—an enemy who will fire his own homestead, kill his own cattle and destroy his crops, so that the contending faction may derive no benefit from them. Almost the whole Army of the Potomac has been transported hither, and we expect to advance soon. Gen. McClellan arrived at Fortress Monroe to-day, and we expect some excitement soon. We had a grand reconnoissance the other day, in which we advanced some four miles beyond Big Bethel. The rebels absquatulated rather suddenly when they saw our boys coming along at a charge. They did not make a stand once, but scouted away before our skirmishers at a tremendous pace. We always travel with the staff of some General or other, thus we have a first rate chance to see all that's worth seeing.

Near Yorktown, April 11, 1862.
I am now sitting in a field in front of Yorktown, and as my sister is doubtless feeling somewhat anxious about me, I will improve the present time in writing her. This has been a day of rest for us and for our horses, and I am sure we need it badly enough. Day after day, and night after night, we have been busy, signaling orders and news. I have pretty thoroughly traversed this neighborhood. Our stations are continually changed about, so that we are one day here, another, there. For three or four days we were on the beach, signaling with the fleet of gunboats, and I tell you we had a fine opportunity for seeing the strength of the rebel works. They are tremendous, and every day thousands of their men are at work upon them. Troops are constantly coming in from Richmond and Gordonsville, so that by this time they must have one hundred thousand men within their fortifications. Why, during one morning, by the aid of a good glass, we saw sixteen of their transports come into Yorktown loaded down with troops. Then, again, they have an enormous quantity of guns of heavy calibre. Considering all things, this place is their Sebastopol. I think they have placed their last hopes on this stronghold. If we conquer, secesh is at a discount. You must not think that we are lying idle all this time while the rebels are strengthening their position. Not so. Our boys are working like bees on our entrenchments—forty-two thousand men are digging to-day. Our heavy artillery is constantly coming up from Fortress Monroe, and our balloon is making daily reconnoissances of the opposite positions. By the way, you ought to see the rebel balloon. It is worth a quarter to see it. Such a queer shape—looks exactly like two Sibley tents with their bottoms sewed together. Well, one of the secesh gentlemen undertook to ascend in this nondescript; but as fate would have it, a few of our sharpshooters happened to be on picket, very close to the aspirer, and he had only arisen a few rods, when such a volley of bullets whistled around him that he was glad enough to cry to be let down. I don't think he saw much.

Tidings of glorious good news have reached us, and it makes us feel anxious to do something, not only for our country, but so as to avenge the deaths of the brave and valiant western men, who fell at Island No. 10 and in Tennessee.

Near Yorktown, May 2, 1862.
I am now very near the enemy. Three of the rebel batteries are within eleven hundred yards of us, and they are very careless as to how they sling their shells around us. Continually are the shells and shots flying around us, I have become quite used to the explosions, and can always manage to get down flat before they reach the vicinity, though I must say that it was rather difficult at flrst to get down in time. Our station is just under cover of a piece of woods, which alone conceals us from the view of the rebels. Redoubt A is on our right, and Battery Sixth on our left. Our line of fortifications is as powerful as extensive, and I think will soon be ready for operation.
May 4th.—Yorktown evacuated; rebels in full retreat; our boys close on their heels; skirmishing between our advance and their rear guard. All is excitement among the troops; thousands upon thousands pressing on to Richmond. We, as well as others, have our duties to perform, so farewell for the present.
May 5th.—We are ordered off to Gloucester Point, which is opposite Yorktown, in order that we may open communication with the gunboats.

New Kent Court House, Va., May 15, 1862.
Within one week the rebels have evacuated Yorktown, Gloucester, Norfolk, Williamsburg, West Point and New Kent Court House. Such reverses can do nothing less than demoralize the secesh army. When last I wrote you, I was on my way to Williamsburg, where we gained a glorious victory. The dead rebels covered the ground like dead leaves. The battle field was an awful sight; but the least said of this will be the better for the sensitive heart of my sister. I cannot write more, as I am very sleepy and tired, having been up all last night.

