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Gen. Andrew Luck's final dispatch following the campaign in New England

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The proud hero of Indianapolis sends his final battlefield dispatch.

Dearest Abigail,

Our campaign has come to end, and I shall be home soon, weary and bloodied but alive. That is the best news I can offer. It is nothing to take for granted even amid the weight of such disappointment and sadness.

We are defeated but not broken.

Salute these brave lads. Limp and lame, we will march through the gates of the city with heads held high. Nothing I might say in tribute to these boys can adequately express how proud I am of each man and our collective effort.

Misery engulfs both sides when the rain falls like it did on the field this day, making purchase difficult for both the boots and hands. In marches another opposing column most foul, dysentery and the consumption. It is hard to fight indeed when a man is leaking from both ends. The New Englanders are most accustomed to the weather in this miserable cold marshes that seem forever dampened by the elements.

One of these so-called Patriots was most unforgettable. My counterpart, a wily veteran called Touchdown Tom by his men, was magnificent. He commands a formation with the will of Zeus.

Coming into the fight we had been warned and prepared accordingly to stop the Pole -- grotesque but friendly, his smile conceals the instinct of a killer. Such power in his hips! He oft leads with his old Nebuchadnezzar, and oh, how the lasses 'round these parts speak of him. Our defenses were able to contain him better than most, but no wall can withstand such a relentless barrage.

After hostilities ended, we retired to our quarters where we received a most unusual visit from the Hon. Mr. Irsay. Such a strange case he is, from the rather queer patterns on his shirts (made in Los Angeles of all places by one Edward Hardy, Esq.) to the unusual staccato of his voice. Tears filled his eyes and he wobbled his way onto a stool to deliver a garbled message to the lads.

Try as I might, I cannot recount what Mr. Irsay said because I'm afraid the men and I were unable to interpret most of it. We fear he may have broken into the laudanum well before the battle concluded. He later disappeared with an odd twinkle in his eye. One of the adjuncts later claimed to have heard him sobbing whilst in consort with a dollymop that followed our cavalcade to this place.

The Alabaman deserted us. We hadn't plans for using him, even with our ranks desperate for reinforcements. He might find the stockade a more welcoming place the humble streets of Indianapolis once news of this travels. And my men shant let him forget.

War does strange things to a man. I fear that my language was not very becoming of a gentleman. Heated moments, innumerable hits and enemies bent on destroying us accrue with a weight too heavy even for Atlas himself. And we are but men. We are still quick to acknowledge the humanity of our enemies with a well-placed pat on the fanny and the occasional complement on their fine work sacking me.

I did receive a promotion for our efforts on this trip. But another star cannot console the pain of such loss. I am unable to turn it down, lest I resign my commission entirely, so I begrudgingly accepted it.

What I struggle with most is the fact that many of our own men will not make the trip home with us. Many more will not muster with this brigade when next we gather arms. I shall never forget them for as long as I live.

With my deepest, fondest sentiment,

Maj. Gen. Andrew Luck