Something for the weekend. Virginia’s Bloody Soil sung by Tennessee Ernie Ford. One hundred and fifty years ago the Battle of the Wilderness was to be fought in two days, the opening act in Grant’s Overland Campaign which would see 55,000 Union casualties and 33,000 Confederate casualties in under two months. By the end of the campaign there were cries of “Grant the Butcher” throughout the North, the price of gold had doubled and Lincoln seemed destined for defeat in the fall. However, Petersburg, the rail nexus that supplied Richmond from the south, was under siege by the Army of the Potomac, and Grant could fully replace his casualties while Lee could not. A very grim war was about to get a lot grimmer a century and a half ago as it remorselessly ground towards its conclusion.
The song is a moving post-war tribute to Captain Dennis Edwin Barnes, Company C, 93rd New York. He raised the company and led it throughout the War, until he was killed in action at The Wilderness on May 6, 1864. He was 26 or 27 at the time of his death. Just one of the many fallen heroes we owe our United States to.