Eight Miles from Richmond, May 30, 1862.
On this beautiful Sabbath morning (so dilierent from the quiet Sabbaths of by-gone days, when we used to proceed through the streets of Albany to the music of the tolling bells), I take up my pen to answer your last dear, good, long letter, which arrived last night. You can't imagine how much joy your epistle gave me. All day long we had been riding through drenching rain, with the further inconvenience of wading through mud, which possessed the virtue of having a very solid consistency. Wet through to the skin, tired and muddy, I had just kindled a roaring fire in the midst of a Virginia wood, and was trying to dry on one side as fast as the other side got wet. Just at this moment two letters were handed me, one from your own dear self. I forgot all my trouble, and commenced reading immediately. My little horse (who was enjoying the fire equally with myself,) seemed to share my pleasure, for he would occasionally look over my shoulder and rub his nose against my cheek. This morning, which I suppose is so quiet in the northern homes, is full of life and motion. Contrary to the customary rule of observing the Sabbath as much as possible, a military necessity has compelled the troops in this vicinity to move forward three miles, so as to hold the position which our boys fought for yesterday. The roads are lined for miles with troops, artillery, baggage wagons, ambulances and dead carts.

We expect the order to move every moment. We hope soon to be in Richmond, but at what a cost, we know not. The latest reports state that the citizens are leaving Richmond; this looks as if they meant to make a stand of it. Hope so, at any rate. We had quite a brisk skirmish two miles from here, yesterday, in which we scattered the rebels, killing and wounding about one hundred and fifty. Our side lost only about ten killed and wounded. This morning the rear guard of the enemy were busily employed in tearing up the railroad track. They have also placed obstructions in the James River, so as to hinder the passage of our gunboats. Notwithstanding all their reverses, the few remaining inhabitants are thoroughly impregnated with the cursed Southern sentiment. Few, very few remain behind to run the risk of exposing their opinions. Rich and poor, equal in this time of their adversity, alike tramp off towards Richmond (a rather critical refuge.) Almost everything is left behind. Rich furniture, splendid crockery and cut glass ware, most beautiful silk dresses and velvet traps. Well, we formed our station on top of the house, and were working away finely, when all of a sudden, whiz, whiz, whiz came a volley of rifle bullets from the woods. Fortunately none of us were touched, though the bullets came uncomfortably close. Ten of us resolved to drive the enemy from the woods; so we mounted, and making a good wide flank movement, we came upon their backs. The rebels skedaddled without firing a shot, leaving us sole possessors of the bloodless field. We were unmolested afterwards.

Savage Station, June 5, 1862.
Oh, if I could but forget the dreadful scenes of the past few days. Another awful battle has taken place and we are again victorious; but oh, what a sacrifice! The people at home read of the fight and our success, and they all rejoice. Processions, parades, fireworks and thanksgiving, are the order of the day; then those who have lost no dear ones, forget everything except the victory. It is not so here. True, we rejoice at our success; but the groans of the wounded, the last words and looks of the dying, the awful scenes of the field of carnage can never be obliterated. Poor fellows! even in their dying moments, they are faithful to their country. I have seen the eyes of more than one dying boy brighten, as I recounted to him the brave deeds of his regiment. The troops are full of fire and eagerly await the next great fight, which I only wish would end the war in Virginia. I can't see why the rebels hold out so long. They must see their cause is lost, yet many of the prisoners we have taken are actuated by the keenest hatred. The women are ten times worse than the men. I have argued with many a pretty Southern girl, and then on parting have had the exquisite pleasure of hearing her say, that she hoped the confederates would kill me and the rest of the cowardly Yankees.

