Wounded Union Soldiers in a Fredericksburg yard, May 1864. All but one of these men have been wounded in the leg. Most of the wounded soldiers brought to Fredericksburg survived?
?But some did not. Hundreds of men died in the hospitals here during May and June 1864. Private Kronenberger's headboard may be among the long row of graves visible behind this burial party.
"?I am lying in this place with a wound in my right leg, below the knee. I am in good spirits and the Drs. say my wound isn't dangerous, so I hope you won't worry about me? We haven't a pleasant hospital, but good as we can expect under the circumstances." —Pvt. Fred Kronenberger (2d N.J.) to his parents, May 17, 1864—five days before his death in a Fredericksburg hospital.
After the December 13, 1862 battle, Fredericksburg suffered yet another form of horror: thousands of wounded Union soldiers crowded the city. For several days Clara Barton, the future founder of the American Red Cross, tended to patients in the shell-torn Presbyterian Church across the street from you.
In May 1864, ambulances again clogged the city's streets. Virtually every public building became a hospital, filled with wounded soldiers from the battles of the Wilderness and Spotsylvania. By today's standards, conditions were gruesome; mortality rates were high.