Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sarah Collins

In the town of Lake Mills, Wisconsin lived a devoted siblings, orphans Sarah Collins and her brother Mason. When the war broke out, Mason made up his mind to enlist, and his courageous 16 year old sister decided to do the same. She was a robust girl with the bloom of roses upon her cheeks, and could easily have borne the hardships incident to a soldier’s life. Won over by her persistence, her brother mason aided and abetted the deception; her tresses were cut short, she put on man’s apparel, and endeavored to accustom herself to her strange garb. She accompanied her brother to the rendezvous of the company, and notwithstanding her soldier-like appearance and air of masculinity, her sex was detected—it is stated, by her feminine manner of putting on her shoes and stockings. So poor Sarah, with tears in her eyes, disappointed at the failure of her efforts to become a soldier, was obliged to return to her home, while her brother left for the front without her. (Ref. Wisconsin Women in the War Between the States by Ethel Alice Hurn.)

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