U. S. Steam Gun Boat Mahaska, July 5, 1862.
What exciting times we have had since last I wrote you, you can hardly imagine. Truly it has been one continual struggle for the dear old flag and the preservation of our Union. Did you receive my last few lines telling you that a fight was going on? One week ago yesterday our army commenced its memorable retreat from in front of Richmond. We have whipped the rebels seven or eight times since we began to retreat. This shows of what material our army is composed. How I wished that you could have seen with what gusto our boys sailed into the rebel vanguard. We scattered them time and again with immense loss. But, although, we have gained so many cheering victories, yet it has been at a sacrifice on our side. Regiments, brigades and divisions are badly cut up.

U. S. Steam Gun Boat Mahaska, July 10, 1862.
Our northern boys have now immortal names and imperishable glory. All praise to the now silenced noble hearts. Grief and sorrow for those poor maimed fellows, who once wounded in their country's cause, were fated to fall into the hands of the ruthless southern soldiery. God ever keep me from again beholding the agonized features of our poor bleeding comrades, as we were compelled to leave them to their fate. One thing is certain, our troops will never forgive the southerners for firing into our sick, whilst they were hobbling and crawling away.

In Camp, Near Alexandria, September 4, 1862.
I have nothing to tell you about except defeat, scenes of blood and almost miraculous preservation from death on my part. Three times have I witnessed our whole army overcome, viz: at Bull Run, on the Peninsula and in the valley of the Shenandoah. Many a time have I been in extreme danger, when it might almost be said that I fairly lived in an atmosphere of shot and shell, yet am I uninjured, and unto God would I give all the praise for His watchful care and protection over me. When last I wrote I had expected to go to Aquia Creek, but instead of doing so we were shipped to Alexandria and had no sooner set foot on shore, than we were immediately sent out to Manassas where the fight was raging. For over a week we have been where the booming of cannon and the whistling of shells have been our music, now we make our final stand for the defence of our Capital and the homes of the beloved north. Here on the verge of the loyal States, two hundred thousand lives stand ready to die for our Union. Three hundred thousand of the foe press onwards—God help the ship, the staunch old ship Union.

Near Antietam Creek, September 18, 1862.
I am going to tell you good exciting news. Yet, while we rejoice at an auspicious event, let us think of noble lives lost, of honorable wounds received for our country's sake. Twice have we whipped the foe within four days. Yesterday occurred one of the greatest battles fought during the war, and that is saying a great deal. At daylight the slaughter commenced, and continued with uninterrupted violence through the day, ending after the shades of night began to fall. Regiment after regiment, brigade after brigade, division after division, corps after corps went up the hill to the fight. Now advancing, now retreating, backwards and forwards all day long. But when the sun hid itself from view, we saw our worn out and powder blackened soldiers upon the crest of the eminence, which had been in possession of the rebel forces at the beginning of the conflict. We are all rejoiced at the success. The enemy's dead strewed the plain in vast numbers, far exceeding our loss. But we have suffered largely in valuable officers, both wounded and slain.
September 21st.—I have spent these three days on top of a high, mountain, from which we can overlook the movements of both armies. It is a most beautiful and romantic position and one in which I have always loved to be placed. The pleasing silence is in such great contrast to the noise and bustle of our army and army movements. You know, dear sister, how I used to love the country: well, I love it still, with all its quiet and beautiful scenery. How I wish that you were by my side on this glorious Sabbath morning, so that we could together look down on the hostile armies. Many a poor fellow is lying in the village below, this day, thinking of the loved ones at home; and 'tis pitiful to see the shadows of death slowly stealing over so many youthful faces, when we consider that there may be wives, mothers and sisters, far away in the loyal North, who on this holy day are praying for the welfare of the absent soldier. It has been said that the heart grows hard and becomes steeled to the continued sight of bloodshed. However true this may be in some cases, it fails in mine, for I cannot get accustomed to such scenes as I have so frequently witnessed.

