"I have called you friends, for all things that
I have of the FATHER I have made known unto you

With Chapter Twenty-four of Book First closed the last devachanic experience of a personal life history, a history enacted over one hundred and twenty centuries ago. It has its good and its bad phases. Under the social rules and customs of a people whom the modern world regarded as pure myth until after the cruise of the "Challenger" and the "Dolphin," there existed a personality whom those who have followed this history thus far know by the name of "Zailm," an Atlantean cognomen not less euphonious than its significance is interesting, viz: "I live to love."

According to his narration, Zailm's youth was that of an obscure mountaineer. He was possessed of an overmastering ambition to make his name blaze among those of the noble of earth. He succeeded in his ambition, for his name, his wealth, his social and political position became of the highest of the aristocracy of a proud and, in myriad ways, marvelous people. If he failed in one particular, if his moral life became awry, his record in other respects was most commendable. For the one failure he paid dearly, and, if you credit his own apprehensions, the payment would not be complete for many along, long year after you would have lain

"--Down with the patriarchs of the infant world--
With kings, the powerful of the earth--the wise, the good,
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past"

You have a view of Zailm, that boy so obscure, that man so celebrated throughout a land not paralleled to-day, nor ever

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matched since old ocean rolled over it and the sun saw it no more in all his proud course.

From the perusal of that record I ask you to turn to the history of another personality, that of Walter Pierson, my own humble self. If the Poseida Zailm was proud to declare himself a Poseida, I am equally proud to say, "I am an American citizen!"


While I was still so young as to be unable to understand anything concerning my parents' death, except the agony of being left alone, I was orphaned by the fell stroke of an epidemic. I cried in my childishness, and begged to be allowed to see my papa and mamma, nor could I comprehend the statement, "They are dead and gone."

My orphaned boyhood was passed under circumstances of such sharp contrast to those years of my babyhood which knew parental kindness, that my inherent tendency to rove grew stronger, until at twelve years of age I became a cabin-boy on board ship, running away to accomplish my ambition. For many years thereafter I realized that actual hardship was an unforeseen part of the dream of travel and of sailor life; but its toil and trouble had to be endured.

My ability, willingness and honesty in service told in my favor so well, that at eighteen years of age I found myself first mate on a splendid British merchantman. With this advantageous position, intervals in which to study such books as tie captain, an educated man, had on shipboard, were mine, and I used the opportunity to excellent advantage, reciting my lessons to the captain, who took much interest in me. An invention for which many a seafarer has been grateful, and to which many a man whose life has, been spent on the ocean wave has owed continuation of that life, paid me such a handsome sum, in royalties, that ere I was of age I had no small fortune, which by wise investment soon gave me a sum to put in the

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bank with the assurance of a fair support for life. I did not long continue in marine service after my money began to accumulate, but left sea life to enjoy travel on terra firma. I had seen the chief ports of every land, and now was bent upon wing the interior of my own country.

In the gold placers of California, I added immense sums to my fortune during the years 1865-6, where I drifted after my discharge from the Army of the Cumberland, having served two years in that, famous corps during the War of the secession.

I gloried in the absence of two fingers, lost by a vicious fragment of shell at the battle of Missionary Ridge. I wonder if any reader remembers the morning of the 25th of November, 1863?

"All night the flash of rifles from the outposts had gleamed through the fog; and when day dawned it had not yet been determined whether the enemy had been forced from his almost unassailable position on the mountain. The morning was clear. All eyes in the Union bivouacs were strained towards the summit. Gradually the east purpled with strengthening light, and just as the sun rose, a squad of men walked out on the rock overhanging the precipice. Then, in full view of the watching tens of thousands, they unfurled 'Old Glory.' Amid thunderous cheers an army of veterans looked long through its tears at the Stars and Stripes, mute announcement of victory."

At the close of this saddest of wan, because the hands of fathers against sons and of brothers against brothers were raised, I presently found myself in the city of my birth, Washington, D. C.



Army of the Cumberland

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The Army of the Cumberland was one of the principal Union armies in the Western Theater during the American Civil War, formerly known as the Army of the Ohio.


The origin of the Army of the Cumberland dates back to the creation of the Army of the Ohio in November, 1861, under the command of Brigadier General Robert Anderson. The army fought under the name Army of the Ohio until Major General William S. Rosecrans assumed command of the army and the Department of the Cumberland and changed the name of the combined entity to the Army of the Cumberland. When Rosecrans assumed command, the army and the XIV Corps were the same unit, divided into three wings commanded by Alexander McCook (Right Wing), George H. Thomas (Center), and Thomas L. Crittenden (Left).

The army's first significant combat was at the Battle of Stones River. After the battle the army and XIV Corps were separated. The former Center wing became the XIV Corps, the Right wing became the XX Corps, and the Left wing became the XXI Corps. Rosecrans still retained command of the army. He next led it through the Tullahoma Campaign and at the Battle of Chickamauga, after which the army became besieged at Chattanooga. Major General Ulysses S. Grant arrived at Chattanooga to assume command of the Army of the Cumberland, Army of the Tennessee, and reinforcements from the Army of the Potomac. Rosecrans had been a popular and respected commander, but due to his defeat at Chickamauga and inability to lift the Confederate siege, Grant chose to replace him with George H. Thomas on October 28, 1863.

At the Battle of Chattanooga, Grant had been leery of using the Army of the Cumberland in the main fighting, fearing their morale to be too low after the defeat at Chickamauga. Instead, he used the veterans from the Army of the Potomac, proud of their recent victory at the Battle of Gettysburg, to take Lookout Mountain and planned to use the troops from the Army of the Tennessee, also recent victors at the Siege of Vicksburg, to attack the Confederate right flank on Missionary Ridge. The Army of the Cumberland was given the minor task of seizing the rifle pits at the base of Missionary Ridge. However, once they achieved their objective, four divisions (one led by Philip H. Sheridan) stormed up the ridge and routed the Confederate center. When Grant angrily asked who had ordered those troops up the ridge both Thomas and Gordon Granger, a corps commander in the army, responded they did not know. Thomas then replied "Once those boys get started, all hell can't stop 'em."

After Chattanooga, Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman assumed command of all Union armies in the West and created an army group of the Army of the Cumberland, the Army of the Tennessee, and the Army of the Ohio and marched towards Atlanta. In September Atlanta fell to Sherman's army group. When Confederate General John B. Hood moved north from Atlanta, Sherman chose not to follow him and instead dispatched the Army of the Cumberland and the Army of the Ohio after him. Thomas finally met Hood at the Battle of Nashville and crushed him, thus bringing to an end any significant military actions for the Army of the Cumberland. It participated in the Grand Review in Washington, D.C., before President Andrew Johnson, in 1865.



Civil War Pension Index: General Index to Pension Files, 1861-1934


Walter C. Pierson



American Civil War Soldiers


Walter Pierson



Civil War Service Records


Walter Pierson


Civil War Service Records


Walter C. Pierson


Civil War Service Records


Walter H. Pierson





Notice: Their was a Walter Pierson who fought for the Army of Ohio which changed its name later to Army of the Cumberland.