Diary of Alfred Burton Welch

June 16th-99

Sick list. Rounded up 175 niggers –and in the evening after telling they must go back and get their guns, they were marched out south to first trenches and let go. But they said that if they went back to the ins. lines, they would be beheaded, and would not go. So our men had to fire over their heads, but even then, they would not go. They tho’t they were going to be executed, and of all pitiful sights. It was awful to hear them cry and scream and pray. They said they would rather be shot by us than killed with bolos, and followed us in. So the Major let them stay, but we never go out without a rifle.