After witnessing the early part of the Battle of Gettysburg from her house in Gettysburg and then after being sent to a “safer” place at the foot of Little Round Top, Tillie assisted doctors in caring for the wounded at Jacob Weikert’s farm. The day after the battlle ended was “Independence Day”. Tillie recalls the day.
It was the Fourth of July, and never has the cheering on that anniversary been more hearty and welcome than it was in 1863.
On the summits, in the valleys, everywhere we heard the soldiers hurrahing for the victory that had been won. The troops on our right, at Culp’s Hill, caught up the joyous sound as it came rolling on from the Round Tops on our left, and soon the whole line of blue, rejoiced in the results achieved. Many a dying hero’s last breath, carried a thanksgiving and praise to Him, who had watched over, and directed the thoughts and movements of the last three days. Most befitting was it, that on the fourth of July, an overruling and allwise Providence should again declare this people, free and independent of the tyranny upheld by an enemy. Again had our natal day been recognized and honored by vouchsafing a new and purified existence to our nation, whose very life had been trembling on the brink of destruction, during this terrible ordeal.
We were all glad that the storm had passed, and that victory was perched upon our banners.
But oh! the horror and desolation that remained. The general destruction, the suffering, the dead, the homes that nevermore would be cheered, the heart-broken widows, the innocent and helpless orphans! Only those who have seen these things, can ever realize what they mean……..
For a number of days after the battle, amputating, nursing and cooking continued on the premises, after which the wounded were removed to the different corps’ hospitals. During this time many a brave and noble spirit went from its tenement, and passed to the great beyond. This is what it meant, when they silently carried out a closed rough box, placed it upon a wagon and drove away.
Matilda “Tillie” Pierce Alleman. “At Gettysburg, or, What a Girl Saw and Heard of the Battle”