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Title: The Blue and The Gray - Or, The Civil War as Seen by a Boy
Author: White, A. R.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "The Blue and The Gray - Or, The Civil War as Seen by a Boy" ***

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THE BLUE AND THE GRAY

OR,

THE CIVIL WAR

AS SEEN BY A BOY

A Story of Patriotism and Adventure in Our War for the Union

By A. R. White

With Over 150 War Photographs And Original Drawings

Illustrated by Frank Beard

`"We live for freedom; let us clasp each other by the hand;

`In love and unity abide, a firm, unbroken band;

`We cannot live divided--the Union is secure!

`God grant that while men live and love, this nation may endure."

--DR. FRED A. PALMER,

[Illustration: 0001]

[Illustration: 0008]

[Illustration: 0011]

[Illustration: 0013]

[Illustration: 0014]

1898

BY

K. T. BOLAND.

TO THE SONS AND THE DAUGHTERS OF THE VETERANS OF THE CIVIL WAR;

TO THOSE WHO FOUGHT ITS BATTLES AND LIVED TO INSTIL ITS LESSONS OF
PATRIOTISM IN THE HEARTS OF THEIR CHILDREN; TO THOSE OF ALL CLIMES WHO
LOVE LIBERTY AND THE NOBLE LAND WHERE FREEDOM HAD HER BIRTH; TO THE
MEMORY OF THE HEROES OF NORTH AND SOUTH WHO FELL IN battle; TO ONE
UNITED COUNTRY,

BOTH NORTH AND SOUTH, FOREVER ONE IN ALL NOBLE AND LOFTY PURPOSES AND
AIMS; TO THE HOMES OF AMERICA; THIS BOOK IS LOVINGLY DEDICATED BY YOURS
SINCERELY

THE AUTHOR.

CALEB B. SMITH, Secretary of Interior.

EDWIN M. STANTON, Secretary of War.

GIDEON WELLES, Secretary of Navy.

WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

EDWARD BATES, Attorney-General.

SIMON P. CHASE, Secretary of Treasury.

MONTGOMERY BLAIR, Postmaster-General.

JUDAH P. BENJAMIN, Attorney-General, War, State.

ROBERT TOOMBS, Secretary of State.

LEROY P. WALKER, Secretary of War.

STEPHEN R. MALLORY, Secretary of the Navy.

CHRISTOPHER G. MEMMINGER. Secretary of Treasury.

JOHN H. REAGAN, Postmaster-General.

[Illustration: 9015]

HE scenes of the war, related by a boy who followed the flag from
the beginning to the end of the war, must carry with them a sense of
accuracy, for they are the recollections of actual service. Those books
which have been written upon the war have, with very few exceptions,
been penned from the standpoint of mature opinions and experiences. In
this work the views and struggles of a boy who went into the army, from
an honest desire to do right, are portrayed. To fight was abhorrent to
his nature, but there was a call for men who were willing to defend the
institutions of his beloved land. And that defense was only possible
through bloodshed and conflict. Tenderly instructed by a loving and
gentle mother, whose early home was in the South, it was almost a
wrenching of her cherished opinions, to give him up to fight against
her kindred. But her boy did not enter the contest with a thought of
conquering his fellow-beings, but as a duty which, though painful,
must be performed. How that dear mother gave him to his country, how he
marched, and fought, and endured hardships, are here set forth in the
colors of truth, for it is a true story.

And that the boys and girls of to-day and their fathers and mothers may
follow the varying fortunes of the boy of our story, thus ushered into
the conflict, with pleasure and profit, is the heartfelt hope of

The Author.



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

Abraham Lincoln and His Cabinet.........................008

A Business Street in Manila.............................389

A Cuban Home............................................371

Allan Pinkerton and Secret Service Officers.............073

An Alexandria Anti-bellum Relic.........................069

Appomattox Court House..................................227

Artillery Going to the Front............................126

Asking for Furlough.....................................095

A Southern Mansion......................................086

A Stolen Child..........................................338

A Sugar Factory in Manila...............................377

Attack on Fredericksburg................................145

Attack on the Mail......................................337

A Typical Colored Boy...................................080

Battle of Bull Run......................................051

Battle of Chancellorsville..............................298

Battle of Malvern Hill-Lee's Attack.....................076

Battle of Phillipi......................................046

Battle of Shiloh........................................194

Bearing Dispatches......................................106

Burning of Chicago......................................328

Burnside Bridge.........................................135

Burying Old Bill........................................142

Camp Douglas............................................159

Camp Fire Songs.........................................117

Camp Life-In the Kitchen................................071

Camp Life on Monday.....................................077

Camp of the Army of the Potomac.........................104

Capitol at Richmond.....................................065

Captain John L Worden Commanding the Monitor............175

Capture of a White Child................................340

Caring for the Dead.....................................055

Charge of a Confederate Cavalry at Trevalian Station... 221

Colonel John S Mosby and a Group of His Raiders.........211

Confederate Soldiers' Monument--Richmond, Va............259

Crossing Big Black River................................191

Custer's Last Charge....................................347

Death of Sitting Bull...................................343

Decoration Day--Gettysburg..............................262

Destruction of Cervera's Fleet..........................385

Devil's Den.............................................208

Dewey's Victorious Battle...............................375

Diamond Joe and Aunt Judah When Young...................082

"Do Any of You Know Peter Hall?"........................123

Drinking from the Same Canteen..........................245

Earthquake at Charleston................................334

Episcopal Church at Alexandria, Va......................088

Fairfax Court House.....................................027

Fall of General James B McPherson near Atlanta..........215

Federal Gunboat--Foraging...............................072

Foraging................................................197

Fort Donelson...........................................161

Fortress Monroe.........................................022

Fort Sumter.............................................019

Franklin Buchanan Commanding the Merrimac...............172

Fremont's Body Guard....................................101

Fun in Camp.............................................119

Garfield Lying in State.................................314

Garfield's Struggle with Death..........................316

General Grant's Birthplace..............................309

General Hancock and Friends.............................153

General Lee on His Favorite Horse.......................295

General Longstreet Wounded by His Own Men...............213

General Meade's Headquarters............................298

General Miles...........................................393

Gettysburg Cemetery Gate................................212

Grant's Tomb-New York...................................258

Grant Breaking a Horse..................................311

Grant Plowing at the Age of 11..........................310

Hailing the Troops......................................064

Harper's Ferry..........................................040

Horticultural Hall, Philadelphia........................323

House Where Lee Surrendered.............................242

Indian Chief............................................349

Indian Dance............................................339

Indian Schools of To-day................................341

Indian Scout............................................350

Interior of Hospital....................................249

In Winter Quarters......................................105

Jefferson Davis and His Cabinet.........................010

Joe Hiding in the Woods.................................083

John Brown's Capture....................................042

Location of the Union Troops--Henry House...............053

Making a Military Road Through a Swamp..................198

Map-Battlefields of the Great Civil War.................147

Map-Loyal and Seceding States...........................052

Map--Showing the Seat of War............................132

Map-The Shenandoah Valley...............................121

McLean House............................................232

National Cemetery at Richmond, Va.......................217

Negro Village in Georgia................................036

Off for the War.........................................018

Old Aunt Judah..........................................081

Old City Hall-New Orleans...............................113

On Board the Hartford-Battle of Mobile Bay..............168

On the March............................................039

Picket Off Duty Forever.................................059

Proposed Monument to Jefferson Davis....................260

Portrait-Alexander H Stephens...........................024

Portrait-Abraham Lincoln................................236

Portrait-Admiral Cervera................................381

Portrait--Benjamin F Butler.............................043

Portrait-Brigadier-General Neal Dow.....................222

Portrait-Buffalo Bill, a Foe of the Indians.............342

Portrait-Belle Boyd.....................................257

Portrait-Charles A Dana.................................133

Portrait-Captain Charles Wilke..........................203

Portrait-Capt Raphael Semmes............................218

Portrait-Commander David D Porter.......................186

Portrait-Christopher Carson.............................351

Portrait-Colonel Charles W Le Gendre....................214

Portrait-Florence Nightingale...........................255

Portrait-Frances Willard................................358

Portrait-General Ambrose E Burnside.....................125

Portrait-General Custer.................................218

Portrait-General George B McClellan.....................047

Portrait-General George E Meade.........................151

Portrait-General Grant..................................163

Portrait-General Grant..................................231

Portrait-General Hooker.................................154

Portrait-General John A Dix.............................025

Portrait-General James Longstreet, C S A................062

Portrait-General Joseph E Johnston......................091

Portrait-General John C Fremont.........................100

Portrait-General John A Logan...........................190

Portrait-General James B McPherson......................196

Portrait-James Abram Garfield...........................315

Portrait-General Lee....................................399

Portrait-General Lew Wallace............................127

Portrait-General Oliver O Howard........................220

Portrait-General P T G Beauregard.......................045

Portrait-General Phil Kearney...........................139

Portrait-General Pickett................................209

Portrait-General Rosecrans..............................136

Portrait-General Stonewall Jackson......................182

Portrait-General Winfield Scott.........................030

Portrait-General Winfield Hancock.......................152

Portrait-General William Tecumseh Sherman...............189

Portrait-General Wade Hampton...........................205

Portrait-General Robert Anderson........................292

Portrait-Harriet B Stowe................................206

Portrait-Henry Ward Beecher.............................021

Portrait-Hobson.........................................383

Portrait-Honorable Charles Sumner.......................087

Portrait-Horace Greeley.................................204

Portrait-James Murray Mason.............................020

Portrait-John Slidell...................................020

Portrait-John Brown.....................................041

Portrait-Jennie Wade....................................209

Portraits (from Photographs)-John M Morgan and Wife.....216

Portrait-John A Winslow.................................219

Portrait-John B Gordon..................................229

Portrait-Jefferson Davis................................230

Portrait-John Wilkes Booth..............................237

Portrait-Lee's Surrender................................239

Portrait-General Montgomery Meigs.......................026

Portrait-Major-General Philip H Sheridan................226

Portrait-Miss Nellie M Taylor...........................251

Portrait-Miss Hattie A Dana.............................252

Portrait-Mrs Mary D Wade................................252

Portrait-Miss Clara Barton..............................253

Portrait-Major-General Fitzhugh Lee, C S A..............094

Portrait-Miss Louisa M Alcott...........................256

Portrait-Mrs Mary Livermore.............................254

Portrait-Miss Margaret Breckenridge.....................256

Portrait-Robert E Lee...................................078

Portrait-Rear Admiral David G Farragut..................186

Portrait-Thomas A Edison................................325

Portrait--Walter Q Gresham..............................223

Portrait--William H Seward..............................320

Portrait-William McKinley...............................356

Portrait-William J Bryan................................356

Pickets Examining Passes................................175

Prayer in Stonewall Jackson's Camp......................183

Prayer at the Funeral of the Maine's Victims............369

Punishment in the Army..................................207

Ralph and the Officer...................................029

Ralph's Good-Bye........................................032

Recruiting Office, New York City Hall Park..............181

Rejoicing...............................................066

Review of Soldiers-Washington...........................241

Ruins of the House......................................085

Sharp Shooters..........................................107

Sheridan Reconnoitering at Five Forks...................224

Siege Gun...............................................020

Soldiers Near Santiago..................................395

The Art Palace, World's Fair............................353

The Battle of Atlanta, Ga...............................097

Stand of Flags..........................................170

The Death of Ellsworth..................................043

The Frigate Cumberland Rammed by the Merrimac...........173

The Sister's Farewell...................................277

Thomas A Edison and His Talking Machine.................326

The Soldier's Farewell..................................180

Troops Going to Manila..................................373

Uncle Ned...............................................149

United States Military Wagon............................035

Warning the Inhabitants.................................332

Wesley Merritt and His Staff............................199

West Point..............................................293

What Caused the War-The Negro and Cotton................057

Wounding of General Stonewall Jackson...................178



INTRODUCTION.

[Illustration: 9021]

OOKS without number have been written upon the Civil War. There will
probably be many more, for it is a fruitful theme. Many of them are
faithful and accurate presentations of the great deeds done in that
war. But whether large or small, they are all imbued with a desire
to perpetuate that love of our country which should become one of the
absorbing passions of the soul. It is a truth worth remembering--that
the man who is a traitor to his country will be a traitor to all the
relations of life.

Our land, young as it is, has received an awful baptism of fire and
blood. It sprang into being amid the anguish of the Revolution, and
before it had achieved a century of freedom, it was plunged into one
of the saddest conflicts which ever desolated a nation--the conflict
between brothers, speaking the same tongue, living under the same
government, and enjoying the same great privileges. But from that
terrible ordeal it has emerged, and we are once more one in aim and
purpose, and have taken our stand among the proudest nations of the
earth, their equal in intelligent achievements, religion and progress.

The little book we offer our young readers is the simple story, told
in plain language, of a boy who was really in the army--one who left a
pleasant home, as did thousands of others, a mere lad, loving his native
land, knowing her need of strong hands and willing hearts to defend her.
His purpose was noble, his mind fresh and ready for impressions; the
scenes of those days are as ineffaceable as though written on marble,
and not even the corroding touch of time can eat them away. So the
present volume has been penned, that the boys and girls who read its
pages may know of the hardships and self-sacrifice of the boys of those
days--how cheerfully they enlisted to uphold the "starry flag," whose
folds shall ever "float o'er the land of the free, and the home of the
brave."

There are other lessons to be taught, as well as that of courage alone;
the lessons of patriotism, of sacrifice, of respect for a government
that offers to all its protection so long as they obey its just and
equitable laws. No one doubts the courage of our boys, but they must
remember that there is a higher quality than mere bravery--regard for
human life, that' it be not destroyed wantonly, a respect for others'
rights and opinions, a readiness to submit to discipline, a willingness
to yield up life when honor and duty demand it. All these thoughts were
impressed upon the boy of our story, and made him a grander man for
their lessons, when the pursuits of peace claimed him.

To the boys and girls whose fathers and friends fought that a great
principle should live, to those whose dear ones fell in battle, or died
of wounds, to all who read this true history of one boy's life in the
army, we send forth this picture, the type of a true soldier, who did
not love war for its noise and glitter, but who conscientiously
fought the battles of his country because he revered her beneficent
institutions. It was there that he was taught what true freedom meant,
and through all his trials, his privations, he kept his faith in God and
humanity undimmed.

Such was our boy, and of such material heroes are made.

The Publishers



THE CIVIL WAR AS SEEN BY A BOY.



CHAPTER I. THE BEGINNING OF WAR.

[Illustration: 9023]

HE early {017}spring days of 1861 were dreams of beauty. The skies
smiled blandly upon the earth, and every heart was glad that the long
winter was over, and the charms of outdoor life could be enjoyed once
more. Surely nature had done her part in making men happy.

A spirit of unrest and uncertainty, however, brooded in the air. The
long conflict between opposing ideas, which had waged so long and
bitterly in politics and churches, and through the columns of the press,
had come to a focus, and dread murmurs were abroad, of an impending war,
and its attendant horrors. Men looked in each other's faces, and asked,
with sad forebodings--"What is coming next?"

The South made ample preparations to seize two South Carolina forts,
Moultrie and Sumter, as early as December, 1860.

Lieutenant-Colonel Gardner was the commander of Fort Moultrie, and,
loyal to the government, he sent to Washington asking for reinforcements
to help him hold that fort. This request offended the Southern members
of Congress, who construed it into an insult, and demanded his removal.
This demand was acceded to by Secretary of War Floyd, and Major Robert
Anderson of Kentucky was appointed to supersede Colonel Gardner.

Major Anderson, {018}faithful to the trust reposed in him by the
government, soon decided that Fort Moultrie could not be held against
a vigorous assault, and he moved his garrison secretly to Sumter, a
fortress across the harbor. This fort could not be approached by land,
and, consequently, from this fact, was deemed more secure against any
opposing force. The undertaking was a dangerous one. The harbor was full
of guard boats, vigilant and watchful, and only their supposition that
the little rowboats containing Major Anderson and his men were laborers
going to the other fort to work on it, prevented their detection and
arrest.

[Illustration: 0024]

Moultrie's guns had been trained to protect this transfer in case the
Major's intention was discovered, and the fort, whose defense rendered
the gallant Anderson immortal, was occupied by his troops at only twenty
minutes' notice! We think that was the quickest "moving time" on record.

A siege gun which was turned upon Fort Sumter is shown on page 20.
Its carriage is broken, and it was thus rendered useless by the
Confederates, when they abandoned the fort in 1864.

France {019}and England would not acknowledge the South as an
independent nation, but the Confederate government did all possible to
bring this about by sending Messrs. James M. Mason of Virginia and John
Slidell of Louisiana to London and Paris with the hope that their claims
would be recognized. Henry Ward Beecher, when in the height of his fame,
afterward went to England, addressing immense audiences, and setting
forth the true condition of American affairs.

[Illustration: 0025]

The hope of the Southerners was that the government would allow a
peaceable withdrawal of the dissatisfied States, and that no bloodshed
would be necessary, but as time went by and the most active preparations
for keeping them in the Union were made by the general government, they
commenced hostilities, and the first gun of the war was fired by the
Confederates under General Beauregard on the morning of April 12, and
while the officers and men within the fort were eating their breakfast,
a perpetual bursting {020}of shells and shot kept them awake to the fact
that the peace had been broken, and war had begun.

[Illustration: 0026]

After breakfast the force was divided up into firing parties and
the first reply on the part of the Union was made by Captain Abner
{021}Doubleday. But their guns were very light.

A bombardment followed, and on the 14th of April, 1861, General Robert
Anderson evacuated the fort.

[Illustration: 0027]

Blockade running was so common it became necessary to fit out out an
expedition to close the most valuable of the openings, Hatteras Inlet.
The first expedition projected for this purpuse was fitted out near
Fortress Monroe and was under the command of Flag Officer Silas H.
Stringham. The engagement lasted three hours with a complete victory for
Stringham, and several blockade runners entered the inlet and were
captured.

The news fell like a pall upon the North. It was impossible so many and
old man urged, that Americans, our own people could be so disloyal. Why
had they done it? What did it mean? And when, in consequence of this
act, President Lincoln ordered them to disperse within twenty days, and
called for 75,000 men from the various States, to enlist to "suppress
this combination against the laws," the response came swiftly.

In every town and village the patriotic fires were kindled, and boys and
old men pressed on, side by side, willing to give their lives, if need
be, to uphold their country's flag.

{022}

[Illustration: 0028]

Many {023}a smooth-cheeked lad, loved dearly and tenderly reared, went
forth from his home, never again to enter its portal. Alas, for those
sad days!

[Illustration: 9029]

Recruiting went swiftly on. Speech-making and passionate appeals to the
people were heard in every quarter of the North.

Women could not fight, but they could organize sewing societies, and
work untiringly for those who had gone to the front. Many an article
found its way to the army that was useful, and when blood had been
spilled, these same patient and tearful women sent lint, and bandages,
and medicines, for the sick and wounded.

As the call for soldiers awoke the boys and men of the North, so did a
like summons from their leaders arouse the spirit of the South. They had
orators in their midst, whose tones swayed them, and they, too, enlisted
to form an army which should repel the "encroachments" of those whom
they deemed their enemies.

Boys went forth from luxurious homes, and stood shoulder to shoulder
with the humblest, clad in the gray, all equally ready to sacrifice life
and home to their idea of duty.

One {024}lad, in his Western home, a dreamer thus far, the light of his
widowed mother's life, heard the war cry, and the blood tingled in his
veins as he listened to stirring arguments day by day, and saw one after
another of his companions leave their homes to join the forces that were
being hurried forward to headquarters.

[Illustration: 0030]

He felt that{025} he must go with them. Why not? His eye was as keen,
his brain as clear, his arm as strong to do whatever his country
required of him, as were theirs.

[Illustration: 0031]

This longing haunted him by day and night, until it became unbearable.
He went to his mother, and with earnest words begged her to send him.
Alas, that mother was not equal to the task. {026}She was loving,
gentle and shrinking, and when he urged her to let him go, her answer
was--"Ralph, you know not what you ask. Do you forget that I am a
Southern woman, whose childhoods days were spent in that beautiful
country? All my people are there. Would you have me send my boy away to
fight those I love, and whose feelings I must share? You are asking too
great a sacrifice at my hands."

"Mother, it is true that you were born and educated there. But did
you not love my father so dearly that you left your home and all your
friends to come to the North with him, where I was born?"

[Illustration: 9032]

A tender smile flitted across her still beautiful face. "Yes, I did love
him," she said softly to herself, "and I honor his memory. What shall I
do?--I cannot forget my dear childhood's home. It is too hard a question
for me to decide."

"Let me decide for you, mother. You surely love your Northern home and
friends. The people of the South have fired upon our forts in Charleston
harbor, and driven the garrison away. I, too, am a Southerner in many
ways. Are you not my mother, and do you not know I honor every thought
or wish of yours?"

"There must be some other way to bring them back, rather than by
fighting. War is a cruel and unnatural alternative. Why, they will be
firing upon their own people--like brothers in one family falling out,
and seeking to do each other deadly harm." {027}

[Illustration: 0033]

Ralph {028}was silent. His heart burned with patriotic fire, and it
seemed to him that it was his duty to help swell the numbers of those
who were ready to respond to the President's call. But he also knew that
his mother loved her early home, and that it seemed to her unnatural
for him to be so ready to take up arms against "her people," and he
respected her too deeply to wound her willingly. That mother had been
gently born, and when she met the young Northern lawyer, she had loved
him from the first, and cheerfully shared his humble but peaceful home.
She was now left alone in the world, with her three girls and this boy,
the youngest. The fortunes of war were too varying. She might never see
him again, and how could she live without him?

To Ralph was presented a problem that he was called unexpectedly to
solve. He pondered over it in the silence of night, and in the busy
hours of day. Was it right to fly in the face of his beloved mother's
prejudices by joining the Federal forces? On the one hand he felt that
he, too, was Southern in feeling and in birth. His father was a Northern
man, and he would uphold the old flag; but which side it was his duty to
join, he could not determine. He was resolved to go into one of the two
armies. In the crisis that had come, it was clearly every one's duty to
come to the front.

The boy talked with every one whom he could interest. He was not able
to study out the problem alone. One of his schoolmates had the proud
distinction of having an uncle who was a commissioned officer, and he
took the bold step of meeting him one day when he was walking past his
home.

"Sir," he said timidly, "may I speak to you?"

"Certainly," the officer replied. And then and there he poured forth his
doubts, his desire to do what was right, his mother's objections--all,
he told the waiting gentleman whose opinion he so desired.

The officer laid his hand kindly on the boy's shoulder.

"Your wish does you credit. The fortunes of war are too varying for me
to decide for you. Try and work out the proper answer yourself, and may
you be helped to make a wise decision."

Alas, {029}the question was too hard for a boy like him to answer. He
was humbly trying to see where his duty lay, and then he was ready to
enlist on whichever side called him. On one hand was his mother and her
early teachings, on the other his dead father, with all his views. "What
side would _he_ choose were he here?" was the ever-recurring thought in
his anxious brain.

[Illustration: 8035]

But after weeks of this long, weary struggle, he decided to join the
Union army. His mother saw that he believed he was shirking a duty, and
that he longed for action.

She thought she would make one more effort to change his purpose. She
said to him suddenly one day, when she saw his troubled face: "Ralph,
you are only seventeen. You have never been away from your home, and
know nothing about hardships and privations. Do you think you could face
a cannon, and know that its deadly mouth might lay you low on the field,
mangled and torn?"

"Oh, mother, I never think of such things. If I enlist, I must take my
chances with the rest. I want to go with the other boys. Eddie Downing
and George Martin have and are going into camp to-morrow, at Readville."

"But will the government accept you? Eddie and George are three or four
years older than you. There are plenty of men, without taking a boy who
is his mother's chief comfort."

{030}

[Illustration: 0036]

"I am strong and well. When I come back, you will be the proudest
mother in the land, to think you sent your boy away. I may go with your
blessing, may I not? That will protect me."

The {031}boy's eyes were moist with emotion. His mother, with a sigh,
gave her reluctant consent, and though many a bitter tear was shed in
the loneliness of her room, she bravely hid them from the boy she loved.

Now that the decision was final, she made every preparation for the
comfort of the boy who was to leave them so soon. His sisters wept
continually--not a very cheerful parting, but Ralph was the idol of his
home.

"Mother," he said to her a day or two after she had given her consent,
"do not worry about me. I shall do my duty. This war _can't_ last long.
Then I'll come back to you, and stay at home as long as I live, depend
on that."

His beaming face half reassured her, and she began to share his
enthusiasm. He was enrolled as a soldier. Although his youth was at
first objected to, his earnestness carried the day, and he was told to
report at Camp Hale at once.

He was a real soldier at last! A genuine soldier, who must fight. He
did not belong to the would-be soldiers, such as they used to call the
"militia," who simply paraded on the open green, or turned out on dress
occasions, with the curious for an audience, who would watch and be
astonished at their evolutions and their showy uniforms, when the Fourth
of July or kindred days made their demands upon them.

In his neat-fitting suit of blue, the cap setting jauntily upon his
head, his musket in hand, and his belt with its bayonet buckled around
him, he looked so manly that a thrill of pride flashed o'er his mothers
face, as she looked at her boy, her Ralph, in his "soldier clothes."

But when the day came for him to leave the only home he had ever known,
and he turned to take a last look at its plain walls, his heart almost
failed him. His beloved mother stood in the doorway, her hands pressed
over her face, while she strove to keep back the choking sobs, as she
bade her boy--"Good-bye, and may God bless and protect you." Those
solemn words came back to Ralph in many a lonely hour, and brought him
consolation and support.

Thus, {032}in many homes, both North and South, were the heartstrings
torn, as mothers and sisters bade farewell to the boys in blue and gray,
who went to the front, to lay down their lives for duty's sake.

Ralph was a proud boy when he joined his companions in camp, wearing
the blue uniform, with its shining buttons bearing the U. S. stamp upon
them.

[Illustration: 0038]

{033}

[Illustration: 0039]

He was naturally retiring, but now he felt as if the eyes of the world
were upon him. He had taken an important step, and he would show his
friends and that great big world that he knew exactly what he was doing.

Camp life was one continual drill--so it seemed to him. Readville was a
quiet little town, but its people were ablaze with patriotism, and the
"boys in blue" were the recipients of perpetual admiration. Every move
they made was noticed and approved, and it is not to be wondered at if
some of them did greedily swallow considerable flattery, which led them
to assume quite lofty airs.

The sameness of life in camp soon wearied, and Ralph longed for
something more stirring. When the bugle call rang out, every man sprang
up, and, after a hasty ablution, at a second call they made a charge
upon their breakfast with vehemence, and tin cups and plates rattled in
a most discordant fashion. Then the drill began; first with musket and
rifle, and then with the bayonet. A bayonet charge was a fierce reminder
of the real thing. When men meet the enemy with fixed bayonets, a
dreadful slaughter may always be counted on. This drilling was kept up
at intervals, all through the day; first in squads and companies, and
then the entire regiment would take part in the use of these weapons,
and the various evolutions that the drill-master taught.

Ralph was very anxious to become proficient in their use, and while many
of the older men grumbled at this work, he kept on, learning at each
repetition something more of their actual value.

"You'll have to know all about this," said Lieutenant Hopkins to them,
or you'll be in a nice hole when you're caught out in the field. "We
don't know how soon we may be sent to the front, and then there won't be
much time for this sort of practice. It'll be march and fight then."

Way down in his heart this quiet stripling, hitherto jealously guarded
from a knowledge of the world by a fond mother and sisters, had his own
dreams of fame burning brightly and steadily. What if he could plan or
assist in some grand sortie, and be mentioned {034}in the dispatches
as "the gallant private of Company K---- Mass. Volunteers, whose valor
turned the tide and carried the day?" Then probably he would be summoned
before the commanding officer, and honors would be thrust upon him.
Perhaps, if he kept on, he might be a general! What would the dear ones
at home say then? The picture was too brilliant; his head fairly grew
dizzy at the prospect.

"I'll tell you," he said to a comrade, "we are in no danger of starving
here in camp, at any rate, if we don't have much variety."

"That's so. What's the matter with pork, beans, soup, bread, molasses
(here he made a wry face), rice and hard tack? If we get enough
of these, we'll pull through all right," his companion responded
cheerfully.

"And we sleep as sound as kittens in our wooden bunks, with plenty of
straw for a bed, and our big army blankets over us," continued Ralph.

"The pillows might be a little softer," said Harvey Phillips. "Overcoats
doubled up ain't quite as easy shook up as feathers."

"No, but our captain tells me that we are living in clover just at
present. Wait till we go into a battle. Perhaps we'll come out without
any heads, then we won't need any pillows," laughed Ralph.

"That's true. Your easy times are right here just now," said a "vet,"
who had been in many a battle in the far West with the red men, and had
"smelt powder" to his heart's content. "War looks very pretty on paper,
with the big fellows at Washington moving the men like they're at a
chessboard, but wait till the guns speak up on the field, and men to
men are hurled against each other, to fight like demons. The real thing
ain't so romantic, let me tell you youngsters."

"You can't frighten us," said Harvey. "We are no three months' men. We
enlisted for the war and we propose to see the war out."

"Boys, I tell you war aren't no pastime. It means work, and hardest kind
of work, at that. It's a great thing to organize an army, and keep its
various parts in trim. We don't usually {035}go out to fight the enemy
with only a flask of powder, and a knapsack filled with soda crackers.
There are men and horses and ammunition to carry along."

"Who takes care of all these matters?" asked Ralph.

[Illustration: 0043]

"The quartermaster. He looks after the rations, the ammunition, in
fact, all the supplies--blankets for the men, medicines for the sick and
transportation for the baggage. He is usually a captain or a lieutenant.
The government appoints him."

"Does he fight?"

"Oh, no. He's got no time for that. He has to look after the fellows who
do the fighting. The quartermasters have excitement and danger enough,
however, in protecting their stores They ain't like the sutlers."

{036}

[Illustration: 0044]

"What is a sutler?"

"He's a chap that gets permission from the government to carry things
to sell to the soldiers. He furnishes them at his own expense, and then
trades and sells them to the boys."

"Is he a soldier?"

"Not much. You don't see him in the battlefield. He takes good care not
to interfere in any skirmishes going on. Somehow, the smell of powder
don't agree with him."

"Then he goes to war to make money?"

"That's {037}just what he does. He oftener loses it, though, and then
his friends don't cry nor take up a collection for him. Still, he's
generally a good sort of a fellow. He's obliging and always willing to
trust a man. Often the boys help themselves to his goods without his
leave, and then he's out that much. He has his ups and downs like the
rest of us."

[Illustration: 0045]



CHAPTER II. ORDERED TO WASHINGTON.

[Illustration: 9046]

AMP life {038}was pleasant, aside from the perpetual drilling, marching
and countermarching. Friends had access to the boys at stated times,
little gifts and pledges were exchanged, and the time passed swiftly.
One day there was great excitement. Coffee was swallowed hastily,
knapsacks were packed in a hurry, arms were brightened up, ammunition
was dealt out, and the word ran through the camp--"We are ordered to
report at Washington."

"Now I shall know something of what is going on. Poor mother, she will
grieve over her absent boy, and fancy me in a thousand dangers. But I
will write to her often, that will cheer her up."

And he did. Many a line he scribbled on his knee with a bit of pencil or
a blackened stick, telling her of his safety and health. These short but
welcome missives were read over and over, and fondly kissed, the dear
little messengers of love and hope.

The war cloud was growing darker. The government arsenal at Harper's
Ferry had been burned by Lieutenant Jones, who knew it would lessen
its value to the Southern forces, who were marching upon the town. The
latter, however, saved considerable of the government property, and next
seized the bridge at Point of Rocks, thus circumventing General Butler,
who was near Baltimore. They also took possession of several trains,
which they side-tracked into Strasburg, a measure which helped the
Confederate train service in Virginia very perceptibly.

The ride of the boys in blue to Washington lay through the mountains
of West Virginia, where nature revels in grand surprises. Many a little
cabin perched far up the hillside was the home {039}of those who had
shed tears when old John Brown was led forth to die. Poor and scanty
though their daily fare was, they were loyal and true, and the spirit of
defiance to the old flag found no echoes in their breasts.

[Illustration: 0047]

To Ralph the scenery appealed with deep solemnity. He was born in the
West, where the green seas of the prairies seemed to know {040}no limit.
To him hills and valleys, with their somber shadows, were objects of
awe. He noted the beautiful homes of wealth and taste as he was whirled
swiftly by on the train. He saw the black faces of slaves working in
garden or field, and heard their voices as they talked.

[Illustration: 0048]

"Fore de Lawd!" he heard a grizzled old darkey say, as they drew into a
small station for water, "pears like dey look jess like de white folks
do down here!"

"You 'spected dey had horns, didn't you? Well, I knowed better. I'se
been Norf wid Massa too many times to take in dat _idee_."

Washington, the capital of the nation, was reached. As they {041}steamed
into the depot, and began to unload, Ralph, for the first time since
leaving home, felt lonely. He saw throngs of people, but all was strange
and new to him, and his heart sank. The city was full of soldiers
waiting for orders, so full that it was a puzzle where to quarter them.

[Illustration: 9049]

The Government buildings were full to overflowing, they
"bunked" every-where, and wild pranks these boys played, their love
of fun leading them into many a mad frolic. The city was too small for
their mischievous natures, and it was no uncommon thing to make a trip
into the surrounding territory, bent on extorting all the sport they
might out of what most of them regarded as a sort of a gala time. "But
we are ready whenever we are called upon," was their unanimous cry.
The shooting of Colonel Ellsworth at Alexandria, because he tore down
a secession flag, so short a time previous, and his prompt avenging, as
you remember, had roused them to a sense of the hostility which was felt
by those who sought to divide the North and South. Then the attack of
the mob of Baltimore upon the Sixth Massachusetts, {042}while being
transported from one depot to another, was another proof that their
brothers of the South had trampled friendly feelings beneath their feet,
and that the fires of sectional jealousy were burning fiercely.

[Illustration: 0050]

Their journey lay through a hostile State, and sober faces succeeded the
jokes and laughter of the past few weeks. The South was plainly up in
arms, and that "rebellion," which the whole North at first thought but
the task of a few weeks to crush, began to assume the appearance and
proportions of a long and cruel conflict.

General Butler was in command of the military department of Virginia.

[Illustration: 8051]

"Wonder {043}if that means fight?" soliloquized Ralph. "The lads say
he is a smart lawyer, but I don't know as that proves him to be a good
fighter."

Ralph wrote often to that dear mother who was praying for her boy. "We
move to the front to-morrow," so his letter ran. "I know how fond you
are of your boy. I am going to do my duty, I believe. But is it not an
awful thought that it is no foreign foe we shall meet, but our own
people?--that is the sting in it to me."

[Illustration: 8051]

The night before the battle the boys slept as calmly as if they were at
home. At dawn they were called to march, and after an attack upon their
rations, they began the advance into Virginia. Raw and undisciplined,
they did not accept the gravity of the situation. They marched along,
light-hearted and gay, enjoying the change from quiet camp life with all
the zest of school boys. Many of them fell out of the ranks and picked
the luscious berries growing thickly by the wayside, while others
wastefully tossed out the water in their {044}canteens and filled them
with fresh every time they came to one of the springs which abounded in
that beautiful and fertile region.

"This isn't hard work," Ralph thought. "We are having more fun than
ever."

A halt had been called for a few moments' rest. A few rods from the road
a dark stream ran slowly by, whose depths no one knew. A swim in its
cool waters was proposed at any hazard, and, quickly disrobing, some of
the younger ones plunged in, and were having a merry time, when the roll
of the drum was heard and the marching was resumed. Here was a fix! The
army began to move, and a dozen soldiers were still in the stream, who
snatched up the first garments they saw and hastened to dress. In their
confusion they had almost to a man seized the wrong clothes, and the fit
of some of them was ludicrous. But changes were quickly made, and after
much good-natured "chaffing" they fell into line, and were as sedate and
soldierlike as any "vet" among them.

The cry, "On to Richmond!" sounded throughout the land.

Officers and soldiers had been massed near Washington long enough,
and the people, as well as the boys in blue, were impatient tor some
results, now that an army had been called into being. The soldiers pined
for action; the people were anxious to know what would be the outcome.

"Who commands the Southerners?" Ralph asked old "Bill" Elliott, a
soldier who had taken quite a fancy to the boy, and was ready to answer
his questions at all times.

"Beauregard, the same chap who opened fire on Fort Sumter."

"And what does he propose doing now?"

"Well, as I am not in his confidence, I can't just tell you, but I 'low
we're not going to be in the dark long, neither are we likely to be the
gainers by any move he makes if he can help it. He's got some thirty
thousand men with him, and we'll have a lively time soon, you bet."

"The {045}men want a brush, I think, from what they say. They're
becoming tired of waiting."

[Illustration: 0053]

"And so does the country; but they don't know how much easier it is
to talk war than to be in it. What does the man who stays at home know
about the dangers and trials of a soldier's life? How is he capable of
judging whether it is time to fight or where it is best to strike,
or how many odds a general of an army has against him? We'll have war
enough before long--they needn't fear." {046}

[Illustration: 0054]

"Well, {047}I suppose we'll some of us be in it soon, and who knows how
many of us will come out?"

[Illustration: 0055]

"Why, boy, you're not showing the white feather, I hope!' and Bill
peered anxiously into the lad's troubled face.

"No, {048}sir, I am not, but I can't help thinking of my poor mother,
and, besides, you know I am going to fight her people. My mother is a
Virginian."

"Is that so? I know, then, she must feel bad have you in our army. I
can't blame her, nuther.

"But she's loyal to our flag, Bill," the boy hastened to add. "It would
break her heart, though, if anything should happen to me."

"Cheer up! You'll get through all right. I can feel it in my bones."

Ralph laughed. "Why, of course I shall. It seems to me this war won't be
a very long one."

"Perhaps not--you can't tell. But McClellan taught the Johnnies a lesson
at the 'races' the other day."

"The 'races?'" Ralph's eyes opened wide.

"Yes, the 'Philippi races,'" Bill went on. "The Confeds ran so fast from
our boys at that battle that they dubbed their retreat the 'Philippi
races,' in honor of the speed they showed. He has been made a general,
and given the Ohio troops to command. He crossed the Ohio with four
regiments and banged after the enemy. He found it hard work, for they
say Colonel Porterfield burned all the bridges. He wasn't long in
putting them in order, though, and getting over some big reinforcements.
He routed them at Philippi and at Rich Mountain. Government ought to
remember him, I tell you."

And it did, for "Little Mac," as he was called, was made
commander-in-chief of the Army of the Potomac. {049}


{050}



CHAPTER III. RALPH'S FIRST BATTLE.

[Illustration: 9057]

T Washington all sorts of rumors were plenty. It was generally known,
however, that General Beauregard was making for Bull Run, where the
stream presented a natural barrier. General McDowell left Washington
with a force, whose accompaniments of civilians, following the marching
columns on foot, reporters, congressmen and idle sight-seers in
carriages, was a motley and curious sight. Everyone declared this to be
the battle which was to close out the rebellion, and all were jubilant
at the prospect.

On the army pressed under the brave McDowell, who was planning to
execute a flank movement upon the Confederates' left. A two hours'
engagement routed the Rebels, who fled before the Union charge.

The victory seemed to the Federal troops an easy one, but Generals
Johnston and Beauregard took the field in person, and, planting their
artillery in a piece of woods, they held the open plateau across which
the Federals were advancing, wholly at their mercy. General McDowell
could see nothing of this, owing to the shape of the ground, only by
mounting to the top of the Henry House, where they took their stand, and
where the attack was resumed in the afternoon.

The men on both sides were raw troops; they had not become the machines
that after fighting made them. This was to most of them their first
encounter, and as shot and shell flew rapidly by them, as the Union men
advanced over the open ground upon the enemy, who were concealed
within the woods, only to be picked off, one by one, by the Confederate
sharpshooters, who took the gunners at their batteries, they became
disheartened.

[Illustration: 0058]

[Illustration: 0059]

The {052} fight in the forenoon had exhausted them, and they were
unprepared for the work still to be done.

The battle was fierce; men were falling like hail, in all the agonies
of death. Here a drummer boy was lying face downward, his stiff hand
clutching the stick whose strokes would never wake the echoes again.
There an officer, his uniform dyed with blood, lay prostrate on the
ground, his horse half across his stiffening body, while at every turn
the wounded were huddled together, in the positions in which they fell.

[Illustration: 0060]

Ralph's heart turned sick, as he saw the brave fellows who manned the
batteries tumbling over each other, many of them shot through the heart,
as the Confederates, tempted by their success, stole nearer to the guns.

Captain Griffin, who made the sad mistake of thinking the troops were
his own men coming to his aid, permitted the nearer approach of the
Confederates. He discovered his error when a volley of musketry took
nearly every gunner and stretched Lieutenant Ramsay low in death, as the
rebels rushed in and seized the guns.

{053}

[Illustration: 0061]

The {054}fighting went pluckily on; both sides were in deadly earnest.
The batteries seemed to be the coveted prize, and they were taken and
retaken, first by one army, and then the other.

Worn and harassed, in the confusion that ensued, regiments and companies
became mixed, and thousands of men lost track of their companies and
wandered about, not knowing where they belonged.

In the dense smoke that covered the battle ground, Ralph became lost,
and, making a short turn, found a clump of trees with a thick growth
of underbrush. He heard voices, and threw himself flat upon the ground,
determined not to be taken prisoner.

"Wonder what General Beauregard's next move will be?" The tones were low
and even.

"Well, Lieutenant, we cannot know at present, but it is certain we have
taught the Yanks a lesson this day. They'll never forget Johnston's
brigade. They were so sure of whipping us. It was a hot battle, and
three or four times I thought we had lost. Those fellows fight well, but
they're no match for the South. What's the matter over there? See, our
men are retreating. Don't they know we've won the day?"

It was true. So many times had the victory changed hands, that it was
hard to tell who had won finally and it looked as if the Confederate
line was breaking.

Jeff Davis' heart sank as he came up from Manassas and found that
hundreds of Confederates, under the impulse of fear, were fleeing to
the rear. He kept on, only to find that the Northern army was in
full retreat, and the battle of Bull Run was a bitter defeat for the
Federals.

