Americans in the Egyptian Army
January 28, 2010 5:25 AM   Subscribe

In the wake of the Civil War, fifty Americans (audio alert), Union and Confederates both, accepted commissions in the Egyptian army. One of the most notable was William Wing Loring who wrote A Confederate Soldier in Egypt about his experiences.
posted by maurice (5 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
Cool as hell.
posted by absalom at 6:02 AM on January 28, 2010

James Morris Morgan provided this account of his voyage to Egypt in 1870:
"...We hurried on board of an Inman Line steamer, the City of Washington. For those days the liner was a very fine and large ship of nearly four thousand tons. She was full ship rigged and very fast. It took us only twelve days to make the passage to Liverpool, in which city we spent three hours waiting for a train for London. In London we lingered for an hour before starting for Paris. In Paris we stayed four hours and then took a train for Brindisi, Italy. We crossed Mont Cenis on a railroad built with three lines of rails, the centre rail being cogged, and a cog wheel on our engine fitted into the cogs and thus pulled us up the steep inclines. (My great-uncle, Dr. John Morgan, has left an account in his journal of how he crossed the same mountain in 1763 on muleback for part of the way and was carried in a sedan chair the rest.) We stopped in Brindisi for only five hours while waiting for the Austrian mail steamer from Trieste bound for Alexandria, Egypt, where we arrived seventeen days from the time we left New York."

Tight connections!

Nice post, thanks.
posted by Floydd at 6:34 AM on January 28, 2010

Fascinating stuff, thanks.
posted by marxchivist at 6:51 AM on January 28, 2010

Late Colonel in U.S. Army, Major-General in the Confederate Service,
and FĂ©reek Pacha and General in the Army of the Khedive of Egypt.

It was a lateral career move, but what a story to tell the grandkids:

It now becomes a painful duty to speak of one most unfortunate in his sufferings and sad fate. I know the story will appeal to the heart wherever human sympathy exists. Major Dorholtz had seen service in Switzerland, where he was born, and was in the Sicilian army for a short time... The major, as I have stated, when the enemy's cavalry was near him, had dismounted to adjust his bridle. Losing his spectacles, and having a defective vision, he did not see his imminent peril. Though told to mount and take the chance of his horse following, he did not do so, and was soon pierced through the lower part of his face with a lance, which tore the flesh from his entire chin leaving it hanging merely by a shred. The side of his head was cut to the bone just above the ear by a sword slash. His captors, taking his entire clothing, carried him, naked and bound, into their camp. The agony that this officer suffered in the hands of these savages I have not the heart to describe. Getting his hands loose, he bound up his bleeding head and held the reeking flesh to his chin until he could obtain a bandage with which to bind it still more closely. Starved and without clothing, exposed to the burning sun by day and the frightful cold by night, he became a blister and a running sore. His sufferings must have moved some savage heart, as in the case of Dr. Johnson, to spare his life. Unlike him, however, he suffered horribly nearly his entire time with the enemy. During this time he prayed to the Almighty for death as a release from his excruciating agony. After forty-five days of mental and bodily suffering he was ordered to the tent of the Egyptian commissioners who had come to arrange for a delivery of the prisoners....
posted by three blind mice at 6:53 AM on January 28, 2010

This is really good stuff and I guess I will have to tell my boss that my project won't be completed today. Something came up, yeah that's it.
posted by govtdrone at 7:56 AM on January 28, 2010

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