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For forty years, Charles Whilden lived a life most noteworthy for a series of near misses. Repeatedly turned down for service in the Confederate Army, he did not enlist until the desperate days when anyone capable of locomotion was brought in to fill the ranks. He was subsequently plunged into the very regiment destined to see the worst of Grant's brutal spring 1864 campaign. But Whilden would go on to discover a courage within that was prefigured by none of his earlier failures.