Hooker's Head Quarters, January 10, 1863.
This is the 10th of January, 1863, and I am just twenty-one years old. Strange how time creeps on. Although so many years have elapsed, yet does my whole life appear as a dream which can easily be recalled. Events of my earliest childhood seem as though they had happened but yesterday. However hard it may be to credit, yet it is the truth that scenes and actions of days spent in the far off regions of Heathendom are still fresh in my memory. I can almost imagine that I am again with father and yourself in the little boat, which propelled by the strong arms of a Chinese boatman, slowly used to transport us across the harbor to the Island of Ko-long-zoo, where I collected shells and sea-weed to add to my stock of playthings. I believe that I owe all my military hankerings to those same shells, for you know how I used to spend hours upon hours in forming my line of battle with buttons and shells. I little thought then that a practical demonstration awaited me. Then again I remember how I, in company with mother and our little brother, used to promenade backwards and forwards on the piazza, which overlooked the water. How that brother and I quarreled over our childish games! Then that sad event flashes up distinctly, when that brother died, and was laid out in his coffin awaiting burial. My fist distinct recollection of the land of Cathay is the saddest, viz: my last look into mother's coffin. Ah, what a loss that was. Many a tear have I shed in secret for the loss of that dear, sainted mother. Ever since I have arrived at man's estate, I cherish these memories of by-gone days, and I think they soften the hardness of a soldier's nature.

Near Falmouth, Va., May 5, 1863.
Some very queer and strange scenes have we passed through within the last seventy-two hours. For three nights I have slept only about two hours, and during the day time we have been under constant fire and excitement. Our brigade is completely worn out. Thus far I have been miraculously preserved. On all sides of me have our brave boys fallen; but not a shot has been designed for me. We charged the enemy's works in rear at Fredericksburg, at half-past seven a. m. on Sunday morning, but were repulsed. At twelve m. [sic] made another terrible charge on their right flank, and carried all the lines of their works. Such a glorious old charge you could scarcely imagine. To be sure many a poor fellow fell, but, we gained the day. What success we have met with on the right, I cannot tell, but am quite confident that the fight is not finished. We expect to pitch over into Fredericksburg again in a day or two—may we be successful. We don't mind wounds or even death itself, if we can only conquer the enemy. They seem to be badly off for provisions. An old woman oflered me a ten dollar U. S. note for a pound of coffee. I did not happen to have it for her.

I suppose you would like to know why we came back from Fredericksburg. I will tell you. After we had captured the fortifications, one single brigade was left to hold the city—the rest of the troops pushing on to form a junction with Hooker on the extreme right. No troops were left in the rebel breastworks, and only our weak, decimated brigade, numbering about two thousand men, to hold the city. Well, everything passedd off quietly during the night. Early in the morning, with the peep of day, a large force of the enemy came rushing into their own works, drove our pickets in, and thought they were going to come right into the town, but not so. Our two thousand rifles were too many for them, and such a hot fire as we poured into them, would have made your eyes stand out. The approach to the town from their works is by a few narrow causeways over a canal, and placing our boys in advantageous positions, we kept them at bay for twenty-four hours, but it was of no use. During the night the enemy were reinforced, and we were forced to retreat across the Rappahannock. I was very sorry that it was so, but what could two thousand men do against eight or ten thousand. Our retreat was orderly, no haste. We did not lose a thing, or leave a wounded man behind.
May 6, 1863.—It storms terribly; a great fight is going on on our right; Hooker is at Lee again; pray that we may be victorious; the roar of cannon and rattle of musketry drown the tumult of the storm. Don't feel anxious about me; I will write as soon after the battle as I can.

Near Falmouth, Va., May 15, 1863.
We are having terribly hot weather for marching, but this I do not mind, for I am so anxious to accomplish something before the rebels have entirely recovered from their last great victory over the Potomac army. Two or three more such victories will be apt to use Gen. Lee's army up. We did just mow the enemy down. We undoubtedly suffered severely, but they must have lost inmensely. If Hooker only keeps at work, and don't let the rebels rest, we may yet expect great things. We can die but once, and if we die in battle for the Union, why, we fall in a glorious cause. I don't think our boys are much demoralized, from what I can see. In ten days the army will be in as good condition to fight as ever, so far as number and feeling is concerned. This last fight makes the thirteenth battle I have been engaged in since the opening of the war. Quite a veteran, am I not ?

