Death of Pvt. Ernest Hazlett
A News Clipping
From Phebe CAMPBELL Hoyt's Scrapbook,
Journal, undated, Prob. Sept. 1898
Transcribed by her great-grandson, Wm. Thompson, Mar. 29,
Death of Ernest
On Wednesday morning, E.
H. Hazlett of Nelson, received the following ominous and
startling telegram: "Your son died this morning at 3 a.m. Shall
we send the remains home?" Signed Clark, surgeon, and dated
Chickamauga Park, August 30, 1898.
Ernest H. Hazlett, son of Mr. and Mrs. E. H.
Hazlett, of Nelson, was a young man well known in the Cowanesque
valley and was born in Nelson twenty-six years ago on the 30th
of June last.
When it was known that Capt. Gambell of
Wellsboro, was raising a company of men to defend the honor of
our nation he was one of the first to enroll, successfully
passed the medical examination and was mustered into the service
as a private in Co. K, 5th Regt., Pa. Vols. The company was
immediately ordered to report at Chickamauga Park and in the
later part of July, arrived at that pest-hole of our otherwise
glorious nation. What has followed has become a matter of
history. Our sons and brothers are being sent home dead or
physical wrecks and all because of the incompetency, ignorance
and carelessness of men who have precious lives in their charge.
The country has fixed the responsibility. The
people and the press of the land lay the condition of affairs
where it belongs, to the secretary of war and the
adjutant-general. Secretary Alger says that the men receive as
good fare as he himself. Alger stops at the Fifth Avenue Hotel
in New York while visiting Camp Wikoff, while the men are
complaining of their hard tack, beans, and putrid meat. Mr.
McKinley is commander-in-chief of the army and the people look
anxiously to him to tell us who is right, Alger or the soldiers.
Why were not these men sent home at the
signing of the protocol on furloughs, instead of being allowed
to remain in these disease-breeding camps? The answer to this
question is easy: The officers desired to remain and show their
uniforms to admiring excursionists, even at the expense of the
lives of their men.
A full account of Pvt. Hazlett's funeral and
burial will appear in next week's [Elkland]
At a meeting of the citizens held in Blanchard's
furniture rooms on Wednesday evening, the following resolutions
Whereas, God in his mysterious Providence has
seen fit to remove from our midst our esteemed fellow townsman,
Ernest H. Hazlett, a private in Co. K, 5th Regt, Pa. Vols., and
Whereas, We deeply appreciate his services as
a representative of our town in upholding the glory of our
peerless flag and offering to his country the greatest sacrifice
that man can give, his life, and truly "greater love hath no
man:" therefore be it
Resolved, That we, a committee appointed at a
meeting of the citizens on Nelson, held on Wednesday evening,
August 31, 1898, realizing the loss the community has sustained
in his untimely death, take this manner of expressing our grief,
and to the family of the bereaved we extend our kindest sympathy
and commend them to the care of Him who "doeth all things well;"
And be it further
Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be
sent to two or more local papers for publication, and a copy
suitably engrossed be presented to the parents of the deceased.
W. H. STEVENS, M.D.
E. L. MUDGE
From a contemporary perspective, it seems curious that the
committee felt that publishing their resolution in the
and the Mansfield Advertizer
or the Wellsboro Agitator,
was an effective way to address the Ernest's tragic death.
The resolution does adequately convey the community's
sympathy to the parents. But aside from that, what are they
trying to accomplish? What result do they expect or hope to
accomplish? They are not demanding an inquiry, or that
any action be taken. And they are not taking their complaint
to their congressman, US senators, president, secretary of
war, or military officials --- they are just going on record
as being upset about what happened to their relative or
neighbor. The reporter expressed much more indignation. -wbt]
Copyright 2012 by Wm. Thompson. Commercial use
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