Ralph lay there in ambush, pale with dread. He feared capture more than
death. He rose quickly as the two officers galloped away, to stay their
men, and looked upon the scene. Lines of men in blue and gray stretched
away in the distance, while the noise of the guns, the neighing of
wounded, horses, the huzzas of the victors, drowning the groans of the
wounded, made him faint with horror, and his cheeks grew white as he
saw men lying on their backs, their glassy eyes staring up to the sky,
{055}their faces ghastly and white, and peaceful, or else distorted with
pain. Here a wounded soldier would half raise himself on one arm, and
beg for water, while others, bleeding and dying, lay uncomplainingly,
their eyes fixed on the blue sky, which nevermore would greet their
waking vision.

[Illustration: 0063]

In the dim light he saw all this, and knew not where to go. The terrible
sights and hideous silence which succeeded the noise of conflict
sickened him, and Ralph, the brave soldier boy, actually fainted.

"What's this? Why, it's Ralph! Is he killed?"

The tones sounded, to the boy's benumbed senses, far away, as a
{056}heavily bearded man knelt down and placed his hand upon his heart.
He saw it was Bill, and the flush of mortification mounted to his brow,
as he tried to rise.

"I was weak--dizzy--and I--"

"I know all about it!" good-humoredly laughed Bill Elliott, for he
it was. "This is your first appearance, and you had a sort of a stage
fright."

Ralph bit his lips with vexation.

"Oh, that's nothing. You'll make a better showing next time. You'll live
to be a brigadier-general. But I was kinder rattled myself when I saw
you so still. I didn't know but some fellow had tuk good aim at you!"

"I'm not hurt in the least, Bill."

"Well, boy, come on. We've been whipped bad, and are most unpleasantly
nigh those fellows with the guns over thar, and as I'm pretty tall, they
might choose me for a mark, just to keep their hands in."

The Federal army, broken and defeated, straggled back to Washington,
footsore, dirty and hungry. No battle during the war was fought with
more desperation, and bravery was shown by both sides--the Union and the
Confederate.

And though the defeat of General McDowell's forces was a blow to the
pride of the North, it carried a valuable lesson; that the South would
not be persuaded back to its old allegiance.

To the boys of this generation slavery is almost a myth. But when the
Civil War broke out the blacks were held in bondage to masters who had
acquired them by purchase or inheritance, and thus they represented
property or wealth.

The South bitterly resented any interference with an institution which
many of them honestly regarded as divine. In the North opinion was
divided, some believing slavery to be wrong, but that it would gradually
die out. All classes were unwilling that it should be extended into new
territory.

This difference of opinion led to the conflict which caused brave men
to take up arms and arrayed brother against brother, in defense of what
each believed to be just and fair.

{057}

[Illustration: 0065]



CHAPTER IV. RALPH DOES PICKET DUTY.

[Illustration: 9066]

LD Bill was a little fearful, spite of Ralph's protestations, {058}lest
his boy, as he dubbed him, was going to show the white feather, after
all, and so he kept him well under his eye.

"I don't want the tarnal little rascal skipping, for it 'ud go hard with
him to be caught. They'd shoot him sure."

But he didn't know the true mettle of the boy. He was no coward, if he
did turn sick at the scenes of his first battle, and he was a lad of
honor, and would have died before he would leave his post.

So he felt a little down-hearted when orders came for a detail from
Company K to turn out for picket duty. The men themselves felt rather
blue at this news, for they were worn out and disheartened by their late
tussle, but they didn't expect their wishes would be considered in the
matter. Ralph's eyes gleamed with joy, for he longed for adventure.

"Bill, I believe you think I am cowardly. You'll change your mind soon,
I know."

That individual grimly responded: "Picket duty is a very cheerful way of
passing one's time, but I guess you'll do."

The picket line was twelve miles distant, and as the men got into line,
the air and the excitement infused courage into Ralph's breast. They had
been ordered out to relieve a regiment which had seen some hard work,
and who were anxious to get into shelter.

{059}

[Illustration: 0067]

The newcomers were told what spots needed the most watching, and as soon
as they were stationed at their posts and received {060}the necessary
instructions, they settled down to the importance of the duty assigned
them.

The woods lay behind them, and each picket sought their friendly
shelter, well aware that any "change of base" on their part would be an
invitation to the enemy to pick them off.

Memories of home filled Ralph's breast. The night was dark and starless.
A strong wind blew at intervals, now howling dismally through the trees,
and then shifting its course, rushing down the bank, as if it would rend
the earth and the tall grass in its anger.

"I wonder if mother thinks of her soldier boy," he pondered.

When does a mother ever cease to think of and pray for her children?

The night wore on. Perfect quiet reigned, and Ralph began to consider
picket duty not half so risky as Old Bill called it, after all. But as
he kept his eyes on the opposite bank, where the "Johnnies" were, he
fancied he saw a small dark object creeping through the grass down to
the river, where it seemed to be looking up and down its shore. His
heart beat fiercely. What was it? he asked himself. Was it a man or some
animal hiding in the grass? If it were a reb, he would be shot dead, at
the least move on his part--that he well knew.

I am afraid you will not think my boy was much of a hero, but the truth
is, he was very much in love with life, as all young people should be,
and, though willing to do his whole duty, he could not help feeling a
trifle nervous about his surroundings, so he stooped quickly down behind
a tall bush that appeared to be growing there just for his benefit.

The object on which his gaze was fixed seemed so small that he almost
laughed aloud at his own fears.

"Why, it's only a dog that's strayed into camp," he said.

"Wonder if they fatten him on hard tack."

His gaze was riveted upon the dark mass, and his surprise nearly found
vent in a low whistle, which he speedily checked, as he saw a man or a
boy steal noiselessly along the bank, till he came {061}to a place where
the grass was tangled and thick, and stooping down he pulled a wide
board from its hiding-place, and picking up a long piece of wood which
lay there, he stepped on the plank and commenced to paddle across the
stream.

Ralph lay in the grass behind the bush, breathlessly watching the
approaching figure. Suddenly a dog began to bark on the opposite shore,
and the man on the plank gave utterance to a low, angry exclamation.
The dog stopped barking, and the stranger came slowly on, till his novel
craft touched the shore within five feet of Ralph.

He saw to his amazement that it was a boy, even younger than himself, it
seemed in the dim light, and he waited breathlessly till he came closer,
and was halted by Ralph's gun, which he brought sharply against the
other's breast, while his own was on fire with excitement, as he cried
aloud--"Halt--you are my prisoner!"

For a moment these two boys faced each other; then the stranger threw
his head proudly back, and, with a gesture of impatience, replied:

"I will not be made a prisoner--I am merely going about my own
business."

"And that business is to spy upon our lines!" Ralph said hotly.

"Take me to your superior officer. I can soon convince him that I am
doing no harm," answered the boy.

A stir ran through the picket lines, as the news was passed on that a
rebel spy had been captured, and soon the lad, whose proud carriage and
haughty face involuntarily commanded attention, was at headquarters,
where to all questioning he remained dumb, after telling an apparently
truthful story that he was crossing the river to visit an old uncle, and
knew nothing of the movements of either army.

"This 'old uncle' is one I fancy we'd better try to unearth," said
Colonel Tuttle. "His acquaintance would be worth cultivating." {062}

[Illustration: 0070]

The boy would give no further account of himself. His frank, boyish face
and manly bearing impressed the officer of the day favorably, and he
muttered to himself--"Wonder if he is a spy. If all the Johnnies are
as brave and resolute as this youth we'll have to work hard to conquer
them."

An opinion which he found cause to verify often.



CHAPTER V. RALPH AT HEADQUARTERS.

[Illustration: 9071]

OU'RE in {063}luck, my boy," and Bill Elliott's face showed genuine
pleasure as he shook hands with Ralph. "You are to show yourself at
headquarters and receive your reward, as the good boys in story books
always do."

An orderly came up to Ralph, and said:--"You are wanted at
headquarters."

Ralph proceeded to the officers' tent. For the first time he stood in
the presence of his commanding officers, and as he saluted respectfully,
a tall, kindly-faced man looked at him with some surprise.

"How old are you?" was the abrupt query, as the officer looked in the
beardless face of the boy.

"Nearly eighteen, sir."

"Have you seen any service yet?"

"I was at Bull Run."

The fine face clouded with sadness. "That was hard and tedious fighting.
You brought in a prisoner last night, whom we have strong reasons
to believe is a rebel spy. You have shown two qualities befitting a
soldier--pluck and forgetfulness of self. Your captain commends you to
me, and I have thought proper to make you a corporal."

Ralph's heart beat loud and fast. What had he done to deserve this
honor?

"Your warrant will be handed to you, and you are expected to attend
strictly to all its requirements."

To a general or a colonel the promotion would not seem very exalted; but
to this boy, who could not realize why he had been selected, it was as
if he had suddenly been lifted into the seventh {064}heaven To be
sure, it only meant two stripes on his jacket sleeve, and a trifle
of authority, but it also meant encouragement and notice from his
superiors, He could not answer, but, bowing low, he left the tent.

[9072]

"A board of inquiry must be appointed at once, and we'll see what this
lad whom Corporal Gregory brought in is doing within our lines."

The boy was marched before them, but he parried all their questions, and
maintained a resolute and fearless mien.

"I have told you the truth," he said proudly.

"I was going to make a visit when I was seized. You see I have no
weapons."

"Spies do not always carry arms. Papers are more to their taste. You say
you came to see an uncle. Where does he live? Why did you visit him at
night?"

"I knew {065}that the enemy lay near us, and I didn't want to be taken
prisoner."

"Where is this uncle?"

"He lives back of the bluff, on the right hand side of the road."

"We'll invite him into our camp, and see if he'll own the relationship."

[Illustration: 0073]

The boy's face flushed with wounded pride, as he answered scornfully:

"We call our old servants uncle and aunt. He is an old colored man, and
lives on this side of the river--one of our old slaves, whom my father
freed."

"We'll send you to the guard-house until more is known about you," was
the stern retort.

The boy was removed to the guard-house. To Ralph he was {066}an object
of much interest. His sympathies went out to him and he longed to say
something comforting.

And so when his turn to act as corporal of the guard, with the abrupt
frankness of youth, he blurted out:

"What were you doing over here the other night?"

[Illustration: 0074]

"I have given an account of myself to your superiors."

"Don't be so lofty. I don't mean to be inquisitive, but I thought
you might like to know that I am awful sorry I brought you into this
trouble."

The boys face softened.

"I don't know as you could do anything else under the circumstances.
{067}I suppose, in fact, I know, I'd have done just as you did. Perhaps
worse," he muttered. "I might have shot you."

"Then you don't hold any grudge against me?"

"Well, I can't pretend that I'm grateful to you for my detention in this
hole, but I can't blame you, either."

"Were you really going to see the old slave you told the colonel about?"

An indescribable expression flitted across the boy's features. "I said
so once. My word is usually taken, where I am known. Why do you ask?"

"Oh, from curiosity, I suppose. You look too young to be very
dangerous."

"I'm as old as you are. You look too young to be carrying arms against
your countrymen."

"Oh, I'm going to help put down this rebellion."

"A hard job you've selected. It is not a rebellion; it's an uprising
against meddlesome Yankee interference."

Ralph's eyes flashed fire. "You don't mean to say that you justify the
South, do you?"

"I not only justify it, but am proud to belong to a people who can never
be subdued. Your people are trying to force us to give up our rights,
but we won't be driven. We have thousands of men in the field, who do
not know how to fear. And when their places are vacant, more are waiting
to fill them. We despise the North, and want to be a separate people."

"You despise a government that has always protected you in all your
rights. You have no cause for wishing to be disunited. How dare you talk
so to me?"

"'Dare?' Am I not your equal? Why should I not speak when I am
insulted?"

"Don't talk treason to me again, then."

"I am a prisoner," the boy said, sadly, "innocent of any crime,
surrounded by foes and powerless. Were it not so you would not give me a
defiance."

Ralph's conscience smote him. It did appear as if the odds were on
{068}his side, and with the quick generosity of youth he said--

"I am sorry for you. We will not quarrel."

Not to be outdone in generosity, the other replied--"I believe you; but
we had better not talk about it any more, for we can never agree, and
we are both hot-headed. You see affairs in a different light from what I
do, that is all."

The next day the youth was rigidly examined. He gave his name as Charles
Arlington, stated that he was merely crossing the river to look after
the old slave; that he had chosen the night-time as he heard the Union
pickets were thrown out, and he did not think, with his knowledge of
the stream, that he would be captured in the darkness. Meantime, the
soldiers had been searching, and had found an old half imbecile negro in
a little cabin half a mile back from the river, whom they brought into
camp, shaking with fear.

"Old man," one of the soldiers said, "do you know this boy?"

"Yas, honey. I knows him well. I'se old Marsa Thomas' boy. I bin on his
old plantation since he was a baby. His mud-der was one of de----"

"Say, we don't care who his mother was. What do you know about the boy
standing there?"

"Yas, yas, I knows lots. Why, he was de littlest pickaninny of de
hull lot, and his father he say to me, 'Jim'--I was young and strong
den--'Jim, dis yere boy's gwine to be your young mastah some day, if
he ebber grows big enuff. And I tole him de sweetest posies were always
small, like de vi'lets and lilies ob de valley, and--"

"You black rascal, we don't want a dissertation on flowers. Tell us
about the young man standing there."

"Yas, marsa, but you tole me to tell you all 'bout him, and doan't I hab
to begin at the beginning?"

"Well, go on," the Colonel interposed. {069}

[Illustration: 0077]

"Dat ar chile dere was de idle of Massa Thomas' heart. My old woman,
Easter, who's dun been dead dese free years, nussed him. {070}And when
she died she cried mo' for leabing him alone in dis cold world dan she
did fer me. You see de boy's mudder was put under de roses when he was
only a few days in de world, and Easter she lubbed him mo' fer dat.
Oh, de old times kaint come back no mo'. Marsa Thomas is in de war wid
Gineral Johnston, and 'fore he went he say to me--'Jim, you'se been
a faiful old servant, and I gibs you yo freedom.' 'I doan't want it,
Marsa,' I say. 'Let me lib and die wid you,' 'Yo neber shall want,' he
kep' on, 'go lib in de little cabin toder side ob de ribber. You know he
owns bof sides ob dis yere big plantation. 'Go lib dar, and de chilluns
will look arter you.' An' bress dere hearts, dey all does care for po'
old Jim. But I fell sick wid some sort ob a feber, and de rest ob 'em
got a little scared like, all but dis yere chile. He neber left me till
I done got well and able to hoe my leetle truck patch. And now he's tuk
a prisoner, fer being kind to de po' ole man, who won't lib many years
longer, to git him into trubble."

The old man's withered features shone with a light that was beautiful;
his utterance was choked, and the tears rolled down his black cheeks as
his simple eloquence found its way to the hearts of those who heard him.

"Sergeant, release the boy and let him go home. And while we stay here,
see that the old man is not molested."

"Praise de Lawd! Bress you for yore kindness."

The boy bowed courteously to the Colonel, and with a look of gratitude
he passed out of the officer's tent, with the old man hobbling after
him. As he approached Ralph he said, "Goodbye. We may meet again."

It was not all danger and dread with the boys in the army. Weeks passed
swiftly, and fun reigned in camp. The gypsy life held charms for them
such as no indoor employment could offer. The men were hardy and strong,
and with light hearts talked of the battles yet in store for them.
And when jests were exchanged, often after having come from a scene of
carnage, it would be hard to believe that these same men were ready
to respond at any moment if summoned by the long roll of the drum into
action.

In {071}the early part of the war many little conveniences were provided
for the rank and file, among them being tents for shelter, which did not
keep out the cold, however, and many a man died from disease who would
have lived to fight, had he been properly housed. The second winter,
however, many huts were put up, rough enough, but better calculated to
withstand the cold than canvas.

[Illustration: 0079]

Each company had a "cook tent" and a cook, generally selected from
the men, the officers boasting a "cullered individual" who was always,
according to his own account, a "perfeshunal." The culinary department
was ever a point of interest to the men, whose appetites were never so
dainty that they failed to enjoy their daily rations. No soldier, no
matter from what part of the North he came, {072}ever turned up his nose
at the beans, which were cooked in holes dug in the earth, and filled
with hot embers, in which the iron pot containing them was buried and
kept there all night.

To Bill Elliott fell the task of ministering to the hungry ones of his
company, and many were the compliments he received.

"You can broil a chicken as good as any French cook," a man would
coaxingly declare.

[Illustration: 0080]

"Not a boughten one," Bill replied; "somehow those kind of chickens the
sutler has on hand don't have the genooine flavor."

The hint was always taken, and alas, for the poor farmer who had a nice
hen-roost, or a young porker in the sty. They had no regard for property
rights, and though they were not supposed to forage, except under
orders, yet the temptation was too strong to be resisted.

At {073}such times the cackling of the fowls, whose quiet was disturbed,
the melodious grunting of the pigs, who often led them a hard chase, and
the laughter and shouting of the pursuing soldiers, made a scene of wild
merriment never forgotten.

[Illustration: 90801]

But Ralph could not see the funny side of these depredations. To him it
was a clear wrong to take what did not belong to them. He never would
join them in these expeditions, a course which exposed him to much
ridicule for his "pious notions," but which had no effect upon him.

Often their zeal in this direction brought its own punishment. On one of
these forays a long-legged, awkward fellow, who could outrun the fastest
chicken, chased an anxious hen into a thicket, where the grass was long
and rank. As he peered round for his game he spied a dozen or so eggs
shining in the sun. "Ah," he said, "my lady hen is stealing a nest.
Well, they look white and fresh, and I'll just confiscate them." His
pockets were full of sweet potatoes, he had a brace ot chickens slung
over his shoulders, he had lost his handkerchief, if he ever owned one,
and the problem was how to hold possession of the coveted prize.

"I know how I'll fix it. I'll put them in my cap. I can carry them all
right."

The eggs were tenderly deposited therein, and he started for camp.
He heard the boys who were still engaged in the chase {074}laughing
boisterously, and saw Rob Douglass, one of the new recruits, with a rope
tied to one of the hind legs of a monstrous pig, who was jerking him
right and left, in quite an unmilitary fashion. Now he was nearly on the
animal's back, and next he was measuring his length on the ground, but
he never once released the rope, while the shouts and cheers of the boys
who were watching the contest made Rob more determined than ever to land
his prize at the cook's tent.

Zach Smith joined in the merriment and began to chaff Rob, whose face
was grimy with perspiration, while his dust-covered clothes looked as
though a good brushing and a few stitches would improve them materially.

Seeing Zach he called to him to help haul in the "critter." The latter
started toward him, but Mrs. Piggie was of the same mind, for she turned
quickly and ran between his legs. Zach lost his balance and fell, and
as he instinctively shot out his hands to save his eggs his head struck
them squarely, while the liquid streaming down his face and neck sent
forth such an odor that the men, who had inhaled many strange ones since
leaving home, voted unanimously that that particular one "beat anything
on record."

Zach made his way back to his tent, followed by the jibes of his
comrades, as he bade Rob, in very strong language, to settle the pig as
best he could while he attended to disinfecting himself.

[Illustration: 0082]



CHAPTER VI. ANOTHER BATTLE.

[Illustration: 9083]

OYS," said {075}Lieutenant Graves, "we have our orders to turn out and
show what we are made of. You know General McClellan has command of the
Army of Virginia, and he thinks we've been rusting here long enough;
so we're to help General Stone in drawing out the enemy. They've so far
kept in hiding, and we've got to force them out into a square and open
fight."

"The General thinks we're spoiling for a battle, doesn't he?"

"I suppose so. Anyway, we are to cross the Potomac at Conrad's Ferry
and wake 'em up. General McCall has his hands full watching the river
crossings, and we must help him do it." This was good news to most of
the men, who had grown tired of inaction. The long summer had worn away,
and Ralph had often slipped away from camp and run into the negro cabins
near by, where he was sure of a nice piece of hoe cake, baked on the
hearth. The garrulous darkeys liked to see Ralph coming, and many a
question they put to him which he could scarcely answer, so little did
he know of the true state of affairs.

There are few idle moments in camp, for the duties of the soldier are
too numerous to afford him that leisure which permits of homesickness.
He has letters to write home, old ones to read; then, too, his spare
time is occupied in looking for something to eat which his knapsack
doesn't hold--not because his rations are scanty, or he is hungry, but
he grows tired of the regular diet. He is always doing duty, police or
fatigue, and the perpetual drilling, all keep him busy.

{076}

[Illustration: 0084]

Mending clothes became quite an art among the soldiers, and the manner
in which some of them darned their stockings would reflect credit
upon {077}many a housewife who has the reputation of being an ex pert
seamstress.

Wash day in camp was as important an occasion as it is at home, and
preparations were made with as much regard to convenience as the
surroundings would permit.

[Illustration: 0085]

Ralph was very fond of running into old "Aunt Judah's" cabin, for her
"pones" were especially toothsome. The old negress was not handsome--her
black skin was shriveled and seamed with age; she was nearly blind, but
she was an admirable cook.

"Massa," she said to Ralph one day, when she had filled his knapsack
with smoking hot pone and luscious sweet potatoes, whose pulp was as
golden as the sunflower's petals,--"I'se been pondering in my own min'
and I kaint see what you all is fighting 'bout. Clar to goodness I
kaint."

{078}

[Illustration: 0086]

"We {079}are fighting to make the Southerners come back into the Union."

"De Union? What you mean by dat?"

"The Union--the States. There are thirty-five States, and how many
slabes does he own?"

"None at all. We don't have slaves up North."

"Don't hab slabes? Who totes your water and picks de cotton and hoes de
fields?"

"We don't grow any cotton, and all our work is done by people whom we
hire and pay money to."

The old slave's eyes opened wide with curiosity.

"And when dey gets sassy, does de oberseer whip 'em?" Ralph laughed
heartily as he thought of the suit for assault and battery whipping a
servant up North would bring about. Here was an old colored woman as
ignorant of her relationship to the great tide of humanity as a child.
Born in the West in a little village where no negroes were to be found,
he had seldom met one.

The old woman seemed to be talking to herself.

"It pears to me dey must be dissbedient and sassy sumtimes. All niggers
are. Wonder how dey makes dem mind. When dey runs across a right smart
uppish cullered pusson how do dey settle wid him? Did you say, massa,
dey neber whip dem?"

"No, auntie, they never do."

Aunt Judah shook her head doubtingly. "Massa."

"The one man governs the whole of them. Your old masters didn't like the
man who was chosen, and so they said they wouldn't stay in the Union to
be governed by him."

"Is dat man a big man? Does he b'long to a good family?"

I was plain to her the difference between servants North and South? To
him slavery was a mere name. He knew nothing of its blighting understand
how dreary and hopeless the life of a "chattel" broke {080}out suddenly,
"dey flogs dem down here; dey has to, sumtimes. I neber was struck a
blow. I was a house servant, but my man worked on de plantation.
'Diamond Joe,' dey called him; he was lashed ebery now and den, and I
tink it made him ugly. He was a likely boy. Wy, massa used to 'clar if
he wan't so stubbon, jess like one of our plantation mules, he wouldn't
take de price of two boys for him, for he could hoe and pick mo' cotton
dan any 'mount of boys. His skin was as shiny as de satin in Missus'
dress, and dark, and he was tall like de poplar trees, and strong and
big. Joe lubbed me in dose days."

[Illustration: 9088]

Ralph looked at her wonderingly. Here was a new thought. Did those
uncouth black folks care for each other as white people did? Were they
capable of attachments? She was almost hideous--had she ever been young?

A tear rolled down Aunt Judah's withered cheek, and she seemed to
be looking far away. She was silent so long that Ralph began to be
impatient to get back to camp with his knapsack full of good things.

"Well, auntie, where is Joe now? He must be pretty old by this time."

A solemn look stole over her features, and looking up to where the blue
sky showed through the chinks in the little cabin roof, she said--

"In {081}Heben, I b'leeve. Oh, honey, it makes my heart heaby eben now,
and offen and offen de tears dey makes my old eyes burn. Many a day I'se
asked my hebenly Fader whar on dis big yarth my Joe was, but it must
hab been wicked fur me to ask de Great King anyting 'bout a po' cullered
boy, fur I neber had any answer. But Joe was a powerful hansum boy, de
best one on de plantation."

[Illustration: 8089]

"How did he die?"

"Die? I didn't 'spress my 'pinion dat he _was_ dead. I has looked long
for Joe, and I 'mos knows he must be gone up above, for he lubbed me and
he lubbed de little missie--de little daisy, Missie Flossie. She was de
only one who could bring him out of his tantarums, fer po' Joe did hab
spells, when he was ugly. Massa Steve--he owned us bof--I 'members dat
day well; it was a sunshiny day, de yarth was all carpeted wid de short,
green grass, and de flowers filled de whole land wid deir sweetness. It
was so bright my heart was singing a song, and Missus Flora wanted to
be druv to town to buy some nice tings for de little missie's birfday
party. Massa {082}say 'Joe, Dicks got a sick hoss to 'tend you hitch up
de big black team, and take your mistress to town.' Joe, he whispered
to me--I had tuk de little lady out on de lawn--dat he cudn't dribe dem
speerited critters, fur he had burnt his hands roasting corn in de ashes
de night afore. 'Don't stan dar, you brack rascal,' massa said, fur he
seed him talking to me. 'Massa, I'se dead anxious to go, but I hab a
bery bad hand--caint Dick go dis time wid de missus?'

[Illustration: 9090]

"Then massa, he got as white as a sheet wif temper, and his voice was
like thunder--'No! go as I told you. Do you want anoder flogging?'

"I felt way down all fru me, sumfing was gwine to happen, for Joe he
looked so wicked, and he kep' muttering and muttering, and I was scared,
fur I knowed sumfing was about to break, when Joe 'muned wid his-self.
But oh, massa, I shall neber forget de awful night dat fell, and no Joe,
nor no missus, nor no carridge and hosses cumd home. Massa was wild.
He tore up and down de lawn, running here and shouting dar, and sending
fust one nigger, den anudder, to the neighbors' plantations to see if
missie had dun gone visiting at any ob dem. Den he called fur Dick and
his white hoss, and was jess jumping on his back when de hans' set up
a holler ing and {083}de carridge cum taring onto de lawn, and fust dey
'lowed Missus Flora was dead, fur she was cuddled up in a heap, as white
as snow. Wen dey got her to cum to she tole Massa Steve how Joe had dun
gone to town wid her and den wen she wanted to cum home he had rode 'em
off, way off inter de woods, and way inter de midst of de fick trees,
and gibing de hosses a terrible lashing he started dem, heads toward
home; den dey runned all de way ober sticks and limbs of trees till
dey foun' de open road, wen dey went so fas' Missus lost her breff and
cudn't see any mo'.

[Illustration: 9091]

"You should have seen massa den! He swore so loud it made my ears ache,
and all de time he was looking right at me. He said Joe had run away and
he'd hab de young black debil's hide off when he kotched him, and if he
was shore any ob de slabes knew he was going it ud be wuss for dem; he'd
sell 'em to de very next trader dat cumd along, and dey'd be toted down
Souf, whar dey'd be showed how to work. He swore he had nuffing but a
pack of lazy niggers roun' him, who didn't desarve to hab a good master.
And, honey, fore de Lawd, Massa Steve was a kind master, only he wud
swar and cuss at us once in awhile."

"What became of Joe? Did they catch him?" asked Ralph, who was so deeply
interested in her story that he had forgotten all {084}about the boys in
camp who were waiting for that hot corn bread.

"Yes, massa, I seen him dragged in de next day, after dey had hunted all
night wid de dogs. Dey had torn his clothes in tatters, and his han's
and face was all red wid de blood whar he fought wid dem. De master he
was so mad he made de slaves all come outen deir cabins, to see how dey
sarbed a runaway. I can see it now"--and she covered her eyes with her
wrinkled black hands--"I can see it all. Oh, Joe, I neber forgits dat
day. And when de cruel 'black snake' cut his back ebery time it hit him
he neber said a word, but he kind o' shibered all over and set his teeth
hard, but I screamed out 'Po' Joe! Will nobody pity po' Joe?' and fell
down on de grass all cold as a stone. My breff was gone, and I fought
de angel ob de Lord had done called me home and jess den Massa Steve
say--'Go to your quarters, Joe.' My Joe, he walk off as proud as a king.
Missus she was bery sorry for me, and was allus bery kind to me, but Joe
neber sing in de field any mo'. He would fix his eyes on me so terrible
I was almos' afraid of him, and he would mutter dat de avenger was on
de white man's track. 'I'm gwine to be free. Neber no more will dey lash
Joe.' I used to tink de walls would hear him and tell de massa. But dey
didn't, and one night wen ebery libing soul 'cept de watch dogs were in
deir beds, de hosses 'gan to stamp and kick in deir boxes, and de dogs
were howling, and den we heard de white folks screaming, louder and
louder, and fas' as we could, we ran outen our cabins, and dar up on de
little knoll-whar de house stood, we saw de black smoke pouring out ob
de windows and rolling up to de sky, and den turning redder and redder,
and we could 'stinguish Massa Steve and Missus Flora out on de lawn jess
as dey jumped from deir beds.

"De oberseer was fighting de flames and he tole us to get all de buckets
we could, and fotch de water from de well in dem, and he jumped on a
hoss and galloped to de nearest plantation for help, and dey all turned
out, white people and slabes, and brought water, and soon de fire
{085}wasn't red no mo', but de house--you can see de walls now ober dar,
whar dey stand to 'min' me ebery day ob de dear massa and missie and de
little lamb, Flossie--was no house any more, all de insides gone, and de
black outside standing up in de summer air."

[Illustration: 9093]

She paused to wipe away the hot tears that blinded her.

"What became of your master and his family?"

"Massa and missus were presarbed, but de little white blos-whose birfday
had been so bright, dey didn't know whar to look for her, and her mudder
was screeching 'My baby--my baby!' and going out o' one faint into
anoder, and her pa trying to rush inter de smoking house and calling for
his Flossie--oh, it was enuff to make de har turn gray!

"She muss hab been frightened so when de smoke got in her pretty blue
eyes dat she didn't know how to fin' de way out, fer she was crouched
down behind de front stairs, and dat's de spot whar Dick found her, wid
her night-dress all on fire, but de light tole him whar to look.

"When he put de little precious chile in my-arms she put her {086}baby
fingers on my black face and she said, 'Judah, tell mamma--I am not
hurt--but I caint see!' Honey, de nex' day she shut dem po' little eyes
on dis world, and missie, whose heart broke den, followed her lamb to de
hebenly pastures whar de good Lawd 'tends to all deir wants."

"What became of your master?"

"Massa Steve? He went ober de sea, and he died in anoder country. De
plantation and all de slabes went to his brudder, who had de big house
yo' sees ober dar on de road put up. No one eber goes near de old place,
fer dey say its hanted."

[Illustration: 0094]

"But the old home and Joe? You don't think he had anything to do with
setting it on fire?"

"Massa, de good Book tells de po' creatures dat dey musn't form no
'pinion to hurt deir neighbors. It goes agin me to say dat he did, but
yo' didn't know Joe, and I did."

"Did they suspect him?"

"I neber could look dem in de face to know, but Joe neber was seen after
de house was burned, and dat's many years in de past."

Ralph drew a long breath, and bidding the old negress goodbye, he
{087}went back to camp with a sad heart. When he entered the camp he
found the men gathered in knots, discussing the news they had just
received of a coming engagement.

"What are we going out for?" asked a new man.

"So as to give the rebs a chance to lay us out, or be laid out
themselves. What do you suppose we go to war for?"

[Illustration: 9095]

Old Bill's gruff tones nettled the man.

"It don't hurt you to answer a civil question, does it?"

"Well, not exactly. You see General McCall has had an advance guard out
reconnoitering, but he can't persuade the boys over on the Virginia side
to show up on open ground. They say there's a big force of Confeds at
Leesburg, five miles or so back from the river."

"This will be my first battle," the new recruit said, with a sigh, "but
I don't expect it'll be my last."

"That's right--never say die. The man who is a little chicken-hearted at
first, often turns out to be the most courageous soldier."

"I remember reading once," Ralph interposed, "that at some charge on a
battery in one of the battles Napoleon fought when the odds were greatly
against him, his attention was called by one of his officers to the
cowardice of one poor fellow who was pressing on, up to the cannon's
mouth. His knees were shaking, {088}his eyes bulged out, and he gave
every evidence of being terror-stricken. But his gaze was fixed on the
coveted point, his teeth were set hard, and he kept resolutely on. 'That
man is not a coward,' said the great general; 'he sees that his life is
in danger, and still he does not shrink from his duty, but faces death
like a man. He will be shot before he yields."

[Illustration: 00896]

"But the soldier was not wounded. He lived to become an officer in the
very regiment which one would have expected to see disgraced by his
cowardice, and won great fame through his heroic bravery in after
engagements."

"Boys," said Old Bill, who was always the spokesman for the {089}party,
"the 'Little Corporal'--that's Napoleon Bonaparte," he continued in an
aside to the new man, who made a wry face at being singled out for an
explanation--"was right. It's agin human nature not to feel a little
shaky when you are going into your first battle. It's how you do your
duty that settles your standing. If you attend to that no one can blame
you for having a leetle private fear of your own."

[Illustration: 0097]



CHAPTER VII. THE DISASTER AT BALL'S BLUFF.

[Illustration: 9098]

HASTY {090}breakfast, with a rigid inspection of their
muskets, and a hurried packing of knapsacks, preceded the long role of
the drum, the signal to be up and doing. The sight of a body of soldiers
with their glittering arms and tasty uniforms is inspiriting, and dull
and cold must be the bosom that does not leap quicker at the thought
that he belongs to this grand whole. Ralph felt a thrill of exultation
as he realized that he was a part and parcel of the men who were massed
on the bank of the Potomac that bright October day. There were Ralph's
regiment of Massachusetts men, the Forty-second New York, Seventy-first
Pennsylvania and a Rhode Island battery, counting, in all, some 2,000
men, watching for a chance to cross at an island which lay there.

The day was beautiful--the sun poured down his warm beams, for in
that region the winter is late. Many were the openly spoken murmurs of
impatience, however, on the part of the men.

"We shall never get across till doomsday," Bill Elliott said to Ralph.
"Look at our men, over 2,000 of them, and we've only got two or three
old boats to carry us over. With all due respect to General McClellan,
I think he's made a great big mistake, as General Stone will find to his
cost before we're over. The Johnnies can see all we're doing and get
all ready for us. Why, it'll be dead easy for them to receive us in fine
shape."

"They are having hard work with that battery, getting it up the bluff.
See how they slip at every step."

And as Ralph watched the battery being dragged up with prodigious
exertion his heart felt heavy, and he, too, began to fear there was an
oversight somewhere.

[Illustration: 0099]

At {091}the top of the bluff lay a broad field of about ten acres,
hemmed in on all sides by thick woods, so dense that neither infantry
nor artillery could penetrate them in line. Colonel Baker was given
entire command of all the troops. Then began a desperate and gallant
attempt, which the Confederates met, dashing out from the timber, and
though the Federals fired round after round from their battery, it was a
hopeless conflict, for the rebel sharpshooters picked off their gunners,
one after another, and the pieces were left useless.

Still {092}on the Union forces pressed, to be met by a heavy body of
infantry, whose hot fire cut them down. For two hours they stood their
ground gallantly, and returned the fire with spirit. Suddenly an officer
riding a splendid horse, whose snowy sides were covered with foam,
dashed out of the woods, and coming toward them, waving his sword over
his head, he beckoned the Union forces forward.

Colonel Baker took new courage; he thought he recognized General
Johnston in the horseman, and wildly cheering to his command to follow,
he pressed forward, hoping at last he should meet the enemy in an open
fight. But he was met by a fierce onset of the Confederates, who came on
with tremendous force. Like a solid wall they met the Federals, and as
part of the latter's columns charged, Colonel Baker received the whole
contents of a revolver in the hands of one of the rebels, and fell dead.

His body was rescued through the bravery of Captain Beiral and his
company, who fought their way back through the thickest of the opposing
force, and with desperate courage rescued the body of their dead
commander, and conveyed it to the island. At once the rout began, and
the Union forces were driven back, down the steep clay bluffs, one
hundred feet high, falling, jumping down, pushed by the Confederates,
who followed at their heels, killing and taking prisoners.

It was an awful spectacle. Men whose courage could not be doubted, were
panic-stricken, and throwing away coats, muskets, and everything
that could impede them, plunged into the river, whose rapid current
overwhelmed them, and to their shrieks as they drowned, was added the
rapid firing of the Confederates on the cliff above, the roar of the
artillery, the cries of the wounded, making a scene of horror which
cannot be described. The imagination alone can fill in the picture.

Among the incidents of this day may be mentioned a desertion of one
of the regiments by its colonel, who swam the river on horseback, thus
making his escape. Many took to a boat, which was quickly filled, and
as quickly sunk with every soul. A {093}captain in the Fifteenth
Massachusetts came to the rescue of the fleeing Federals, with two
companies, and charged up the hill, only to see how little help he
could give, and a few moments decided him to wave his handkerchief, and
surrender to the Confederates.

Dispirited and weary, the remnant of the troops moved back to camp.
Their loss had been heavy. Over five hundred soldiers had been captured
by the Confederates, Colonel Baker had been shot, and they had lost
arms, ammunition and clothing.

Corporal Ralph Gregory had shown coolness and clearheaded courage, equal
to the oldest and bravest. When the battle began, the color-sergeant
had received a ball in the breast, and had fallen dead. Seizing the
flag from his stiffening fingers, Ralph rushed to the front, and held
it manfully, through the storm of bullets that riddled its folds, and
clinging desperately to it, he carried it proudly and safely, soiled and
torn, but not disgraced.

But his strength was not equal to his courage, and handing it to a
stalwart comrade whose arm was more powerful, he bade him to "protect
it from capture." The colors went back to camp, and with them, went the
story of the boy's bravery.

Ralph was weak, his nerves were unstrung. His ears still echoed the
noise and confusion of the battle that had not yet died away. Still the
Union men were fleeing, pursued closely by their enemy, who wounded them
with muskets and swords, as they ran. The agonized shrieks of those
who met their death in the swift-flowing stream rang in his ears with
fearful distinctness, and he vaguely wondered if he would ever cease to
hear them.

He was unnerved. It was not cowardice, but the reaction that so often
follows times of great excitement. Exhaustion, complete and unavoidable,
had taken possession of him. He reeled like a drunken man. Making a
frantic effort to recover himself, he sank on the earth amid a clump of
leaves and brush, that half hid him from observation. How long he lay
in this stupor he could not tell, but when he became conscious of
the dreadful {094}place he was in, he slowly struggled to his feet,
half-dazed and bewildered. His first thought was to wonder where Bill
was. He recollected that he had fled in hot haste with the others, and
the last glimpse of him which he had, was when the plucky Massachusetts
captain made his stand, but was compelled to surrender. He was sure that
he had been wounded, for he saw blood streaming down Bill's face, as he
ran.

[Illustration: 8102]

"Could he have escaped, or is he among the dead lying here?" he thought.
"I must search for him."

And as he threaded his way among the dead and wounded as best he could
in the twilight, he stumbled over the body of a boy. Kneeling down, he
turned the lad's face upward, and in the dim light he knew him.

"It is Charlie Arlington!--he is surely dead!"

The boy opened his eyes, and seeing Ralph, he assured him that he was
not wounded, but he feared his ankle was sprained. "I told you," he
said, with a smile, "that we should meet again."

"You did, but I did not think it would be so soon. Are you injured?"

"Only by my horse, who stumbled and threw me with such force against
that old stump that I fainted with pain. Do you think my leg is broken?"

"Let me examine it. No, I don't think it is. How are you going to ride,
however? Where is your horse?"

"Oh, he ran away after serving me that mean trick. But why {095}are you
here? Don't you know you are my prisoner now?" he continued, smiling
broadly.

"How's that?" Ralph spoke sharp and loud.

"Hush!" the other cautioned. "You'll have a dozen soldiers after you.
They're coming back to bury the dead. Of course you're my prisoner.
You're on our field--were you not routed?"

This fact rather staggered Ralph. It had not come home to him till then;
he looked anxiously toward the river's bank.

The boy divined his thought.

"It's no use to try to swim that stream here. The current's too strong."

[Illustration: 8103]

"It seems I'm your prisoner, then." Ralph's sad tones spoke volumes. The
horrors of captivity stared him in the face. He thought at that instant,
of his mother, sisters and the dear old home, and his heart was heavy as
lead.

Charlie appeared to be enjoying the advantage he had over Ralph, for he
never removed his gaze.

"I've but to raise my voice and you'd be surrounded in an instant."

"But how is it you are here now; I thought you knew nothing about the
army," said Ralph.

"I {096}didn't when I last saw you, but I joined the Southern army the
next week. I am in the cavalry service."

Ralph's curiosity would never be silenced. "Do you like it?" he asked.

"Yes, and no. I have been in several engagements, but the hardest blow
I had was when they carried my father home dead, and I asked for a
furlough, to go home to see him once more, and was refused."

Here the boy nearly broke down. Ralph's sympathies were aroused at
once. He knew not what to say. But Charlie recovered himself soon, and
continued--"You see how I'm placed now. I shall _have_ to take you into
our camp."

"I wish Bill were here!" Ralph blurted out. "He wouldn't see me taken
prisoner so easily."

To him Bill represented the sum total of all knowledge, and he felt
confident of his ability to rescue him, even in the face of the danger
that now menaced him.

A low whistle startled both boys. A few feet from them, stretched
lengthwise of a fallen tree, lay Bill, who raised his head, which was
bleeding freely.,

"I've a good mind to take you both prisoners!" he said, jocosely. "What
are you exchanging courtesies for? The boy's right. Unless we can get
away in a very big hurry, he can land us both in the rebel camp, and
then it'll be all over with us. You'd better be planning each other's
escape, and then you'll both be likely to be court-martialed!"

"It's my luck, isn't it? I can't blame Charlie if he does take me. But I
haven't got anything against him."

"Neither has any of us got anything against any of the Johnnies. This is
not a personal affair, at all. But just the same we've got to fight 'em
because they're agin the government."

Ralph looked closer at Bill. "You're wounded, and will be carried to
prison, too! Oh, Bill, what will become of you?"

{097}

[Illustration: 0105]

"It's nothing but a scratch. I lay here awhile till those fellows'
{098}guns gave out, for I felt a little dizzy, and didn't care to get up
till the smoke cleared away, and I could make out my bearings."

A groan from their companion recalled them to their position. Ralph was
in a fever of anxiety. War was a brutalizing affair, he pondered.
"You mustn't have any feelings at all, Bill, if you want to be a good
soldier."