Falmouth, Va., May 24, 1863.
Glorious good news has reached us within the past few days, in reference to Grant's operations in the south and west. We hope and pray that the news is true; but there are so many false reports afloat now-a-days, that we hardly know what to think. Here everything remains in statu quo—not a sign of a move. I wish that we could strike a decisive blow soon.

Falmouth, Va., June 6, 1863.
We expect to have another fight pretty soon. Our forces are again across the river. We are expecting to be in Fredericksburg before forty-eight hours more. Our orders were to start at two o'clock this morning, but the order was countermanded. Before I write again, I hope to be able to tell of more glorious deeds accomplished by Union arms and valor. Yon must not be alarmed if you do not hear from me very soon, for in the stir of battle it is difficult to collect one's ideas and time.

Thoroughfare Gap, Va., June 21, 1863.
Here we are, safe and sound, but that is all I am able to tell you; for to what place we are bound, or what we are to accomplish, is more than I can tell, but we hope for the best. I think we are here to cut off the retreat of the rebels when they come from Pennsylvania and Maryland. We have undergone some very severe marches and hard times for our country's cause.

Union Town, June 30, 1863.
Almost worn out from our constant marching, we are at last in a friendly neighborhood, and breathe a good Union atmosphere. You cannot imagine how good we felt to see the people greet us kindly, and freely offer us almost everything they had. The rebels are at Westminster, only seven miles off, and only three miles from the Pennsylvania border. We hope to draw them out in a day or two. The country all through here is beautiful. It seems a pity that it should ever be traveled over by an invading army. I hope we will be able to bag the rebels. As I have said before, do not be alarmed about me. Remember that I am in God's hands, and that the same being who has brought me safely through thus far, can, if He so sees best, preserve me unto the end.

But the last closing tragedy draws near. Our hero, after passing through the toil, hardships and perils of thirteen hard fought battles, appears before us in the bloody field of Gettysburg. Our forces, weary, hungry and exhausted by their long marches under the burning sun, wheeled into ranks to receive the shocks of the rebel artillery. Those memorable three days of July, when heroism and brave endurance won such triumphs, will never be forgotten by a grateful people. On the 2d of July, the valiant Colonel of the regiment was severely wounded, and Lieut. Pohlman was the only field oflicer left during the remainder of the battle. How keenly he felt his responsibility, and how well he discharged his duties, his men relate with passionate pride. How could they falter, when, wherever the peril was greatest,

"There was no braver sight
than his young form, steadfast 'mid shot and shell."

But late in the afternoon of Friday, July 3d, a Minnie ball struck his arm, and frightfully shattered it. He was at once urged to withdraw from the front, but he answered, "No, never while I have a sound arm left to fight with." An hour later his sword arm failed him, and another ball, glancing from his swordhilt, which it shattered, pierced his right wrist, and severed an artery, thus disabling him from service. At this crisis his noble nature shone forth with new lustre. To the soldiers, who would have borne him from the field, now almost won, he said, "Boys, stay in your places. Your country needs every man of you." Thus he left them, but not until he had groped about in his blindness, to recover, if possible, the sword given to him by his adopted mother. Its empty scabbard, battered and blood-stained, with the glorious motto engraved upon it, unmarred: "For God and your country" is now the most cherished relic to her who filled a mother's place to the orphan boy. He reached the camp, having fainted on the way from loss of blood, and was laid by the side of his beloved Colonel. So careful was he of the feelings of his friends in this city, that he withheld his name from the newspaper reporters, lest the tidings of his wounds might shock those who were dear to his heart.

