The following is from Historic Fredericksburg: The Story of an Old Town by John T. Goolrick, published in 1922, describing events of Christmas Eve 1862, after the horrific Battle of Fredericksburg of December 11-13, 1862.
"We spoke of Christmas Eve , when in the long lines of the two camps great fires beamed, voices rose in songs and hymns, and bands played. Late in the evening when dusk had settled, a band near Brompton broke out defiantly into 'Dixie,' and from the Washington Farm a big band roared out 'The Battle Hymn [of the Republic]'. There was a pause and then, almost simultaneously, they began 'Home, Sweet Home,' and catching the time played it through together. When it was done, up from the camps of these boys who were to kill and be killed, who were to die in misery on many a sodden field, rose a wild cheer."