"Nary a feeling. Humanity don't cut no figger in a battle. Why, boy,
I've stood in the ranks and seen father on one side, and son on the
other, blazing away with hate and bitterness in their eyes. And all
on account of a mere difference of opinion." Ralph shuddered. "It is
dreadful; but war shall never make me so hardened and indifferent to
suffering that I will not do all I can in honor to relieve it. I intend
to fulfill all my duties as a soldier, but do not see why I should
hesitate to show mercy to an injured foe."

"He's the right sort," Bill chuckled to himself.

With that thought in his mind, Ralph went nearer to Charlie, and
said--"Give me your handkerchief, and I will bandage your ankle." In a
few moments he had finished binding it on, tightly and skillfully, while
the boy looked his gratitude.

"It feels a little easier," he said, "the pain was intense." Bill
watched them both narrowly. In his heart he admired "the little rebel
cuss," but he wished him a thousand miles away, for he saw that it was
impossible to make their escape, as Charlie had only to raise his voice
as he had suggested, and the enemy would be upon them.

It was a moment of anxiety for the man and his companion. Charlie was
the most indifferent of the three. "I'd rather have been killed than
have to go to their prison, for who knows how long it may be before I am
exchanged?" thought Bill.

The firing had ceased, and darkness had settled o'er the earth. Suddenly
Charlie seemed to recollect something, for he whispered--"Go--you must
go, at once. The detail will soon be here, to bury our poor boys, and
they will have you, sure. Go down the bluff as still as you can; don't
loosen a pebble even, for there {099}are sharp ears near. Keep close
to the river bank, and about half a mile down you'll see an old tree
standing that has been struck by lightning. Two rods north of the tree a
little skiff is hid in the tall weeds. Take it and row across. Go quick,
and, above all, make no noise. My life, as well as yours, is in danger.
They'd shoot me in a minute, if they knew I helped you escape."

"You're a brick--you are!" broke out Bill, admiringly. Ralph wrung his
hand. "What will you do? You can't lie here all night."

"They'll find me all right and carry me off to the hospital. I can talk,
if I can't walk, and I'll soon let them know where I am. But you haven't
a second to waste. Go!"

The hint, so urgently given, was acted upon, and none too speedily, for
a moment after, the men appeared, and Charlie was suddenly seized with a
violent fit of coughing, so loud and boisterous, it was well calculated
to cover any noise which Ralph and Bill might unintentionally make. He
was placed on a litter and borne away.

Bill scarce drew a breath until his feet touched the bottom of the boat.
Charlie's violent cough had served them well, for though they stole
noiselessly down the bluff, the night was so still that a breath almost
could be detected. They were soon across the noble river, and their
hearts beat tumultuously when they found themselves safe within the
Union lines.

Bill's wound was not serious, so he declared. He even objected to the
few days in the hospital which the surgeon prescribed. His good nature
never left him.

"Sick men may go and lay up, but you cain't kill Old Bill. I'm presarved
for something better than to stop a bullet. I've been through too many
hard sieges to give in for a little blow like that was."

"You've got another invite to see the Colonel," a grizzled old soldier
said to Ralph a day or two after the engagement. "He desires the
pleasure of your company in his tent. Leastwise, that's what it amounts
to, though that ain't the language he {100}made use of. Wonder why I
don't be asked once in awhile? He don't know what he's losing by not
consulting me. But hurry up--'tain't perlite to keep him waiting."

Ralph trembled visibly, and every drop of blood turned to ice. He knew
something must be wrong. Perhaps he ought not to have helped Charlie,
but what else could he do? He walked briskly toward the tent of the
officer.

Colonel Hopkins was a stern, battle-scarred old soldier, who wasted no
words. His keen vision could discover merit, however, and as he looked
steadily at Ralph, he took his measure at once.

[Illustration: 9108]

"Your captain tells me you saved the colors of the regiment, in the late
engagement?"

"I did, Colonel."

"And you risked your life in so doing."

"Why should I not? I am a soldier, sir!" and the boy's "I will, with the
help of Heaven!" was Ralph's fervent utterance, as he followed the
orderly from the Colonel's tent.

{101}

[Illustration: 0109]

One of the most brilliant affaire of the war was the charge of a body of
cavalry under Fremont. This was a fine and choice {102}array of cavalry,
known as "Fremont's Body Guard," whose exploits were famous. It was
commanded by Major Charles Zagonyi, a Hungarian, whose military record
had been made in Europe.

[Illustration: 9110]

This dashing and fiery soldier, with a band of 160 men, charged upon
a Confederate force of 2,000, who were drawn up in a hollow square.
He rode across the field, unheeding the firing of the skirmishers, but
charged into the midst of the Confederates, and with pistols and sabers,
scattered them like dry leaves in the autumn wind. Not content with
this, the daring Major chased them into the streets of Springfield, and
fought them hand to hand.

After this daring and unequaled achievement, he hoisted the National
flag upon the courthouse at Springfield, sent a guard to care for the
wounded, and then went quietly back to Bolivar.

[Illustration: 0110]



CHAPTER VIII. THE ARMY IN WINTER QUARTERS.

[Illustration: 9111]

INTER so {103}far had brought them much suffering and privation.
To Ralph it was peculiarly dreary. With the prospect of a period of
inactivity, it was strange that so little provision was made to protect
them from the cold, raw winds that were so frequent. Many of the
soldiers put up rude huts, made from the fine timber which grew
so plentiful in that region, and those who were independent and
enterprising enough to build for themselves, often fashioned a very
snug, cozy little house. The rough stone fireplace, put together with
Virginia mud, was never wanting. What though it was neither symmetrical
nor artistic? The warmth and cheer compensated for the absence of both
these features.

In some of these huts--they surely deserved a better title--the men
threw themselves down at night on the ground, which was covered with
blankets, rubber coats, and any material the jovial occupants could find
to keep out the dampness. Some, more pretentious, constructed bunks or
boxes round the sides, which were as comfortable as a spring bed would
be at home. It was quite common to find home-made chairs, benches and
tables, round which they gathered when off duty, and told stories or
discussed the situation. The walls were papered with illustrations cut
from newspapers, which added to the charms of the dwelling.

{104}

[Illustration: 0112]

But the greater number shivered under canvas tents, feeling keenly the
light snows and rains, followed by days of thaw and sunshine, which were
so frequent. To add to the dreariness of their surroundings, the funeral
dirge was often heard, as the dead were carried out from hospital, who
had succumbed to that apparently {105}simple disease, the measles, but
which leaves its victim feeble, exhausted, and unable to rally.

To a new recruit, or to one who is full of sensibility, as Ralph was,
these sights were particularly depressing.

[Illustration: 0113]

A snowstorm during the day had been succeeded by a windy, cold night.
Ralph had been writing to his mother, and while he took care to
make every word as cheerful as he could, and never to mention his
discomforts, vet the mother heart between the lines, and knew her boy
was homesick, pining for her, as she, alas! was longing for the loving
caress and the sound of his voice.

As he pushed back the stool which had answered for a writing desk, the
wind gave a sudden whirl and lifted the canvas, sending a shower of
sleet over him which made him shiver.

"The winter here is full as cold and disagreeable as up North!" he said.
"I thought this was a land of perpetual sunshine and flowers!"

He {106}peered out at the sentry, who hugged his great coat closer, as
he paced to and fro. He fancied he saw in the gloom a man and horse, and
heard the sharp challenge--

"Halt! Who goes there?"

The horseman drew up, and replied promptly--

"A messenger from General Shields, with dispatches for Colonel Hopkins.
I must deliver them at once."

[Illustration: 0114]

The sentinel called--"Sergeant of the guard--post number five--a message
from headquarters!"

The words were passed along the line of guards, until it reached the
sergeant, who came instantly.

He carried the papers to his colonel, who read them hastily, and signed
each one, handing them back to the orderly, who rode swiftly away.

Ralph was by this time outside his tent, unmindful of the sleet
{107}which tore his flesh like sharp-pointed arrows. He longed to
know what those dispatches signified, but his curiosity had to remain
unsatisfied, and he went back to his tent to try to sleep, as well as he
could, for the biting wind that forced its way into every crevice.

[Illustration: 0115]

He seated himself on the side of his bed, and tried to think. He
wondered when General McClellan was going to take Richmond. The cry "All
Quiet on the Potomac" was heard continually, and weary men and weeping
women all over the land were longing for the dawn of peace which should
bring back to them fathers, husbands and sons. But ah, that peace was
far distant. The boy reasoned that he had no right to criticise the men
who held trusted positions in the army. But surely the boys in camp
and field were doing all they could, under orders, to hasten the end of
these troublous times. Would the conflict ever cease?

Perplexed {108}and worn out in trying to solve the problem agitating so
many of the most patriotic and the most far-seeing, all over the land,
Ralph at last fell asleep, to be roused by the reveille. He sprang
up, sure that he must be dreaming, for he had just been sleeping but a
moment--a mere "cat nap," and this couldn't be a summons to leave his
comfortable bed. He had neither time nor right to object, however; his
sole duty was to obey orders, and he hastened to dress. Outside, the
soldiers were hurrying about, most of those who were called on glad of
any break in the monotony of their first winter in camp.

"Breakfast at two, march at half-past," was the captain's peremptory
order.

"What an unearthly hour," was Ralph's comment. "Where, are we bound? And
why march at night?"

"Can't say," a comrade ventured, "unless it's so we won't have to march
by day!"

They were not long in suspense.

A portion of their regiment was ordered to assist a force of Ohio and
Indiana men under Colonel Dunning, in routing a body of Confederates who
were posted near Romney, Va., at a point called Blue Gap.

The wind had died away, the stars were out, and the moon shone
brilliantly. The cutting sleet had turned to snow, and the soft carpet
lay white and pure, muffling the sound of their footsteps. It was a
weird sight--that mass of men tramping along with steady steps,
while their shadows falling on the ground danced and flickered in the
moonbeams with startling vividness.

Blue Gap was a natural opening between hills, and was well defended by
howitzers and rifle pits. As they approached the Gap, Ralph's keen
eye detected a dozen men piling up limbs, straw, and other inflammable
material, against the bridge that spanned a stream running through the
Gap.

"Captain," he said, "some of those fellows have left the lines, and are
fixing things nice to burn that bridge."

"We'll block that game, instanter. We need that bridge more than they
do."

A {109}dash was made for the bridge, led by the captain, who opened fire
upon them, and thus ended that attempt. On the hills the entrenchments
were held manfully, but the Confederates had scarce time to pour forth
their fire, before the two Ohio regiments dashed upon them, and captured
two pieces of artillery. The surprise was so complete and the attack so
overwhelming, that defense was vain.

The hills were swarming with Federals, fighting hand to hand, and
forcing their opponents back. The houses on the other shore were filled
with sharpshooters, whose constant firing harassed the Federals, and
brought down a soldier at nearly every shot.

A score of men sprang into a large boat lying at the bank, and with a
storm of bullets hissing and rattling about them, they crossed to the
shore where the sharpshooters were hidden. Death menaced them, but with
a huzza that would have put life into a stone, they rowed fast, and
sprang out of the boat. Dashing up the hill, to the houses which the
enemy had used for vantage ground, they found them vacated.

"They didn't wait to make our acquaintance," Ralph said.

"No, but those sharpshooters introduced themselves to us in fine style.
Why, a man went down at nearly every shot."

Bill said not a word, but leaned heavily over the side of the boat. No
one paid him attention, for their hearts were filled with a longing for
revenge.

"Boys, we have missed the rebs ensconced in these houses, but we can
prevent their using them again. We will burn them to the ground, and
take good care that not a timber stands, after we have done with them.
They have picked off some of our best men, and we won't leave a roof to
shelter them."

A dozen pairs of willing hands were at work in an instant gathering wood
and brush, which they piled around the dwellings. With faces grimy and
soiled, these resolute men touched the pile with a match, while they
stood ready to shoot the first man who dared to show himself to protest,
and soon the flames leaped upward, crackling, sputtering and curling
round doors no and {110}windows, licking up every object within reach,
till naught but the charred and blackened timbers stood to mark the spot
where the sharpshooters had dealt their deadly work.

The skirmish was brief. It was an easy victory, and no loss had been
sustained by the Federals, save those who were shot in the boats. But
the Confederate loss was greater. Forty soldiers were lying dead in the
grass and weeds, and as many more were carried back to camp, prisoners.

Even while the houses were being consumed, Ralph went back to assist
those who had received the bullets of the sharpshooters. Some had fallen
overboard, and sunk in the stream. Others were lying as they had fallen,
their cold hands still grasping their weapons, which they would never
use again. One poor fellow was kneeling in the bottom of the boat, his
finger on the trigger of his musket, and his staring eyes fixed on the
shore. Ralph shuddered. Could he ever become inured to these dreadful
sights?

Bill Elliott was leaning over the side of the boat, in a half-stupor. The
wound in his head had opened afresh, and the red stream was running down
his face, staining its ghastly whiteness crimson. His arm hung useless
by his side, shattered by a bullet. Opening his eyes at the sound of
Ralph's voice, he whispered faintly: "I thought you'd come arter me.
They've fixed me this time, sure," and he relapsed into unconsciousness.

A litter was soon hurried together, and Old Bill was placed in hospital.

[Illustration: 0118]



CHAPTER IX. FAIR OAKS.

[Illustration: 9119]

HE Johnnies {111}are busy these times, aren't they?' "And so are we,
chasing them up. I don't see that we are any nearer Richmond than we
were a month or so ago."

"Nor we won't be," broke in another man, "if General McClellan repeats
his Yorktown tactics. Perhaps, by the time we get to Richmond, we'll
find some 'Quaker guns' there."

"It must have been kind of disheartening to the boys after lying 'round
a place a month to have the rebs move out just as they were getting
ready to go in, and find they had left a lot of wooden guns behind."

All the next day the soldiers were working on the redoubts, and wholly
unaware of the surprise in store for them. May 31st dawned, and while
they were still fortifying their position, a tremor ran through the
line. "The Confederates are upon us!" was the cry, and as they tossed
aside the shovels, the Confederates charged upon them with their
well-known "yell" that so often echoed and re-echoed on the
battle-field.

But they found brave men ready to repel their assault. The Chickahominy
had swollen to such a height that bridges were carried away in its mad
rush. General McClellan had thrown the left wing of his forces across
the stream, but it was impossible to get reinforcements to their help.

Both sides showed unexampled bravery. General Johnston moved on toward
Richmond, six miles away, where he halted, for the purpose of striking
the detached wing of the Union forces. The rise of the river had
hampered the movements of the latter, and it seemed as if capture was
certain.

The half-finished redoubts had been occupied by General Casey's
{112}division of Keys' corps, and although they rallied several times,
it was in vain. The rebels, made a detour, and stole upon their rear,
and they could no longer hold them. Their line was in danger.

Meanwhile General Johnston's evident intention was to bring up a heavy
flanking force between General Casey and the river whose banks had risen
so unluckily for the Federals, cutting off all hopes of reinforcements.

And now a magnificent exhibition of courage was shown by Sumner. He
expected orders to go to the rescue, and his men were drawn up in line
ready for the summons. One bridge alone remained with which to cross the
river, and its approaches were under water. Some of its supports were
gone, and as the soldiers stepped upon it, the frail structure swayed
to and fro, mid the rushing waters, but they passed over as speedily and
safely as though it were a solid piece of masonry.

General Sumner's appearance was most opportune. He met the flank attack,
and was victorious. The slaughter was fearful. In this battle 12,000 men
gave up their lives--5,000 Northern men, and 7,000 Southern.

General Johnston fell, a Federal shot having taken effect. He was
carried off the field, and at first it was feared by the Confederates
that his wound was mortal, but after some months of suffering and
enforced retirement he recovered, and a year after assumed command of
the Confederate forces of the Mississippi.

Ralph was sent with one of the details to bury the dead and bring in the
wounded. Trenches were dug, and the dead piled in them. Many were left
where the last shot had struck them down, and earth was heaped
upon them. The ground was literally blood-soaked. The dead were
everywhere--the battle-field was one vast graveyard, with its tenants
left unburied.

Ralph entered a little log house in a pasture near the railroad, and
seated himself on a bench for a moment's rest. Just outside the door,
he found the dead and the wounded packed so close that he could scarcely
avoid stepping on them. To distinguish {113}them was a hard task, for
the wounded lay there so quiet and motionless, fast in that silent
resignation born of despair, that, save for the dull blackness that
covered the faces of those from whom life had fled, it would be easy to
mistake the living for the dead.

[Illustration: 0121]

All sorts and ages were there, in one mass--the boy, who had gone from
home, ardent and hopeful, the old man who had left the record of an
honorable life behind him; officers who had cheered their commands on to
victory, privates who had fought fearlessly--all lay there, while horses
had fallen dead across their riders, or were struggling in agony. The
picture was horrible! He was r e minded of h is duty by the voice of an
old man, who came into the room where he was musing.

"This is a cruel war, sir!" he said to Ralph. "I've been raised here,
man and boy, nigh onto seventy years, and I never thought, when I played
in these fields, that I should ever live to see them desecrated with
human blood."

Ralph {114}raised his head, and looked at him earnestly.

"No," the old man continued, "I have looked for the coming of the Lord'
these many years, but I never thought He would come in blood and smoke,
and the noise of battle."

"What do you mean?" the boy asked, breathlessly. "How has the Lord
come?"

"Has He not come to set human beings free? Is not the black man's
bondage nearly over? Is not slavery doomed? Then the only blot upon the
fair name of America will be wiped out. The North and South will become
brothers again, and go hand in hand in all worthy undertakings. Thus, as
one family again, they will march on, to a grand and glorious destiny."

"If my mother could hear him talk!" his listener thought. "What does he
mean by the blacks being set free?" For the Proclamation of Emancipation
had not yet been given to the world, and the position of the slaves
during hostilities had not been settled.

"Are you a Northerner?" he asked the old man.

"No, I am a Southerner," with a tinge of pride in his tones. "How do you
dare say such things?".

"I am an old man, and they call me childish and silly. But I love my
country, and I want to see her truly great."

"Have you always talked in this way?" queried Ralph, puzzled at the old
man's language and manners.

"Always. Oh, I have paid dearly for my opinions. I have had my house
torn down over my head, I have suffered in my young days; but I have
lost all I ever loved, and they pity me now. I know I shall live to see
my prayer answered--that we may become a free and united country. Then I
shall be ready to die. Yes, it comes to that with old and young. We must
all be ready to die at any moment."

With a courteous nod to Ralph, he passed out of the door, and the boy
was left alone.

"We must be ready to die at any moment!" The words sounded like a knell
to Ralph. Was _he_ ready to die? He had, been carefully nurtured by that
blessing to a child, a praying mother, {115}and his boyish days were
spent in the Sabbath school. Like all in the springtime of life, death
seemed afar off, something that would not approach him for many years.
Death was the expected portion of the old, but he had always resolutely
put aside all thoughts of a future that did not belong to this life.

Now these words came home like a shock. Was he ready? He had never been
a bad boy, in any sense, but still he was not ready or willing to die.
At that possibility his courage forsook him; memory went swiftly back to
many a childish piece of wrong-doing, which, under the fear of death,
he magnified into black and unpardonable sins. Filled with sorrow and
repentance he fell on his knees on the hard floor of that little cabin,
with the dead so near him, and cried--"Help, O Lord, or I perish!"

A wave of tender feeling swept over his soul, and his mother's favorite
psalm, the 118th which she had read to him so often, came to his
remembrance, and one verse was as music to him,--"The Lord is on my
side; I will not fear. What can man do unto me?" He rose to his feet,
refreshed and made strong.

[Illustration: 0123]



CHAPTER X. CAMP FUN.

[Illustration: 9124]

HAT time {116}should not hang heavy on their hands, much inventive
genius was brought into play, and no schoolboys, famous for their
ability in making up games, could equal these grown men in originating
sports to fill in the hours that otherwise would have been exceedingly
dull. Some such safety-valve was necessary, or else many would have
broken down with memories of the dear ones at home, and the depressing
sights of war, and its hardships.

The camp echoed often with the songs so dear to all who can be moved by
tender thoughts. Many of the men were the possessors of rich, melodious
voices, that brought many a thrill of delight to their listeners, in
their tones.

Ralph had a fine voice, and to please his comrades he often sang the
sweet old songs of childhood, while they listened with an enthusiasm
and rounds of applause that many a prima donna could not have inspired.
Throwing themselves around the blazing camp fire whose ruddy sparks flew
heavenward, the whole company would join him in singing the melodies
with hearty goodwill, and at those moments care and danger were
forgotten. Now he would give them a plaintive, gentle ditty that would
make the eyes of those brown-faced soldiers moist with emotion, as home
pictures started into life before them, and then a stirring song of
patriotism and victory would ring out, until the blood would leap
in their veins, and each man there was ready to attack any foe
single-handed.

But the boy's heart was heavy, even while his humble efforts in the
musical line were giving pleasure to his comrades. His constant prayer
was that some decisive move might be made, by which the war might be
brought to a speedy close. He {117}was lonely, too, for "Old Bill," as
he always called himself, had been in the hospital for some time, and he
missed his cheery ways.

[Illustration: 0125]

One afternoon as he sat in his tent reading, he heard peals of
boisterous laughter ringing out upon the air. Going to the opening,
he saw a group of soldiers gathered round some object, and heard them
chaffing some one whom he could not see.

"What is the excitement, Harry?" he asked a companion who had evidently
come from the scene of action.

"I just came for you to pile out and see the fun. They've got {118}one
of our boys, and are amusing themselves at his expense. Come on, or
you'll be too late. The performance will be over." Ralph hurried after
Harry, who was off like a deer, and going straight up to the group, he
saw a crowd of men tossing another one up in the air, and letting him
fall into a blanket, amid screams of laughter, and cries of "Send him up
higher!"

"Pickle him in his own salt!"

"Head him up in a barrel, and send him to the cook!"

"We'll make a high private in the rear rank of him!"

"Gently, boys," the victim panted. "You don't want to be too hard on a
poor fellow for having a little joke of his own."

"Who is it--what has he done?" inquired Ralph, who didn't enjoy such
rough sport, and was really concerned lest they might carry it so far as
to injure the man.

"It's Corporal Fred Greene, the funny fellow of Co. H,"

Tim Mackey responded. "It's his birthday, and we re celebrating it. And
he's having a high time."

Fred was a mischievous young fellow, who had just seen his twenty-third
birthday. If there was any chance for a joke on any member of the
company, he never lost the opportunity of making the most he could out
of it.

In order to impress the fact that he had a birthday, he had invited a
score of his comrades to a "small spread" in his tent. The colored cook
was in the secret, and through his connivance, and the help of a few
cracker boxes draped with bunting, and some tin cans, he had succeeded
in making quite a tasty looking table. Before the banquet began, he
made a short speech of welcome, which was responded to in good faith by
Franklin Field, who was deputed to do the speaking on all occasions, as
he had quite a gift of extempore oratory.

Without further ceremony, Fred cordially pressed all of them to "fall
to." Just at this interesting moment, the cook, a loose-jointed,
wrinkled old darkey, whose huge mouth looked as if it was always ready
to utter a guffaw, entered the tent, and scraping and bowing to the
"gemmens," broke out with--"Sorry to put back your 'joyment, Massa Fred,
but youse wanted outside, bad."

Fred {119}rose, and with a graceful salute to his guests, begged them,
in a most elaborate manner, to attack the food, which was entirely at
their service. It was unfortunate that he should be disturbed at such
a moment, but duty called him, and he would return at the earliest
opportunity.

"This black rascal is bound I shan't have my share, but fall to,
friends." Once outside, he hunted a safe hiding place waited behind a
hedge.

[Illustration: 0127]

Those left behind sat a moment lost in wonder as to where the good
things sprang from. They did look inviting to these devourers of hard
tack and bacon. The table had for a centerpiece a fine-looking chicken,
flanked on both wings by oranges, potatoes roasted in the ashes, canned
fruit, and--two huge cakes!

"Where did Fred get these dainties? He's too lazy to forage, and I don't
believe he could buy them at the sutler's tent. His {120}credit, ain't
good enough," was the comment made by one of his "friends."

"Never mind where he got 'em," a gaunt, hungry-looking fellow answered.
"Let's try 'em fust, and investigate afterwards." No further urging was
necessary. They all "fell to," as they had been ordered, but the wry
faces, choking, gasping breath, and muttered expletives, as one after
another bit into some tempting morsel to find a mouth filled with salt,
pepper or sand, would have been a subject for a painter. The chicken was
a sham; its unusual plumpness was due to a liberal stuffing of cotton
batting, the oranges were well sanded, while the cake was plentifully
seasoned with salt and pepper--two condiments that are very well in
proper proportions, but rather nauseating when taken in large doses.

They rose in a body--all were of one mind when they rushed out after
their host, who was making for the woods at the other end of camp.
A dozen fleet-footed men soon overtook him, and, bringing him back,
proceeded to inflict summary punishment, amid roars of laughter, for he
was liked by every man of the company.

Fred didn't play any more jokes upon those boys, and after his undesired
elevation, he was quite subdued. But they all forgave him, and "Fred's
birthday party" passed into a byword, when some illustration was needed
to indicate a good time.

Ralph was homesick. It was useless to disguise the fact, for it began to
tell upon his health. Malaria had fastened its strong hand upon him,
and he grew more listless every day. He did not waver in his duties,
however, and when marching orders came, he was among the first to pack
his knapsack and shoulder his musket.

{121}

[Illustration: 0129]



CHAPTER XI. SOUTH MOUNTAIN.

[Illustration: 9130]

HE summer {122}of 1862 was hot and dry. Streams were parched, the grass
was brown and burned. The army trailed through the dust, and lay down at
night footsore, weary and sick. Often the only water they had to
drink was supplied by "brackish" ponds, whose surface was covered with
greenish slime. Fevers and malaria broke out among the regiments, and
dissatisfaction was loud and outspoken. Now and then a brush would
take place, or a skirmishing party would sally out, surprise a party of
Confederates, bringing some of them into camp prisoners.

"Knapsacks and rations ready by seven in the morning!" Fred Greene said,
one September afternoon as they were watching eagerly and impatiently
for some move to be made. .

"Sure its not another of your jokes, corporal?"

"No joke this time, as you'll find to your sorrow, perhaps."

"How many days' rations are we to carry along?"

"Can't say. We're going out to interview General Lee. His victory at
Manassas the other day has given him the idea that he can bring the
whole State of Maryland into his army. He's traveling in that direction.
He has a poster out inviting the Marylanders to enlist, but by all we
hear, it won't bring many valuable accessions to his ranks."

"Why not?"

"For two reasons. If they want to enlist, they'll do so, without his
starting recruiting offices. Most of the able-bodied men who wanted to
go to war did so long since. Then again, most of the Marylanders are
fond of the old flag. The State has never left the Union. General Lee is
a fine military man, but he {123}surely don't understand the people he's
trying to interest. Hallo! what's a woman doing here? She's coming this
way."

A woman, dressed in cheap, but neat and tidy-looking clothing, and
holding the hands of two sad-eyed, poorly attired children, was making
her way toward them. A soldier stepped up to her, and with a pleasant
smile asked her if she was looking for any one.

[Illustration: 9131]

The woman looked earnestly into his face, as she said--"You'uns all look
kind. Can you show me whar to find Peter Hall?"

The man looked puzzled, and uncertain as to how to answer her.

"Don't know him, ma'am. What regiment is he in?"

"I can't tell you, sir. He is my man, and he 'lowed he wouldn't go
against the old flag, for any one. The neighbors said he was a traitor
to the cause, and wouldn't give him any work. So he went off in the
night, and told me he'd make his way into the Union army, and as soon as
he could he'd send me word whar he was. He 'lowed I could take care of
the babies somehow, but I've found it mighty hard work to get bread for
'em often. They're good children, though, no better nowhar, and they
don't complain, not even when they're hungry. I heard you'uns were in
the neighborhood, and I thought as perhaps you'd know whar my Peter is."

"Boys!" the soldier cried to a group who were listening at a little
distance. "Do any of you know Pete Hall?"

"_Peter_ Hall," the woman corrected, with great dignity.

"Excuse {124}me, ma'am; _Peter_ Hall, I meant to say."

"Why, certain, I know him," a man answered. "He's in the Second
Maryland, and they're over there, on the brow of that hill. Go right
over, ma'am. You'll find him, I hope," he added in a lower tone. "Don't
be afraid. No one will harm you."

"Me and the children have walked twelve miles since yesterday noon,
and we want to see Peter bad. He'd have come out and met us, I know he
would, if he'd have thought we were so near," she added, with refreshing
simplicity. The idea of Peter's leaving his company, even for so
important a matter as meeting her, caused a general laugh, which she did
not seem to observe, but continued--"You see, we have moved since Peter
went away, and he doesn't know where we live now."

"God bless the woman and her Peter," was the honest invocation sent
after her, as she hurried away in the direction pointed out, and they
were rewarded a few moments later, by seeing a soldier spring up from
the grass where he had been lounging, and hasten forward to receive
the greeting of his wife, who sobbed for joy upon his breast, while the
little ones could only jump and shout in the fullness of their pleasure
at seeing "Pa."

Many a man stood there, and silently wished some of their loved ones
could meet and greet them also.

The entrance of the boys in blue into Frederick was a perfect ovation.
General Lee had retired from the town only two days before.

This welcome thrilled their hearts. From every door and window the
national flag fluttered, and the stores were decorated with the colors.
Banners were strung across the streets, from house to house, while
crowds of happy men and women with radiant faces, spoke words of
welcome.

Good luck seemed to be showered upon them, for General McClellan here
captured a copy of the orders of General Lee, which gave him a key to
the whole situation. It was of very recent date, and the Confederate
commander had mapped out his campaign. The {125}information contained in
these explicit instructions to his generals, enabled General McClellan
to see plainly how to thwart General Lee. So he proceeded to send two
corps through the two Gaps of South Mountain, with the prospect of being
able to cut the enemy's forces to pieces.

[Illustration: 9133]

Dividing his command, General McClellan ordered Franklin to Crampton's
Gap, while Reno and Hooker, with Burnside at their head, were sent to
Turner's Gap.

It was a toilsome task for even those sturdy men to ascend the sides of
the Gaps. South Mountain towered a thousand feet above them, while the
most accessible points were the two Gaps, each nearly 400 feet high.

"We've got to reach the top of those hills somehow," Ralph said. "But
it's one step forward, and three backward. Our men are gaining a little.
They show splendid pluck." Clambering, toiling up the rocky hillsides,
the Union forces made their painful way. From behind ledges and trees,
the rebel riflemen marked their slow progress, and sent many a man
to his death. The company to which Ralph belonged was under Reno, and
assaulted the southern crest of Turner's Gap. On the northern crest of
the mountain General Hooker, with splendid courage, kept on.

{126}

[Illustration: 0134]

Ralph now realized how desperately men will fight. He even felt that hot
hatred which two foes ever feel, when pitted against each other. He saw
the Federal army, scratched and bruised from forcing their way through
the brush and over rocks, while the Confederate riflemen poured bullets
into their midst like {127}rain. Hot, and panting with their efforts,
still they never wavered. Gibbon, with his brigade, was trying to force
a passage through the turnpike in the Gap, and here also the enemy did
terrible execution. The heat was blistering. The fervid rays of the
September sun burned into their very blood, and the dust which rose in
clouds mixed with the smoke of the powder, and choked and blinded them.

[Illustration: 9135]

They had fought continuously the entire day. Their canteens were
empty--their mouths parched and dry. Ralph saw a tall officer spur his
horse forward, and fire at General Reno. That gallant soldier reeled in
his saddle, and fell, but as he was borne to the rear to die, his eyes
were fixed on the men he had so gallantly led, with a last look of
farewell.

This contest was long. Each side fought to the death. As Ralph turned
to speak to a companion he heard a wild shout: "Forward! One more such
charge, and we'll have the Gap."

It was the colonel's voice, and as he rose in his saddle and cheered
them on, they took fresh courage. Wild responses answered his appeal,
and new strength was given them.

"We are sure of victory," Ralph said to himself, At that instant a horse
dashed madly by. He bore General Garland, of the Confederate force,
who was lying half across his back, as he was vainly striving to raise
himself in the saddle. His hat rolled down the hill as he came to the
ground with a shock; his fine features were distorted with pain, and his
long, dark hair was dabbled with blood. He made one frantic effort to
recover {128}his sword, which had slid from his grasp, and then he sank
half on his knees, a livid corpse. Ralph was so near he could almost
have touched him, and to his dying day, he never forgot the look of
agony on the wan face, as the eyes fast glazed in death.

Darkness settled down upon the earth, before the battle was won, by the
Confederates withdrawing and leaving the Union forces masters of the
field. But what a sacrifice of human life!--three thousand human beings
sent into eternity, as the result of one day's conflict.

The loss of life was felt equally by the two opposing forces; but
the boys in gray suffered a loss of fifteen hundred, who were taken
prisoners.

The night was warm. The stars looked down with kindly gleams upon
thousands of worn-out soldiers sleeping as quietly as little children,
while the wounded were groaning with pain, as the life-blood slowly
trickled over the grass which the hot sun and the trampling of feet and
stamping of horses had matted into a tangled and brown mass.

Ralph's captain threw himself down by the side of the boy, as he was
trying to shut out the dreadful pictures which were burned upon his
brain.

"Is the victory ours?" he asked.

"It is, and a dear one to us," the captain replied. "We have left over
a thousand dead upon the field; but the Johnnies have moved off, and we
have orders to push on to the western side of the mountain. They raked
us down in terrible fashion, but the men stood their fire like statues.
There was some heavy firing over at the other Gap a while back, but
it has stopped now. Hallo!" he called to a man in the uniform of
an officer, "where are you going in such a hurry? Has anything
happened--any new move ahead?"

The man stopped suddenly, and coming up close to them, with features
convulsed and pallid, with either pain or fear, he made answer:

"Oh, captain, I'm sure I'll die, I'm in such misery. I'm all doubled
{129}up, and can't sleep. I'm in perfect agony. There--there goes that
twinge again. I must try and find my regiment, and hunt up the doctor
right away."

Ralph looked incredulous at the man's apparent suffering. He felt sure
it was a pretense. "It's strange that he's so far away from his command,
and going in an exactly opposite direction. Can it be that he's going
to skip?" This was a painful thought, and brought an angry flush to his
brow, for he held nothing in such scorn, amounting to abhorrence, as he
did cowardice or dishonesty.

"Are you going in the right direction to join your company? If you
keep on the way you are faced, you'll be more than likely to find some
friendly boy in gray to snap you up."

The officer looked steadily at him a moment, while his face turned
scarlet.

"Your advice is not required, sir. I shall remember your incivility at a
more fitting time." And he stalked away, quite oblivious of the anguish
that had racked him so short a time before.

"That fellow must be a mind-reader," laughed the captain. "He plainly
knew what you thought about him. But seriously, your opinion was rather
harsh; he's probably shamming to get excused from duty. For the honor
of our cause I should hope no officer would be guilty of such dastardly
conduct. Nor a private, either," he added, a moment after, "for the
boys who carry the muskets have true grit, and don't run, only after the
enemy."

"I know that's so, but when I saw him making such haste to get away, the
suspicion would come into my mind. To me it seems a shame for a man with
a spark of cowardice to wear a uniform."



CHAPTER XII. MORE FIGHTING.

[Illustration: 9138]

ALPH arose {130}from the heap of leaves and brush which had served him
for a bed the night through, with his bones aching and sore. The army
was already stirring, for although the Passes were won, there was
promise of another engagement at once. Word was passed along the line
that General Lee had withdrawn his forces and crossed the Antietam,
where he took up his position on a high bluff near Sharpsburg, and was
thus able to command a view of the whole country. But he had met with
great losses, from the dead in battle, and from stragglers. He realized
the injury the latter had done him; indeed, he complained openly and
bitterly, saying that his army was "ruined by straggling." But the
best men of his army were still left with him--picked men, of splendid
courage and vast endurance. He was determined that the coming battle
should decide the campaign, and he waited calmly its issue.

"Lee has the choice of positions," the men said. "He has both flanks
resting on the streams. He has the whole four bridges across the creek
well guarded; that is, all but one, and that's the point we have to
take. We intend to call the attention of the Johnnies to our point of
attack, and throw our entire strength against the bridge that is left
unguarded, and then cross. They say Lee hasn't much over 40,000 men, but
they are a body we shall be proud to meet, and whip."

The artillery practice on both sides was sharp all day, but not much
execution was done. At nearly five in the afternoon General Hookers
corps made, a dash across the upper bridge, and advancing through the
woods, fell upon General Hoods brigade, and a fierce skirmish followed,
but the darkness brought it to {131}a close for that night, and both
armies rested, eager for the morning light, that they might rush at each
other again.

Before sunrise General McClellan hurried Mansfield's corps to Hookers
aid, while Sumner was ready to follow.

The renewal of hostilities began early. As the sun rose, his beams
lighted up the two armies, angry and threatening. General Hooker threw
his forces with vigor against General Jackson's, and pressed him so hard
he fell back. The batteries came promptly to the front, and raked the
Confederates with shot the entire length of their line, breaking their
ranks in wild haste.

Crowding and forcing them back, General Mansfield came to the Unionists'
aid, when a shot struck him, and he fell dead, but his command kept on,
and entering the woods, got their position and held it, against immense
odds. General Hooker here received a serious wound, and was carried
away, just as General Sumner crossed the stream, drove the boys in gray
before him, and entrenched his men near the little church of Dunker.
Here the fighting raged so madly, and the artillery fire was so heavy,
that a historian relates that years after, when the trees were cut down
and sent to a sawmill to be made into logs, the saws were torn to pieces
by the quantity of metal that had pierced the trees, and been hidden
there by the growth of the wood. But in spite of this vigorous fire, no
irresolution was shown, and as fast as men were shot down at the guns,
others were ready to take their places, with undismayed zeal.

A lull occurred, and as the sounds of firing seemed to die away, there
was great rejoicing, for to the Federal army a victory was apparently
assured, when the hope was suddenly dispelled by the arrival of two
divisions of the enemy, who, with a loud yell, threw themselves into
a gap in Sumner's line, forcing him from his position, and across the
meadows and cornfields, where he made a stand, but the foe retired again
to its own position.

{132}

[Illustration: 0140]

"Harry, see those regiments," Ralph said to a fellow soldier--"look
at the race. Which will come out ahead, I wonder? They are pretty well
matched--both are fleet-footed."

It was a race, indeed. A New Hampshire regiment was marching parallel
with a Confederate regiment, and each were intent on reaching a certain
high piece of ground. As they ran, the bullets whizzed {133}back and
forth, from both sides, and these pleasantries were kept up.

"The Johnnies are ahead--no, they have fallen back a little. The New
Hampshire boys are in the lead now. They've reached the ground. Hurrah!"
shouted Harry, and in his excitement he threw up his cap, and caught it
on the point of his bayonet. As soon as the winners gained the coveted
point, they poured shot into their late rivals' ranks.

[Illustration: 8141]

The artillery was heaviest near the church, and the dead lay so thick
that they could have formed a foot bridge the entire length of the line.

"Wonder why Porter and Burnside keep so still?" This question was
asked again and again. "See the rebs mowing down our men like ripe
grass! Why don't they come to our assistance?"

"They are keeping their troops as reserves. The Confeds don't hold any
of their men back, but launch every one of them at us."

"That don't seem to me to be the right policy," said Ralph. "But
look--Franklin has come up from Crampton's Gap just in the nick of time.
He is very welcome, for there are fresh troops advancing, from the right
flank of the boys in gray." Franklin's opportune coming infused new
hope, and the boys' {134}eyes brightened, cheery words went round, and
muskets were handled with a will.

"General Burnside's orders are to take that bridge. We've got to do
it; it won't be very much work, and then we'll soon be over to see our
friends on the other side."

"You think that's easy, do you? Wait and see. We're on low ground here,
but the land over the other side is higher, and the road runs alongside
the stream. Those fellows have their guns well placed, and can damage us
bad."

The bridge they were expected to take, was of stone, and rather narrow.
The first brigade to attempt to cross was General Crook's.

"Hark! he's gone the wrong way. The rebels are pouring shot into him.
He'll be cut all to pieces."

The General had struck the wrong road, and was being subjected to a
heavy fire. A Maryland regiment and a New Hampshire followed him on the
double quick, but retreated, as they could not stand the fire!

"There is help for us now," said Ralph, "for they are bringing up some
guns that will speak loud for our side."

Two heavy guns were soon thundering over the ground, and commanding
the boys in gray who were guarding the bridge? Their persuasive tones
opened the passage, and triumphantly the Union men crossed the bridge,
and secured the position.

Four hours had been consumed, and thus General Lee improved his chance
to bring fresh troops to his aid, who drove Burnside from the heights,
and retook a battery which he had captured.

The battle was over. When the rattle of musketry is heard, the smoke of
battle, and the wild plunging of the frightened horses, and the shouts
and fierce onset of a maddened mass of human beings is felt, there is an
excitement, a fever in the blood that strengthens the arm, and
hardens the muscles--thoughts of self are forgotten. But when those
accompaniments are missing--when the awful stillness of a deserted
battle-ground succeeds them, then the heart grows faint and cold.

{135}

[Illustration: 0143]

Both {136}armies were glad to rest; both sides had been rent and
dismembered. Many regiments in both lines had been slaughtered
unmercifully. The victory belonged to McClellan, but the sorrow and
anguish belonged to those who loved the fallen ones--to the friends
alike of the blue and the gray, in cottage and mansion, all over this
broad land of ours.

[Illustration: 8145]

Daily papers were a luxury, and the boys in the army were always glad
to purchase them at a good round price. The newsboy is ubiquitous. He
is the product of the century, and will never be shelved as are so many
useful things. Their cries were welcome to those men, who were anxious
to know what each day was bringing forth and when one galloped into
camp, two days after the battle of the Antietam with a bag heavily
freighted with New York dailies, he was surrounded at once, and his
stock rapidly melted away.

"Good news!" flashed through the ranks as they eagerly devoured the news
of the battle of Iuka, with Rosecrans at the head.

"It was a daring attempt," Ralph read aloud to the eager group; "the
account says that the Union forces attacked Price's men in a narrow
front, with ravines filled with undergrowth, where it was difficult to
maintaining a foothold, with but one battery, and with hosts against them,
three to one. Yet they swept down the enemy, and fought till darkness
overtook them, and in the night the Confederates beat a hasty retreat."