In a characteristic note dictated the following day, after first speaking of their glorions victory, he added, "The usual good fortune which has attended me in thirteen battles of the war, has forsaken me in the fourteenth engagement. I bear honorable wounds in my country's cause." Our hero was tenderly cared for, and under the influence of a home presence, and while hoping soon to welcome a beloved only sister, he seemed to rally; but on the night of the 20th he sank rapidly, and at 11 o'clock in the forenoon, July 21st, his noble spirit went to its reward. His nearest relative says of her patriotic and christian brother: "We could not wish him a prouder record, nor ask for him a worthier death."

'Great God of night!
Accept our sacrifice;
Bid thou our country rise,
The joy of longing eyes,
The home of Right.' "

The following is an extract of a letter written by a dear cousin of the deceased, and publislied in The Princetown Standard:

We found Mary (the sister) in the greatest distress. She felt her loss the more because she was not able to get to her dear brother. The news which first arrived was that Willie's wounds were slight, and that he wanted somebody to come on, so that he could be removed to his home, in Albany. His adopted brother went on immediately, and then he begged for his sister. Three telegraph messages in succession were sent to her, none of which she received. Letters were written on three successive days, each giving particular directions to his sister for her journey, urging her to come on, which all failed to reach her, until after the intelligence arrived that the dear boy's spirit had flown.

I hardly know where to begin to tell you about Willie, but will commence at the time of his first wound.

The Captain of his company (his intimate friend) being mortally wounded, the command devolved upon him. He bravely, at the head of his men, cheered them on, fighting with all his might. At length a shell hit him, shattering his left shoulder and arm, which hung powerless by his side. His men urged him to leave the field, but he said, "Not while I have my sword arm left.'' For an hour, he bravely rushed on to victory, when a Minnie ball penetrated his right wrist, and passed up his arm, shattering his sword in pieces. One of his men wound his handkerchief round the arm, and pushed his ramrod in the wound, to keep it from bleeding. They now proceeded to carry him off the scene of action, but the brave, noble boy said "No, every man is wanted; go back to your post," and notwithstanding all their entreaties, he insisted upon walking. He walked three miles, fainting once by the way. He happily fell among very kind friends, who did everything in their power for his comfort. The reporters came repeatedly, and begged him to have his name put among the wounded. No, he would not, for his wounds were, he thought, slight, and it would needlessly alarm his friends at home, and he expected so soon to be taken to them.

When the Surgeon extracted the bones from his shoulder, not a groan or sigh escaped his lips. The Surgeon asked, "Doesn't that hurt you, Adjutant?" The reply was, "Of course, a little." I know he must have used all his fortitude so that his dear sister might not hear how he suffered. On Monday, the day before he died, he longed so for his sister. He did not expect to die, neither had those about him the least idea that he was so near his end. He had a long talk with his adopted brother, until the fever flushed his face, when he was requested to desist. He then dropped asleep, when his wound commenced sloughing, as it is termed. It means that a second bleeding takes place, an outward and inward hemorrhage, and the dear boy slept away his life. He was called by name several times, but he took no notice. The steward stooped down and shouted in his ear, "Adjutant." He opened his eyes for a moment and then closed them again. A short time before he died he raised his head, gave the order "Cease firing," dropped it again, and in few moments expired. He was not the only one who died on that day. There were over one hundred and fifty who were wounded in the same battle, and whose wounds were all, as they thought, getting along well, but just between two and three o'clock the barometer fell, and immediately the wounds of the more than one hundred and fifty commenced sloughing, and every one died. It is said that such a thing has never been known before.

The body was embalmed and sent to Albany, and reached Mrs. McClure's on Saturday evening. It was a comfort to have the precious remains at home, but oh, how unlike Willie! The funeral services were very interesting. Dr. Sprague opened with a prayer. Mr, Nevius followed with a touching address, and Dr. Clark, of whose church W. was a member, closed with prayer and the benediction.

Mr. Nevius referred to his deep attachment to the father (with whom he was formerly associated in the missionary work in China) and of that love having been transferred to the son. It was truly a comforting address. A flag was thrown over the foot of the coffin with a broken scabbard upon it. At the head, a beautiful wreath of flowers was placed.

