I thought it was interesting, and it seemed as if both sides of the discussion were respectful of each others opinions and feelings - something that woefully seems absent in much of the news we see today. It was interesting to read about searching for "couchant" in the digital search for Mr Douglas letter. Apparently couchant was an off used adjective by Mr Douglas
I have not spent a lot of time in digital searches of digitized newspapers from the 19th century, but in transcribing some letters of my great great uncle who fought with the 80th Indiana, I found an article in an Evansville Indiana newspaper detailing how desparate my specific ancestor, and members of his unit, were in Kentucky - so desperate for drinking water they literally "chased hogs out of hog wallows to get their drinking water".
Indiana and other midwestern farm kids readily know what a hog wallow is - it is not just a puddle a hog walked through. but a mud bog a hog has spent hours soaking in. You really would have to be desparate to drink such swill, and would likely suffer a great deal over the next few days for it. I mention this not for its graphic quality, but to demonstrate how specific newspaper articles could be when written by local people, about local people, well known to their readers,
That's so graphic it is hard to imagine, and not a fact I have ever read in a history book, or even a history novel. It speaks to the hardships endured by Union soldiers during the Civil War, where disease was often a more dangerous foe than even the Confederate Army.
There is still much to be found in digitized old newpapers, as the historians recently demonstrated once again.