This {137}news cheered the hearts of the boys in blue, and while they
were giving vent to their joy in different ways, Ralph's heart was
filled with a solemn thankfulness, for to him it seemed as if One above
surely ruled their destinies.



CHAPTER XIII. OLD BILL DIES.

[Illustration: 9147]

HE beautiful {138}autumn days grew shorter. Novembers blasts were keenly
felt, even in that sunny clime, and the boys looked forward with dismay
to a winter passed in inaction.

"Why, we'll have to fight to keep warm," jolly Fred Greene said to the
comrades gathered round.

Old Bill had been in hospital for many months. Ralph visited him
often, and the sick man's face would brighten, and his voice grow
stronger,'whenever the boy came to his bedside. But he seemed to
have lost interest in everything pertaining to this life. Ralph tried
earnestly to induce him to talk of the events passing around them, but
without success.

One morning early in November, when he went to pay his usual visit, the
boy said:

"Bill, this is my first experience as a soldier. But you have seen
plenty of service before?"

The sick man shook his head slowly, but made no reply. Ralph waited a
few moments, and began to think his question had not been considered
worthy of an answer, when Bill suddenly spoke:

"Yes, I have been out on the border fighting Indians, for years. How I
detest the redskins. They seldom come out and give a man a fair show,
but they just go on the warpath, and then it's skulk and lie in ambush,
and burn sleeping villages, massacring women and children. Their mode of
warfare don't suit me." And the disdainful curl of the lip showed what
he thought of them. After a long pause, he resumed:

"Then I was in the Mexican War. I was quite a stripling then, and I
fought under General Phil Kearney. He was a fighter, {139}brave as a
lion, and when he lost his arm not a man under him but would rather it
had been his own arm shot away. He's one 01 General McClellan's most
trusty officers. His experience is worth millions to younger men. How
I'd like to see noble Phil Kearney!"

"Why, Bill, didn't you know that he was killed at the battle of
Groveton, Va., in September?"

[Illustration: 9148]

"Kearney killed--and I've been lying here, and knew nothing about it!
It's too hard. Let's hear all you know, Ralph."

"I can only tell you what we heard. You know we wasn't there to see
it, but he was sent to Hooker's support, when the lat-ter's men charged
Jackson with bayonets. They had an awful battle, but General Kearney had
been sent to their assistance too late, and he was forced back.
Hooker almost broke the enemy's line, but fresh bodies of Confederates
hastening up, changed the outlook, and so the Union boys were repulsed.
At six in the afternoon General Pope ordered another attack, and Kearney
came up in fine style, seizing a railroad cut on the Warrenton turnpike
{140}where Jackson was nicely entrenched, and holding it for awhile. One
of the Confederate regiments who ran short of ammunition, hurled great
stones and fragments of the rocks at our men, killing many. General
Kearney still maintained his position, but was overpowered by numbers,
and driven out of the cut."

Ralph paused, but Bill's eyes were gleaming with excitement "Go on," he
said, earnestly--"is that all?"

"The two armies rested till the next day, when a still fiercer attempt
was made to rout the rebels, but in spite of the most stubborn fighting,
our army was withdrawn from the field, and fell back to Fairfax Court
House; but the next evening, September 1st, Stonewall Jackson made
another attack upon General Popes flank, which was resisted hotly, and
General Kearney, with Hooker, Reno, McDowell and Stevens, were there
to help, but General Stevens fell dead at their fire, and as all their
ammunition had been used up, his men retired at once. General Kearney
started forward to reconnoiter, and was confronted by a Confederate
band; he put spurs to his horse, hoping to escape, but they shot him
dead."

Bill shook his head solemnly, and leaning back on his pillow, he closed
his eyes, as if he had fallen asleep. Glad to have awakened even so
slight attention as he had succeeded in doing, the boy continued:

"Bill, we have a new commander now. The President has relieved General
McClellan, and we are to have General Burnside. What do you think of
that?"

A look of the old time came into Bill's face, as he answered:

"Yes, I have a new commander--one whose call will soon be heard!"

Ralph shuddered. He knew too well the meaning of Bills words.

"I mean our army commander, Bill; General McClellan has been relieved of
his command, and General Burnside has been appointed in his place."

"General {141}McClellan--yes, he's too slow. It needs some one with a
little push. But it's all the same to me, now."

And that was all he said about the change. He lay on his cot, looking
intently at Ralph, and suddenly he broke out with--"I don't know why
I'm so fond of you, boy, unless it's 'cause you mind me of Eddie. He was
just such a little plucky, fair-faced lad as you are, and I can't help
mixing you up with him."

Ralph wondered who Eddie was, but he waited patiently. Bill's eyes
burned with a luster the boy had never seen there before. The sick man's
face was very thin. The brown tint that outdoor life always gives had
faded, and the sharp features looked more pinched and wan from their
pallor. He went on in a weak and trembling voice:

"She was a beauty, and I was powerful fond of her. Her eyes were like a
young fawn's, and her hair was brown as the chestnuts when they ripen
in the sun. She liked Frank better nor me, and she told me so. Then
when they were married, I hated him bitterly. But when the little fellow
come, and they sent for me, somehow from the first time I took the
little tot in my arms, and he smiled up into my face, all my anger died
out. After that I would have died sooner than harm his daddy. They were
happy with each other. But he died when the lad was ten or so, and left
the poor wife alone. I didn't know how to comfort her, and she grieved
continually. One day, when he was quite a lad, nearly sixteen, and
needed his mother most, they found her dead on her husband's grave. Ah,
that is the way some women love!

"That nigh killed me, but I meant to be a good friend to the boy. They
took even that comfort from me, for they carried him away down South to
his father's folks, and I never seed him again."

The man's face was fever-flushed now, and his words came almost in a
whisper. He tossed uneasily from side to side.

"Ralph, my head bothers me--it aches so strangely. I wish--"

But {142}the wish was never told. A wild look came over his face, his
words became incoherent. A delirium had seized him, and kindly as he was
tended by the nurses and his comrades, he never regained his senses. A
few days of apparent suffering, and Bill Elliotts kindly heart ceased to
beat. The uncouth, rugged, but brave soldier had passed on to the Great
Beyond.

[Illustration: 0151]

It was late in the afternoon of a raw November day, while the winds
shrieked mournfully, when they carried him to a little valley in which
they had dug a grave, into whose depth they lowered the body of a brave
and true soldier, who never shirked a duty. The chaplain, a plain and
tender, man, read impressively that beautiful Psalm:

_"Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.

"From {143}the end of the earth will I cry unto Thee, when my heart is
overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.

"For Thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.

"I will abide in Thy tabernacle forever. I will trust in the covert of
Thy wings. Selah_."

In a clear and ringing voice he read the solemn burial service, and the
comrades of the dead soldier listened reverently. When he had concluded,
some one suggested that they sing, and a clear, sweet voice broke
plaintively into that exquisite hymn,

```"_Abide with me, fast falls the eventide;

```The darkness deepens--Lord, with me abide; *

```When other helpers fail, and comforts flee,

```Help of the helpless, O abide with me._"

The voice suddenly broke into a passion of tears, and Ralph threw
himself on the grave, which was fast being filled up, and cried--"Bill,
Bill, you were my best friend--I cannot let you go."

There were many looks of sympathy for the boy, but death was, after all,
nothing but a passing incident to men who faced it every hour, and as
Ralph went back to his tent, his heart rebelled at the levity which
allowed the merry jest to pass around, as to whose turn it would be
next.

To him it was a new experience. He had seen hundreds of men shot down in
battle, but no one had died whom he had cared for, and it came home to
him. He had become deeply attached to Bill, whose cheerful, off-hand
manners had enlivened the homesick boy. He had lost his comrade, but his
memory was cherished, and he was missed for a long time.

[Illustration: 0152]



CHAPTER XIV. FREDERICKSBURG.

[Illustration: 9153]

T was {144}with many forebodings and some outspoken prophecies of
failure that many of the Union officers learned that they were to move
at once upon Fredericksburg.

"It looks to me like a mad freak to send us out to assault such
fortifications as are thrown up on the hills south and west of the
town. It isn't right for a soldier to grumble, but when he sees a
man perpetrating a piece of folly, that is going to cause a needless
sacrifice of life, why, he can't help expressing himself as opposed to
the scheme."

The plaint of the captain found a ready echo in the hearts of his fellow
officers, but a soldier must obey instructions unquestioningly.

Early morning hours came, the camp was astir, and all preparations were
made for a speedy move upon the fortifications.

"Lee has thrown up forts for five miles will stand any attack that
General Burnside can make. We are going to our death."

A two o'clock breakfast, eaten in haste in the fog of early morning, was
all that the men were allowed. The outlook was gloomy. The river must
be crossed, but while Burnside was trying to lay pontoon bridges, the
engineers were terribly harassed by the continuous fire of the rebel
sharpshooters, who were using the houses skirting the river bank as
places of refuge.

{145}

[Illustration: 0154]

General Burnside determined to try the effect of shelling the town. The
men who were detailed to lay the pontoon bridges were falling at their
posts by the rifles in the hands of a Mississippi detachment which was
hidden securely in cellars, behind walls and fences, and in every corner
where it was possible to {146}conceal a man. Crack! crack! their rifles
were heard, and many a boy in blue was tumbled into the water with
a bullet in his brain, to be carried away by the current. It was a
fruitless endeavor to keep on with the work, the loss of life was so
great. The Federals had better luck at the lower bridges, being able to
dislodge the sharpshooters from their rifle-pits.

"What are the prospects for crossing?" asked Sergeant Gregory of an
officer who passed at that moment.

"We'll be over somewhere about doomsday, judging from the outlook. The
three bridges we need the most can't be laid under the present regime.
We've got to evict those sharpshooters from the houses along the river
bank, for it's worse than murder to post our men there to be picked off
in that cruel fashion--all to no purpose, for bridges can never be built
when men are shot down as fast as they show their heads."

The country was hilly, now and then dotted with clumps of trees, while
barns, fences, and everything that was combustible, had been converted
to use by the two armies, as each in turn had passed over the land. All
was dreary and desolate. The sky was leaden-hued, save when a burst of
flame from the cannonading would lighten it for a short space, and then
it would die down, leaving it almost a pitchy blackness.

General Burnside's resolve to bombard the place had no power to oust the
sharpshooters, even when tons of shells were thrown into its streets,
setting fire to many of the buildings. When, after a brief rest, the
engineers resumed the construction of the bridges, the same result
followed--destruction of their numbers.

The town itself was almost impregnable, being completely encircled by
hills, save on the river side. These heights were bristling with forts,
entrenchments seamed them in every direction, and batteries were planted
in such profusion that no opening presented itself for attack. {147}

[Illustration: 0156]

How long this slaughter would have continued it is hard to tell,
{148}but a happy inspiration came to General Hunt, chief of artillery.
He suggested that a body of men could make a dash for the river, cross
in boats, and besiege the sharpshooters in the houses, driving them out,
and taking possession.

The daring of the plan almost took away one's breath, but it seemed the
only way to silence the enemy's murderous fire, and it was quickly put
in execution. The pontoon boats lay at the river bank. A band of tried
men was selected for the perilous undertaking, who at a sign, without a
sound or word of command, rushed from their concealment, leaped into the
boats, shot out from the shore, and were half across the stream before
the Confederates realized their intention. Then came a shower of bullets
from their rifles, rattling like hailstones about the heads of the
brave men, who held boards up before them for protection, dodging the
murderous fire as well as they could, while those who were rowing pulled
with a will, and the boats were across the stream in swift time. A few
were shot, falling into the river, but the largest number went over
safely.

Reaching the shore, the regiments ran up the hills, and succeeded in
forcing the sharpshooters from their lairs, capturing over a hundred of
them, while the rest fled to the hills.

The way was now clear for the completion of the bridges. A pontoon
bridge is a fine piece of ingenuity.

Heavy boats, perfectly flat, often twenty feet in length, are anchored
at equal distances from each other, lengthwise of the current, and beams
are placed upon them to unite them; then strong, thick planks are laid
across the beams, thus making a steady, wide roadway, strong enough to
endure the weight of horses, heavy pieces of artillery, and the tramp of
thousands of men.

While the bridge was being made, the enemy did not remain quiet, but
dropped shells at various points along the river, which exploded, but
happily did little injury.

{149}

[Illustration: 0158]

The smoke of the artillery, the flames bursting from the houses, and the
struggling army of the Union exposed to a pitiless fire made a picture
which was never effaced from Ralph's mind, and {150}years after, when he
saw the panorama of "The Battle of Gettysburg," in Chicago, the memory
of that day at Fredericksburg came back with vivid force. He was once
more a stripling, in the midst of the noise and shock of battle, with
comrades falling about him, torn and mangled out of all semblance of
human beings, while he was miraculously preserved.

That night the Union forces rested on the ground, in the mud and frost,
not far away from the pontoon bridge; and though they knew the morning
would plunge them into further conflict, yet tired limbs and aching
heads found the refreshing slumber which they needed. Early next
morning, after a hasty breakfast, they were ready for any events which
the day might bring forth.

A heavy fog hid the other shore, while the air was cold and raw. Long
before the sun scattered the mists, cannonading began at the bridge, the
main point of attack, but the firing became so severe that orders were
issued for them to retire behind the bluffs.

At last the bridges were finished, and the army crossed to the other
side of the river, under the continuous shells of the enemy. Now began
a terrific struggle. General Franklin had advanced against the troops
on the hill, but they had repulsed him, with much loss. General Meade's
division was chosen to lead the attack. Down across the railroad they
dashed, under heavy fire, their skirmishers having been sent forward,
while the well-directed batteries hurled against the hills did some
execution.

But the Confederates from their elevated positions poured destruction
into their ranks, mowing them down. The Union forces were not daunted,
but made an entering wedge between two rebel divisions, turned back
their flanks, and captured prisoners and battle flags. Scaling the
heights, they were met by the second line, which drove them back in
confusion, and they were only saved from utter rout by General Birney,
who threw his command in front of the enemy, who were pursuing them.

[Illustration: 0160]

The sounds of battle grew louder, and as the divisions of French
{151}and Hancock moved in columns through the town, the Confederate
batteries burst upon them, but they charged across the open ground, to
be met by a veritable sheet of flame, which swept into their faces, and
literally consumed them. No bravery, no determination, could withstand
that awful fire of the enemy, who {152}had taken advantage of an ambush
which nature had seemed to furnish them, from whence they sent forth
their deadly aim.

[Illustration: 0161]

A road ran at the foot cf Marye's Hill, which had sunken so much as
almost to be unobserved, at a little distance. This road was bounded
at its outside edge by a stone wall, where were hidden two brigades of
Confederates, who had sent forth this {152}sheet of flame and death.
Their numbers were so great, that every man at the wall was assisted by
several behind him, who loaded muskets as fast as they could, and passed
them to him, while he discharged them as rapidly, leaving only his head
exposed for an instant, as he raised it to take aim.

In the face of these fearful odds, the Union soldiers were undismayed.
No disorganization, no wavering in their ranks, but they kept on, only
to meet certain death.

And now General Hancock, he whose presence was an inspiration, led the
charge with 5,000 men, whose intrepid daring carried them within twenty
yards of the fatal wall, only to be beaten back, leaving 2,000 dead to
tell the tale of the slaughter at Marye's Hill.

General Burnside was beside him himself with rage. In the face of these
defeats, he demanded that General Hooker make a bayonet charge, and
those doomed men rushed forward, with a valor never surpassed, rallying
again and again, until nearly half their number lay dead on the road, or
torn with fearful wounds.

[Illustration: 0162]

The rebel artillery was not idle, but as the Federals retreated, sent
shells after them, still plowing their numbers with deadly effect.

A heavy storm of rain came on in the night, and under cover of
its inclemency, the Union troops withdrew to the north bank of the
Rappahannock, although it had been General Burnside's determination
{154}to renew the assault the next day, and lead it in person. This
was a step which needed a vast deal of dissuasion on the part of his
generals ere he relinquished his mad attempt.

Mud was over the shoe-tops, and the rain was falling fast when the
Union army received orders to evacuate the town, and no time was lost in
obeying. The pontoon bridges carried them safely across from the scene
of disaster, and left the army in a sorry plight.

Decimated in numbers, the dead alone counting 12,000, disappointed,
hospitals full to overflowing, the dead to bury, the predictions of
defeat had been bitterly realized. It is said that the {155}brave and
dashing General Meagher went into that battle with the Irish brigade,
over 1,200 strong, and came out with a little over 200.

It was plain that the men had been sacrificed through incompetency and
stubbornness. Murmurs and discontent were abundant, as the army prepared
to settle down in its winter quarters.

[Illustration: 0164]



CHAPTER XV. RALPH IS SENT HOME.

[Illustration: 9165]

FTER the {156}slaughter at Fredericksburg, Ralph rapidly failed in
strength. The excitement of that scene of carnage and his increasing
exhaustion told upon his frame. He fulfilled his duty as well as he
could; he was cheerful and alert; he wrote more often to his dear mother
without ever alluding to his health.

"I can't understand what ails me," he thought. "I have never received a
wound, while some of the boys who have been badly cut up are well again,
and seem as strong as ever. I do believe I miss Old Bill more every day.
I never felt sad or lonely when I had him to cheer me up."

He grew daily worse. Often when on duty he would halt, with weak and
failing breath. He lost all desire for food, and his lusterless eyes and
pale skin told how he suffered.

"What seems to be the matter, sergeant?" one of his comrades asked,
anxiously. "You don't pear to have any vim about you. Why, if you hadn't
shown such pluck--fact is, if it was any one but you, I mout 'cuse you
of playing off."

"I'm all right, Hank. I feel a little weak and have hard chills
sometimes--but I'll be better soon. I'm a little sick, that's all."

"That's enough. You ain't been yerself since we fit at Fair Oaks I've
seen it a long time. That malary from the swamps has finished many a
strong man."

At last Ralph had to succumb. His condition was observed by the doctor,
who called the attention of his captain to the fact that he was no
longer fit for duty. And when one morning he was not able to report at
early {157}roll call, it was with gloomy forebodings that he heard the
order that he be removed to the hospital at once.

"Is this the end of my ambitious hopes?" he queried. "Am I going to die
when I am willing to serve my country? I would not mind being killed
in battle, as a soldier should be, but to die in hospital, far from my
mother. It is hard!" And he buried his face in his pillow to hide the
hot tears that he could not keep back.

When weeks passed, and Ralph grew no better, the Colonels attention
was directed to his case. He was a severe disciplinarian, but he had
a kindly heart, and he speedily forwarded a recommendation to the war
department that Sergeant Gregory, Company K, Massachusetts Volunteers,
be honorably discharged from the service of the United States. A
document granting the request came back in due time, to the Colonel,
who passed it to the captain, and he handed it to Ralph, who could not
repress his emotion.

"I enlisted to the end of the war. I do not want a discharge. Could you
not have obtained me a sick leave? I know I shall be strong soon."

The doctor shook his head solemnly.

"You are not fit to march, or do active duty--perhaps' never will be.
The hardships incident to a campaign have broken you down. You were very
young to have undertaken them. I do not wish to wound your pride, but
the government does not want sick men on its rolls."

So Ralph was given his papers, and after writing his mother a few lines,
saying that he was quite sick, lest his sudden coming should alarm her,
he was sent home by the same route by which he came. It was a painful
journey, not alone from his physical suffering, but his heart bled as he
noted the ruin that had been wrought in the land--the deserted houses,
the neglected fields, miserable-looking people, mostly women and
children, whose woe-begone faces told of the privations they were daily
enduring, uncomplainingly. The {158}contrast between the early days of
the war and the present was bitter, and he felt how terribly real that
war was to these people. Their farms had been overrun by the tramping
of two armies, and each had equally despoiled them of their
possessions--both were alike unmindful and indifferent to their sorrow.

But brighter thoughts succeeded these gloomy musings, as he drew nearer
to his home, and already saw his beloved mother's sweet face, and felt
her warm kiss upon his cheek. But even in the Western country, as the
train stopped at the various stations, he noted careworn faces, and
anxious glances, as the murmured "God bless you!" was sent after the
boys in blue. There were several soldiers on the train, some going
home on furlough, and some on the same errand as Ralph--going home to
recuperate, or, perchance, to die.

When Ralph reached Chicago, he was glad to lie down on one of the
benches in the depot. He found he had to wait three hours for the train
that would convey him to his prairie home. The rest was welcome, and
after a nap, and a strong cup of coffee, he felt a little better; so
much so that he thought he would take a short walk of a block or so. The
city was, so to speak, in holiday attire. The streets were teeming with
an excited yet happy-looking people, and an unusual bustle pervaded
them. He wondered why every one was crowding to the edge of the
sidewalks, and as he was about to ask a bystander, he heard the tramp of
many feet. How familiar the sound of the steps was to his ear. The boys
in blue were coming, he thought, and again a wave of wounded pride came
over him, as he realized that he was shut out from the ranks, by reason
of an illness which he could not understand or conquer.

{159}

[Illustration: 0168]

But no--these were not his comrades, he saw, as he looked curiously
at the long procession filing past him, closely guarded by the boys in
blue, who kept step, while the men they hurried along were the subjects
of ridicule from the thoughtless crowd. They were prisoners--these
{160}men, some clad in the well-known gray, some wearing butternut
suits, some of them without coats or hats, their pants frayed and torn
clear up to the knees. Here would proudly march a clean-shaven, erect
young fellow, with a suit of gray, scarcely soiled, while at his side a
mere shadow of a man, ragged and dirty, would shamble along, barefooted
and wild-eyed.

Nearly all of them were emaciated, while the expression upon their
faces was one of sullen despair. Men were there who were the flower
and chivalry of the South, who had staked their lives and fame upon the
success of their cause, and there were men who scarce knew for what or
who they were fighting. To the former defeat was bitter humiliation--to
the latter capture meant something to eat, and beyond that, they did not
look. But to the careless crowd who watched them pass, they were merely
rebel prisoners. No sympathy their anguish and shame was felt; no pity
for their long months of captivity, when heart and brain would chafe
restlessly, moved the crowd, who jeered and exulted. It was so, we know,
the country over. The boys in blue were hooted at and mocked, when the
fortunes of war threw them into the hands of the enemy. They all forgot
that those who wore the blue and those who wore the gray were alike
animated by a love of country, and that all were brothers--equally
brave, equally earnest, equally true-hearted.

Thoughts like these passed through Ralph's mind as he saw the wretched
men on their way to Camp Douglas, the military prison at Chicago. To him
they were objects of sympathy, and he shuddered as he asked himself what
would have been his feelings had he been taken prisoner. He was
startled by a smart blow upon the shoulder, under whose force he almost
staggered. He turned in astonishment, and saw Alfred Boneel, a merry
French boy, who had been a schoolmate of his.

"Why, Alph, is it possible--you are looking well. You're as brown as a
nut, and say, where _did_ you get those whiskers?"

{169}

[Illustration: 0170]

"In the service, of course. There's nothing like army life to {162}bring
out a man's good qualities. But say, Ralph, I'm sorry I can't return
compliments. You are neither brown nor rugged looking. What's up?"

"They are sending me home as unfit to serve any longer," Ralph replied,
dejectedly. "I don't know why they should single me out for such a
distinction."

"Oh, you'll come out all right. I see you've done something besides get
sick, judging by your sergeant's stripes."

"Yes, I won them, and was hoping for something better. But tell me all
about yourself, Al."

"I haven't got much to tell, but I've seen some fighting, too. I was
at the Fort Donelson scrimmage, and it was the coldest time I ever
saw--snowing and blowing, and afterward turning out clear, but bitter
cold. The storm of rain and snow had been pretty severe, and the fellows
who were in the trenches must have been frost-bitten. I know we had
no shelter and were hungry besides, as rations had given out, and had
nobody round to ask us in to take dinner with 'em. We had pulled up
stakes at Cairo, and had to go up the Ohio to Smithland, and then up the
Cumberland River. Cavalry was no good in that country, for there was too
much big timber, and the ground was too rough. We were kept busy trying
to plant a battery, for those fellows in gray have some sharpshooters
worthy of their name, and though not one of them showed himself, it was
whiz! pang! every few minutes, and some one was sure to go down. We lost
Eddie Downing that way."

Al paused a moment to brush an imaginary fly from before his eyes.

"Eddie Downing was shot? He was a noble boy. So he's dead!"

Al nodded assent.

"Where's George Martin? Do you know what regiment he joined?"

"Oh, sure. He was in the gunboat service. Poor fellow, he fared worse
than Eddie. He was on the Cumberland and had his right arm shot away."
{163}

[Illustration: 0172]

"Is {164}he at home?"

"He was sent home as soon as the stump healed, and his only regret is,
so his father says, that it wasn't the left arm, for he declares he'd
try it again. But of course they wouldn't have him in any branch of the
service."

"Of course not. But George always had grit. But how did you come out at
Fort Donelson?"

"We had taken Fort Henry, but didn't feel so certain about Donelson.
General Buckner had swelled the Confederate numbers there by about ten
thousand men. Then the fort stood on high ground, and had a fine battery
on the river front, as well as several lines of strong fortifications
on the land side, such as immense logs, bags of sand, were well
protected, and their riflemen were in little pits dug in the side of
a hill. All the time the weather staid stinging cold, and we suffered
terribly. They were resting when the gunboats came to the front. Their
gunners looked death right in the face every instant, but the way they
made the shells fly was lively. Commodore Foote is a hero, and {165}he
bombarded them in gallant style. He had six boats, and the sight was
worth seeing, as they would come up toward the fort, getting nearer, one
by one, and then each delivering its fire, and circling round to give
the other boats a shot at the rebs. And the fort was giving them
trouble, too, for they were sending solid shot over the decks, which
were doing damage.

[Illustration: 0173]

"When a bomb from the enemy struck the iron plates a terrible racket
would be heard, as they crashed into them, wrecking smoke pipes, and
tearing down the rigging, and wounding the crews. The Commodore kept his
flagship, the St. Louis, in the front. But he received a bad wound in
the ankle, which did not make him give up, though, but when his boat and
the Louisville began to fall behind, and they could not be managed, it
was seen something was wrong. It seems they had their machinery hurt,
and their steering gear gave out. So he had to stop, for the guns of
Fort Donelson were making sad havoc with his disabled fleet, and it
was found that the fort could not be captured by an attack on its water
side. The flagship had been hit fifty-nine times and the others twenty
or thirty times apiece, before it became clear that Fort Donelson must
be assaulted by the land forces.

"That night kept us all well occupied, in making preparations for the
next day's fight. That day was an awful one, and hundreds went down
before the desperate fire of the butternut boys, but we drove them back
into their entrenchments. Sunday didn't see us ready for church, for
we had other engagements. The boys in blue had just enough taste of the
excitement to make them want more, and General Grant had us all up in
line of battle early in the morning, and we were waiting impatiently
for the order to attack, when the word flashed along our ranks that an
officer carrying a white flag had come to visit the General. We knew
what that meant--some sort of an understanding, and we were not very
sorry after all, for we had lost many a gallant soldier, and didn't know
who'd be called away next. Still, we were ready, if it had to be.

"Ralph, I tell you, when we heard that the distinguished looking
{166}gentleman on the black horse had come to ask that the battle might
be stopped for a time, so that they could argue it out on some terms,
every man amongst us felt like throwing up his hat and hurrahing for
the plain, unassuming little man who commanded us, when he sent his
answer--'No terms other than an unconditional and immediate surrender
can be accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works.' That
speech is as grand as any you'll ever find in history. It will be
repeated through all the ages. Why, it's good enough to have
been uttered by the great Napoleon." Alph's eyes glistened, as he
unconsciously expanded his chest, and took on a more dignified air, as
he walked proudly by the side of his friend, who was trembling with the
effort to keep up with his robust companion.

"The whole world knows what his firm answer did. General Buckner sent
another flag of truce, with the acceptance of General Grant's terms, and
the Union troops moved in to Fort Donelson."

"You must have been glad."

"Glad! Indeed we were. You should have heard us shout and yell. We
pulled the Confederate colors down in a hurry, and ran up the Union
flag. The very earth almost shook with the cheering of the boys, while
the band played 'Star Spangled Banner,' 'Red, White and Blue,' and
a dozen other patriotic airs. We almost felt like having that bright
little ditty 'In Dixie's Land' served up to us, we all felt so jubilant.
Before an hour had gone by, we were on the most friendly terms with
them all. We were trading off our greenbacks for tobacco, and they were
getting bacon and biscuits from us. They didn't have any hard feelings
against us, and I know we didn't have any, for they showed themselves
brave and worthy foes wherever we met the Confederates in battle."

Ralph had listened with delight to his description of the taking of Fort
Donelson. But he suddenly recollected that the train must be due, and he
reminded Al of the fact.

"That's so, and here I am, going home on a furlough, and forgot {167}all
about it, while I was spouting. We'll hurry a little; we are only a
block or so from the depot. You're all out of breath!" he said, half
alarmed, as he observed Ralph's short, quick breathing, and the pallor
of his face. "We'll be there in a jiffy, and you can rest. It's a good
thing I'm going to be on the same train, for when we reach Marion, I can
take you to your own place. Pa's expecting me, and we'll drop you down
at your own door."

This was pleasant news to Ralph, for his home was over a mile from the
station, and he sighed as he recalled how little that distance affected
him when he was leaving home, but now that he was returning, alas! he
knew that he could not walk so far.

[Illustration: 0176]

{168}

[Illustration: 0177]



CHAPTER XVI. RALPH AT HOME.

[Illustration: 9178]

OME {169}at last! And when that longing mother took her boy
in her arms once more, and looked long and earnestly into his weary
face, she saw only the boyish Ralph, whom sickness could not change;
he was to her the same lad who had left his home with strong hopes and
sunny smile. True, he was older and more careworn looking, but the
honest look of his childhood shone from his eyes, and the same truthful,
frank expression was on his features.

Ralph, as he rode up from the depot, with his friends, the Boneels,
looked around at the old familiar place with eagerness. He expected
to find everything changed--he had been absent so long, that to him it
seemed as though the landscape, even, must have taken on new features,
or at least changed its old. But there was the same gentle slope in
front of the door, the same trees in the fields beyond, the same sunny
knoll where he had played when a little boy. Oh, how long ago that
seemed to him, now, when he reviewed the experiences of the past four
years! Al and his father would not enter the house, though cordially
invited to do so; they did not wish to intrude upon the sacredness of
the first meeting with his mother.

She could scarcely speak for joy. At last she broke forth with words of
greeting:

"Oh, my boy, my boy, you are home once more; you have come home to me,
and you shall never go away again."

"I am glad to be with you, dear mother; as glad as a little child, who
needs a good petting. But it was a bitter disappointment when I found
that I could not stay with the brave boys who are offering up their
lives for their country."

"Never {170}mind, dear boy. You could not help getting sick. I will
bring you back both health and strength, and then--"

"And then they will take me back in the army, again. Oh, mother, do you
think it possible?"

[Illustration: 0179]

Her face grew sad. She had not thought of that, and her heart
experienced a bitter pang, for she felt that not even her love and
care were to him so sweet and dear as was his country and her cause. It
wounded her deeply when she saw that even in the flush of his delight
at being home again, he could not help clouding her joy by expressing a
wish that in her bosom found no response.

She sighed deeply, and made him no answer, but he was so absorbed in
greeting his sisters and friends who had met to welcome him, that he did
not notice her silence.

Ralph {171}could not endure patiently having to play the part of an
invalid, but the home doctor's peremptory orders were that he should
keep his bed, and visitors were to be admitted only when he felt as if
he were able to talk with them.

There were many long days when his voice was so faint and his strength
so nearly exhausted that he was forbidden the excitement caused by their
presence. But as the winter passed, under the tender ministrations of
his mother and sisters, hope again sprung up in his breast, that health
might return to him, and with health would come a return to the service.

The medical man was using every effort to restore him to health. He was
wise, keen-sighted and skillful, and he fathomed the secret of Ralph's
low vitality. His diligence and care were at length rewarded, and he
had the satisfaction of seeing the elastic, springing step return, the
bright color come back to his cheek, and the luster to his eyes, as he
grew stronger daily, and to those who had come to greet his home-coming,
and had mentally felt they were taking a last farewell, his recovery
seemed almost a miracle.

Soon he could walk long distances, and even spring on the back of a
horse for a ride. Al Boneel had returned to his regiment, but the young
man's father had sent Ralph a horse, with a suggestion that he should
ride every day when he was able, a privilege which brought the boy more
healing than even the doctor's careful attentions.

He had instinctively shrank from visiting George Martin, although that
young man had been to his home three or four times during his illness.
It was a fine afternoon, and he knew he was able to ride over to
George's father's farm, over three miles distant. He longed to talk over
the war with him, and yet he had a feeling of delicacy lest George might
be sensitive about any reference to his own misfortune. But he could not
help going, and he found George sitting on a bench in the orchard, where
the green buds were just beginning to shoot forth their promise for
future abundance.

"I'm {172}glad indeed to see you able to come down here, Ralph," was
George's cordial greeting. "I've been wishing all day for some one to
talk over old times with."

"Old times! Yes, we were happy, good-for-nothing lads in those days, I
know, and gave our teachers lots of uneasiness."

"So we did, but I don't refer to those days; I mean the days in the
army."

Ralph was all attention at once. "How did you like the service?" he
ventured.

[Illustration: 9181]

"Liked it clear through--way down to the bottom. You know how I lost my
arm?" he said, pointing to the empty sleeve.

Ralph nodded. He longed to know more of the particulars, but would not
ask.

"That was a great day. You should have been there, and seen a real
fight. Not that a fight on land ain't all right, but there's a dash and
inspiration about a battle on board ship that I enjoy! You feel as if
the boat were your castle--you can't get away from it, and you're bound
no one else shall get into it. Then the waves rocking beneath your feet,
the shells screaming and dancing over the water, and the thought that
your boat is almost a living thing, lends you a desperation nothing else
can equal."

Ralph smiled faintly. To his way of thinking those sensations were
common to all who went into battle, whether on land or water.

"You know when I went into the service I made my way to {173}Washington
at once. I didn't wait to be enlisted here, but I knew Uncle Dick, who
lived there, could get me onto a war-ship, and he did.

[Illustration: 0182]

"Through his influence I went on the Cumberland. She was a wooden vessel,
but stanch and trim, with a good commander, {174}Lieutenant Morris, whom
we all liked. He was brave, resolute and determined. The Merrimac, under
Commander Franklin Buchanan, was trying to raise the blockade, and do us
all the harm she could. She was steaming round Hampton Roads, waiting
to sink any of the boats that were maintaining that blockade. Commodore
Buchanan evidently fancied he had an easy job on hand, but as soon as
we sighted the ungainly-looking craft, our hearts were made glad with
orders to pour a broadside into her, which we lost no time in doing. We
tried our best to destroy her, but her heavy iron plates withstood the
assault. Had she been made of wood, we would have made a sieve of her
with our charge. We did her some damage, though, for our shot went clear
into her open ports, and killed some of her crew. I heard some one say
when a man's hit he don't cry out, but I know better, for the shrieks
of the wounded on both sides that day, mingled with the roaring of the
shells, the crashing of shot against the iron-sheeted monster, and the
confusion of voices as orders rang out, sound in my ears yet.

"Lieutenant Morris would not say die, and when the rifled shot from the
big house, for that's what it looked like, tore our decks fore and aft,
the Merrimac's commander followed it up by turning his boat so that
he rammed into our gay little vessel's side, and left a huge gash. Our
commander's blood was up. We felt the frigate slowly settling beneath
our feet, but not a man dreamed of forsaking his gun, but steadily
poured fire into the Merrimac. We were willing to die, rather than
surrender, and even though the breath came quick and hard, and we may
have quailed a little as we looked at our watery grave, yet we waited
calmly to hear our leader's orders, while the enemy was dealing us
terrible blows with shot and shell.

"I felt a sharp pang, a numbness followed. The whole world was growing
black, and for a second I thought the night had suddenly settled over
us, and I knew no more, until one day I woke up in hospital, and found
my right arm and shoulder had parted company. A {175}messmate told me
what happened after I fell to the deck. Our brave commander would not
surrender; the water rose steadily, or, rather, the Cumberland sank
steadily, until the waves washed across her gun deck, when the crew
sprang overboard, and the ships boats carried them ashore.

[Illustration: 0184]

"Tom said it was a sickening sight--they had done us great havoc, but all
of our wounded who could be dragged into the boats were saved, myself
among the number. Tom said it was a gloomy sight when the trusty frigate
keeled over, and sank to the bottom, but she went down game, for her
top-masts stood above the water, with her flag flapping in the face of
the Merrimac and her commander."

George paused. A sparkle was in his eyes, and he laughed aloud at his
own idea. He continued: "But I had my revenge when I heard about the
Monitor giving it to the Merrimac. You know Ericsson invented that queer
boat. It's a curious affair. You never saw it? It looks for all the
world like a big cheese box, with a round chimney or turret on it. This
turret carries two monstrous guns, {176}and it can be turned round so
that they can be pointed in any direction.

[Illustration: 9185]

"The mischief she did was something worth talking about. Lieutenant John
L. Worden commanded her, but he met with a mishap at the start. He was
looking through the sight hole, taking observations, when a shell struck
it, and hurt him badly, making him blind for a time, and he had to
turn over the command to Lieutenant Sam Greene. The two boats kept on
fighting wildly, each trying to ram the other. Why, they came so close
once in the fight, that both guns went off together, causing such a
shock that the crew at the after guns were knocked down, and some of
them bled at the nose and ears. They fought four hours, so the paper
stated, and the Merri-mac went back to Norfolk, badly used up, for they
put her in dry dock."

George would have talked on all night, it seemed, but Ralph, who had
enjoyed the brief story of the sea-fight, said he must go, as the sun
would soon be down. But that visit was but one of many which he made to
George, and each one increased his anxiety to return to the army. He was
gaining health under his mother's care and the long rest he was having,
and he often laughingly declared that if the regimental doctor could see
him now, he'd never believe in his own predictions again.

Grateful as his mother was for his restoration to health, yet it
saddened her, for she saw it was useless to keep him back, for he talked
of nothing else but returning to the army. She felt {177}that he had
done his duty, and she could not see why that did not content him. But
she realized that it did not; she saw that he was determined to go, and
her heart sank like lead in her bosom at the thought.

The day for parting came, and as Ralph, with a few other soldiers who
were returning to their regiments, started for the great city beyond,
from which they were to proceed to the front, she thought her heart
would break at this second leave-taking. Her boy loved her more dearly
than she knew; but he honestly thought his duty to his country was above
any private considerations, and that he should be guilty of a great sin
if he did not return to that duty.

The news from the front was most inspiring. Each day the "war news" was
of more absorbing interest. Ralph wanted to be back with the army. He
had no longer any ambition to win any especial distinction, but he was
content to do his part as one of the vast army of great heroes of whom
the world will never hear, but whose whole duty was done, quietly and
unobtrusively.

How many sublime acts of self-sacrifice, of generous comradeship, were
performed, on the field of battle, in camp and hospital, and even in
prison life, will never be known. But a record has been kept in a higher
ledger than a worldly one, and when that is revealed these deeds will
come to the knowledge of all men.{178}

[Illustration: 0187]



CHAPTER XVII. RALPH RE-ENLISTS.

[Illustration: 9188]

NCE {179}again our hero was in Chicago. The city had put on its spring
dress, and well was it named the Garden City, for the streets at that
time were nearly all bordered with trees, and their green foliage gave
it, at a little distance, the appearance a wooded plain, for the city is
built on level ground--indeed, it was once a swamp, and it has cost the
labor of years and an outlay of millions of dollars to reclaim it from
its original state, and fill in and grade and elevate its highways.

The terrible battle of Chancellorsville had been fought, under General
Hooker ("Fighting Joe," as the soldiers loved to call him), and a
victory had resulted for the Union army. The news electrified the North,
and great results were predicted. General Hooker had been given the
command after the utter failure of General Burnside at Fredericksburg,
and his soldiers were ready to follow him to the death, for he was
intrepid and fearless. This memorable engagement had been fought
with Hooker on the Federal forces, and Stonewall Jackson, the brave
Confederate leader on the Confederate side. He was General Lee's right
hand man, the ablest and best Lieutenant he ever had. Close upon this
victory came the news that General Jackson had been shot by his own men.
When the shades of evening began to fall, he rode to the front to see
what could be learned of the movements of the Federals, and as he
rode back to his own lines, surrounded by his staff, some of his own
followers, watchful and faithful to their duty, not recognizing him in
the dim twilight, but mistaking the mounted men for cavalry belonging
to the Union side, fired a volley at them, {180}killing several of the
horsemen, and wounding others. This was, of course, supposed to be an
attack from some of the Union soldiers, and to them was imputed the
firing. The Confederate loss in the day's encounter had been severe, and
they smarted at their defeat, They had been met by such a storm of grape
and canister as no mortal power could withstand. The charge of Major
Peter Keenan, which had been ordered by General Pleasanton, had been so
brilliant that it had surprised the Confederates, who could not believe
that Keenan, with four hundred men, would dare oppose ten thousand
of their infantry, and they concluded that tremendous numbers must be
behind them. The Major, with his little band, was slain, but his charge
stopped the onset of the Confederates.

The stories of individual bravery which are furnished by the annals of
the conflict, are alone enough to fill a volume, but will probably never
be written. The heroic Major knew that he was inviting death, but he
never faltered. Indeed, his own words were to that effect, for he said
to his officers, "It is the same as saying we must be killed, but we'll
do it." And his words proved prophetic, for he fell, and but few came
out of that engagement alive.

The twilight was falling, veiling every object in its uncertain light,
the trees cast their dark shadows over the path which General Jackson
had chosen. As his men, ever watchful, saw the result of their first
volley, they became exultant at their success, and again they
loaded their guns, discharging them at the form of the leader of the
approaching party, who had thus singularly fallen into their hands. They
knew that they had wounded an officer, and as he fell from his seat,
they rushed forward to learn his rank and name, if possible. Alas,
to their consternation, they discovered that their beloved commander,
General Jackson, had received three wounds. His steed, mad with fright,
plunged wildly forward, and dashed into the depths of the thicket,
tossing him against the limbs of the trees in his path, and bruising him
most severely.

{181}

[Illustration: 0190]

While his men were sorrowfully conveying him to the rear, a Union
battery belched forth its {182}fire down the road after them, one man
was wounded, and the General fell to the ground. He was borne to an
hospital but lived only one week, after having endured amputation of his
arm.