His cousin, Joseph Scudder, did not receive the news in time to attend the funeral. He came in the evening. He said if he had known Willie was dangerously wounded, he would have come on immediately. He referred to a satisfactory conversation he had with W. after his visit home, in February, on his way to join his regiment. He went from home to Governor's Island. Chaplain Joseph Scudder is now stationed at Governor's Island, and was formerly Chaplain of the Fifty-ninth New York State Militia, with which Lieutenant Pohlman was connected at the time of his death. Mr. Scudder remarked that as they parted, he said, "Willie, live for Jesus." He answered, "Yes, I will." Mr. S. says that he has not the least doubt that the precious one is now happy, and he is as perfectly assured of this as if he had been with him at the last, and heard from his own mouth that he was going to Jesus.

The following tribute to our departed hero has been received from a college classmate:

My acquaintance with William Pohlman began September, 1859, at which time we entered the Freshmen's class of Rutger's college at New Brunswick, N. J. We soon became well acquainted, and our acquaintance rapidly grew into a strong friendship, which continued until he left the college in the spring of 1861.

He was, in many respects, a remarkable young man. The first prominent characteristic that one would notice in him was his sprightliness and vivacity. He was very quick in his movements, and all his actions showed that he possessed an energy that might be quite irresistible. His continual good nature made him a most pleasant companion, and this alone won for him many friends. He was always ready for fun; was notorious in his class for his perpetual good humor and pleasant wit; and in all college sports, none was more eagerly sought or better fitted to take the lead than Pohlman.

Combined with this natural buoyancy of spirit and activity of body, was a natural quickness of mind, which made study no real task for him. His power of quickly grasping and thoroughly comprehending a subject, was indeed wonderful in one so young. For him a few moments would be sufficient in which to acquire a perfect knowledge of a lesson, which it would take most of his classmates an hour to learn, and his recitations were almost invariably perfect. This quickness of mind, combined with a most excellent memory, an ambitious zeal and an indomitable perseverance, soon ranked him among the best in his class, and we all looked upon William H. Poiilman as one who, if spared, would make his mark in the world.

But these are intellectual graces. There are also graces of the soul which as far outshine the intellectual, as the noonday sun excels in brightness and glory the midnight star. These spiritual graces Pohlman possessed in an eminent degree. His whole walk and conversation evidenced true piety of heart. As he entered upon his college course with the design of preparing for the ministry, his whole energies while in college, were bent towards the attainment of that object. He was always in his place at the college prayer meeting on Friday afternoons, and his fervent prayers and earnest exhortations often warmed our hearts and encouraged us to renewed diligence in the Master's service. It may be proper also to state here, that as he contemplated entering upon the foreign missionary work, he was one of a faithful few who sustained a missionary prayer meeting. This little band often met in his own room, and on those occasions fervent prayers were offered to God in behalf of the missionary cause.

A prominent and well known characteristic was his love of everything that was honorable and manly. He despised meanness, in any shape or form, and nothing would so rouse his indignation and scorn as the commission, by any one, of a cowardly and ungentlemanly act. He was generous to a fault, always ready to use any means in his power to accommodate a friend, or relieve any one in distress.

Such were some of the characteristics of William H. Pohlman. Every one who knew him could not but love him, and all saw before him a bright career of usefulness, when he should enter upon the labors of the minister of Christ. But God, in his providence, ordered otherwise. He had scarcely passed through two years of his collegiate course, when the trumpet of war sounded through the land. Traitors were aiming deadly blows at the life of the Nation. Men were needed to punish them, and save our Government from a horrible death, and Pohlman was the firsl, among a number of others in Rutger's College, to shoulder his musket and rush to the field of battle. Friends and relatives expostulated, entreated him not to go, but in vain. He saw his duty before him, and that duty must be performed. He fought bravely. For two long years he patiently and patriotically endured all the toils and privations of a soldier's life, when, at the battle of Gettysburg, July, 1863, he received the wound which soon after caused his death.

