Bayonet disagreement: 2010 vs 1864

“The 1870 Surgeon General’s Medical and Surgical History of the War of Rebellion listed the types of wounds treated in Union hospitals. Because the report listed fewer than 1,000 bayonet wounds, a number of historians then and since concluded that soldiers rarely fought with the bayonet and it hadn’t been of much use as a combat weapon….

“Craig L. Barry in his [2010] article “Mythbuster: The Bayonet” for Civil War News, believes the Surgeon General’s report can be read to mean that bayonet wounds were more often fatal. Therefore, soldiers with bayonet wounds never made it to a doctor…”

A hundred and forty-six years before, the 13th’s surgeon, Simon Baruch, disagreed with Barry. Writing in the July 1864 edition of the Confederate States Medical and Surgical Journal he concluded: “…bayonet wounds are almost harmless when compared to the ploughed tracks which the terrible minie [bullet] bores through the tissues….A bayonet wound almost invariably heals…”

Via Poore Boys In Gray.

About Dick Stanley

Retired Texas daily newspaperman
This entry was posted in Humpreys Mississippi Brigade, Simon Baruch and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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