[Illustration: 0191]

Bounties had been offered in all the Northern States. New York was
offering liberal sums to recruits. The new levy for 300,000 men ordered
in April had not been filled, and trouble was anticipated, as a draft
had been threatened. But in Chicago no such fears disturbed her people.

{183}

[Illustration: 0192]

Ralph {184}found that city full of activity. Groups were gathered on
every street corner discussing the war and their hopes of its probable
early ending. The South had suffered severely in loss of men and means,
and so had the North. Many a family could point to the "vacant chair"
and lament the dear one who had gone, never to return. Death had been
busy at every fireside and the cruel war had wrought the havoc.

But the spirit of patriotism was not dead, but burned more brightly
than ever, and those who had lain down their lives were embalmed in
the hearts of a grateful people. They fell in a sacred cause, and their
memories will live forever.

Ralph walked through the streets with a hopeful step. He had won his
mother's free consent to go to the front, but little did he dream how
far from willing the consent she had spoken was. He knew, too, that her
blessing accompanied him everywhere, and he wished he could see her now,
and tell her how happy he was. Turning down a street near the river, he
saw a crowd standing round an office, on whose front was a big poster,
with the words--"Recruits wanted--Enlist here!" Stepping in at the door,
he saw a motley crowd of men pushing and jostling each other in their
desire to be among the earliest to be enrolled. A military man sat at
a desk, with a huge book open before him, and two officers sat near at
desks, writing busily.

Ralph made known his business as soon as he could engage the officer's
attention. He was questioned as to his age, occupation, and many other
particulars.

"You say you've been in the army already?" the officer queried, while he
looked earnestly into the boy's face. "How is it that you are here now,
trying to re-enlist? Why did you not serve your time?"

"I got sick, really sick, sir," as he saw a smile flit over the other's
face. "I did not want to come home, but the doctor said I would surely
die if I remained. I received a discharge and went home to mother, and
she cured me all up, and I am well--well, and stronger than ever. And
now I want to go back to {185}the boys in the army, and help them finish
this contract they have taken, to bring the South back into the Union.
Yes, I want to enlist 'for the war.'"

As the boy concluded, his eye grew bright, his cheeks were flushed, and
his form seemed to expand with the strength of his emotions.

The officer seemed to enjoy his earnestness, and writing down his name,
age, and place of birth, passed him over to the doctor for examination.
He passed satisfactorily, and thankfully he heard the verdict of the
doctor. He was sent to military headquarters, and then he was assigned
to the Seventy-second Illinois Infantry. That regiment was the first one
organized by the Board of Trade of Chicago. It was then at Milliken's
Bend, after having tried in vain to make the Yazoo Pass. A canal had
been ordered dug by General Sherman in a bend opposite Vicksburg, into
which he was confident he could divert the river, but this plan was
checked by the sudden rising of the river, and it was only by a miracle
that entire regiments escaped drowning.

The attempt afterward made by General Grant to enter this Pass had
proved equally disappointing, even though an embankment which the
Confederates had thrown up had been as promptly blown up by him. His
boats entered the streams, whose banks had heavy growths of timber, only
to find that the Confederates had cut down trees of immense bulk, and
thrown them across the channel. But General Grant kept on, removing the
fallen, trees that blocked the way, but he at once discovered that he
was placing himself in a trap, for the rebels were felling trees and
throwing them across the channel behind him, so that he could not get
out again. They had also raised earthworks at a point where two rivers
met, and they were well guarded.

There was one forlorn chance left, yet untried, and that was to go up
the Yazoo a short distance, in boats, and pass into Big Sunflower
River, and then descend that stream into the Yazoo again. This hazardous
expedition was intrusted to Generals Sherman and Porter, to carry
forward.

The {186}situation was desperate. The channels were narrow, there was
no solid ground on which to plant troops, the cane-brake was dense and
nearly impassable, and they actually had to pick their way through the
dark and uncanny swamp by the aid of candles. It was inviting death
too openly to proceed, for, added to natures horrors, the whole region
swarmed with sharpshooters to whom every step of the way was familiar,
and whose unerring aim told heavily all along the lines of the Federals,
who were glad to escape from the narrow pass.

[Illustration: 0195]

{187}

[Illustration: 0196]

Commodore Farragut, with one gunboat and his flagship, had shot by the
batteries at Port Hudson, and several boats had passed Vicksburg. On
the night of April 16 Commodore Porter ran by the batteries, but the
watchful enemy had provided for this move, and suddenly setting fire
to huge heaps of wood on the bank, a brilliant flame darted up to the
heavens, and by its light for an hour and a half they sent a heavy
fire into the fleet, which as industriously returned the courtesy as it
steamed past its {188}adversary. But the Federal fleet met with no loss
save the sinking of one transport.

This was some of the history of the campaign which the regiment to which
Ralph was sent had taken part in, and the thought of joining it gave him
unbounded delight.

"I was not contented, dear mother," he wrote to her a few days later,
"until I was back with the boys in blue. This is a lovely country. When
this war is over, I'll bring you down here, and we'll spend our days
where nature has done so much for her creatures."

Down the river they steamed. When they reached Milliken's Bend,
Louisiana, their corps united with Grant's army in its memorable march
on Vicksburg. Ralph was on the alert to see all that he could of the
country. But there were no signs of aught but desolation. Fences had
been torn down, and consumed to cook the camp fare on marches; here a
pile of charred timber told where a house had once reared its stately
head; a few half-starved animals roamed round an old, deserted place,
in search of the food they needed. Poverty, devastation and ruin were
evident everywhere, and spoke plainly of the blight that followed in
the wake of the armies that had tramped over and destroyed the beautiful
homes of former days.

The morning of May 16, they reached Champion's Hill, where they found
severe work. General Sherman had been left at Jackson to destroy the
railroad, and the factories which were making goods for the Confederate
soldiers. He performed this task with thoroughness. He now received
orders from General Grant to send forward an ammunition train, so as
to be ready for the battle that must take place soon. He was not
disappointed. At Champion's Hill, on rising ground, he found General
Pemberton waiting to receive him, with 23,000 men drawn up in line.
His force held the vantage, as they were stationed on high ground,
commanding three roads, and thus it was admirably calculated for a
defensive point.

{189}

[Illustration: 0198]

For hours the fighting went on. The Union force's made a overwhelming
{190}charge, and the rebel lines wavered, but speedily regained their
position. It was a desperate duel, and fought to the death. General
Pemberton had a splendid army of well-disciplined men, and when the two
lines met with impetuosity, the day seemed lost to the Federals. General
Logan saw the danger threatening them, and pushing forward on the right
with his magnificent division, he passed the rebel General's left flank,
and secured the only road by which the latter could make his retreat.

[Illustration: 8199]

The enemy were dismayed. Cut off from escape, they knew defeat was
inevitable. The movement of Logan had been so sudden and brilliant that
there was not a moment of grace given them. But that General was not
conscious that he held the road in his grasp, and when General Hovey,
who was besieged vigorously by the Confederates, a few moments later,
shouted for aid, Logan fell back to his assistance.

{191}

[Illustration: 0200]

Now was their chance, for the road was left unguarded, and a dash
was made by General Pemberton, whose flying columns were {192}in full
retreat, without giving a thought to his dead and wounded, left uncared
for on the field. He also abandoned thirty guns, and crossed the Big
Black River.

The battle was over, and to the opportune move of the brave Logan was
due the hard-won success of the day. Four hours of hard fighting had
been followed by the usual harvest of dead and maimed. Nurses and
hospital stewards succored all whom they could find, but wounded men
were lying between the lines and in every corner, groaning with the
anguish of uncared for injuries. Among those lost on the Confederate
side was General Tilghman, who fell early in the day.

The soldiers found a brief rest in sleep. Ralph had thrown himself on
the ground in a state of perfect exhaustion. He would not confess, even
to himself, that he had overrated his strength. But when the stars came
out, and the silence of night succeeded, nature asserted her rights, and
he slept undisturbed by dreams of carnage and bloodshed, but his visions
were of home and its charms.

"Wake up, young fellow!"

He sprang to his feet, while a man of about forty, who had been shaking
him violently, said, with a hearty laugh:

"You're something of a sleeper. Rip Van Winkle is nowhere. Reveille
has sounded, the regiments are ready to move as soon as we get a cup of
coffee, and you've been sleeping through it all, as sweetly as if you
were in your little bed at home. It's a mighty fine thing to have a
clear conscience."

And the pleasant-faced soldier gave Ralph a gentle push as he gathered
himself up, and made a jump for one of the fires that were burning in
different spots, kindled by the hungry men to boil their coffee, or cook
a bit, before they took up the march again. The other followed
closely at his heels, and sitting on a fallen log they were soon busy
"fortifying their inner man," amid much laughing and chaffing going on
around them.

That is a marked trait of the American soldier, be he from North or
South. No amount of hardship, no deprivations, can destroy that love of
fun which is inborn. He is always ready to {193}see the comic side of
all situations, as he merrily laughs at danger, and jokes almost in the
very presence of death.

That day General Pemberton was overtaken at the Big Black. Here he had
stationed his main body on high land, but on the east of the stream the
ground was low and wet, and on this spot the remainder of his command
was held.

"We have got to dislodge Pemberton from his position," Ralph heard a
comrade say. "He has a splendid view of all we are doing, and can make a
stanch resistance. But we'll soon set him running again, and he'll have
to find a better lookout than the one he now occupies."

"See!" shouted Ralph. "General Lawler is leading the attack on their
right flank. They give way--they fall back! The General is in his shirt
sleeves, and looks as if he were in earnest!"

"Shouldn't wonder if he was. He's a hard one to tackle, and won't stand
on ceremony. He don't go into battle in a full dress suit. Just look
over there. Pemberton is retreating, skedaddling. His men have set fire
to that bridge, and how is he going to cover the retreat of his rear
guard down there in the bayou?"

"He's not trying to save them at all, but is looking after No. One. By
George, he's off, and has left those poor fellows to be captured, or
shot down, he don't care which."

It was true. He ran away in mad haste, making no effort to cover their
retreat, but abandoned the panic-stricken men in the lowland to their
fate. Wild with terror, with no leader to direct, many of them flung
themselves into the river, only to sink beneath the waters, and those
who were left were taken prisoners by the Federals. {194}

[Illustration: 0203]



CHAPTER XVIII. CROSSING THE RIVER.

[Illustration: 9204]

ENERAL {195}GRANT set to work at once building bridges by which to cross
the Big Black. General Sherman's corps were soon busy felling trees and
laying planks. A raft bridge was now constructed, and a bridge was also
hurried together, with cotton bales for pontoons. The next step was to
cut trees on each side of the river in such a manner that their trunks
were not severed, but clung to the stumps. In falling across the stream,
their boughs met and grasped each other firmly, and the planks laid
across them made a secure road, over which the troops passed, while the
two Generals, Grant and Sherman, sat on a log and watched the living
mass of blue-coats march over, with the smoky, ruddy light of pitch pine
torches throwing their weird shadows over the scene. It was a wild and
picturesque panorama. The vast body of human beings moving fearlessly
across the swaying structure, the fitful gleams of light reflecting from
their muskets, the two great generals sitting there as calmly as though
watching a festive procession--the somber depths of the forest on either
side, where danger lurked in many shapes--what heart could fail to be
impressed by the solemn spectacle?

By the morning of the 18th that vast army had crossed to the west side
of the river, but the rebel general had not waited to receive them, but
flown, without attempting to give them battle. He hastened to the city
of Vicksburg, behind whose walls he found shelter. He was speedily
followed by Grant, who got his army in position, placing General Sherman
on the right of the line, General McPherson on the left of Sherman, and
McClernand next, his command touching the river below Vicksburg. Sharp
resistance was offered, and the Confederates lost ground in {196}a
skirmish on the 19th, but made an onset which almost regained it for
them, but the National troops checked their assault and moved to a more
advantageous position. The Federal forces were nearly famished, for
rations for five days had to do duty for three weeks, eked out by
what they could confiscate from the people as they marched through the
country, one of General Grant's first steps was to make roads in the
rear of his line, so that supplies could be obtained more easily. These
roads ran through swamps and miry places, where no team could force its
way.

[Illustration: 9205]

"We are expecting an attack from Johnston. He has been laid up with the
wound he received at Seven Pines, and has all the Mississippi forces
under him," Ralph's captain said to him. "Our line of defences is
thrown out six or seven miles, so I hear," answered Ralph. "We are well
prepared for them."

"That is true, but we may look for an attack in our rear. McClernand
reports that he has taken two forts, and is in imminent danger, and
sends a request for reinforcements at once."

Ere he finished speaking, the ball was opened vigorously.

{197}

[Illustration: 0206]

The {198}river heights were fortified strongly, earthworks rearing
their heads for miles, bristling with guns, against which the Union army
hurled its strength in vain. Grants purpose was to carry the works by
storm, but though splendid courage was shown, and the color-bearers at
many points reached the breastworks and planted flags upon them, they
proved impregnable.

[Illustration: 0207]

When {199}Ralph saw their efforts, he could not repress his enthusiasm,
but shouted--"Hurrah! Our flag is floating on the breeze. We shall soon
be in the city!"

His excitement was contagious, and with a ringing shout the advancing
men hurled themselves vigorously against the obstructions, only to be
driven back slowly but surely.

"General Grant has just received a dispatch saying that McClernand has
two forts of the enemy in his possession. A brigade has been sent to his
aid, and firing has been resumed-Boys, at them with a will!"

[Illustration: 0208]

As {200}they entered a cut in the road, Ralph saw the color sergeant of
one of the Illinois regiments, who could scarcely stand from fright. The
balls were whistling by their ears, the leaves of the trees were falling
in showers, scattered by the rifles' fire. The man was ashy pale, and
his knees trembled so he could not stand erect. Ralph thought of what he
had related to boys months ago, about the French soldier, but this, he
saw, was not a parallel case, for this man was clearly a coward, and as
he watched him, he expected to see him fall down, and trail the colors
after him. The man saw that he was observed, and he made one
desperate effort to raise himself to his full height, but suddenly
the pleasant-faced man who had taken interest in Ralph sprang forward,
wrested the flag from the cowardly fellow, and carried it valiantly to
the front.

Ralph looked for the sergeant. He had shrunk to the rear, and was busy
hiding behind a huge tree which towered above the field.

"Thank heaven!" said Ralph, "our flag was saved." He felt sure that his
new friend, who was corporal of the color guard, would be rewarded in
some way, but the soldier who had rescued the flag, when summoned
before the commanding officer, and offered promotion to color sergeant,
promptly refused it, unless the one who had so belittled his trust were
reduced to the ranks. This was not done, for some reason, but the man
who had rescued the colors was made a sergeant--a deserved promotion.

The rumor proved false, for General McClernand, so far from taking the
two forts, had been repulsed, and the men who were sent to help him were
many of them killed; they were made the victims of a misstatement, to
put it as mildly as possible. A short time after, General Grant relieved
him of further responsibility, and General Ord succeeded him.

This assault was a costly one, for two thousand five hundred men were
sacrificed, and Grant determined to besiege the city. He went to
the rear, earth-works were thrown up, and mines were dug under
the fortifications. By day and by night the big guns were booming
{201}across the space, which daily grew narrower, as the Union soldiers
brought the trenches nearer to the line of defense. Those were days that
tried their courage and patience, but not a murmur was heard.

One day a great commotion took place among the soldiers. Three objects
were seen whirling through the air, and fell in the Union lines, within
five feet of where Ralph was standing.

"What is it? Where did it come from?" was the query, as several hastened
to the spot, to find three men, two white ones lying on the ground dead,
and one negro nearly so.

"Something struck some one that time," Corporal Calvin Strong said.
"See--the colored man's coming to."

And so he was, and as he raised up, he began to rub his head, and look
wildly about.

"Say, he's contraband of war, and we must confiscate him," the
Corporal continued, laughingly.

"Whar--whar be I? Is dis yere de bottomless pit?" the black man asked.

"Yes, Sam, you've arrived at your proper destination, and now you've got
to be flogged every day, until your sins are all paid for."

"Oh, massa, spare a poor cullered boy who neber did nuffing wuss den
steal a chicken, or grab a few eggs. Neber did no mo'." And falling on
his knees he began to jabber away in pure fright.

"Get up, you black rascal; you're in the Union lines now," Sergeant
Harmon said, as he pulled the shaking darkey to his feet.

"Bress de Lawd! In de Union? I'se whar I'll git sumfin to eat, now,
sure."

"How far did you come, Sam?"

"Bout free miles. I'se come to stay, too. I'll neber go back dar any
mo'."

And Black Sam did stay, and made one of the most faithful of servants.
He often referred to his first appearance among the soldiers. When the
mine exploded at Fort Hill, it killed the {202}two white men, but by
some miracle Sam escaped, and when he recovered consciousness, and found
himself surrounded by men black with powder and dust, he had really
fancied that he had landed in a certain world where they tell us cold is
unknown.

Day after day the noise of the great guns was heard. Shells were thrown
into the beleaguered town, and much injury was inflicted. Vicksburg
at this time might be called a city of caves, for they were dug in the
banks wherever a street was cut through a clayey hill, and these caves
were tenanted by entire families, who lived in comparative safety, while
shells and balls were whizzing over their heads. Nor did the darkness
bring a cessation of hostilities, the night proving no barrier to
Grant's vigorous attack. As the two lines came nearer together, a mutual
understanding was had, after this fashion:

"Well, Yank, how are you getting along?"

"Oh, fine. We'll soon be over there to see you. Have the ice-cream and
cake all ready, for it's a hot day."

"Oh, that'll be 'all right. We'll freeze you out sure. Say, you come up
on top where we can get a look at you."

"If you'll put your old guns away, and not pop at us, we'll come up."

"That's a bargain. We promise. But you must do the same by us."

"Agreed--that's fair enough." And true to their word, they would show
themselves, and a running fire of jokes and ridicule would be launched
at each other.

"Say, Johnnie, how are the hotels over there? Engage us rooms at the
best one, for we want good accommodations when we get there."

"We have everything fine, and are waiting to receive you in first-class
shape."

"Good eating?"

"The choicest cuts of mule-steaks, roasts, soups, any shape you order
it. Say, Yank, what's the news your way?"

"Oh, were having a jolly time. We've got everything we want, {203}save
your town, and when we get that, the old mud stream will be open for a
sail way down to the Gulf."

"Well, you won't take your sail very soon, then, for you'll never get
Vicksburg. Say, have yer got any terbacker?"

"Lots of it. Want some?" Then the exchange would be made, and after this
friendly pause, both sides would resume hostilities, as earnestly as
ever.

[Illustration: 8212]

Work in the trenches brought the prospect of subduing the almost
invulnerable heights nearer and nearer. Famine threatened the besieged
city, with its horrors. Forty-four days had been consumed in laying
siege. Soldiers lay down in the same clothes which they had worn through
all these weary weeks of bloodshed and resistance.

General Pemberton sent a flag of truce to General Grant, and
negotiations were carried on, but the Federal commander was now prepared
for a final grand assault. The Fourth of July was near, supplies had
given out within the walls, and the Confederate general, who had held
out bravely, surrendered without making any conditions.

General Grant took possession in a most magnanimous manner. By his
express command not a man of his army was permitted to cheer; not a
single salute was fired, and silently, with dignity and generosity,
the half-starved Confederates were fed bountifully, the Union soldiers
emptying their own knapsacks, and giving their contents to {204}them.
All the prisoners taken at Vicksburg and those at Port Hudson were
paroled, under the supposition that they would return to their homes,
and await a proper exchange.

[Illustration: 8213]

War has its humor as well as peace. The help afforded by Porters fleet
and Farragut's had been considerable during the siege. The Confederates
had sunk the Indianola, one of Porter's boats, and were trying to raise
it, when they saw a monitor coming down full upon them. Admiral Porter
had fitted up an old flatboat with pork barrels for smoke stacks, and
furnaces made from mud, in which a fire had been started. He sent it
sailing down the river, with not a human being on board, to the evident
terror of the Confederates, who were watching her and who fired point
blank at her, without stopping the supposed monitor. Dreading lest they
would lose their prize, they promptly blew up the Indianola, before they
discovered that they were sold.



CHAPTER XIX. THE PROCLAMATION.

[Illustration: 9214]

LACKS {205}were constantly coming into the Union lines, and though it
was a hard problem to dispose of them, yet General Grant's care of them
was most humane. Few among them were aware of the immortal proclamation
of Abraham Lincoln, but believed themselves still subject to their old
masters.

[Illustration: 8214]

The colored folks all through the war had shown very friendly feelings
toward the Union army, as many an act of kindness at their hands had
testified. Those who came into camp, as well as the white refugees, were
put to various labors. Surely no race, save the African, ever produced
such a quantity of culinary artists, judging from the claims they set
up. Whenever a darkey was queried as to his calling, whether he had
been a field hand or a house servant, he always answered that he was "a
fust-rate cook, massa; can gib yo' some fust-class dishes."

"Still more good news, boys; General Lee has been routed at Gettysburg,
and several of his generals killed or wounded. Among the latter is
General Wade Hampton. Lee's brilliant sortie has been checked by three
of the hardest days' {206}fighting ever witnessed in this war. Both
armies fought like demons. But we have driven Lee and his followers off
the soil of Virginia. General Meade, the master spirit, has given them a
taste of his fine generalship.

"He's never jealous of his officers under him--that is another trait of
his," spoke up a man who had fought under him.

"Yes, and Pickett, with his magnificent column, was there, and was
nearly annihilated, for he lost nearly every officer he had."

[Illustration: 9215]

"The fight was hottest, they say, at Round Top. The Confed sharpshooters
held Devil's Den, and a ghostly place it is. I know every inch of the
ground, for I was born three miles from there," said another man.

"How strange," said Ralph, "that two such glorious victories should
follow each other--Gettysburg in the East, and Vicksburg in the
Southwest. General Lee has been instructed that an invasion of the North
is impossible, and we have cut the Confederacy in two by opening the
Mississippi to navigation from Cairo to the Gulf. Surely, the God of
battles is on our side," he reverently continued, for Ralph knew that
without His overruling care, we are but naught.

[Illustration: 0216]

The {207}martyrs of Gettysburg, those who had laid down their lives for
universal liberty, were not forgotten by A National cemetery, in which
the soldiers' who fell in that campaign were to be buried, was laid out.
The ground was dedicated on the 19th of November, 1861, and here, with
the wintry winds making music round their graves, the remains of 3,560
brave men were laid to rest, according to the order of their respective
States. It was a fitting tribute to bravery, and the occasion was most
impressive.

{208}

[Illustration: 0217]

[Illustration: 9218]

Edward {209}Everett was chosen as the orator of the day. President
Lincoln was invited to honor the event by his presence, and he received
a gentle hint that his voice would be a welcome tribute.

He came, with no speech prepared, save a few fugitive thoughts which
he scratched down on an old envelope, on his way to Gettysburg, and
intended solely as references.

[Illustration: 8218]

When he was called on, he rose, and in his simple, unaffected way he
gave to his hearers an immortal speech.

A long time after its delivery, Mr. Lincoln, at the urgent request of
friends, rewrote it and affixed his signature.

The copy gives an exact facsimile of his handwriting, and thus in
a double sense it becomes a most valuable addition to one's reading
matter. {210}

[Illustration: 0219]

{211}

[Illustration: 0220]

The {212}days of idleness had not come to them yet. Victory did not
mean inaction. They were embarked on board a steamer, bound for Natchez,
Mississippi, which town was taken with little resistance. They also
seized several pieces of artillery, a large number of prisoners, and
5,000 head of cattle designed for use in the Southern army. A quantity
of Government stores fell into their hands, also. At Natchez they were
detailed to do provost duty.

[Illustration: 0221]

This was to Ralph a pleasant change from the awful scenes of carnage he
had been a participant in. The morning of September 1st the regiment
was ordered out to attack a body of rebels who were harassing the Union
people at St. Catharine's Creek.

{213}

[Illustration: 0222]

They found a small force stationed here who were levying contributions
from the country around, but they promptly drove them {214}back to their
hiding-places. At Cross Bayou, Louisiana, they were again called into
action, and suppressed the guerrilla bands who preyed on all alike.

[Illustration: 8223]

Guerrilla warfare is most exasperating. The West was full of these
vicious and irresponsible men, who, under a leader of courage and
brains, would unite to prey on and murder rich and poor alike. They
could skulk in the depths of the woods, and dash out upon their victims,
and after gratifying their murderous designs, they would flee to their
homes and lie in concealment till some new exploit would reveal their
lurking place. Probably the best organized and most reckless of these
bands was led by Colonel John S. Mosby, whose daring deeds made his name
a terror. His raids were remarkable for their boldness and success. He
never was captured, although his band was thinned often by the frequent
efforts on the part of the Federals to bring him to justice.

"We are ordered back to Vicksburg, to do provost duty there," the captain
informed his men, who heard it with variable feelings.

Grumbling was heard from some of the younger ones, who were anxious to
be "at the front," and to them acting as provost guards smacked too much
of being kept in the background. The older ones heard the news with much
satisfaction, however.

{215}

[Illustration: 0224]

They returned to Vicksburg, with very different emotions to those they
felt just after the surrender of General Pemberton, and even though they
were not welcomed, their coming insured peace and protection from the
contentions {216}without, and the rough element within. Doing post duty
is quite as necessary as constant warfare, but few were the occasions
for interference on the part of the soldiers.

[Illustration: 9225]

Skirmishes were frequent, but the days of the rebellion were drawing
to a close. The Confederates realized that the hours of the Confederacy
were numbered, but still they struggled on. How ardently Ralph wished
that peace would dawn. He abhorred the bloodshed that the protracted
conflict entailed.

Time passed heavily, and he began to fret at the duty assigned.
Events so brilliant that everything paled before them were transpiring
elsewhere, and the boys spirit burned to be in the fray.

Morgan, the Confederate guerrilla, had planned a bold raid across
the Ohio, and had captured Columbia and Lebanon, Kentucky, seized
two steamers, and, going into Indiana, had left a trail of ruin and
destruction behind him, as he hastened toward Cincinnati, burning
bridges and stores, tearing up railroad tracks, and plundering every
one, irrespective of their views. How far his depredations would have
been carried, cannot be judged, but at Buffington Ford he was pursued so
closely that he was driven make a stand and fight. Here he was defeated,
and, fleeing up the stream, was again attacked at New Lisbon, where he
surrendered, and was sent to the Ohio penitentiary, but a few months
later he dug under the walls and fled.

{217}

[Illustration: 0226]

July 18 the regiment was again aroused by receiving orders to move on to
Grand Gulf, Mississippi, where a large force of Confederates {218}were
posted. They found them waiting for them, and gave battle at once,
taking a few prisoners, who were sent to the military post for future
exchange.

[Illustration: 9227]

The awful Battle of the Wilderness had gone down into history, with its
record of unparalleled daring, and its list of 60,000 dead on the two
sides, sending up a wail to Heaven. It was in this fatal battle that
General Longstreet, of the Confederate army, received a severe wound
on the same ground and under a similar mistake, as that which cost
Stonewall Jackson his life, a year before The General was returning
from the front, when he was seen by some of his own men, and fired upon,
under the supposition that he belonged to the National cavalry.

The Atlanta campaign, which had added to General Sherman's everlasting
renown, had lost to the Union cause one of its bravest generals--the
brilliant McPherson, who lost his life by venturing into the woods
almost alone, where he was shot by the Confederates, and his horse
dashed into the Union lines bleeding, but riderless.

The Confederate vessel Alabama, commanded by Raphael Semmes, was at
Cherbourg, France. She had been cruising round for two years, preying
upon American commerce. The United States man of war, Kearsarge, Captain
John A. Winslow, lay {219}off the port, expecting Semmes to come out.
The latter sent a polite request to Winslow, asking him not to leave
those waters, as he intended to fight him. This was exactly Captain
Winslow's wish. On Sunday, June 19, the Alabama went out of the harbor
with flying colors, only to be lured off eight miles from the coast, by
Captain Winslow, who then turned and attacked the enemy.

[Illustration: 9228]

After the Kearsarge began the battle, the firing was terrific and her
shots told heavily. Captain Winslow's shells cut the mizzenmast of the
Alabama in two. The crew were half of them killed by a shell, and the
gunners had been swept away. After an hour's battle, it was seen that
the Alabama was sinking, her officers struck their colors, and threw
the swords, that would no longer avail against their adversary, into the
sea.

Captain Winslow lowered boats from his vessel to save the remaining crew
of the Alabama, when suddenly her stern went down, her bow was tossed
into the air and the Alabama went to the bottom, carrying nearly all the
men. Semmes was picked up by a yacht, with forty sailors, the Kearsarge
rescued some, and all the rest were drowned.

The autumn had come. October had put on its gaudy dress, and the
Seventy-second were still in Vicksburg. By their sedate and manly
bearing and perfect discipline, they had won the friendly toleration of
the very people who had dreaded their coming, but who now felt secure in
the protection of their property.

Business had been to a certain degree resumed, quiet had settled down
over the city, and the great events of that year were had in {220}the
papers from the North, which came freely into the city.

"At last we are going to move again," said Ralph, as they gathered round
headquarters. "We are to report to General Howard and go with Sherman on
his 'March to the Sea.'"

[Illustration: 9229]

"Well, it'll be a relief, for this sort of life is too much like playing
soldier to suit me," a gray-haired private responded.

It was a light-hearted body of men who left Vicksburg that day, but when
they reached Nashville, they were disappointed to learn that they were
too late to join Sherman, but the Seventeenth Corps was cut off and
assigned to General Schofield's Command, then stationed at Columbia,
Tennessee. It was approaching winter's rigors, and General Hood had
harassed the Federal army at all points, and was trying to persuade
Sherman away from Atlanta. When he found he could not do so, he massed
his whole strength for the purpose of destroying General Thomas' forces.
Turning his face in the direction of Nashville, he met a barrier in the
heavy rains which had fallen, rendering the roads almost impassable,
and it was well into November before he reached Duck River, forty miles
south of Nashville.

{221}

[Illustration: 0230]

General Schofield expected him, but Hood flanked him by crossing to
the other shore, which led the Union general to deem it {222}prudent to
attempt to reach Nashville.

[Illustration: 9231]

Quickly he retired to Franklin, where he succeeded in getting across the
river, throwing up earthworks, and placing his artillery. The scene
was a stirring one. General Hood forced his men up against the strong
breastworks with a recklessness that was appalling. They were doomed,
for the terrific onslaught of musketry and artillery cut them down so
fast that they were piled up in heaps, dying and dead, the entire length
of the line.

The struggle at the breastworks was so fierce that it became a hot, mad
encounter between the two armies, who fought literally, hand to hand,
while their fire flashed in each others faces. Officers dismounted, and
fought beside their men. The contest became so close that the standards
of both armies were upon the earthworks at the same time.

A ditch ran outside the works, which was filled with the Confederates,
who could not cross it under such a blinding fire. Here they met their
heaviest losses. The smoke from the National side was so dense, and
kept so near to the earth, that it added to the horror of the scene by
bringing on almost complete darkness. {223}It was one of the hardest
fought battles of the war, and not until midnight did General Schofield
order a retreat to Nashville, a wise move, for had he been content to
remain at Franklin, the fortunes of the day would have been changed very
essentially, for Hood planted all his artillery there that night, and
thus, aided by General Forrest's cavalry, the victory of the day before
would surely have been turned into a defeat.

[Illustration: 9232]

They were worn out--unable to fight longer, and so completely exhausted
by lack of sleep that many of the men in this retreat stumbled and fell
on their faces, and only the vigorous pricking of the bayonet by their
companions aroused them to a sense of the danger they were in of being
captured,--thus they were hurried along.

The whole strength of the army was now concentrated on the defeat of
Hood. On the fifteenth of December General Thomas, who had been grumbled
at and called "slow," delivered a crushing blow by moving upon Hood's
front and flank with such force that he fled precipitately toward
Franklin, with Wilson's famous cavalry in hot pursuit.

{224}

[Illustration: 0233]

General Thomas made a clean sweep of the {225}artillery, capturing every
piece, and taking forty-five hundred prisoners.

The morning of February 9 was cold and frosty, and as the soldiers
huddled round the crackling fires built in the open air, they recounted
tales of the incidents they had seen, or fought again the battles of the
past four years.

"I enlisted to the end of the war," said Ralph. "'When this cruel was
is over,' I shall go home and try to be content," Some of his companions
shared his feelings; to these the prospect of returning home was a
delightful one, but others had grown so fond of this life of danger and
peril that a return to the peaceful pursuits of home-life seemed tame
and dull. War hardens and blunts the finer feelings, making men callous
and indifferent to the gentler ministrations of home.

It was with mixed feelings of joy and regret that the regiment embarked
on the steamer for New Orleans. The voyage was a break in the daily
life, but when land soldiers are penned up on board a boat there is not
much r to break the monotony. At noon of the fourth day they laid up
at a little landing to "wood up." Not a house was to be seen, the tall
trees stood up black and gloomy, and the dull gray sky lowered ominously
over them. Glad to feel the earth beneath their feet, a few of the more
venturesome leaped ashore for a "run in the timber," as they expressed
it, though they prudently kept near the boat.

Ralph was sitting on the deck when he heard the report of a rifle, and
jumping up, he called out, "Our men are attacked!"

Instantly every man's weapon was pointed in the direction from whence
came the sound. A poor fellow had roamed a few steps farther from his
comrades than caution would have dictated, and had been fired upon by
guerrillas, who were skulking behind the trees in the leafy depths of
the forest. Another man staggered to the edge of the bank, and would
have fallen overboard, were it not for Ralph's quick leap. He had been
wounded in the arm, and as he was helped on board he said; "There is a
band of them up there in the woods."

"Fire!" {226}came the word of command, and the bullets whistled after
the fleeing band, who did not return the shots, however. Whether they
were hit, was not known. A detail was sent to bring in the body of the
dead soldier who had fallen just at the edge of the woods. This incident
checked the gay spirits of the men, but, after all, it was one of the
possibilities of war, and might have befallen any one there.

[Illustration: 0235]

They reached the city of New Orleans on the evening of February 21st,
and encamped at a beautiful little village about eight miles below that
city. But their stay was brief, and again they were transported across
the Gulf to Dauphine Island, Alabama. The March weather was
health-inspiring, but they had no leisure for admiring natures lovely
face, for there was more fighting ahead.

{227}

[Illustration: 0236]

{228}

Mobile Bay was now the destined point. Crossing over to the mainland,
they spent several days in skirmishing, it being General Grants design
to divert the enemy's attention from his real intention, which was to
attack and subdue Spanish Fort, before whose walls they were arrayed on
the dawn of March 27. Bombardment began early. A dense curtain of
smoke hung over the fort, like a pall, and after four days of vigorous
assault, their guns were silenced, and just before the midnight hour,
the works were carried, amid wild cheers and exultation.

[Illustration: 9237]

Great events were taking place while the Western army was busy. Sheridan
and his cavalry had not been idle in the Shenandoah Valley, and at
Waynesboro' General Custer, the intrepid, who commanded his Third
Division, routed General Early, and took 1,500 prisoners, and every gun
and train he had. Sheridan was not content with this victory, but
he ruined the locks in the James River Canal, destroyed parts of the
railroad, thus cutting off supplies, and then joined General Grant's
army, and passed through Dinwiddie Court House with his splendid body
of cavalry, and attacking the right flank of the Confederates at Five
Forks, found no {229}difficulty in dislodging their cavalry, when a
strong force of infantry came to their rescue, who in their turn routed
Sheridan most unexpectedly. At once Grant hurried the Fifth Corps
forward to his assistance, but it was noon of the first of April before
he could get them into position.

[Illustration: 0238]

Bringing up his mounted force in front, who dashed forward in gallant
style, he led the Fifth Corps so as to completely encircle {230}the
Confederates. This manouver was an unpleasant surprise to the enemy, and
a victory for the Federal side. Five Forks was held by them, and 5,000
prisoners fell into the hands of the Union army.

Following up his advantage, General Grant leveled two more forts, whose
defenders still resolutely held out--Forts Gregg and Whitworth, at the
latter of which the Confederate General Hill was shot.

[Illustration: 0239]

General Lee's flight was a sad ending to his earnest hopes and faithful
espousal of the cause which he believed right. He was pursued closely by
General Grant, who attacked him whenever {231}the two armies approached
each other. These conflicts were severe and destructive, as it presented
the strange fact of two bodies of soldiers, both skilled and brave,
moving along over the open country, unprotected by any entrenchments,
and continually falling upon each other with desperation. To add to the
gloom of Lee's situation, his men were half-famished and nearly worn
out.

[Illustration: 0240]

Arriving at Appomattox Court House, a week after leaving Petersburg, he
was again checked by Sheridan's dismounted cavalry, {232}who were massed
in a solid line across his path, but this gave him no uneasiness. He
advanced with confidence that he could easily break their ranks, when to
his dismay they drew off to the right, and his progress was barred by a
heavy force of blue-coats, with their glittering weapons.

[Illustration: 0241]

A halt was made, and as Sheridans men {233}were about to charge
upon them, a flag of truce was sent out, which caused a cessation of
hostilities.

General Lee's hopes had suddenly been destroyed. He had bravely held
out, even in the face of adverse fate, and even in March had summoned
General Gordon, who had command of Stonewall Jackson's old corps, to a
conference, and that general had frankly told him the hopelessness of
a further struggle. His own admission was that his army were almost
starving, he could not furnish men, or food, or horses, and after
visiting the Confederate Congress at Richmond the next day, he came back
almost heart-broken, but with no power to stay the tide of blood. The
desperate attack on Fort Steadman and the failure of the Confederate
troops to cover their retreat followed.

General Grant's liberal terms which he dictated to the defeated men were
a marvel of generosity. He merely asked that they lay down their arms
and return to their homes, where he promised them fullest protection in
all their rights, so long as they did not again take up arms against the
government. He also permitted them to take their horses with them, as
they "would need them for plowing," so sure he was that the end of the
terrible war had come, and that men would be glad to resume the peaceful
pursuits of life.

The two great commanders, Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee, had
exchanged several notes relative to the surrender, and on the 9th of
April they met at the McLean House, where the terms were made known, and
the next day General Lee issued a farewell address to his army, whose
love and devotion to him had proven itself in many a hard-fought field.



CHAPTER XX. THE SURRENDER.

[Illustration: 9243]

ICHMOND has {234}surrendered! The army of Lee has retreated! From every
little village, and in every vast city the glad cry rang forth on that
bright April morning, early in 1865, till the echoes bore the joyful
tidings to every camp and bivouac in the Union army, "Shout the glad
tidings!" The words rang out, and the streets of the cities were filled
with excited crowds of men and women, who were frantic with joy. Even
the little children seemed to have become inspired with the enthusiasm,
and laughed and danced, they knew not why.

Flags were run up in haste, men and boys ran wildly around, singing and
cheering, strangers clasped each others' hands gladly, while women wept
with joy.

The "good news," however, had been received at first by the army to
which Ralph belonged, with incredulity, and such expressions as "We've
heard that before!"

"My feet are pretty sore tramping!"

"I'm going right on to Richmond now!" and it chagrined the officer in
charge so deeply to think that they could not accept it as a truth, that
he had the men drawn up in line, some 6,000 strong, in the pine woods
through which they were marching, and appointed officers to ride up
and down the line and announce it officially. And then what a roar and
thundering of cheers aroused the echoes in those old trees! No more
weariness then, no more stumbling and grumbling, but they made all haste
to the town to which they were nearest, and set up a playful bombardment
with blank charges, to celebrate the event, much to the rejoicing of the
citizens there, who were as glad as they.

To the worn-out, sunburned soldiers it was good news, and as they
{235}gathered in groups loud rejoicing and eager discussion was heard
among them. To Ralph it brought the grateful thought that the dawn of
peace was near, and the Union would once again be restored, and his
heart was full of a quiet thankfulness that words could not express.

But alas, for the jubilant people--for those who were rejoicing, and to
whom a feeling of relief had come, because there was no more war.
Those who had so bitterly opposed each other on fields of battle, whose
differences had received a "baptism of blood," met daily, more like
brothers than late enemies. True, bitterness and disappointment rankled
in some hearts, but it is also true that all over our broad land, both
North and South, men rejoiced together that they could return to the
homes they had been so long exiles from, and once more take up the
thread of social and business life, with a surety that it would be
no more severed But even while the North was trembling with excess of
happiness, a terrible shadow darkened the brilliancy of the victory--the
four years of struggle and bloodshed were obliterated, so it seemed, by
a wave of sorrow that swept over the heart of the North, paralyzing its
throb of ecstasy. Abraham Lincoln, the friend of all mankind, whose
life was free from petty vindictiveness, and whose whole aim was the
restoration of the republic on a fair and just basis, a grand and
unselfish man, was struck down by the hand of an assassin--J. Wilkes
Booth. The President was shot while sitting with his wife and other
friends, in a box at Ford's Theater, Washington, April 14, 1865, and
he died the next morning. The entire nation was dumb with grief and
consternation. On the heels of sweet and gentle peace came the dread
question--What will be the outcome? A nation had been plunged into
mourning by the mad act of a fanatic.

{236}

[Illustration: 0245]

At once the War Department issued a poster, offering a large reward for
the capture of the murderer, and on April 26 he was tracked to an
old barn on Garrett's farm, twenty miles from Fredericksburg, with a
shattered leg. He refused to surrender, {237}and the building was set
on fire, and he was shot in attempting to escape, and captured. He had
received a mortal wound, from which he died.

The surrender of General Lee was followed by that of all the principal
armies of the Confederacy; the last to throw down their arms being the
command of General Kirby Smith, on the 26th of May. Thus very little
was left for the Government to do, save to reconstruct the shattered
portions of our land, to repress wandering bands of outlaws, and to
maintain order.

[Illustration: 9246]

The close of the war was welcomed by North and South alike--it was as
if a hideous nightmare had been banished, and now the waking dreams of
desolated homes, reunited, could be realized.

To the boys in blue who had fought valiantly and untiringly, the news
that the opposing armies had surrendered was a relief, although they
sorrowfully turned their faces homeward, at the remembrance of those who
came not with them; still a deep joy filled their souls as they thought
of those who were waiting to receive them.

The same scenes were transpiring at the South, where patient wives,
mothers, sisters and daughters were waiting and watching for those who
had been so strangely preserved to them, and happy voices and beaming
smiles made their home-coming glad.