Thus terminated the glorious career of one of Rutger's noblest sons; the devoted Christian student; the patriotic Christian soldier. God's ways are mysterious; but He doeth all things well. Yet who would say that it were doubting God's goodness, as we stand by that silent grave, to wish that William H. Pohlman might have lived to become, what he bade fair to be, a faithful servant of Christ.

The following account of the conversion, and Christian character of Mr. Pohlman, has been furnished by an esteemed fellow citizen, Mr. Anthony:

Albany, March 7, 1866.
Mrs. J. McClure:
Madam—In compliance with your request that I would furnish you with the incidents relating to the conversion and the earlier Christian life of your nephew and my former pupil, William H. Pohlman, I would present the following statement:

I think it was in the autumn of 1853, that, near the close of the day, I was in company with George Blake, (afterwards Sergeant Blake, Eighteeth Regiment New York Volunteers,) when he expressed a desire to converse on the subject of religion. Gladly accepting the proposition, I induced him to lead the conversation. This was done with a view of eliciting the train of thought that was evidently passing through his mind, and with the hope of bringing our discourse to a profitable issue. The result was what had been anticipated. He left me, impressed with the necessity of immediate action. It was not long that I was obliged to wait for the joyful announcement that he had yielded to the claims of his Saviour.

Soon after this, knowing that your nephew was very intimate with George, I took occasion one day to inform him of what his friend had done, and how he had been blessed; reminding him that the way of salvation was no less open to him, than to the one who had already begun to walk in it. He gave me encouragement to believe that he would think seriously upon what had been said. He was faithful to his promise, and in a few days he too brought me the pleasing intelligence that he had accepted Christ as his personal Saviour, and was resolved henceforth to live to His honor and glory. This interview, as well as the preceding one, was marked by perfect calmness on both sides. My own mind was entirely free from excitement, and I wished that his should be so too. There is every reason to believe that it was so. He had evidently been doing what he had for a long time felt it his duty to do. His friend George was soon made acquainted with the stand that he had taken; and it was resolved that we three should institute a private prayer meeting. In a short time we had an addition of one or two more; and the systematic study of the Bible was superadded to the exercise of prayer. Many a pleasant and profitable hour was spent in this way; and William was never willingly absent from our little circle. Here I had an excellent opportunity of studying the inner spiritual life of every member of my class; while the daily walk of each one, as manifested in the school room, could easily be compared with the standard which a profession of religion so plainly indicates. With such means before me of judging, I can say, most emphatically, that if he, of whom I write, was not a servant of Christ, I have no means of knowing who is so. I know of no act in his life, while he remained under my charge, that was inconsistent with, while I can remember many things that served to adorn, a Christian profession.

In the year 1858, during the great revival, a most marked interest in religion was manifest among the youth of our city. The .boys' prayer meeting, held at the rooms of the Christian Association, was largely attended, although it occurred at a time usually devoted to play. It was not a rare thing to see in the entrance halls, instruments of boyish sports, now laid aside, that their owners might enjoy an hour of communion wdth God, and of spiritual intercourse with each other. The devotional zeal of those boys on such occasions might profitably be copied by their elders, when, as members of the visible church, they assemble for prayer and praise. Our little gathering, which had continued its meetings for more than a year, had now merged itself in this larger convocation, where William still exhibited the same earnestness of purpose that had characterized his efforts from the very commencement of his religious career. And so it was with him as long as any opportunity was afforded me of observing his course of life. During all these years, nothing occurred, on his part, to modify my opinion of him as an earnest, consistent follower of his Divine Master. How could I doubt that he was so, while I bore in mind His words who said, "By their fruits ye shall know them."

It gives me great pleasure to bear this testimony in favor of one so dear to both of us, so earnest in the great business of life, and whose blessed privilege it was, in his early departure hence, to set a seal, with his own warm blood, to his sense of obligation to our beloved country and our common humanity.

Very truly yours,
Late Principal Albany Classical Institute.

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Debby Masterson

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