Somehow amid all the hubbub the band of Hudson’s 14th U.S. [Inf.] never received the order to return to depot, remaining with the army long after first blood had been drawn. The musicians were seasoned campaigners by now and had endured as much as their comrades of the line, never losing sight of their primary business of making music:
When [Band Leader] Adkins came back from his visit to New London, he brought some music from the Opera of Faust, then quite new, and I well remember the strong impression it made on me by its great beauty and originality. The band was now so reduced in numbers that it was not easy to play well, and the First Cavalry band was in about the same plight, but had members who played the parts we lacked; so we played together, making a very good band.Adkins’ youthful charges eagerly absorbed the rudiments of Gounod’s popular score, the words of the “Soldiers’ Chorus” ringing hauntingly close to home:
Hail to the heroes of long ago,So add Gounod's "Faust" to your Civil War songbooks. Thanks, Tim.
Men who courageously met the foe.
We fought as you for the cause of right,
Our spirit is high, our honor is bright.
For you, dear native land,
Let our banner fly,
At your call and command,
We will gladly die.