The two armies--the Army of the Potomac and Sherman's Army--were sent to
Washington late in May for review, before being mustered out of service.
The scene was inspiring. The {238} streets were packed with a surging
mass of people, proud to shout and cheer for the brown-faced men who
fought for the upholding of their beloved government.

[Illustration: 0247]

{239}

[Illustration: 0248]

Banners, garlands of flowers, tumultuous cheering, marked the marching
divisions of the Army of the Potomac, as they wheeled into line, and
arriving at {240}the grand stand at the White House, where President
Johnson and his cabinet reviewed them, the officers gave a royal salute
with their swords, while the commanders of the divisions sprang from
their horses, and went upon the stand as their commands filed by.

The following day, May 24, Sherman's noble army of bronzed and
weather-beaten men were reviewed in the same manner, and as the marching
columns kept step to the music of their bands, the enthusiasm was
intense, and broke into cheer after cheer, while the houses, sidewalks,
and every spot where human beings could find a foothold, was one mass of
waving flags, handkerchiefs and streamers.

As Ralph, in far-away Montgomery, where the regiment was to remain but
a day or so, read the account of the monster ovation, his bosom swelled
with pride, and life seemed to, take on a rosier color. Every cheer
that was uttered, every look of welcome to those who passed through the
streets of Washington that day, he considered a tribute to every soldier
in the land; for had they not all done their duty and stood by their
colors?

He claimed a share in that rejoicing, even though could not be there,
and he vaguely wondered if those who had died to save this glorious
Union did not also rejoice at the dawn of peace, and the new birth of a
nation, whose proudest boast should ever be that "All men are born free
and equal."

His soul went out in peace and love to all--to those who had fallen in
battle or died of wounds on either side; to the dear comrades whom he
remembered long; to that grana martyr--the type of freedom, justice and
love for all--Abraham Lincoln!

"Dreaming, are you?" a cheery voice broke in upon his musings.

"Yes, Steve, I am dreaming--dreaming of the time when I can go to my
mother, and tell her how grateful I am that I have been saved through
all the sad scenes the past four years have shown me."

{241}

[Illustration: 0250]

"Well, {242}it won't be very long before you can go. I have no mother
to welcome me; you're a lucky boy, Ralph. But we are ordered to Union
Springs, about forty miles or so from here, to do post duty. They are
having lively times down there between the darkeys and their former
owners, and they need us to adjust matters. The boys are being disbanded
as fast as possible, and it will be our turn soon."

[Illustration: 0251]

"I shall not be sorry, but I have had many instructive and useful
experiences. Life in the army has been to me the best school I ever
knew. It has taught me the beauty of discipline, the value of freedom,
and an insight into military affairs which I never could have had. It
has left me, too, with a warmer admiration for the blessings of a wise,
just and stable government."

"Well, {243}I never gave these things a thought, but I believe you are
right, and I don't know but I'm better prepared to take up the business
of life than I should have been without this training. But to the case
in hand. We leave here in a day or two, and shall be compelled to say
good-bye forever to some very nice people we have met."

"That's true, Steve, and I am sorry it must be so."

Two days later, and while the daily papers were full of the descriptions
of the gorgeous spectacle the review furnished, they moved on to Union
Springs. Here they found a turbulent element which only the presence of
soldiers could quell. Remaining here until the middle of July, they had
orders to proceed to Vicksburg, where they were to be mustered out of
the service of the United States.

It was August before they reached Vicksburg, where they were discharged
from further service. When Ralph stepped on board the steamer which was
to convey them to Cairo, he was overjoyed. His spirits bubbled over like
a schoolboy's, and he mingled with the gay crowd of passengers, with a
light heart. The water was low, and as they sailed between the banks,
the sounds of industry were plainly to be heard, as the blacks worked in
the fields.

As they glided along, the merry throngs were amusing themselves, some
in the cabin, dancing to the music of the piano, some chatting as
pleasantly with the soldiers as if their acquaintance had extended over
years, and all light-hearted and careless. A sudden commotion was heard,
and the quick, sharp voice of the captain giving orders. Too late--a
sudden jar, a trembling of the boat, and a crash, over all of which were
heard shrieks of terror and the hoarse shouting of the officers, as the
boat, with her hull completely torn away, began to settle into the muddy
bottom.

A huge snag, floating down stream, had caught the boat's hull, and
completely destroyed it, and the steamer was sinking like lead.

The river was alive with frightened human beings, some of whom {244}had
jumped at the first shock, while others had been hurled into the water.
Ralph was among the latter, and his terror was intense, as he wondered,
with lightning-like rapidity, whether he had passed through so much
danger, only to perish miserably just when he felt that he was safe. He
was overcome but a moment, however, and seeing the gang plank floating
a few yards away, he swam toward it, and seizing one end, he raised
himself upon it and began to plan what he should do next. The cries of
some were growing feebler. He saw men on the bank putting boats out from
shore, and as he floated along he called loudly to those within sound of
his voice, trying to encourage them. He caught a lady by her dress and
placed her on his raft, then a child floated by, whose light form he
grasped firmly, as he laid her on the planks. Thus Ralph managed,
by courage and strength, to save fifteen persons on his clumsy but
exceedingly useful craft.

He paddled them to shore, and on his way he saw a young black girl who
had been on board with her mistress. She was being drawn at a rapid pace
through the water, by hanging to the tail of a mule, who was swimming
vigorously to land. One moment her head would be under the water, as
the mule went along, and the next she would come up to the surface,
sputtering and shaking it from her streaming head, but never for an
instant relaxing her hold of the frightened animal, who must have
wondered a little why he was being used for a tow boat. Ralph's love of
fun and the queer spectacle overcame him, even in the midst of danger,
and as she went by, he asked her how she was getting along.

"Fust rate, massa. We'll make de passage, I 'low, sooner dan yo' crew
will."

All the passengers were saved, and those who owed their rescue to
Ralph's courage, would have made him the hero of the hour, but he
modestly disclaimed any praise, for it was by mere luck, he said, that
the gang-plank came his way, and any one would have done as much, or
even more. {245}

[Illustration: 0254]

A {246}gunboat was sent to take them up the river, and soon the placid
scenery of the Mississippi was exchanged for the ripe fields, the
well-tilled farms of Illinois, as they were whirled on the train toward
Chicago. The sun poured down his hottest beams, the skies were sultry,
and the pavements hot and dusty, when they reached that city, but a
reception awaited them, which made the heat and dust seem trifles, as
they marched through the lines of people who greeted them on their
return from the war. And as the battle flags were borne aloft, some mere
tattered rags, some with blood dyed folds, carried by maimed and scarred
veterans, whose eagle eyes scanned the throngs to find some one whom
they knew and who would clasp them by the hand as in the olden time,
there was not a man in those thinned ranks but thanked his heavenly
Father that once more he trod the soil of a clime where peace folded her
snowy wings, and the sounds of war and discord were heard no more.

When the train rolled into the depot, Ralph heard the shouts and cheers
going up for the boys in blue, and a six-pounder was fired off, giving
them a salute of thirty-six guns. He felt proud to belong to that
stalwart band of men who had borne the brunt of the battle, and whose
hands had helped to rear the massive structure of a reunited nation
upon an enduring base--freedom for all. And then cheers broke forth from
thousands of throats, women's faces grew brighter, children caught the
contagion of joy, and men shouted v and hurrahed until they were hoarse.
The boys had come home from the war, and their toil and privations were
past. Never again, it was to be hoped, should the wave of dissension
sweep across the land, but the banner of liberty should float from every
tower and dome, for all nations to honor.

The soldiers had caught the glad spirit of welcome, and as they wheeled
into line and kept step to the music of their bands, every nerve tingled
and burned, and their hearts beat tumultuously. They were to be shown
still farther attention, for they were escorted to a hall, {247}where,
when they had "stacked arms," they clasped hands with old friends, and
after a half hour passed in renewing old friendships and making new,
they were invited to an elegant banquet, to which they all did justice.

To Ralph the scene was a revelation--the brightly lit hall, the perfume
of countless flowers, the kind attentions of beautiful women, and the
eloquent speeches--all in turn charmed him, and the home-coming seemed,
indeed, a delightful fairy vision.

But there were yet three weary days of waiting ere the final forms were
gone through with, the regiment paid off, the Board of Trade having
assumed the payment, so as to permit the men to return home more
speedily, and to Ralph they were the longest and most tedious he ever
remembered. But at last his face was turned homeward, and as he sprang
from the car, and hurried along the one short mile that divided the dear
mother from him, his sunburned and speaking face, the erect form and
swinging, elastic step, bore no resemblance to the boy who had come home
to die, two years before.

His mother and sisters stood in the doorway, and as they threw their
arms around him, and pressed him to their hearts, he knew at last the
sweet and tender bliss those two simple words conveyed--"Home again!"

And when, in the years that followed, the simple army boy rose to
position and fame in the field he chose for a life-calling, his dearest
memories were of the toil and pain and sacrifice of the days he spent
in the army. His proudest boast was that, humble as were his services,
obscure as he was, he gave all he had, youth, energy, enthusiasm and
endurance, to the cause of universal freedom, and dearly as he loved his
mother and home, he still more dearly loved the land of his birth.



THE SANITARY COMMISSION.

I want to tell the boys and girls who have followed Ralph's simple story
to the end of the war, about a grand body of men and women who worked
valiantly for the soldiers while they were fighting in the field.
Indeed, it would be unjust to the wives, mothers {248}and sisters of the
boys of the days of the war, did I not say something about this noble
enterprise.

It has been said that women cannot fight, but even that assertion is not
strictly true, for the records of history have furnished many cases
of women going to the front with their husbands, disguised as men. But
though they did not help swell the quota of soldiers, they did noble
deeds--they cheered and comforted the boys in the field, and took
tender care of them when sick or hungry. And one of the most powerful
outgrowths of this humane and womanly sympathy was the Sanitary
Commission.

When the war broke out, in 1861, the women of the North met at once in
many places to confer with each other as to the best means for taking
proper care of the sick and wounded. They commenced to form societies,
and chief among their objects was the wise one of bringing the sick home
wherever it was possible, purchasing warm clothes, provisions and little
additions to their comfort which the Government could not supply, the
sending of books and papers to the camps, and keeping informed as to the
condition and needs of the soldiers, by corresponding with officers of
regiments, thus learning all they could about individuals.

Such efforts were lofty and patriotic, and coming to the notice of Dr.
Henry Bellows and Dr. Elisha Harris, they talked the matter over, and
proposed to call a meeting, to get things into shape. They saw the
value of the aid which women could give, so selecting Cooper Union.
New York City, for a gathering-place, they invited all the societies of
women whose aims were similar to meet with them, and this hall, one
of the largest at that time, could scarce contain those who came, so
earnest was the interest taken in the matter. A permanent association
was formed, and a constitution was framed by Dr. Bellows.

{249}

[Illustration: 0258]

The next step they took was to send a committee to Washington, offering
the Government their services. General Scott received it kindly, but did
not see that it was right to give the members {250}any authority. But
they were not discouraged, though it is sad to say that the first days
of the Commission were very dark, for they found army officials full of
jealousy, for they could not see that anything which could be practical
and useful could exist outside of the regulations.

The Government itself had just gone through the hard task of making
matters straight between the regular army and the volunteer, and very
naturally dreaded any further agitation, or the opening up of any new
topic. But after trying so hard to accomplish something, they were glad
of even the permission given them to form a commission, which should
consult with the government as to the sanitary condition of the people.
This was a small concession, but it was the beginning of an immense
undertaking.

Still, they were distrusted and suspected, and at this unfortunate
juncture, their friend, Surgeon-General Lawson, died, and was succeeded
by Dr. Clement Finley, who was bitterly opposed to the movement. Another
long struggle ensued, which was ended by permission being given them to
form a commission that should act only in connection with officers of
the volunteer army, and have no authority whatever. This was permitting
them to do good only on their own responsibility. Even Mr. Lincoln,
whose heart was ever in the right place, seemed to consider their
plans and aims as of small account, but he, with Secretary of War Simon
Cameron, yielded, and the association was, on June 13, 1861, made real.

One of its first steps was to obtain the discharge of boys (of whom
there were a large number in the army) who were too young for hard
service, and sickly men who had been mustered in through careless and
hasty examinations.

From this time the Commission grew, until it had so many, avenues of
usefulness that it became too vast to attempt to carry out its designs
under one head, and so women everywhere were called upon to help in the
great work by forming local societies, to carry on their labors. More
than 7,000 such sprang into {251}existence, all of whom raised supplies
of food and clothes and money to bestow on the brave boys in hospital
and field. It is estimated that in the course of the war the Sanitary
Commission provided 4,500,000 meals for sick and hungry soldiers. They
also had ambulances, and were often found on the field with supplies,
and at the very front, rescuing those who were wounded. It had hospitals
and depots for the objects of its care. It had camps for soldiers who
were convalescent, and not only looked after the physical needs of
the boys in blue, but in connection with the Young Men's Christian
Association measures were taken looking to their souls' needs, also, and
religious reading matter was given them, prayers and addresses were had
at the recruiting offices, and a hymn book was compiled, which seemed to
be exactly what a soldier needed.

[Illustration: 9260]

The Sanitary Commission had a ready assistant in the Christian
Commission, which came into existence as a working body on November 14,
1861. These two organizations worked harmoniously together, and it can
never be told how much good they did.

Among the many women who gave their whole strength with sincerity, we
have space for but a few names, although the list might lengthen out
indefinitely, for to woman is due the credit of unselfishness and
patriotism and earnestness in whatever project she engages. She never
gives her efforts grudgingly, but puts her whole soul forth. The women
of the North and of the South gave all they had---their dear ones whose
going away clouded the light of home, their services in ministering to
the sick, their patient skill in furnishing articles for their personal
use. All these things women did for the cause, and much more.

Miss Taylor was born in New York, but lived at the breaking out of the
war in {252}New Orleans. She was ever ready to work in the hospitals,
and gave liberally of her means to the boys in the army.

It is told of her that it was well known that she loved the old flag,
and this caused bitter feelings, a mob once even surrounding her
house, and demanding to know her sentiments. She was watching her dying
husband. They gave her five minutes to say whether she was for the North
or South, and threatened her that if she was for the North, they would
tear down her house. Her brave answer was, that she was and ever should
be, "Tear my house down if you choose!" she said To their honor, be it
said, although very angry with her, they dispersed without doing her any
injury.

[Illustration: 8262]

A young lady who volunteered as a nurse just after the first battle
of Bull Run was Miss Hattie A. Dada, also of New York. She worked
incessantly through the entire war, part of the time in the Eastern and
part in the Western armies. She was taken prisoner by the Confederates
after the retreat of General Banks in the Shenandoah Valley, and
was held three months. After her release she spent two years in the
hospitals at Murfreesboro, a very arduous field of labor.

[Illustration: 9261]

Philadelphia was a point which received Hi a large number of soldiers
who passed through that city, either going to the front or going home on
furlough--often disabled. Several ladies established an eating-house for
their benefit, where they could obtain meals free.

{253}

[Illustration: 0262]

One of the most tireless workers in this direction was Mrs. Mary B.
Wade, who, in spite of her being over seventy years of age, never left
her post save {254}for necessary sleep, but waited on them night and
day, during the four years of the conflict.

[Illustration: 8263]

There were many other opportunities for women to work in the cause.
Bazars were held, materials were solicited and manufactured for sale,
speeches were made, arousing patriotic sentiments, and societies were
formed to assist formed to assist the families of soldiers. There was no
end to the calls for kindly offices.

Among the foremost of those who turned their talents to this use, was
Mrs. Mary A. Livermore, of Boston, the celebrated pulpit orator. Her
efforts were given freely to making the Northwestern Sanitary Fair, held
at Chicago, an immense success.

Perhaps no woman's name is so widely known, after Florence
Nightingale's, of the Old World, as having labored long and unceasingly
in the cause of humanity, as is that of Clara Barton. Her arduous
services in field and hospital, her untiring devotion to the welfare
of the soldier, her efforts to find the dead and missing, so as to send
word to their kindred, her weary search in Southern prisons for news
of the absent, and her formation of a corps of nurses to work for the
helpless in the present war, have endeared her to every humane heart
in our land. She knows no distinction--all are alike the objects of her
bounteous care. And when the names of those who love their kind go
down into history, Clara Barton's will be honored and revered among
the first killed at Cold Harbor; it unnerved her so that her own death
followed soon, and on the 27th of July, 1864, she passed away to a
heavenly shore.

{255}

[Illustration: 0264]

[Illustration: 8265]

The famous author, Louisa M. Alcott, whose "Little Women" almost every
girl in the land has read, was a most devoted nurse in the hospitals,
and afterward embodied her experiences in a book entitled "Hospital
Sketches."

[Illustration: 9265]

There were women on both sides of the contest Margaret {256}E.
Breckenridge, a relative of the celebrated Breckenridge family of
Kentucky, served constantly in the hospitals, until she was prostrated
by illness. Her pure face and lovely manners made the boys regard and
call her "The Angel." She was very ill, but determined to continue her
"labor of love," when the death of her brother-in-law, Colonel Porter,
who was who {257}did effective work as spies, for the cause they
espoused. Among the most noted of these was Pauline Cushman, a Union
spy, who was wounded twice while in the service, and was made a major by
General Garfield, and Belle Boyd, who was famous throughout the war as
one of the most daring and successful spies the Confederacy had.

[Illustration: 0266]

The life of spies is one of incessant danger, and demands rare qualities
of mind to carry out their designs. Whatever opinion may be formed
of their vocation, it is a historic truth that spies are absolutely
necessary in time of war.

The scars of the great Civil War we know are healed. We have given our
dearest and best, and as one great and united people, we are marching on
to a grander future than even the most hopeful could have foretold.

Peace had come to our land, but the man whose splendid generalship had
won it for us, was seized with a painful affection of the throat, which
soon developed into cancer. The heart of the nation went out to him in
sympathy, but human aid could avail nothing.

He was an agonized but patient and uncomplaining sufferer, and during
all his illness he worked laboriously at his "Memoirs," which he had
undertaken to write for publication, and finished them but four days
before he died. He had passed through a long year of pain and anguish,
ended only by his death, which took place at Mt. McGregor, near
Saratoga, New York, July 23, 1885.

His funeral was probably the most imposing ever accorded to a
{258}citizen of our great Republic. Although twice called to the
Presidential chair as a tribute of the love of a grateful people, yet
his highest title when death came was that he was a simple American
citizen.

[Illustration: 0267]

{259}

[Illustration: 0268]

His admirers at once set to work to raise a fund to build a tomb worthy
of the hero; it was completed, and General Grant's remains were removed
to it, and the structure given up to the city {260}of New York, on
the 27th of April, 1897, with magnificent ceremonies. The celebration
occurred on the recurrence of his birthday, he having been born at Point
Pleasant, Ohio, on April 27, 1822. His tomb stands on a height of land
at the north end of Riverside Park, New York City, where a fine view of
the beautiful Hudson is had, and is a just tribute to a truly great man.

Our dead are not forgotten. The custom of strewing flowers on the graves
of the dead soldiers, in the cemeteries of the North and South,
has taken a deep hold upon the hearts of the people, and yearly the
beautiful ceremony is faithfully observed, Thousands wend their way to
the resting-places of the dead and cover the green mounds with those
sweet emblems of remembrance and love.

[Illustration: 0269]

It {261}is a blessed thought that, though they have gone hence, and
their battle cry sweeps no more like a whirlwind in the faces of the
enemy, yet the sacred anniversary brings back the memory of their heroic
deeds, and as the bands of music peal out in solemn strains, and the
tongues of orators are heard, recounting the story that will never grow
old, the heart is stirred by a tender love for them, and goes out to
the dead of the army who wore the gray as well. They were dear to their
friends, among their most precious possessions, who mourn them deeply
yet. The boys in gray laid down their lives with a complete renunciation
of self, and their graves should be honored and remembered.

Memorial Day has become what its name signifies--a mingling of the
friends of the Blue and the Gray, and a cordial exchange of mutual
courtesies. The graves of both are decked in unison in many of the
resting-places of the nation's soldier dead.

The thought of decorating the graves of their dead comrades originated
with the Grand Army men, and they inaugurated the custom on May 30,
1868.

Let this hallowed duty be observed in every graveyard of our land. And
when the blossoms of beauty are borne to their resting-places, scatter
them with lavish hands over the men who wore the Blue and the Gray,
alike. They are slumbering peacefully under the green sward, and the
sounds of conflict will disturb them no more. As we stand at their
graves, let gentle thoughts of love and sympathy drive forever away all
harsh or bitter memories. Let us think of them as having finished the
battle--it is over, and they have gone to their reward.

The sun shines kindly down upon them; may its beams brighten and bless
every living soul on whom they fall.

When the veil fell upon the drama of the Civil War, it was believed that
the throes of battle would never again convulse' our land. Peace was
welcomed and hopes were indulged that it would be perpetual. Brothers
met brothers again in the walks of social and business life, the scars
of discord were healed and the rude sounds of dissension were banished.
{262}

[Illustration: 0271]



TWO VOICES.


A {263}SOUTHERN VOLUNTEER.


``Yes, sir, I fought with Stonewall,

```And faced the fight with Lee;

``But if this here Union goes to war,

```Make one more gun for me!

``I didn't shrink from Sherman

```As he galloped to the sea;

``But if this here Union goes to war,

```Make one more gun for me!

``I was with 'em at Manassas--

```The bully boys in gray;

``I heard the thunderers roarin'

```Round Stonewall Jackson's way,

``And many a time this sword of mine

```Has blazed the route for Lee;

``But if this old nation goes to war.

```Make one more sword for me!

``I'm not so full o' fightin',

```Nor half so full o' fun,

``As I was back in the sixties

```When I shouldered my old gun;

``It may be that my hair is white--

```Sich things, you know, must be--

``But if this old Union's in for war,

```Make one more gun for me!

``I hain't forgot my raisin'--

```Nor how, in sixty-two

``Or thereabouts, with battle shouts

```I charged the boys in blue;

``And I say I fought with Stonewall.,

```And blazed the way for Lee;

``But if this old Union's in for war,

```Make one more gun for me!



HIS {264}NORTHERN BROTHER.


``Just make it two, old fellow!

```I want to stand once more

``Beneath the old flag with you,

```As in the days of yore

``Our fathers stood together,

```And fought on land and sea

``The battles fierce that made us

```A nation of the free.

``I whipped you down at Vicksburg,

```You licked me at Bull Run;

``On many a field we struggled,

```When neither victory won.

``You wore the gray of Southland,

```I wore the Northern blue;

``Like men we did our duty

```When screaming bullets flew.

``Four years we fought like devils,

```But when the war was done,

``Your hand met mine in friendly clasp

```Our two hearts beat as one.

``And now when danger threatens,

```No North, no South, we know;

``Once more we stand together

```To fight the common foe.

``My head, like yours, is frosty--

```Old age is creeping on;

``Life's sun is lower sinking,

```My day will soon be gone;

``But if our country's honor

```Needs once again her son,

``I'm ready, too, old fellow--

```So get another gun.



A REMINISCENCE.

[Illustration: 9274]

HE {265}night had fallen slowly and softly. The stars had stolen out,
now dancing gaily in one corner of the heavens, and now a cluster of
them marched forth in stately fashion. The air was quiet; even the
leaves had quit whispering, the breeze had died away, and they nodded
sleepily on their stems. Pretty Alice Whiting sat on the porch of the
one-story, old style plantation house, and lazily wished the tea-table,
whose disorder showed it had been attacked by hungry mouths, would
vanish bodily. But it didn't, and she ruefully contemplated the prospect
of clearing it up herself, with much chagrin, for such lovely nights,
she declared, were not made to work in.

She had come to Memphis from the North with her husband and brother, who
had "settled" in that hospitable city. Frank and Will had gone to the
lodge, and she had been dreaming of her far Northern home. As she sat
there her head rested against the vines which covered the porch, turning
it into a perfect bower of beauty. Her dark brown hair waved and curled
around a broad, full forehead; her features were far from regular, but
the piquant nose and smiling mouth redeemed them, and gave a saucy charm
which was more pleasing than set beauty. And as the moon rose in the
sky, until her pale beams lit up the darkened porch, flooding every
corner, she made as pretty a picture as one would wish to look upon.
Something of this thought evidently passed through the mind of the man
who had stolen noiselessly through the garden until he stood by her
side, for he looked earnestly upon her as if loth to disturb her,
and then longingly at the table, which had abundance, even after the
appetites of the household had been appeased.

With a start she sprang to her feet. Her heart beat loud and {266}rapid
with fear, as she looked at the stranger. Visions of burglars,
guerrillas and all the clan, flitted through her brain, and held her
dumb, unable to utter a sound, from pure terror.

Certainly the man before her was not one to reassure her, for he was
wild-eyed and dirty, and his ragged clothes had fallen away from his
thin frame.

"Don't be afraid, ma'am," he said, in a voice intended to be gentle and
assuring; "all I ask is a bite to eat. I'd never hurt a woman."

She drew a quick breath of relief.

"Are you hungry?" she asked.

"Hungry? Look at me, ma'am. Do you see any signs of the gourmand about
me?" pointing to his pinched face.

"I'll give you something to eat--for Eddie's dear sake," she added, in a
faint whisper.

Bringing clean dishes, she poured out a cup of coffee, and bade him sit
down and help himself.

"Can I have a wash fust?" he asked.

"Yes, and welcome." Bringing him a basin of clear cold water and a
towel, she had the pleasure of seeing some of the tawny hue disappear,
and he seated himself and began to eat most heartily.

It was just after the war, and the city was full of homeless men, who
roamed its streets, unable to find work, and actually living on charity.
Some of them had no home to go to, and others could not raise the means
to take them there.

"Pears like we wus whipped bad," he said, between the mouthfuls.

She nodded an affirmative.

"I 'lowed General Forrest would help me to get back to Georgy. There's
whar I belong."

"Did you ask him?" The General was a resident of Memphis at that time.

"I went to see him about it, and he couldn't do nothing--said he had no
money," which was a fact, no doubt.

"I {267}tell you, them cussed Yanks fit well. They had good pluck, after
all."

"I think they proved that," she said faintly, her terror returning,
for she saw he thought her a Southerner as well as himself, and she had
misty visions of being strangled, the silly girl. "Oh," she thought,
"will Frank never come?"

The man ate as if he had not seen food for many a day, and all the time
his discourse was about the Yanks and what he'd like to do to' them.
At last his hunger seemed satisfied, and rising, with his ragged, faded
soldier cap in hand, he began to thank her profusely for her kindness.
Something in her face arrested his attention, for he suddenly paused,
and coming a step nearer to her, he said:

"I didn't like to beg, but I was nigh dead. If those Northern cusses
hadn't beaten us into poverty, I'd have been home with my old mother
now. I don't 'low they'd ever give a crust to a dog to keep life in his
body!"

Her face flushed, and a sudden courage came to her. She answered,
defiantly--

"Indeed, you do not do us justice. You do not know us."

"Know you? Ain't you one of our people, ma'am?"

"I am one of those people you despise--a Yankee," she answered, looking
him steadily in the face.

"A Yankee? And you have fed _me_. Fed a man who has been abusing you
right along, and you must hate him?"

"I do not hate you. Oh, no, I could not hate a single human being. You
are one of God's children, and so am I." The scowl of doubt and distrust
fled from the man's troubled face. He towered above her, tall, gaunt,
but powerfully built.

"But it seems strange you'd be so willing to help me out, when you knew
that I was agin your kind. Why did you do it?"

"You were hungry, and asked me for food. I have a better reason than
that, even. I am but a girl, but I had a little brother younger than I,
the idol of our home, who went to war, as a bugler. He was so frail and
boyish that they wouldn't enlist him as an able-bodied soldier, but he
would go. He was wounded {268}and taken prisoner in the Battle of the
Wilderness, carried to Andersonville, where he died. I made a solemn
promise to my own heart that never, while life lasted, would a human
being ask me for food in vain, even though I took the food from my own
lips to give him. I will keep my word. You are welcome to all I have
given you. May you never want." The man looked down at her, and in a
choked voice said: "Ma'am, may I take you by the hand?"

She held out both hands toward him, and as he grasped them and
reverently bent over them, a tear dropped on their whiteness, and he
walked quickly away into the silence and darkness of the night.

[Illustration: 0277]



THE LITTLE BLACK COW.

AN INCIDENT OF THE WAR.

[Illustration: 9278]

T {269}was the autumn of 1864, and the supplies for the boys in blue
were being hurried forward. The Government purchased cattle in the North
and West, and sent them to its soldiers, for they must be fed or they
could not fight. The Southern army had not fared so well--they were
destitute of nearly everything. Foraging had been kept up the troops
on both sides, until the land was almost devastated. Families were
suffering from hunger, for most of the able-bodied men were at the
front, and only old men and pretended farmers remained to till the land.
These latter belonged to the roving bands of guerrillas who pretended to
work the farm lands. Want stared women and children in the face. Little
ones who could not understand the dreadful fever of hate and blood that
was abroad in the land looked into the faces of their elders, and asked
for food.

Thomas Grant was a young fellow of nineteen who had seen some service in
the Missouri militia, and was full of life and youth. His early days had
been spent on a farm in Northern New York, where his reckless courage
and fine horsemanship had made him a leader among his boy comrades.
When he entered the Government service it was for the purpose of driving
cattle to the army for its use.

The position was one of great danger. Their steps were watched by
guerrillas by night and by day, and many a stray shot {270}picked off
a cattle driver or one of the soldiers who accompanied them as guards.
Hurrying them over hill and dale, now in dense woods, and now over
country roads, sometimes struggling and sticking in the clayey beds, it
was a common event to have many of the tired animals, worn and footsore,
fall down in their tracks, to be abandoned. These animals were a rich
harvest for the guerrillas who hovered in their wake, like birds of
prey, for they would capture the weary beasts, and convert them into
food. It was the pride of a cattle driver when he could bring the
bulk of his drove to the destined point, and deliver them to the
quartermaster.

It was sultry, and the dust lay in heaps along the highway. The news
had come that a large body of Confederate cavalry were about to attack
Stevenson, Alabama, which was held by the Union forces, and the cattle
were hurried out of the town as soon as the first beams of the morning
sun lighted up the earth. The boom of cannon and the rattle of musketry
lent wings to their going.

"The rebs are after us, and we'll lose every steer we have," the foreman
said to Tom Grant, who rode beside him.

The morning breeze brought the scent of the wild flowers on its wings,
and as the soldiers guarding the train marched with easy, swinging step,
it seemed more like a lively walk taken for pleasure than a dangerous
undertaking. The hills ahead were clothed in a beautiful green,
sprinkled thickly with the white clover so dear to the bovine tongue.

"We'll get away all right, Tom," said the foreman, Jim Morrison. "But
we must make quicker time than this. Our usual twelve miles a day ain't
going to bring us out of the reach of the Johnnies, and before we get
far they'd overtake us, and then good-bye to the steers, and to our own
liberty as well."

"There's trouble ahead already," Tom replied. He was active and lithe,
and ever on the alert, showing much skill in managing cattle.

"Blast that long-horned steer," Cleary, the assistant foreman, cried.
"They're on the stampede. Boys, go after them, lively."

A {271}score of drivers set spurs to their horses, while the frightened
animals, with tremendous leaps, thundered across an open field, and made
straightway for a gully just beyond the field. The scene was one of
wild confusion. The shouts and oaths of the drivers, the trampling and
crowding of the maddened creatures, as they tore over the grassy field,
and the sounds of the firing behind them, in the beleaguered town, were
indescribable.

John Morrison and Tom Grant spurred their horses toward the flying
cattle, intending to head them off, but Tom's horse was fleet, and
coming up to the leading steer, he threw the whole force of his horse's
breast against the steer's neck, and vigorously plying the whip to its
nose, he checked its headlong career, and drew him into a circle. At
once the remainder of the drove followed their leader, and quiet was
restored. The unreasoning animals, governed only by instinct, were soon
started on their original course.

The lieutenant in charge of the drove complimented young Tom in the
warmest terms, stating that he had accomplished more than any ten men.

The journey was finished without any further incident. They made such
good time that they escaped capture at the hands of the Confederates,
and on arriving at Chattanooga, Lieutenant Reed was promoted to the
charge of a drove of 3,000. This honor he knew was due principally to
the ability and quickness of manouver which Tom Grant had exhibited, and
to show his gratitude he had the boy appointed to the superintendence of
the drove, a position which many an older man coveted.

Days passed slowly by; the cattle, many of them, grew restive and
footsore. Often one or two would lie down, and then it was impossible to
get them up again.

"Where did that little black cow come from?" one of the men asked,
pointing to a cow walking sedately along in the drove.

"I suppose she's wandered in from some farm place we've passed on the
way," Tom Grant said. "But anyhow she's a godsend, for we'll have fresh
milk now."

"Can you milk?" the Lieutenant asked.

"Can I? {272}What was I brought up on a farm for, I wonder!" Tom
responded.

"You're a regular encyclopaedia, Tom," the officer laughed. "But, of
course, the cream comes to headquarters."

"Certainly--but what shall I raise it in, my hat?"

"We'll fix that. On second thoughts, think I'll take the cream with the
milk--just whenever I can get it."

The little creature was as smooth as satin, and quite plump. To Tom's
charge she fell, and he milked her each day as he promised he would, and
she soon became known as "Tom's cow."' She seemed quite at home.

One hot and sultry day, when they had traveled with considerable speed,
Tom's prize showed signs of exhaustion. At last she could go no farther,
but lay down, hot, tired and footsore, at a cross roads.

"We'd better let her rest and then we'll come back after her," Jim
Cleary said.

"That's the best thing we can do, I believe." So the animal was left
where she had dropped, and the drove kept on till they found a place
where they could feed and rest for the night.

As soon as it began to grow dark Tom and his companion started back
to where they had left the cow. She was not there, but a woman sitting
outside of quite a pretentious, two-story house, informed them that a
man who lived "down the cross road a piece" had driven her to his own
home.

"We'll have to get her back, Tom, for she's quite an acquisition to our
larder."

It was quite dark when they reached the place to which they had been
directed. It was a weather-beaten old log house, with one room down
stairs to serve the family, and an attic or loft above. Rapping at the
door, they heard a gruff voice bid them enter. By the dim light of
a sputtering candle they saw a rough, poorly dressed man and a woman
sitting at a table which had no cloth, on which was some corn bread and
sorghum. The mother held a puny, sickly little girl in her arms, whose
big {273}eyes roved restlessly around, as if wondering who the strangers
were. A tin cup stood by her plate, full of milk.

"Strangers, what ar' yer business?" The man's threatening countenance
seemed to demand an instant reply.

"We are looking for a cow we've lost."

"Wall, what's that to me? Yer didn't expect to find it here in this
cabin, did ye?"

"Not exactly in the cabin, but we heard it was down here."

"Wall, that's about so, but I found the critter lying down in the
bottoms, and I concluded she was as much mine as any one's."

"That ain't so, for we own the cow; that is to say, she joined our drove
of cattle we are taking to the army, and so we have the first claim on
her."

The man seemed to be listening. He paused a moment, and looked furtively
around, and then at the two armed men. He went on:

"I'd not have troubled it, only for the sake of my little un there.
She's sick, and can't eat a thing. She'll die soon without some
nourishment," and he pointed toward the child, who was the picture of
starvation.

Tom's heart was tender. He saw the man had not overstated the case, and
he rose to go.

"Come, Jim," he said, "You can see the child needs that milk bad--worse
than we do. Mister," he said, turning to the man, "you are welcome to
the cow, on one condition; and that is, that you promise on your word as
a father that the little girl may have all the milk she can drink, every
day."

The woman had not spoken till now, but with a glad look she started
to her feet, and pressing the child into its father's arms, she
said--"Jack, that's a fair bargain. And you're a fair man, sir, after
all."

The man looked at Tom, then out of the window, and said--"Look here,
young fellow, you've, shown you've got a heart, and I won't be beat in
doing the fair thing, by any one. This neighborhood is full of fellows
who wouldn't mind giving you a chance {274}shot. The woman up at the big
house has given them the word that you're here, and before you know it,
there'll be a committee sent to wait upon you. Don't go back the same
road you came, but strike for that piece of woods, and then cut across
the fields, and you may get away. Hurry--you haven't much time before
you--you know the rest."

Into their saddles the two men vaulted, after thanking the man for his
caution, and away they dashed. The stars were out in full force, and the
darkness of an hour before had lifted, for the moon was rising, and as
they entered the woods their shade hid them from sight. They rode fast
through them, and struck a corduroy road, a rarity in that part of the
country, and as they left it behind them, and were going to take the
field, Jim whispered--"Don't stir a step. Pull your horse into that
thicket. Over there I hear them after us."

They could hear the horses galloping down the road they had just left,
and by the faint light could see that there was a dozen or more men.

"A narrow escape for us," said Tom.

"We haven't escaped yet. They'll not let us get off without scouring
these woods."

"Which way shall we go?"

"Why, away from this vicinity as quick as we can."

"My Kentucky thoroughbred will carry me out of danger--she can outrun
anything they've got."

"But I've only got a long, lank, rangy old mule, and half-blind at that.
I'm destined to be captured," ruefully answered Jim.

"No, we're not--they are turning off into the left hand road; no,
there's three or four taking the other one. Some have dismounted, and
are talking with the man we've just left. He's true blue; he's pointing
away in another direction."

"Well, he's not so bad after all, even if he is a guerrilla."

"Why, do you believe he's one of that band?"

"Sure as preaching he belongs to the gang who are bothering the whole
country round here, and all that saved us was your generosity {275}in
making him welcome to the little black cow. He's got a heart hid away
somewhere, and you just touched it."

Tom's eyes opened wide. "I couldn't see that little creature starving
there, and not offer them something to help her out. Why, she was
nothing but skin and bones."

"We mustn't loiter here. It is a good three miles to camp, and we must
make it quick, or they'll head us off before we reach the road."

Touching their animals lightly with their spurs, they dashed across the
open field toward another road, and were almost ready to congratulate
themselves on their escape, when they heard a yell, and looking back
they saw one of the guerrillas who had sighted them and was almost
standing in his stirrups in his excitement, and shouting wildly to his
companions, who were coming after him at full gallop. Tom and Jim did
not need any further hint, but led the way, at a rattling pace. Tom was
mounted on a racer, but Jim's army mule proved that he could run, for
he kept pace with the horse, almost neck and neck. Whether he dreaded
capture and being set to work, or feared being converted into mule meat,
we are not able to say, but he held his own.

With shouts and oaths that were heard by the two men with distinctness,
the guerrillas dashed after them, while they kept on with break-neck
speed, now through a gully, then over a broken fence, and sinking in
the furrows of fields that had been plowed in the long ago, now past
a ruined building that rose up black and forbidding in the weird
moonbeams, and then the lights gleamed friendly from one that was
occupied. What the end of this John Gilpin ride would have been, it is
hard to say, for the guerrillas were gaining on them, but at a turn in
the road a dozen blue-coats were seen coming toward them. The pursuing
foe fired a few wild shots, which were returned with a will, when they
wheeled about and fled across the field, and were soon in hiding in the
woods.

"Tom's cow came near getting me into trouble," Jim Cleary said, when he
finished telling the story to the lieutenant.

A few {276}weeks later, when they had reached Knoxville and gone into
camp, an old, feeble-looking farmer came into the lines looking for
Tom Grant. His hair was grizzled, and his beard uncut, and as Tom came
toward him, he was surprised to see the wrinkled brown hand extended as
if to clasp that of an old friend.

"You don't seem to recognize me," the man said awkwardly. "You haven't
forgotten the little sick gal and her mammy down in the country a
hundred miles or so?"

"You're not the man who showed us so much kindness when you knew the
guerrillas were on our track?" Tom asked.

"The very same. You see a gray wig and a butternut suit make quite a
farmer outen me. I'll never forget you, stranger, nor how you saved my
baby. She was the only gal we had left--we'd lost three, and when she
took to that milk so, and you told me to keep the cow, why, I couldn't
hold still. I'd had it in my heart to kill you both, that night. I had
only to whistle and I'd have brought the whole band about your ears. The
little gal--Eda, we call her--began to pick right up on that milk,
and now she's as peart as any child you ever saw. My woman says to
me--'Martin, go and tell that young fellow the good turn he has done
us.' I've followed your trail for nearly a hundred mile to tell you
that you will never be forgotten in our home, and I'll never raise a gun
against a Yank again." {277}

[Illustration: 0286]



A WAR STORY.

[Illustration: 9287]

HEN {278}the war broke out, Helen and Marie Mason, twin sisters, were
left at home with no protector save two old slaves, Dan and Lois. Their
father had given every dollar he had to the cause of the South. The two
girls had grown up without a mother's care, for she had died when they
were ten years old, and their father had mourned her so deeply that
he had never thought of giving them a new mother. But they were not
spoiled--they lived in this simple little home, tenderly guarded by
their father, and all their needs had been carefully looked after by the
two old slaves, who would have laid down their lives for them.

But when in the second year of the war, Mr. Mason went into the army,
their hearts were nearly broken. They declared they could not spare him,
the "old darling." Were there not plenty of younger and stronger men?
and besides, they were half Union at heart, and did not share their
father's sentiments of fidelity to the Southern cause.

They showed no signs of their sorrow at the parting, but, with Spartan
endurance, bade him a long farewell, and he set off, followed by the
prayers of his beautiful daughters. Letters and messages came often
to the little home by the Mississippi, and time did not hang quite as
heavily as they had feared it would; but their father's letters were
filled with bitter rancor, and he sought earnestly to impress upon their
minds the enmity which {279}they should cultivate as daughters of the
sunny South, against the soldiers of the North.

But there was one chapter in their life which he had not fully conned.
Marie would sigh deeply over her father's messages, but Helen, who had
more independence and self-reliance, found words of consolation for her.

In the days before the war, their home had been the scene of many a
pleasant gathering, and among their guests were several young men of
Northern birth, whom business or pleasure had brought to the South, and
who had found great attractions within their charmed circle. Marie did
not know why she took such pleasure in the coming of Walter Ryder, or
why she felt so lonely when he was away. Her father had liked the young
man for his manly, straightforward bearing and honest principles, but he
could not tolerate his becoming a Union soldier, and when he learned of
his intention, he forbade his gentle Marie ever to see him again.

In vain Walter had striven to see her, if only for an instant, so that
he might say good-bye to her. She would not disobey her father, and yet
it was with a bitter pang that she refused to meet him once more before
his departure.

Old Aunt Lois saw how her lily drooped, but she had great faith in her
master's judgment, and she didn't "like Northerners nohow," and yet she
wiped many a tear away with the corner of her blue-checked apron, as she
lamented about "diswah dat upset eberybody's 'pinions so."

Walter had gone without a word to cheer him. He had gone from the place
which had grown so dear, and while pretty Marie wept, Helen chided her
for her lack of fortitude.

The months went by, and they often heard through returned soldiers of
Walter Ryder. Then came news that he was wounded, and then that he had
died of his wound. The whole world seemed to have stopped then for poor
Marie. She grew thin and white, and she reproached herself incessantly
because she had so cruelly refused to see Walter. The house grew
strangely still, {280}for there were no more social meetings, and Helen
shared the gloom that enveloped Marie.

"Pears to me dat eberyting goes wrong," Aunt Lois said, as she stopped
in her mixing bread, and gazed out upon the landscape, which was
beautiful to look upon.

But Aunt Lois was no poet or artist, only the colored cook in this
lovely home. "Fust de wall cum--den Massa Mason brung home to die, and
pretty Missie Helen sitting dar in her bodoor all alone all day, neber
speaking a word to po' Miss Marie, who lubed her father dearly. Don't I
know dat po' little gal is breaking her heart 'tween losing dat foolish
man and her dear father?"

"Lois--Aunt Lois!" a sweet and girlish voice called.

"What is it, honey--Ise coming!"

Before she could take her hands from the dough a slender young girl,
whose pure face would have made the veriest stranger admire it, burst
into the kitchen, and sank in a heap at the feet of the old negress,
who, now actually alarmed, seized her by the arm, and with a look of
anxiety on her black face, asked the girl what had happened.

"I've seen him--seen Walter. They said he was dead. Oh, Aunt Lois, he
looked so brave, so happy. I never thought he _could_ look happy again,"
and the tears streamed down her face.

"Now cum here, chile, and sit in yo' old auntie's lap as yo' used to
when yo' was a tiny gal, and I used to tell yo' stories and sing de old
plantation melodies. Come, and you'll forgit all about yo' trubbles."

Lois had cleared her hands by this time of the dough, and as she took
the girl by the hand, a loud rap sounded on the outside door.

"Oh, look, there's a whole lot of soldiers on the lawn, but he ain't
with them!" Marie added, as she peered from the window.

"Ise not afraid of sogers! What do you want?" Aunt Lois said, boldly
advancing to the door, where a tall soldier in blue stood, with a dozen
men, all armed. "Hello!" he said rather roughly, but catching sight
of Marie, whose face was blanched with {281}terror, he spoke more
courteously: "I beg pardon, Miss, but we are in search of a spy who goes
by the name of Walter Ryder. We have tracked him to this place, and have
orders to arrest him."

"My--" she choked the telltale words, and with dignity answered: "Walter
Ryder is not a spy, neither is he here."

"I regret the necessity, Miss, but I must search the house."

"You can," she said, haughtily.

Leaving the soldiers posted around the house, the sergeant and two
of the men entered the dwelling, and commenced the search, but it was
useless, for no trace of Walter was found. When they came to the door of
Helen's room, they found it locked, and yet they heard voices.

"I thought you were dead," some one was saying. "My sister has mourned
you constantly."

They struck the butts of their guns against the panels of the door, and
demanded admission, but no one answered. They pushed it open, and the
girl who sat there sprang to her feet, thoroughly frightened, but no one
else was in the room.

The three men looked at each other with a puzzled look. There was
but one window in the apartment, and that was covered with a mass of
clinging vines so dense and thick that they formed a complete mat. They
pushed their bayonets through the tangled mass, but no one was there.

Helen gazed at them as if half stupefied. The sergeant courteously
raised his cap, and said: "Miss, we are in search of a man whom we think
is a spy--he certainly was seen in these grounds."

"We do not harbor spies, sir."

"I do not think you do--but he may have used your premises for a
hiding-place. I beg your pardon for intruding. Right about face!" to his
men, A still more prolonged search of the grounds revealed nothing, and
after placing a guard, the remainder left.

But where was Marie? As soon as the soldiers had left the room she went
back to Helen, who sat with bowed head, and {282}touching her gently on
the arm, she whispered--"Sister." A tender light shone in Helen's face,
but she answered--"Marie, if you only knew how I have injured you--I
have not been a sister to you."

"Not a sister to me, dear Helen? Why, you are the dearest of sisters.
What do you mean?"

"Marie, could you dream that your sister, who loves you so dearly, would
willingly have wronged you so that you never can forgive me?"

"I cannot believe you, Helen. Explain, will you?"

"I poisoned our father's mind against you. I wrote him that you were
receiving Walter Ryder's attentions, and that I had prevented an
elopement by my watchfulness."

"Helen! How could you? And that is the reason that he would not see me
when they brought him home wounded. How cruel! Father, you cannot hear
me, but you must know the truth now."

"I dare not ask your forgiveness, nor dare I tell you why I did it."

The girl stood before her sister, and in low and pleading tones she
urged--"Tell me all, Helen. I _will_ call you sister," as the other
put up her hand with a gesture of pain. "You know how fond you were of
Walter once."

A frown contracted the brow of the girl who listened, and she buried her
face in Marie's lap, as she continued--

"I am ashamed to tell you, my unselfish sister, that I have done such
a grievous wrong. I, too, loved Walter Ryder. Do not start. I was
infatuated, and when he asked our dear father's permission to address
you, I hated him, and from that hour I lost no chance of ruining him
in his estimation. He went into the Northern army, and that helped my
cause. Father swore that no daughter of his should marry a man who would
take up arms against the South. I played a double part. I told Walter
of our father's objections, and also persuaded him that you were half
promised to a colonel in our army. He went away, {283}and was killed at
Chattanooga." And the stately Helen broke into a passion of weeping.

"Sister, who told you that he was killed?"

"I have letters from cousin Will, telling me so, and lamenting his
death, for he was much attached to him."

"Did you not hear the soldier to-day charge Walter with being a spy?"

"I did not hear the name of the man they were looking for--it surely was
not Walter?"

The rosy flush that rose to her cheeks made Marie turn faint. Could it
be that her sister cared for him yet?

"Do not look at me as if you doubted me. That foolish passion has burned
itself out. My only hope is that he lives, so that I may repair, in a
measure, the wrong I have done you both. When I have seen you pining, my
heart has ached for you."

"Oh, Helen dear, how good you are!"

The twilight deepened, as they sat there, and a shot was heard, which
brought them both to their feet. Another rang out, and with a wild cry
of alarm the girls fled from the house, toward the spot from whence they
came. Marie saw a form fleeing into the darkening woods, and heard the
command "Halt!" It never paused, and as the soldiers raised their rifles
to fire, she sprang almost in front of their weapons, and cried--"Do not
fire again. You have killed him."

"We have not fired at all. It was not our shot that struck him, but we
were about to fire on the man who wounded him, and whom you saw running
away," Sergeant Hughes said, respectfully.

At a short distance they found Walter Ryder, who was wounded in the
side, and as they carried him back to camp, he said--

"Take me to the Lieutenant. I can prove my innocence." Marie and Helen
threw themselves into each other's arms. Old Lois wrung her hands in
despair.

"I tole you no good wud cum outen dat man's comin' round here," she said
to old Dan.

"I {284}doant know why not," he said. "Wat you got agin him?"

"He ain't our sort," she said, contemptuously. "Nordern men am diffunt
from Soudern--doan yo' sense it?"

"Dat's not for me to explaticate. But who was it gib'd us our freedom
but dem same Nordern men; and isn't it worf sumfing to own yo'self?
Dat's wat de Nordern 'trash,' as you call 'em, has done for you and me."

"I neber could talk wif you, old man, for youse always on de contrary
side," and she left the partner of her joys and sorrows with what was
intended for a very lofty step.

"De old gal doant like my plain speaking," Dan chuckled. "But Ise on de
right side always."

Next morning dawned brightly. As the birds sang their welcome to early
day, a young girl left the house and walked rapidly toward the camp,
a quarter of a mile distant. No one would have recognized the elegant
Helen in her disguise. She wore a calico dress, much faded and too large
for her, pinned in folds about her form. A sunbonnet hid her lovely
face, and an old black cape completed the outfit. She carried a basket
of fruit, and to all appearances was a country lassie seeking a market
for her goods.

No challenge was given her. The customary "Halt!" was replaced by a
gracious smile from the guard, and permission was given her to enter.

"I want to see the General who has charge here," she said. A broad smile
was on the soldier's face. "The General is out on business just now,
Miss. Indeed, I haven't seen him for some time. Won't the Lieutenant do
as well?"

The haughty look she gave him brought the flippant fellow to his senses.

"Miss," he stammered, in an apologetic tone, "if you've got anything to
sell, why you'd do better to see the cook. He buys all our provender,
and will take your fruit, I'm certain."

"I wish to see the officer who is in command here," she continued.

"Bob," {285}the guard said, "go tell the officer of the day that a lady
wishes to see him."

"The Lieutenant will see the lady at once," the man said, on his return.
Conducting her to a tent, she entered, and saw a very handsome young
man, "far handsomer," she thought, "than Walter." His brown eyes rested
inquiringly upon her as he arose and politely handed her a camp stool.
She seated herself, but remained silent. He kindly said--

"Did you wish to see me on any particular matter? I am at your service."

Helen's heart beat fast. She knew that she was placed in a strange
position, but she felt she could endure any unjust comment, so that she
could undo the wrong she had done her sister and Walter Ryder.

"Sir, I came to ask you if the young man who was shot yesterday, was
killed?" and her voice faltered.

"Ah," Lieutenant Gordon thought, "she is no simple country girl. Why is
she interested in a Union soldier?" The query gave his voice a tinge of
bitterness as he made reply--

"He was not, though he deserved death, for he is a Confederate spy."

"Oh, sir, you are wrong. Believe me, he is no spy, and I will prove it
to you, if you will only listen."

In her excitement she had risen to her feet, and her sun-bonnet had
fallen off, while her long dark hair rippled over her face, which was
flushed and eager. Again that bitter feeling crossed the officer's
mind as he gazed at her, half forgetting that she was waiting for his
permission to explain.

"You will not shoot him as a spy--you cannot be so cruel!"

"Miss, it does not rest with me to decide the fate of the young man. He
will be tried on the charge of being a spy, and if guilty--why, you know
the rules of war."

She looked at him steadily, and as their gaze met he felt there was some
powerful reason for the feeling she showed. He waited courteously for
her to speak, but her lips trembled and her voice failed her.

"Have {286}you any reason to give why he should not be punished?"

"I have--he is innocent, and I come to you to ask for his life. I must
tell you the truth, and leave it to your honor to conceal as much of the
facts as you can, consistent with his safety. My twin sister and I are
deeply interested in him."

"And so you are yet," he thought, with a jealous pang. "He asked my
father's consent to address her, but was refused because he joined the
Northern army. I did not like the thought of her marrying him, and I did
all I could to prevent it. He went away a long time ago, and we heard
of him now and then, but at last we learned that he was killed at
Chattanooga. Then my heart turned to fire, for I had driven him away
without giving him a chance to hear my sister's promises of fidelity.
I learned quite lately that he was not dead, but that his company was
doing guard duty at this place. I was so thankful to know that he was
alive, that I resolved to see him and tell him the truth. I wrote him,
begging him to come to our house, and at a signal agreed upon I would
see him and all would be made right. I signed my sister's name, for I
wanted to be sure he would come. He was just outside my window, and I
had begun to explain, when your soldiers burst into my room, and he hid
in old Dan's quarters."

"I trust the men were not rude to you," Lieutenant Gordon said, alarmed.

"Oh, no, they treated us as all true soldiers will, with respect. But
oh, if Walter is shot, I shall be a murderess!" The look of distress
upon her beautiful face made her still more lovely, so the Lieutenant
thought.

"I believe your story, Miss," he said, "and will investigate at once.
He had no right to be absent from his post without leave, but I suppose
'the end justifies the means,'" smiling into her inquiring face.
"Meanwhile I will send a guard with you to insure your safety."

"Please do not. I came here disguised as a fruit peddler, so as to
excite no remarks, and I can go back the same way."

"But {287}you have not told me what you have done with the young man?"

"He has been placed in the hospital. His wound is quite severe, but
not fatal. The strangest part of the affair is, that not one of our men
fired a shot. He was wounded by some one unknown to us."

"Who could have done it?"

"I have no idea--possibly he has some enemy; most of us have."

"I must hurry away. Breakfast will be ready, and my absence will make
them wonder. Good-morning, sir, and many thanks for your kindness."

"Good-morning, Miss--"

"Mason. I live but a half mile away, and I hope, if you are ever near
us, you will call and tell us how Walter is. Or, rather, I had better
send old Dan, our servant, here every day to inquire."

"Do not trouble yourself to do that. I will do myself the honor of
calling, to inform you how his wound progresses."

It was strange how long it took Walter to recover, or at least how many
calls Lieutenant Gordon was compelled to make, ere he deemed Marie's
nerves would endure the shock of seeing him. Helen always had a bright
welcome for the Lieutenant, and when she requested him to allow Marie
and herself to visit Walter, the officer shook his head wisely and
promised to help the wounded soldier over at a very early day. The
latter had been chafing at the delay. Lieutenant Gordon had long since
received proofs of his innocence as a spy, and was satisfied that his
punishment had been severe enough, but his own case perplexed him. Was
he pleasing in her sight; could she care for him; and how dared he tell
her his own feelings?

Old Lois was always shaking her head in solemn disapproval. "What has
dun got into dem two chilien?" she often asked old Dan. "Dey seems to be
gitting 'witched wif dem couple Norvern men. Dey cahnt eider ob 'em hold
a candle to Massa Colonel Allison, who's dun gone, on Miss Marie.
Why, he's de man {288}after my own mind. His big black eyes flash like
diamonds, and dat booful beard falls over his mouf like a willow tree.
Doan know what young gals is tinking of nowadays." Another shake of the
head and a puckering up of the thick lips. "But here cums Dan; he never
did like Massa Allison, so I won't 'spute wid him, for I 'spises family
quarrels."

Old Dan walked slowly and as if thinking deeply, up the path to the
kitchen door, and stood there, looking in. Aunt Lois at first thought
she would ignore his presence entirely, but curiosity triumphed, and as
he showed no desire to talk, but turned off into the woods, she unbent
from her dignity, and called loudly--"Dan--ole man!"

He turned impatiently, and said--"Let me alone, Ise engaged on
particular business, dat wimmen don't know nufhn about conducting."

Lois' nose went up into the air, or rather would have gone, were it not
so flat and heavy she could not elevate it.

"How high and mighty old niggers can be!" was her retort. For a day or
two there was an air of mystery about Dan which offended Lois deeply,
but she wouldn't ask any questions. "If my ole man has any secrets
from me now at his time of life, well, I'll find 'em out," she said to
herself. One forenoon he astonished her by saying--

"Does yo' like Massa Allison?"

"I dus. He's de kind of a gemman dat I likes to see 'roun. Whar's Miss
Marie's eyes when she cahnt see how far s'perior he is to dose Norvern
sogers who am jess libin' here now."

"Yer wouldn't like him so well if yer knew he was a 'sassin, would yer?"

The old negress was all attention. "A 'sassin, what's dat?"

"A wicked man what tries to murder anuder jess becase he lubs de same
gal dat he does."

"Whose de man? Whar am he?"

"I'll tell yer sumfing, but yer musn't tell. Ise had de secret a long
time, but I cahnt keep it any longer."

"Perceed, {289}old man."

"Massa Allison lubs our sweet mistis."

"Which one?"

"Why, Miss Marie, ob course. I 'lows Miss Helen is all right, but she
cahnt--"

"Dar yo' go, way off from de subjict. What did he do?" Dan tiptoed
nearer to his spouse. "Yer 'members de day Massa Walter was shot. I
was in dem woods after rabbits, when I seed Massa Allison wid a musket,
lying flat on his face in some high bushes. I felt it was kind o' queer;
yo' know he's home on leab ob absence, and so I watched him. Quick I
heard de report, and saw Massa Walter fall right down, and Massa Allison
rund away fast as a deer. I picked up his hankcher and his name is
printed right on it, and I've kep' it in my bussum ever since."

"You telling de troof? If yo' is, my symperthies go right ober to dat ar
wounded boy."

"Ise telling de troof, ole woman. And now yo' see why Ise got no lub for
Massa Allison."

"Well, we'd best keep dis yere news to ourselves. Yo' know a nigger's
word never'd go before a white man's down here, so we'll jess keep our
moufs shut."

But Aunt Lois' prejudices were strong yet, and it took some little
persuasion on the part of Dan before she would acknowledge that Massa
Walter was as nice as one ob deir "own Soudern men were."

Lieutenant Gordon had at first, when the company was assigned to provost
duty, chafed restlessly, for he preferred being at the front, but as the
weeks rolled on he became wonderfully resigned to his orders, and so
one day he assumed a fierce martial look, and stormed the fortress
of Helen's affections. It was a singularly easy victory, for she
capitulated at once.

Walter's recovery was slow. When he first met Marie, his joy was almost
overshadowed by timidity. He could scarce credit the assurance that she
loved him. He never alluded to her sister's part in their separation,
and this delicacy won for him {290}the gratitude of that young girl.
The old slave, Dan, was jubilant. It had been arranged that Lois and
he should accompany the two sisters to their Northern homes, where the
parents of both the bridegrooms were awaiting them, eager to receive
them. The dear old home was to be occupied by their cousin Will and his
wife, a sweet-faced Southern girl, who assured them that it would ever
be a home for them as well.

One fine morning in May a double solemn ceremony was performed which
bound Marie and Walter and Helen and Lieutenant Harry Gordon together,
for life. A few chosen friends were there, and Lois and Dan were
decked out in all the colors of the rainbow. Dan chuckled audibly as he
informed Lois that "dat ar Union was what de whole Souf and Norf ought
to celebrate--a Union forever."

Walters period of service had expired, and he was free to go. Lieutenant
Gordon was to remain behind until the boys were discharged from the
service.

"It will not be long before we shall be together again, dear sister,"
Helen said. "General Lee has surrendered, the armies of both sides
are being disbanded, and the time will pass quickly." They sat on the
veranda, where they had so often sat, and talked over their dreams and
hopes.

The Colonel, whose shot came near ending a life, had disappeared after
his murderous attempt. They never heard from him again, and in their
luxurious homes the sisters dwell, loving and beloved.



ROBERT ANDERSON.

[Illustration: 9300]

HIS {291}brave and loyal officer was born at "Soldiers' Retreat," near
Louisville, Kentucky, on June 14, 1805. His early days were pleasantly
situated, his surroundings and companions being of the best. He was a
graduate of West Point, leaving that school in 1825, when only twenty
years of age. He was a very apt pupil. He entered the third Artillery,
and saw considerable fighting in the Black Hawk War in 1832. He was
appointed instructor of artillery tactics at West Point from 1835 to
1837, when he served in the Florida War, and in May, 1838, was
made assistant adjutant-general to General Scott. He resigned this
appointment upon being made captain, and accompanied Scott to Mexico in
1847.

He was wounded very severely at Molino del Rey, and for a time his life
was despaired of. In 1857 he was lieutenant in the First Artillery;
November 20, 1860, he assumed command of Charleston Harbor.

His loyalty to the old flag was proven at Forts Moultrie and Sumter.
When he took command of the former he determined to place it in good
condition, and he asked for money to make both forts more secure; large
sums were allowed him for this purpose.

Fort Moultrie was far from being impregnable. Indeed, the land side was
a good point for attack, so he concluded to remove to Fort Sumter, which
was built on a rock at the entrance to {292}the bay, and could only be
reached by boats. He made all his preparations with such secrecy that no
one suspected his design, not even his second in command, Captain Abner
Doubleday. The first intimation that the latter received was an order to
go to Fort Sumter in twenty minutes. The families of the officers were
sent to Fort Johnson, opposite Charleston, and afterward taken North.

[Illustration: 9301]

The clever manner in which Major Anderson deceived the Confederates
into believing that the troops which silently marched through the little
village of Moultrieville that cold December eve, just after sunset, were
only laborers going to Fort Sumter, is worthy of the cool and resolute
commander. When they reached Sumter, the laborers who were at work
in the interests of the Confederates, putting it in shape for their
occupancy, opposed the landing of the Union soldiers, but were driven
into the fort at the point of the bayonet. Major Anderson afterward sent
them ashore, in the supply boats.

At noon of the next day, Major Anderson celebrated his possession of
Fort Sumter by raising the Stars and Stripes and by prayer and military
ceremonies.

His slender garrison, all told, comprised but sixty-one artillerymen and
thirteen musicians. After he had thus taken possession of Fort Sumter,
they did not have a very enjoyable time, for provisions were growing
scarce, and the markets of Charleston would sell them nothing. Fuel
was scarce, and the cold was severe. Besides, they had to resort to
all sorts of stratagems to {293}keep up the appearance of being amply
provided with ammunition and munitions of war, one of which was the
filling of barrels with broken stone, with a heavy charge of powder in
the center, which they would roll down to the water's edge, and burst,
giving their watchful enemies the impression that the fort was filled
with "infernal machines." The garrison were in no very robust condition
for fighting, for salt pork was nearly their sum total in the meat line.

[Illustration: 0302]

Meanwhile, arguing went on between the Confederates and the garrison, to
the effect that the United States government had gone to pieces and
they ought to evacuate the fort quietly. But that was not the sort of
material that Major Anderson was made of. And when fire was opened upon
him, he returned it in kind, and fought valiantly. It was not till the
13th that he had to surrender. Twice the wooden frame on the inside
took fire, and when the flag staff on the fort was shot away, a servant
{294}named Peter Hart made a staff of a spar, and nailed it to the gun
carriages on the parapet under the hot fire of the enemy.

On the 14th Major Anderson and his garrison sadly left the fort after
saluting the dear old flag, and went on board the _Baltic_, which bore
them to New York.

In May, 1861, Robert Anderson was made brigadier-general in the United
States army, commanding the Department of the Cumberland. His health
failed so rapidly that he was shortly after relieved and brevetted
major-general in the regular army, when he was retired from service. In
1868 his health had failed so rapidly that he went to Europe, hoping for
relief. His translations from the French on military matters, have been
accepted as valuable textbooks, and are used by the War Department. The
health he sought eluded him, and his death took place at Nice, France,
October 26, 1871.



GENERAL ROBERT E. LEE.

[Illustration: 9303]

ENERAL ROBERT EDWARD LEE came from what is known in the South, as a
good family. He was the son of Colonel Henry Lee, who was known in
Revolutionary days as "Lighthorse Harry." Robert was born at Stafford,
Virginia, January 19, 1807. He became a cadet at West Point in 1825, and
graduated second in his class, composed of forty-six members, in 1829.
He never received a mark of demerit or a reprimand during his four years
at that institution, thus showing that he honored discipline--a fine
trait in the young. He became a lieutenant in the corps of engineers,
and superintending engineer in improvements of the harbor of St. Louis
and the upper Mississippi. He also served with great distinction as
chief engineer of the army under General Scott. His gallant conduct at
Cerro Gordo, Contreras, Churubusco and Chapultepec, in the Mexican War,
in the latter engagement receiving {295}a severe wound, won him honors,
and he was brevetted major, lieutenant-colonel and colonel.

[Illustration: 8304]

He was appointed superintendent of the military, academy at West Point
from 1852 to 1855, when in the latter year two new regiments of cavalry
were formed, in the second of which he secured an appointment as
lieutenant-colonel, a most deserved honor. Two years were spent
in Texas, but a leave of absence being granted him, he returned to
Virginia. He had command of the forces sent to suppress old John Brown
at Harper's Ferry, in October, 1859.

The year 1832 was an eventful one to him, for in that year he chose
a fair daughter of his native State, for his bride. The lady whom he
selected was Mary Custis, daughter of G. W. P. Custis; the latter was
the grandson of Martha Custis, and the adopted son of George Washington.
General Lee became heir to the estates of Arlington House on the
Potomac, and the White House on the Pamunkey. The Arlington estate was
confiscated by the Government during the war, and is now national
property, and the site of a Union soldiers' cemetery.

When the ordinance of secession was passed in Virginia, April 17, 1861,
he at once resigned his commission in the United States army, and wrote
to General Scott these words--"Save in defence of my native State, I
never desire again to draw my sword." He felt keenly that there was no
need of revolution, and would gladly have asked for redress of whatever
grievances his State felt that they suffered, but in vain, and he
declared that {296}although his devotion to the Union was sincere, and
he knew what was demanded of the duty and loyalty of an American, yet
he could not raise his hand against his friends, his children, and his
home.

Virginia had seceded from the Union, but had not yet acknowledged the
Confederacy. He was chosen major-general of the forces of the State, a
trust which he honestly assumed, and for more than a year, although he
was named as one of the five generals whom the State elected after it
joined the Confederacy, in May, still he was merely superintendent of
fortifications at Richmond, and a sort of military adviser to Jefferson
Davis.

His military record, as commander of the Southern army, proves him
to have been one of the ablest generals that history furnishes us any
record of. When he met General Grant in that little Virginia village,
to confer with him as to terms of surrender, it was the meeting of two
great commanders, each worthy of a world's admiration.

After the war General Lee refused to attend any public gatherings, but
lived a secluded life. His fortune had vanished, his hopes had been
defeated, and he was compelled to accept the position of President of
Washington College, Lexington, Va. This was in October of 1865. To the
last he was in favor of reconstruction in the South, without recourse to
arms.

On the evening of September 28, 1870, he was struck with paralysis, and
lived but a fortnight, dying on October 12. Thus passed away a man of
great nobility of character, brave and sincere.

His wife, Mary, followed him on November 6, 1873. The General had three
sons and four daughters. All of his sons served in the civil war.



AFTER THE BATTLE.

[Illustration: 9306]

T {297}was just after the battle of Chancellorsville, and the storm of
shot and shell had ceased to rain upon the wounded, who were pinioned in
the blazing woods, when the sudden blow which Stonewall Jackson's army
had struck, had left a trail of woe and blood. The dense forest had
hidden the oncoming of Jackson's forces. They stole in noiselessly and
fell upon the Union men under General Hooker, like an avalanche.

The pickets had not given the alarm, so swift and silent had been
Jackson's advance. The battle was over. The musketry had ceased its
rattle, and darkness had fallen, lit only by the red blaze which
enwrapped the Confederate and Union wounded, without mercy. Some of
them had tried to crawl away from the consuming fire, which played about
them, and licked up leaves and underbrush, and now and then, as a gust
of wind arose, sending the burning brands into the treetops to start a
new conflagration.

The heat burned into their wounds, and as the shrieks of those who could
not drag themselves away rose on the air, it seemed as if demons were
calling to each other, so madly did they shout for help and mercy from
the pitiless wall of fire.

Men were caught as if in a network, and held prisoners indeed. Choking
with the smoke, blinded by the sparks whirling in every direction, there
seemed no hope or chance for rescue.

{298}

[Illustration: 0307]

Here {299}a dead man's face, caught by the flames, was scorched and
disfigured so that his dearest friend could not have recognized him.
Near him lay a living soldier with bloodshot eyes and aching wounds,
terror written on his features--terror born, not from the fortunes of
battle, not of the foe whom he has met face to face, but terror of the
black night' the loneliness, the awful thought that the dead are all
around him, a somber scene lit up by the fire that seizes some helpless
one, never releasing him until he has lost the semblance of a man, and
is only a charred fragment.

That night was a fearful reality to many. Its horrors can never be
told, for those best able to repeat the story, perished where they lay.
Details were sent out by the Federals after Jackson's advance had been
checked, to save the victims in the burning forest, and heroically they
worked, but alas, they could not reach half of the wounded.

At the foot of an oak whose lofty head towered above the scene, two
soldiers fought valiantly for life. They were no longer arrayed against
each other, but against their mutual enemy, the fire-fiend. One wore the
blue, the other the gray. Both had gaping wounds, but their peril was
the same, and as they struggled to their feet, weak from loss of blood,
the bitterness died out of their hearts. They were once more friends,
comrades, and together they labored to stamp out the destroyer. Their
breath came quick and short, their voices sank to a whisper, but
shoulder to shoulder as of old, they met as brothers--and nobly they
battled with the flames, now smothering a burst of fire, now cheering
each other with brave words, until, slowly and painfully they advanced,
step by step, to a spot where the cool ground received them, as they
fell, fainting, almost dying, where they were found by the boys who were
sent to rescue, and whose work had been that of heroes.

And when, once more they struggled back to life, hand met hand in a
friendly grasp, and heart beat joyously to heart, as they thanked their
heavenly Father that they were saved from a fiery furnace.



A BOOTBLACK OF TENNESSEE.

[Illustration: 9309]

RELY {300}Percy was a product of the war--one of those stray "chilluns"
who drifted into camp with the refugees who were constantly coming under
Uncle Sam's paternal care.

It was but a short time before he drifted out again and into our home.
We (Allie and I) were in search of a boy "to run errands," and do odd
jobs about the house, and this particular boy was sent to me by one of
our soldier friends. When we saw his mirthful face (he had a perpetual
grin) we thought he'd do very nicely for us. It was quite the fashion
for boys to work in families in Memphis, washing dishes, preparing
vegetables, and kindred labors, and though at first our Northern ideas
were rudely disturbed by that fact, we soon became used to it, and
enjoyed having a boy for such work. Indeed, it was rather a relief to
Allie, for, as she said, if she hired a girl of the same age she would
be in a measure responsible for her manners, and she would have to
instruct her in the care of her wardrobe; but with a boy no such
difficulties presented themselves. Like too many white boys of good
families, it was supposed a boy could knock around and shift for
himself; in other words he did not need any particular care, beyond
providing him with enough to eat, drink and wear.

The boy informed us when he came to us that his name was Percy. Allie
suggested that it would be much more ready to call him Jim or Sam. In an
instant his family pride was up in arms.

{301}

[Illustration: 0310]

"'Scuse {302}me, Missie, but I cahnt go back on my raising dat ar way.
It wud be slighting my marsa's family. Percy it is, and I cahnt see my
way clar to answer to no oder name."

We afterward learned that his name was Jerry, and that he had fallen
deeply in love with the name Percy, it belonging to a colonel in the
Southern army who used to visit at his master's house, and so he had
appropriated it.

But Percy it remained, and if it was rather incongruous to see the
high-born Percy scrubbing the kitchen floor or delving into the garbage
box in search of a silver fork or spoon that he had thrown in with the
remains of a meal, it couldn't be helped.

He had some odd ways about him, that rather startled Allie. He believed
in Voodooism and when one day he informed her in a stage whisper that a
very elegant old lady who called often, but who had lost one eye
through some misfortune, was a witch, and was trying to "spell" him, she
promptly ordered him out of the house till he could learn to keep his
thoughts to himself. He despised winter, and one morning when he woke
up and saw a light snowfall that had come down the night before, he
expressed himself thus--

"Now, Missie, that's what you uns calls pretty. I jess tinks it's de
debil whispering bad tings to de earth, and she's ashamed of 'em, and
cobers up her face."

He never could be made to understand why certain articles in the china
closet should have certain places. As for instance the closet in our
house had shelves way down to the floor and he insisted on placing the
silverware on the lowest shelf and then stepping into it. He had been
talked to and threatened with punishment, and every time he'd promise to
do better. One morning as usual the spoons, knives, etc., were found in
the old place, and the look of perfect astonishment on his face would
have immortalized a painter could he have caught it, as he threw up his
hands and rolling up his eyes, said in the most tragic manner:

"I clar to goodness, Missie, I neber know how dey cum dar--dey must have
walked down all by demselves!"

He {303}went to market every day with his mistress, to show her how to
select, as he confidentially informed his companions---"Yer see she's
only a chile, not far frum my age (he was sixteen, she was nineteen) and
isn't 'sperienced in de tricks of dem ar market folks, so I goes along
and helps her."

We had been teasing for a dish of roast goose for a long time, so Percy
and his mistress started just after breakfast and made a tour of the
stalls. She selected a huge, but plump-looking white fowl, whose snowy
feathers attracted her attention. She was quite ready to accept Percy's
assurance that "dat ar fowl will make seberal good meals." The bird was
purchased, and Percy slung it over his shoulder, while it squawked most
horribly as mistress and boy went down the length of the market, greeted
at every step by the grinning colored folks, who wished them "good luck
wid dat ar young bird!" while some were anxious to know "whar yo' get
dat snow bird, honey?" accompanied with many fervent hopes that it would
"eat like cream." When the fowl reached the home of Percy's mistress,
she nearly died with chagrin to find that what she preferred for its
snowy plumage, thinking it an evidence of youth and beauty, proved to
be a gander whose tough old skin Charlie assured her no amount of heat
could penetrate. So when she slyly opened the gate, and bade him wander
forth, he did so without delay.

Percy pretended much sympathy for her discomfiture, but she lost faith
in all humanity after the goose episode, and deputed the marketing to
her brother and the boy, who kindly relieved her.

But Percy was not entirely a trifler, as a few weeks after proved. One
night when all were sleeping and the night was full of beauty, a little
flame, so fine it was scarce observable, shot up into the room where
the master and mistress reposed. It grew larger, as it danced across the
floor, and curled up over the windows, drawn by the night breeze that
played there. Now it seized the curtains of the bed, and still they knew
nothing of the danger. And now the flames burst forth, lighting up the
whole room, A feeling of suffocation, a frightened cry, and they awake,
{304}but the smoke is thick and lurid, they are blinded and dazed. Where
is the window--how can they find the door? They are silent from fear,
while the flames leap nearer and nearer.

"Ise here--doncher be feared! Percy's here to sabe you bof," and in the
boy springs, and seizing Allie by the arm, he calls to her husband to
follow close after him. He dashes to the window; he steps upon a ladder,
and half-carrying her down, he shouts words of cheer to Charlie, who
waits till they have reached the ground, when he takes to the ladder,
and follows in safety.

Looking up, they see the room one mass of fire, and they know that they
owe their lives to the watchful care of the black boy who had been only
the subject for mirth and ridicule in their little home.

They were grieved indeed, when, a week later he came to the friend's
house where they had found shelter, and after much scraping and bowing,
he told them he wanted to "gage in anoder business--shining gemmen's
shoes." They tried to persuade him that it was a precarious occupation,
and rather uncertain of returns, but there was an independence about it
that Percy craved. So they had to bid the boy good-bye, but the generous
donation which Charlie and Harry gave him to "set him up in business,"
made his eyes shine and his teeth glisten, as he "fanked dem, and wished
'em luck."

[Illustration: 0313]



CONFEDERATE CEMETERIES

[Illustration: 9314]

ANY {305}are the monuments that have been erected in Richmond, Virginia,
through the liberality of her citizens. That city has paid particular
attention to her brave boys who fell in battle, and her cemeteries are
very beautifully laid out. The word cemetery is from the Greek, and
means a "sleeping-place." There, indeed, do those who laid down their
lives sleep in peace, and it is the pride and pleasure of the living to
beautify their last home. National cemeteries were first provided for
by our government on July 17, 1862, and the noble provision has been
carried out in all the States, both North and South.

Oakwood cemetery, Richmond, contains 16,000 dead Confederate soldiers.
Libby Hill has a towering granite column, of great beauty, dedicated
to all the soldier and sailor dead of the Confederacy--a beautiful
memorial.

The cemetery of Hollywood is particularly distinguished for being the
resting-places of Generals Stuart, Pickett, and Maury. Each grave has
a tasty monument erected over it to tell who slumbers beneath. This
cemetery has ninety-five acres, and was established in 1847. There are
12,000 Confederate soldiers in this picturesque burying-ground, and a
granite pyramid has been raised to their memory.

All {306}civilizations have respected and cared for their dead. Even the
Indian decorates the graves of his people, and watches that they may lie
undisturbed. He places the weapons of the chase in the grave that they
may take them to the Happy Hunting Ground with them.

While Richmond has several cemeteries wherein her soldiers lie, it
is noticeable for the statues of her heroes also. General William
C. Wickham's statue adorns Monroe Park. One of the finest streets,
Franklin, has a statue of General Robert E. Lee and General A. P. Hill,
General "Jeb" Stuart, and President Jefferson Davis are also remembered.

In the eighty-three National cemeteries established by the United
States, and containing 330,700 soldiers, 9,438 wore the gray.

``"There is a tear for all that die,

```A mourner o'er the humblest grave;

``But nations swell the funeral cry

```And freedom weeps above the brave."

In the cemetery at Beaufort, South Carolina, all feelings of distinction
are swept away, and yearly, on Memorial Day, the noble-hearted women of
that town direct their steps toward the graves and place flowers
upon all--those who wore the blue and those who wore the gray, alike
appealing to their womanly sympathy, and sharing alike their tender
care.

On October 23, 1866, a fine and spacious cemetery was dedicated at
Winchester, Virginia, with most imposing ceremonies. This abode of the
dead is known as the Stonewall Jackson cemetery, in honor of that brave
and true-hearted soldier.

[Illustration: 0316]



PART II. UNDER BOTH FLAGS.

[Illustration: 9316]

NUMBER {307}of years have gone by since the scenes told of in the first
part of our book were enacted by the boy, whose interest has never
wavered, and whose heart is as young as it was in that day. The scars
of battle are tenderly smoothed away by the softening touch of time, and
the blue and the gray are no more arrayed against each other, but stand
shoulder to shoulder, eager to draw the sword, if need be, in defence of
their beloved land and her institutions. The grassy mound and towering
monument each tells its tale of the heroes who slumber beneath, and who
are alike worthy of unstinted praise.

Our late war with a foreign power has proven the loyalty of Americans in
every corner of our republic, and how earnestly the men of those days,
from North and South, have come forward to fight the battles of their
country--one, forevermore. Valuable services have been rendered by many
of those who were the leaders of those days, in that sad conflict,
and whose names have ever been renowned for courage, earnestness and
bravery.

We are, as a nation, making history fast, and in a book written {308}for
young people, it seemed proper to give them a few brief sketches of
those whose names were prominently identified with the war of 1861.
The boy who told his simple story is no longer a boy, but his pride and
rejoicing are as hearty as if the "dew of youth" sat upon him yet, and
in reviewing the lives of those who can truly be called great, and gone
to their final reward, one of the first whose claims are strong.



ULYSSES S. GRANT.

General Grant's career was so extraordinarily brilliant, and was
compressed into so short a time that it stands almost alone as one of
the most astonishing succession of events.

His birthplace was Point Pleasant, Ohio. Here on the 27th of April,
1822, the future general was born. When he was but a year old his
parents moved to Georgetown, where he grew into a sturdy, quiet lad,
showing no particular smartness any more than the average boy. Indeed,
he was rather dull, learning rather slowly, and with difficulty.
There were no free schools when he was a boy. These institutions
were supported by subscription, and one teacher had charge of all the
pupils--from the primer class to the big boy or girl of eighteen.

General Grant never saw an algebra nor any mathematical work until he
went to West Point. He had a great fondness for horses, and was never so
happy as when he could be with them. He was an excellent judge of them.
When he was but seven he drove his father's horses, hauling all the wood
used in the house and shops. When he was fifteen he made a horse trade
with a Mr. Payne, at Flat Rock, Kentucky, where he was visiting.
The brother of this gentleman was to accompany young Grant back to
Georgetown. The boy was told that the horse had never had a collar on
(it was a saddle horse), but he hitched it up, and started to drive the
seventy miles with a strange animal. The horse ran and kicked, and made
the companion horse frightened, and Ulysses stopped them right on the
edge of an embankment twenty {309}feet deep. Every time he would start,
the new horse would kick and run, until Mr. Payne, who was thoroughly
frightened, would not proceed any further in his company, but took
passage in a freight wagon. The boy was left alone, but with that
faculty for surmounting difficulties which distinguished him in after
life, a happy thought struck him--he took out his bandana, a huge
handkerchief much used then, and blindfolded the creature, driving
him quietly to the house of his uncle in Maysville, where he borrowed
another horse.

[Illustration: 8318]

A laughable incident occurred when he was eight. He saw a colt which he
very much coveted, and for which the owner demanded $25. General Grant's
father said he would give $20. The boy was so anxious to possess the
colt that his father yielded, giving him instructions how to make the
bargain. Going to the owner the boy said: "Papa says I may offer you $20
for the colt, but if you won't take that I am to offer $22.50, and if
you won't take that, to give you $25." It is needless to say what he had
to pay for the colt.

The elder Grant was not poor in the usual sense of the term--on the
contrary, he was quite well situated for the time and place.

Ulysses was sent to West Point at seventeen; he was quite apt in
mathematics, but had no love for military tactics, and resolved {310}not
to stay in the army, even if he graduated. He was not brilliant in his
class here, either--he says himself that had "the class been turned the
other end foremost, I should have been near the head." He graduated four
years after his entrance, No. 21 in a class of thirty-nine.

[Illustration: 9319]

It was feared at that time that he had the consumption, for he had a bad
cough, but his outdoor life entirely removed it.

His real name was Hiram Ulysses Grant, but some one made a blunder in
making out the document appointing him a cadet, and as U. S. Grant he
will be known always.

On graduation he was breveted Second Lieutenant of Infantry, and placed
in the Fourth Regiment, which was sent to the frontier. But two years
went by, ere he was sent to Texas to join General Taylor's army, and
here he became a full lieutenant. He was made quartermaster of his
regiment early in 1847, after showing great valor in the battles of Palo
Alto, Resaca, Monterey, and the siege of Vera Cruz. He participated in
all of the engagements, and was promoted on the field of Molino del Rey
for his bravery. A few days after an exhibition of the same quality won
him special notice and praise from his brigade commander.

When {311}the Mexican War was over, he was stationed at: Sackett's
Harbor, New York. He had long been attached to Miss Julia Dent, the
sister of one of his classmates, and August 22, 1848, she became his
wife.

[Illustration: 0320]

Four years later he went with his regiment to California and Oregon,
where he became captain. The summer of 1854 saw, apparently, an end to
his military career, for he resigned his commission and tried to work a
small farm near St. Louis, and attend to real estate in the city. He was
{312}not intended for either vocation. Greater things were in store
for him, and, disheartened at his poor success, he went to work for his
father, as clerk in his store--the leather trade, in Galena, Illinois.

At the first sound of war he offered his services to the government, and
marched to Springfield at the head of a company. Governor Yates placed
him on his staff, and made him mustering officer of all the volunteers
from Illinois, but in June he was made colonel of the Twenty-first
Regiment, which he had organized and drilled himself. Needing cars
to transport it to a distant point, he was told they could not be
furnished. So little a matter as that did not annoy him, but with that
directness and energy which always marked his movements, he astonished
the authorities by marching the entire regiment to the desired place.

In August he was promoted, becoming brigadier-general, and assuming
command of all troops at Cairo. From this hour his successes were great,
and have become matters of history. He was the idol of the army, and the
surprise of the country, which gave him the popular name which seems to
fit him so well--Unconditional Surrender Grant.

After the siege of Vicksburg and the defeat of General Bragg, it became
plain to the government that one great mind should control all the
forces, and General Grant was declared commander of the entire armies of
the Union, early in 1864.

It was then that President Lincoln and General Grant met for the first
time--a meeting between two great men. The commission of full general
was bestowed upon Grant in July, 1866, this title being created
especially for him. From August, 1867, to January, 1868, he was really
Secretary of War, on account of the trouble between President Johnson
and Secretary Stanton. He received the nomination for President, in May,
1868, at the hands of the Republican convention which met in Chicago,
and was elected by an overwhelming majority. He was reelected to a
second term and at its close he made a tour of the world, with his wife.
He was received with unbounded enthusiasm everywhere.

In 1881 he {313}bought a house in New York City, which he made a home in
the fullest sense, for his family and himself. On Christmas Eve, 1883,
he slipped on the sidewalk, and injured himself so badly that he had
to use crutches ever after. Becoming partner in a banking house, he was
robbed of all he had by his associates in business and had to turn his
attention to literary work, furnishing the _Century_ with some articles.
Being solicited to give his experiences, he wrote his "Memoirs," which
he indited while suffering great anguish, and which he finished four
days before his death. His wife received for the two volumes from his
pen $400,000 as royalty.

The hero of many battles, the grand soldier, was doomed. In 1884 a
trouble in his throat developed into a cancer, and for nearly a year he
endured intense agony, never murmuring, but working on, that he might
place those he so dearly loved beyond want.

On July 23, 1885, he died, in a cottage at Mt. McGregor, near Saratoga,
New York--a man whom the world is better for having known.



JAMES ABRAM GARFIELD.

Few boys have risen from such humble surroundings to the highest gift
of a great nation, as did the twentieth President of the United States,
James A. Garfield. His boyhood's home was a simple cabin in the woods of
Ohio, unbroken save by the few settlers who hewed the trees and made
a clearing for a home. His father was one of these pioneers, and the
future President of our great Republic was a genuine farmer's boy,
and knew how to do all the hard work upon a farm. He chopped wood, and
helped care for the few acres they called their farm. They did not live
in luxury, for they had no means to squander. Living on the plainest
fare, wild game and corn, or wheat cracked or pounded in a mortar,
performing the hardest labor, the boy's strength grew, until he became a
hardy, robust lad, the pride of his beloved parents.

{314}

[Illustration: 0323]

He {315}never had much schooling, as it was only three months each
winter that his parents could send him to the district school, but most
excellent use he made of his scant opportunities. At fourteen he was
apprenticed to a carpenter, and three years later he worked on the
canal. When he was a mere lad, he longed to be a sailor, but he fell
sick, and after that he never seemed to long for the sea.

[Illustration: 8324]

The little village of Orange, Ohio, where he was born on the nineteenth
of November, 1831, was soon to see him no more as a resident, for in
March, 1849, he left home and entered Geauga Seminary at Chester, and
soon was fitted to teach a district school. But he had to work at his
trade (the carpenter's) to help pay his way, his mother not being able
to assist him, save by a loan of $17.00 which she furnished him the
first term that he was there. Every morning and evening, and Saturdays,
as well as his entire summer vacation, he spent in labor at the bench.
The next three years he passed in the Eclectic Institute at Hiram, and
here his finances still continuing low, he willingly acted as student
and janitor, and afterward as student and teacher. He was unable to
earn enough to pay for his tuition at William's College, and although
he practised the closest economy, when he graduated he owed that
institution $500, a debt which he afterward faithfully discharged.

He accepted the Professorship of Ancient Languages and Literature in
Hiram College, at twenty-six becoming its president, which he continued
to be until he entered the army in 1861.

In 1858 he married Lucretia Rudolph, who was a teacher, and a very
cultivated woman, who proved a valuable companion in his literary
career. He had studied law while President of the college, and was
admitted to practice in the Supreme Court cf the United States in 1866.

His {316}military services were large and valuable. He was an authority
upon American finances. He held many important positions and was honored
by all his colleagues. He was made an honorary member of the celebrated
Cobden Club of England.

[Illustration: 0325]

He made many able speeches in Congress, and was elected to the
Thirty-eighth Congress in 1863, and reelected successively {317}to
the Thirty-ninth, Fortieth, Forty-first, Forty-second, Forty-third,
Forty-fourth, Forty-fifth and Forty-sixth Congresses.

The year 1880 was an important one to James A. Garfield, for in January
he was elected by the Ohio Legislature Senator for the term beginning
March 4, 1881, to succeed Allen G. Thurman. But on the 8th of June
a still greater honor was shown him by the Chicago convention, which
nominated him for president, and the November election showed him to be
the choice of the people.

His public life was destined to be a short one, for on the morning of
July 2, 1881, with bright expectations of a pleasant trip to New
York and the White Mountains with his wife and several members of the
Cabinet, he started from the White House for the Baltimore and Potomac
station. As Secretary Blaine and he entered the station, arm in arm,
they passed through the ladies' waiting-room. As they walked briskly
on, two pistol shots were fired in quick succession, one of which took
effect in the President's back. He sank to the floor, but was conscious.
Dr. Bliss was summoned, and took charge of the case, but he named three
other surgeons as assistants. Later two very celebrated physicians were
added to the list of medical advisers. Their united opinion was that the
ball had grazed the liver, and lodged in the front wall of the abdomen,
but that it was not necessarily fatal. Still they did not deem it wise
to extract it.

The assassin who struck down a good man, was Charles J. Guiteau, a
crazy, disappointed office-seeker. After suffering for weeks, and
fluctuating between hope of recovery and unfavorable symptoms, he died
at Elberon Park, New Jersey, whither he had been removed on the 19th of
September, 1881.

His life, with its early struggles, is a lesson to the boys of this
age, to show them what great possibilities are within the reach of an
American citizen.



EVENTS FOLLOWING THE CIVIL WAR.



THE ATLANTIC CABLE.

[Illustration: 9327]

ARLY {318}in October, 1851, the first effort at laying a cable for a
submarine telegraph was begun by the United States brig Dolphin, which
carried a line of soundings across the Atlantic. At that time there were
but eighty-seven nautical miles of submarine cable laid, while now there
are nearly 200,000 statute miles. Some of these cables merely connect
islands with the main shore, others are thousands of miles long. A cable
is laid so far below the surface that neither storms, tides or currents
can disturb it. But the ends touching the shore are made much stronger
and heavier, so that the waves will not impair them, and in some cases,
near landings, they are heavily weighted to keep them in place--a thing
it is not necessary to do in deep water.

In 1854 Cyrus W. Field obtained a charter for laying a cable, and when
the first attempt was made at Kerry, Ireland, in 1857, the occasion was
made a very brilliant affair. It was honored by the presence of a vast
squadron of British and American ships of war. Representatives of many
nations were there, as well as the directors of the Atlantic Telegraph
Company, and most of the magnates of the English railroads. It was a
momentous undertaking, but after laying 335 miles of cable, and causing
the heart of its projectors to beat high with hope, {319}the strands
suddenly parted, and their hopes were crushed.

The next year another expedition was commenced, which ended in a similar
failure. But nothing could dampen the ardor of its friends, and on the
16th of August of the same year another cable was successfully laid,
and on the 17th Queen Victoria sent the President of the United
States congratulations upon the successful termination of this great
international work, to which Mr. Buchanan returned the courteous
wish that the cable might "prove to be a bond of perpetual peace and
friendship between the kindred nations." The two continents held great
rejoicings, but disappointment was again their portion, for about the
1st of September the cable throbbed no more.

In 1865 a further attempt was made, and after 1,200 miles had been laid,
the cable broke again. So grand an undertaking was not to be given up
lightly. Mr. Field's perseverance was unconquerable. A strong, flexible
cable was shipped on board the "Great Eastern," and on the 13th of July,
1866, this gigantic boat started from Valentia, Ireland, and two weeks
later it "glided calmly into Heart's Content, Newfoundland, dropping
her anchor in front of the telegraph house, having trailed behind her
a chain of 2,000 miles, to bind the Old World to the New." It then went
back to the mid-Atlantic, grappled the end of the broken cable of 1865,
a splice was made, and the line was continued to Newfoundland by the
side of the other. These lines have never failed to work. The cable
having thus become a fact, the world was astonished and gratified. Mr.
Field had worked heroically, and by our own land, by England and by
France he was enthusiastically praised. The first message which passed
over this line was a worthy one--the announcement of the treaty of peace
between Prussia and Austria.

The charges for telegraphing were formerly very high, twenty pounds for
a short message being asked, but as rival companies began to spring up,
competition reduced the price considerably.

Marine cables have multiplied so fast that where there was originally
but one or two, there are now eight, owned and operated {320}at a vast
benefit to the entire world with which we are in communication. The
events occurring in the most distant climes are brought to our doors
through this medium so perfect is the system. Cyrus W. Field received
a gold medal from Congress in recognition of his services, and the
gratitude of the world, as well.



ALASKA

|Few can realize the magnitude of this far Northwest territory. To most
boys and girls it seems a cold, barren, desolate country, a perpetual
scene of ice-bound rivers and frost and snow the whole year round, with
nothing growing. When Secretary Seward accomplished the purchase of this
vast tract of land from Russia, he showed great wisdom and foresight. No
wonder that, in view of its immense size and valuable resources, he
declared the conclusion of this affair the crowning triumph of his life.

[Illustration: 9329]

Russia had been anxious to sell for a long time, but many feared that
she had drained all the value from the territory, and wanted to get rid
of it. There was bitter opposition in the United States to the plan of
buying what every one considered would prove but "a field of ice and a
sea of mountains."

We want to tell the young folks how great a mistake these sort of
reasoners labored under, and how we came to be the fortunate buyers of
this vast stretch of land.

Many years ago a party of American explorers conceived the idea of
establishing a telegraph between our country and Asia, and they went to
Alaska for this purpose. Fancy their surprise when they saw what they
had supposed was a desert waste, producing the largest pine and cedar
trees in the whole world, and the most extensive seal-fisheries, with
here and there a town, with {321}its churches and buildings. They at
once saw how rich it was in natural advantages, and they became
very anxious that our government should confer with Russia as to its
purchase. They presented good reasons for this desire to Congress, and
Secretary Seward saw at once what an acquisition it would be to us, in
many ways. So in March, 1867, the treaty between our country and
Russia looking to its sale was ratified. It had at that time a native
population of 60,000, and since we have come into possession of it,
the United States Commissioner of Education has started schools and
appointed teachers to care for the education of the young. There are now
twenty-four of these schools in the different settlements, two of them
in Sitka and a manual training school has been organized here also,
where they receive instruction in the various trades. This school must
be very popular, for it has a large attendance for a small city like
Sitka, it numbering over 200 pupils on its list.

The chief city, or capital, is Sitka, very romantically situated on
the shore, while high mountains rise behind it, forming a beautiful
background for the streets and dwellings. It is an old-fashioned, quiet
place, when compared with bustling American towns, but it boasts a
lively weekly paper, and the Russo-Greek church has a good edifice
there, showing that the religious education of its people has not been
forgotten. The harbor is very beautiful, being deep, and affording safe
shelter for vessels.

The purchase of this territory has extended our northern boundary from
the 49th to the 71st parallel, and added to our growth westward by sixty
degrees of longitude. It can boast of the highest mountain in America,
Mt. St. Elias, which rises 14,000 feet above the sea. The magnificent
Yukon river runs through the territory, and steamers of light draft can
sail on its waters for 1,500 miles. We have gained 600,000 square miles,
and this vast area really cost our government the trifling sum of two
cents an acre, the sum paid Russia being $7,200,000. It would require
thirteen of our States to equal its extent. As a writer jovially
remarked, "It is a gilt-edged real estate investment."

The {322}climate is quite endurable. The winters in the northern portion
are excessively severe, but on the southwest coast it is warmer at that
season than either Maine or Dakota.

The salmon are very plentiful, as well as mackerel, cod and herring.
The streams are full of them. The salmon rival those of the Columbia
and Fraser rivers, and immense canneries are daily in operation in the
summer, preparing them for the markets of the world. The Chinese do this
work principally, and they are brought up from San Francisco for this
purpose and taken back there in the Fall. Fish are mostly caught in fish
traps and nets, but the natives spear them.

The largest stamp-mill on this continent for reducing gold-bearing
quartz is in operation near the town of Juneau.

Agriculture does not flourish on account of the shortness of the
summers. Gardening on a small scale goes on, and plenty can be raised
for home use. The region so long remaining almost unknown, has suddenly
become the desired bourne for men and women of all classes. It has
always been known that its mineral resources were fine, and gold has
been found there in small quantities, but the hardships endured in
getting it from the soil were too great in proportion to the amount,
but a new impetus to the labors of the gold seeker has been given by the
discovery of the precious metal in such large quantities that thousands
have rushed to this field eager to dig for the yellow ore. Steamers are
leaving Pacific ports weekly, laden with those who are willing to brave
the terrors of the Chilkoot Pass. If the tales are true, it is surely
a land of' untold riches, as the entire region is gold-bearing, and
for some years to come, that metal will be found by some, in paying
quantities. One authority, Dr. Becker, states that the beach sand all
along the Alaskan coast contains enormous quantities of gold. But even
though there was not an ounce of it in the whole territory, Alaska has
paid back to our commerce its price several times over.



CENTENNIAL EXPOSITION.

|The {323}United States, now in the midst of prosperity concluded to
hold one of the most notable fairs any land has ever enjoyed. The first
one was held in commemoration of the one hundredth birthday of our
nation, and was projected on broad lines, and carried out in the same
manner. It was opened May 10, 1876, and continued 159 days. It was a
general invitation to all the world to bring their productions to our
shores for admiration and instruction, and caused a unity and sympathy
between the severed parts of our country such as no other event could
have succeeded in doing. People flocked to Philadelphia from every land,
and the North and South met in a friendly rivalry as to which section
should be most fully represented. Over 61,000 visitors attended each
day of the Fair, and at the close of the Fair the receipts were, in
admissions, concessions and royalties, in round numbers, $4,307,749.75.

[Illustration: 0332]

It had been the desire of many patriotic people for ten years to make a
showing of our resources, and to invite, as it were, the whole world
to see us at home. The hope had never met with favor, but by repeated
representations as to the importance of the idea, the people of the
United States were at last {324}aroused, and worked so faithfully and
rapidly to carry it out, as to surprise the world.

President Grant, on behalf of the United States, asked the nations to
take part in our rejoicing, and they responded promptly, by sending
commissioners to attend to the details. Congress appropriated large
sums, and all the States entered into the undertaking with hearty
good-will.

City governments and private individuals also contributed freely. A
site was chosen, Fairmount Park, Philadelphia, one of the most charming
locations which could have been found. Five large buildings were
constructed, covering an area of twenty acres.

Each State erected a building, as did many foreign nations, within which
to exhibit the products and manufactures of that particular State.

The exposition was opened by President Grant, with Dom Pedro, Emperor
of Brazil, and his empress, by his side. Theodore Thomas' orchestra
furnished the music, playing eighteen airs at the opening, the last of
which, Hail Columbia, met with tumultuous applause. A cantata came next,
a prayer by Bishop Simpson, and a hymn followed written by Whittier, the
Quaker poet. General Hawley presented the buildings and their contents
to the President, who accepted them in a few words, announcing that the
exhibition was open. The two ponderous Corliss engines which were to put
the whole machinery going, were set in motion by the President and the
Emperor.

The exhibition was formally closed November 10, 1876, after a season of
unexampled prosperity, in the simplest manner. Addresses were made by
General Hawley and several others, the entire audience sang "America,"
and President Grant declared the International Exhibition closed. But
it had taught foreign powers a lesson of respect for our republic, and
caused wider intercourse between the Old World and the New.



EDISON, THE GENIUS OF THE AGE.

|To-day the old system of illumination is giving way to the splendors of
electric glow. With man's progress came the much needed {325}question of
artificial light.

[Illustration: 0334]

Electric lights not only adorn the streets of our cities, but grace our
parlors, furnishing a stronger, a cleaner and more healthful light than
any other known. {326}To Thomas A. Edison, who was born in Milan, Ohio,
in 1847, belongs the glory of bringing electricity for lighting purposes
to a successful basis.

[Illustration: 0335]

Other scientists before him had experimented, {327}but to Edison
remained the work of removing the final difficulties. Electricity is
to-day furnishing the motive power for street cars, railroads, engines,
etc., and it is predicted that before the dawn of a new century
more wonderful still will be the achievements of this untutored and
remarkable man.

With no less possibilities in scientific research comes the Kinetoscope,
his latest invention, which by a thousand instantaneous pictures one
is enabled to see the lifelike motions of "a child at play," "a distant
battle," or the varied scenes of a "County Fair."



CHICAGO FIRE.

|The terror which fire excites exceeds all other causes for fear. It is
a subtle power that the average person cannot cope with. Its exhibitions
are so terrible, so changeable, and so unmanageable, that it temporarily
unnerves or unbalances the calmest brain. Great conflagrations have
raged in many lands, and in all ages, doing exceeding great damage,
but it is yet to be recorded that a fire ever swept over so wide a
territory, and swallowed up so large an amount of wealth and products,
sacrificing so much life as did the great Chicago Fire.

The history of the prominent events of the times would be incomplete
were not the attention of the boys and girls of to-day directed to an
occurrence so startling as to arouse the sympathies of the entire world.

The fire started on the night of October 8, 1871. The previous summer
had been especially dry and hot, and was prolific of fires, many cities
and towns having suffered in this respect, and the lumber districts
of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and the forests of New York State,
having been visited by the destroying element. Many causes have been
assigned for this fire, but its origin will probably remain forever
unknown. It burned with unabated fierceness for two days, and
three-fourths of the city were literally reduced to ashes.

On the evening of Saturday, the 7th, a fire had broken out in {328}a
portion of the West Division of the city, and consumed property to the
value of a million of dollars. This was thought a terrible fire, and was
heralded in all the Sabbath morning papers; thousands visited the spot
on that day, and commented on and shuddered at the loss. Little did they
apprehend that the same evening, Sunday, October 8, a fire would take
place which would do the most deadly work, ruining business, licking up
homes and property, destroying human life, and almost wiping out a whole
city, whose prosperity and energy had become famous.

[Illustration: 0337]

Nothing escaped. Private homes, public buildings, churches, banks,
theaters, the postoffice, courthouse, newspaper edifices, hotels,
{329}all fell before it, and not until General Sheridan ordered the
blowing up of buildings, was its progress stayed.

At half-past three in the morning, while a strong southwest wind was
blowing, the anxious citizens were informed that the North Side was
attacked by the fire fiend, and one of the first victims to its wrath
was the engine house of the waterworks, thus cutting off the supply of
water for use in fighting the flames, and driving the terrified people
to despair. From here it leaped northward, taking in the elevators on
the river banks, with their millions of bushels of grain, setting fire
to vessels lying at anchor, then to the cemetery nearest the city, and
to the beautiful park known as Lincoln, in short, to every conceivable
object which could furnish food for the monster of destruction.

The tramp of hundreds of people fleeing from the fire, the shrieks of
terror, the noise of the engines, the hoarse shouts and calls of those
who searched in vain for their dear ones separated from them in the mad
chase for life, the thunderous fall of stately structures, the roaring,
crackling, howling flames, made a wild scene that Pandemonium was
silence compared with. The fire burned the North Side until there was no
trace of a building left standing save one, the residence of Mahlon D.
Ogden, which stood in a large plat of ground, entirely detached. On
the site of this house has since been erected a fine building of stone,
devoted to a public library, and called the Newberry. The northern city
limits and the lake were the only barriers to the further encroachments
of the fire.

Blazing brands were seen sailing through the air, and, falling in
some spot as yet untouched, they would kindle a new fire. The heat was
intense, the very air one breathed almost scorched the throat. One vast
sea of flame melted marble and stone till it crumbled and fell. But oh,
blessed relief! The thousands who camped out on the prairie that night
welcomed the torrents of rain that fell, even though it chilled them
through. People went nearly mad with terror on that dreadful night.
Robbers and thieves were busy plying their trade, taking everything
they could {330}carry away. Some of these perished with their ill-gotten
gains. The lake was a welcome refuge, and hundreds waded out as far into
its waters as they dared, to escape the heat that lay behind them. It
was said that many were drowned through their temerity.

The 10th of October rose upon a waste, whose dwellers were clothed
in the apathy of despair. For eight days after the fire, the city was
without water, and the dread of a second outbreak hung like a pall over
them. The city came under military rule, citizens patroled the streets,
and every stranger was looked upon with suspicion, lest he be an
incendiary. General Sheridan, by virtue of the fact that he was
commander of the Military Division of the Missouri, took charge of the
city, to protect it from the thieves and incendiaries who were at
work. He ordered two companies of regulars from Omaha, three from
Fort Leavenworth, and one from Fort Scott, here. General Halleck also
furnished him with four companies from Kentucky.

A hundred men were put to work on the engines of the waterworks, and in
a week the mains were filled by pumping water into them from the river.
Some sickness resulted from drinking this water. But eight days' labor
resulted in forcing water from the pure lake into the pipes, and once
more Chicago could drink its fill. Meanwhile peddlers had dipped water
from the lake and sold it from house to house at a shilling a pail.
Mayor R. B. Mason, on the 10th, forbade any fires kindled for cooking,
and "cold victuals," and in many cases no victuals at all, for a day or
so, until the Relief Committee could distribute the stores pouring into
the desolated city, were the order of the day.

And then the great heart of the world beat with noble generosity.
From every city, and town, and village, and from foreign lands, the
beneficent gifts flowed in, and food and clothing. From New York,
Boston, Cincinnati, St. Louis, London, England, and all over the world,
generous contributions of money were poured into Chicago, to feed the
starving--not the "starving poor," but the starving people, for all
were made beggars by the {331}calamity. Banks were destroyed, local fire
insurance companies were wiped out of existence, and for months our fair
city was kept alive by the noble and unstinted liberality of the world.

The loss in property was over $290,000,000, at the lowest estimate. How
many lives were laid down no statistics have ever been positively given,
as there was such a large floating population, of whom no account could
be made, but accepting the lowest computation, at least 250 people
perished on that fearful night, and over 100,000 were left homeless, and
without a shelter.

A writer, speaking of the great loss of the fire of 1871 says that
$1,000,000 of property was consumed every five minutes, and 125 acres of
buildings every hour.



THE TELEPHONE AND PHONOGRAPH.

|No invention of modern times equals in interest the Telephone. It has
remained for an American to solve the problem of communication
between persons at a distance from each other. Scientists, by means of
electricity and sound, have devised an apparatus for transmitting the
voice to a distance of hundreds of miles. To Alexander Graham Bell, of
Massachusetts, and to Elisha P. Gray, of Chicago, is due the honor of
originating this wonderful invention.

Closely following the telephone is the Phonograph, an invention based on
the same principle of science, but brought about by different means. The
phonograph is made to talk and sing, thus enabling one to read by the
ear instead of the eye.



THE JOHNSTOWN FLOOD.

|Fly for your lives! The dam is going!" Such was the warning the
inhabitants of the towns received from the lips of a man who rode madly
through the valley, warning every one he saw, on that sad afternoon of
May 31, 1889. It was five in the afternoon. The people were beginning to
think of leaving their {332}work and going to their peaceful homes, when
this dread news broke upon their ears. They could not credit it, and as
they heard the news, they looked doubtingly at each other. To most of
them, it seemed impossible. The dam was away up in the mountains, on
private grounds, and few had ever seen it or dreamed how vast it was.
Besides, they reasoned, it had broken once or twice before, and no great
harm was done. All these causes served to lull their fears. But even
when they were warned, it was too late, so impetuous was its course.
Nothing could have stayed the mad waters in their descent into the
doomed valley.

[Illustration: 0341]

The Johnstown flood followed a long rain storm in the Alleghanies--a
storm of several days' duration. All the rivers running east were
swollen, and the immense dam of the huge Conemaugh valley burst with a
thunderous report. The reservoir was a large one, four miles long by one
broad, and over seventy feet deep. This vast body of water swept a wave
twenty feet high at the rate of twenty miles an hour, right down into
{333}the narrow and deep valley, where were eight villages boasting a
population of 58,000. Johnstown, Pennsylvania, the largest of the towns
in the valley, lay at the junction of Stony Creek and the Conemaugh
river, and had extensive iron works, banks, and many business houses.
This and all the villages were swept out of being in two hours, so rapid
and vehement was the coming of the torrent. Thousands were drowned, and
nearly two thousand people were burned to death by means of a mass of
wreckage which was caught and held at a new bridge near the town. The
houses were all made of wood, timber had floated down the current and
stacked up, and hundreds of trees were piled up at this bridge for a
space of sixty acres. It is presumed that some furnaces set fire to this
mass, and the poor creatures whose helpless forms had been entangled in
the débris, met an awful death by fire. There was no chance for escape;
the raging torrent was ready to engulf them, while the fierce flames
were eager to lap up all that the waters spared.

Railroad tracks were swept away, telegraph poles leveled, and though
Philadelphia and other cities sent help and food at once, it was
impossible to reach the helpless victims for forty-eight hours, and when
at last soldiers and navvies on rescue trains reached the scene, there
was nothing to be done but to feed the living and bury the dead.

Nearly 10,000 perished, and all who had escaped with their lives tried
to succor the sufferers, save a few Hungarian Slavs and Italians, who
plundered the dead, but who were shot at once as a reward for their
greediness.

It is not possible to picture the condition of the Valley after the
waters receded. In many places the whole town was swept as bare as
though a gigantic broom had passed over it, nothing but sand and gravel
being left. Where a house chanced to be left standing, it was filled
with mud and slime to the third story, while trees, broken timbers
and debris was piled up to the second story. Not a house was fit for
occupancy. Dead bodies were found in cellars, and in some dwellings
horses had been forced into the rooms by the rushing waters, and lay
there putrefying. {334}They all fared alike. A few citizens were held
prisoners in their frame houses, and floated over two miles to a place
of safety, but these fortunate ones were the exception.

Medicines, clothing, money and food were liberally poured into the
unfortunate region. Men and women from all over the country offered
their services to care for the living and the dead.

The dam whose bursting caused this awful loss of life was very
carelessly constructed, and had no stone work in its makeup. Indeed, it
might well be called a vast embankment of earth.



EARTHQUAKE AT CHARLESTON.

|Charleston, South Carolina, seems to have more than her share of
misfortunes.

[Illustration: 0343]

This thought occurred to me when the papers all over the country on the
morning of September 1st, 1886, {335}gave to the world an account of
that dreaded convulsion known as an earthquake, which had taken place
the night previous, just as the hour for retiring had come. The first
intimation that the Signal Service Bureau at Washington city had of this
catastrophe was only a surmise. They knew that something was wrong, for
communication was not to be had. All the telegraph wires were suddenly
cut off. Without a moment's warning the city had been shocked and rent
to its very foundation. Hardly a building escaped injury and almost a
third of the city was in half or total ruins. The whole Atlantic coast
was more or less affected, and for leagues from the shore the ocean was
thrown in a turmoil.

People fled from the tottering houses to the parks and public squares,
where they erected tents and remained for weeks, afraid to return to
their own homes. It was soon discovered that these shocks were only the
dying away of great convulsions and that further alarm was unnecessary,
so they returned home.

With true American energy the debris was in a few months cleared
away, business was resumed and to-day were it not for a few cracks and
fissures in buildings we would never know that anything had happened
there to disturb their peace.

[Illustration: 0344]



INDIAN WARS.

[Illustration: 9345]

ATING {336}from the time of the discovery of our continent there have
been disturbances between the whites and the Indians. The first Indian
war was between the colonists and the natives, and dates back to 1622.

At the beginning of the nineteenth century the Sioux Indians held all
the lands between the Mississippi and the Rocky Mountains, north of the
40th parallel of latitude. These lands were grassy, rolling prairies,
with a plentiful supply of timber growing along the rivers and creeks
which abounded. The government established reservations thirty-two years
ago for the purpose of keeping those Indians who are hostile, separated
from the peaceably disposed ones, who only went upon the hunt for game
for food and sale. When buffalo and large game grew scarce, the United
States furnished them with food and clothing, and placed the means
within their power, to support themselves.

The Indian question is full of interest, and comes forward constantly to
perplex our government, which regards them as its wards. Articles by
the hundred have been written about the red man, his possibilities and
capabilities set forth; plans have been proposed to subdue, or rather
civilize him, and still the fact remains that the savage nature, save in
exceptional instances, is as untamed as the first day he came upon the
scene. {337}

[Illustration: 0346]

The {338}first mail to California from the East was carried by the
overland route, in stages, and lucky was the party that made the
lonesome journey across the plains unmolested by the Indians, who
swarmed about them and sent showers of arrows into the coach which was
carrying its bag of mail and the trembling passengers. The stage was
always guarded by United States soldiers, but in spite of this the
half-naked savages would press closer and closer, hurling their sharp
arrows with unerring aim, as the stage went plunging along, the horses
half-mad with fear, but straining every nerve to outrun the screaming
foe. The settlers of those early days were brave men and women, or they
would not have risked falling into the hands of the roving bands who
were always on the war-path on some pretext. Many a brave man has died
defending the mail which the government intrusted to him.

[Illustration: 0347]

While our land was torn with dissension, the Indians cunningly planned a
general uprising. This was in 1862. The Indians in Minnesota and Dakota
massacred the settlers everywhere, In Minnesota the Sioux attacked
outlying towns, committing {339}terrible atrocities. They pounced upon
New Ulm, a small but thriving village, and killed 100 of its people.

[Illustration: 0348]

They turned their attention to two other villages, but were driven
away. {340}Colonel Sibley was sent after them, and met several bodies of
Indians, whom he defeated. They fear cannon greatly, and two were turned
upon them, much to their terror.

[Illustration: 0349]

The garrison at Fort Kearney was surprised by Indians December 21, 1866,
and 100 soldiers were slaughtered.

The Indians have many peculiar customs. One of them is, their habit
of daubing on the war paint and indulging in a war dance whenever they
resolve to attack the whites.

{341}

[Illustration: 0350]

Once seen they {342}can never be forgotten, for their lithe forms,
hideously painted faces, and demoniac yells would startle the bravest.

September of 1867 the Indians on the North Platte called a council to
confer with General Sherman. They demanded that the building of several
roads should be stopped, and particularly the work on the Southern
Pacific, as it interfered with their hunting. The General would not
accede to these demands, but promised that any loss they suffered should
be made good to them.

September 18, 1868, the 'Indians attacked our troops at Republican
River, and Lieutenant Beecher and several other officers were murdered.
In 1871 the Apaches killed over 200 white settlers, not in battle, but
skulking in ambush, and shooting them wherever they met them.

[Illustration: 9351]

The whites met the Indians at Washita River, and defeated them, November
27, 1868.

Thus the continual outbreaks of the Indians, have been a source of
trouble and anxiety to the government, which has sought to adjust the
claims of the red men in a fair and just manner. That the latter have
often been cheated and robbed by unscrupulous agents and traders, no
one can deny, but the fact still remains that the Indian nature is
peculiarly hard to subdue, and their natural instincts are cruel. {343}

[Illustration: 0352]

There are, fortunately, many bright examples among several tribes,
{344}of the beauty of civilization, and its beneficial influence upon
them.

The Modoc massacre was a cruel return for intended kindness. This
tribe had for its chief Captain Jack, a very intelligent man of fine
abilities. Their removal to another reservation was violently resisted
by them, and they retreated to the Lava Beds, where trouble was
anticipated. At last a peace council was arranged for and although
Colonel Meacham, the peace commissioner, urged the whites not to attend
it, they paid no attention to his warning, but went. The Indians had
concealed weapons, and they rose in a body, and attempted to massacre
every white man present. General Canby and Dr. Thomas were killed, and
Colonel Meacham received a dozen wounds, but survived them. Three months
afterward the band surrendered, and Captain Jack and some of the other
leaders were executed at Fort Klamath, Oregon, October 3.



GEORGE A. CUSTER.

|A the close of the war of 1861 most of the boys in blue went back to
their homes--but not so with General Custer. He was one of the most
brilliant soldiers of the war, and had the distinction of being the
youngest general in the army. His graduation from West Point took place
just about the first year of the conflict, and he was made lieutenant,
but before the close of the last year he had attained the rank of
major-general, and assisted in some of the most remarkable victories.

He was not allowed time to visit his home in Michigan, but was ordered
to lead a cavalry command through Texas, to teach the people there that
the war was over, and to check the ravages of the "bushwhackers" who
still infested that beautiful State. On his return home he accepted
the lieutenant-colonelcy of the Seventh United States Cavalry, and nine
years were passed in service at the frontier posts of Kansas and Dakota.

His wife lived with him through those scenes of interest. She {345}had
the gift of transmitting to paper the vivid pictures of this wild and
daring life. She passed four months in an army wagon, and rode the long
marches which her brave husband was forced to make. He was a hero, she
also was a heroine, for the hardships and privations which she endured
so uncomplainingly, were worthy of so grand a spirit.

The Sioux (Soo) is the most powerful tribe of red men on our continent.
They preyed upon all alike--with the defenceless settlements of our
Minnesota frontier, with the Pawnees, the Cheyennes, the Arapahoes, and
the Shoshones and, indeed, with all the other tribes, far and near.

They spared no one. At the end of the war of 1861 our army was called
on to protect the peaceable settlers of the far West, for the Sioux
were more hostile and bloodthirsty than ever. For ten years the cavalry
regiments knew no rest. The Indians were on the war-path continually.
They were always rash fighters, but when in 1874 they obtained
breech-loaders and rifles, they became a foe more to be dreaded than
ever. They burned our forts and massacred the small garrisons in a most
atrocious manner.

Our government used every method to subdue them, feeding, clothing and
coaxing them. Agencies and reservations were placed at good points, but
this care for their comfort had no effect. The old worn-out Indians,
women and children lived on these reservations, partaking of the
government's bounty, while the young and vigorous warriors sallied
out to murder and pilfer the whites wherever they could find them. The
soldiers of the United States were not permitted to attack them on their
reservations, and so they kept out of their way, and escaped punishment.

An Indian in his wild state has no respect for another of his race who
has no scalps to show. There were, however, some who made treaties with
the whites, and kept them. But among the many who never made any promise
to behave was a powerful medicine chief known as "Sitting Bull."

In March, 1876, General George Crook was sent against this {346}renowned
warrior, who had entrenched himself in the hills with 6,000 "bad
Indians" around him. From the south General Terry was sent with a strong
body of cavalry and infantry, and General Gibbon with a small but brave
band of frontier soldiers. They approached the stronghold of the chief.
Major Reno left camp to reconnoiter, and was readily convinced how rash
it would be to attack Sitting Bull, who was daily receiving accessions
to his numbers.

General Terry thought, however, it was time to start an expedition to
discover and dislodge the enemy, and he gave the command to the brave
and fearless soldier, General Custer. He named the 26th of June as the
day when he and Gibbon would be there to assist Custer, but the latter,
impatient to open the conflict, had urged his horses and men to their
utmost so as to reach the scene. He started on the trail with the
Seventh Cavalry, riding sixty miles in twenty-four hours. His aim was
to have a bout with the Indians and defeat them single-handed. Coming
within sight of the village on the left bank of the Little Big Horn
River where Sitting Bull was encamped, he observed such tokens
of excitement and hurrying away of ponies as to him had but one
explanation--that the chief and his warriors were running away. Dashing
forward with panting chest and the fire of courage flaming in his face,
he placed himself at the head of his men, plunged hastily into the
valley, and the last that General Reno, who followed him closely, ever
saw of the brave Custer and his three hundred, was the cloud of dust
their trail had left behind.

The valiant Custer had gone to his death! Expecting Reno would make a
dash such as his own, he had gallantly ridden forward, to be met by a
perfect storm of flame and lead. In an instant he saw how vain was his
attempt, and giving orders to mount he sought a way out, but the red men
swarmed around his followers. Boys and even old squaws were firing at
him and his band most viciously. {347}

[Illustration: 0357]

Vainly they tried to remount--they cut their horses loose, and on a
little mound, General Custer, with scarcely a dozen men, all who were
left, made his last {348}rally. In a few moments all was over. Of the
twelve troops of the Seventh Cavalry, but one thing escaped alive--Myles
Keogh's sorrel horse, Comanche, who came back into the lines a few days
later, a most pitiable object. Thus perished General Custer, as brave
and noble a soldier as ever lived!

The Utes gave a great amount of trouble in 1879, in Colorado, pouncing
upon a wagon train and slaying Major Thornburgh and eleven of his men.
They next murdered Agent Meeker, and carried many women into captivity.

The Apache Indians fell upon the settlers of Silver City, New Mexico,
October 19, 1879, killing twenty-one men and women, and seventeen
children. The men were shot and scalped, and the women tortured. Troops
were sent to protect the remainder, but it was some time before they
could be reached.

The year 1890 witnessed one of the most serious outbreaks of the red
men of the Dakota reservations. The Ghost Dance was indulged in, and
the feeling of dread and fear spread all over the Western country.
This dance was instigated by Sitting Bull, who had returned to the
reservation eleven years previous. It has always been a superstition
among all the Indians that the Messiah would come to them some day,
bring all their dead to life, and drive the whites out of the land.
Sitting Bull encouraged the Sioux in Dakota to believe this.

At once the War Department was given full control of the Indians by the
Interior Department. At the different agencies it was found that the
Indians were stealing cattle and horses and running them off into the
Bad Lands, where they designed starting a camp. It was well known that
if Sitting Bull reached that stronghold he would be safe, so the Indian
police at the Pine Ridge Agency were told to arrest him, which they did,
and started back to the Agency, knowing a body of cavalry and infantry
were following in their wake to assist them. But Sitting Bull's friends
rushed to his assistance and a fierce hand-to-hand encounter took place.
They all fought like fiends, and lost several of their numbers. But
the police held the old chief captive, {349}and two of them shot
him--Bullhead and Red Tomahawk. A son of the chief, Crow Foot, was slain
also.



BATTLE OF WOUNDED KNEE CREEK,

|In the annals of American history there cannot be found a battle so
fierce, bloody and decisive as the fight at Wounded Knee Creek between
the Seventh Cavalry and Big Foots band of Sioux. It was a stand-up
fight of the most desperate kind, in which nearly the entire band was
annihilated, and although the soldiers outnumbered their opponents
nearly three to one, the victory was won by two troops, about one
hundred strong.

[Illustration: 8359]

The night before the Indians had agreed to submit, and the troops were
up bright and early in readiness to move by eight o'clock. At that
hour the cavalry and dismounted troops were gathered about the Indian
village, the Hotchkiss guns overlooking the camp not fifty yards away.
The Indians were ordered to come forward, away from their tents, and
when the band, under the leadership of Big Foot, walked out of their
lodges and formed a semicircle in front of the soldiers' tents, there
was nothing to indicate that they would not submit. Colonel Forsyth, an
Indian fighter of tried worth, never gave a thought to the chance of
a fight. When it was made plain to the band that their arms must be
{350}given up, the murmur of discontent was unanimous.

[Illustration: 9360]

When the soldiers proceeded to disarm them and search their tents
the medicine man jumped up, uttered a loud incantation and fired at a
trooper standing guard over the captured guns. That was the signal for
fight, and in a second every buck in the party rose to his feet, cast
aside the blanket which covered his winchester, and, taking aim, fired
directly at the troop in front. It was a terrible onslaught, and so
sudden that all were stunned but, quickly recovering, they opened fire
on the enemy. The position of troops B and K would not allow their
fellow-cavalry-men to fire, lest they shoot through the Indians and kill
their own men. This the terrible duel raged for thirty minutes. Someone
ordered "Spare the women," but the squaws fought like demons and could
not be distinguished from the men. The entire band was practically
slaughtered, and those who escaped to the ravine were followed by the
cavalry and shot down wherever found. The chief medicine man, whose
incantations had caused the band to act with such murderous treachery,
fell with a dozen bullets in his body. It is claimed that of the Indians
there were but two survivors, one of which was a baby girl about three
months old, who has since been adopted by a wealthy lady in Washington.

After {351}the defeat of the Indians at Wounded Knee Creek, they were
ready to close the conflict and make the best terms possible with
General Miles. On the 22d of January there was a grand military review
in honor of the victory over the redskins. Ten thousand Sioux had a
good opportunity to see the strength and discipline of the United States
Army, the end of the ghost-dance rebellion being marked by a review of
all the soldiers who had taken part in crushing the Indians. Thus passed
into history probably not only the most remarkable of our Indian wars,
but the last one there will ever be.



CHRISTOPHER CARSON.

|The subject of our sketch was one of the most noted mountaineers,
trappers and hunters that ever lived.

[Illustration: 9361]

He was no less renowned as a guide and a soldier. He was a native of
Madison County, Kentucky, where he was born December 24, 1809. When he
was a babe his father removed his family to Howard County, Missouri.
Here he spent {352}many happy days in hunting wild game, and making
himself familiar with nature. The schoolroom had not very many charms
for him, and at fifteen he was apprenticed to a saddler, with whom he
remained two years. But this employment was irksome to him, and he soon
freed himself, and we next hear of him as a trapper, which was more
congenial to his taste, as he remained one for eight years. He next
engaged as hunter to Bent's Fort, and eight more years glided by. Few
men understood the nature of the Indians more thoroughly than did he.
He dealt with them in a truthful, straightforward way, which won their
regard, and the government appointed him Indian agent in New Mexico,
where he was singularly successful in making treaties with the red men,
which were religiously kept.

His services during the Civil War were inestimable in New Mexico,
Colorado and the Indian Territory, for which he was promoted to colonel,
and was brevetted brigadier-general.

He died from a rupture of an artery in the neck, at Fort Lynn, Colorado,
on the 23d of May, 1868.



THE WORLD'S COLUMBIAN EXPOSITION.

|The next great fair which our country saw, was planned on a huge scale.
It was also an invitation to the peoples of all lands, who liberally
responded. This was the World's Fair, and it was rightly named, for
it proved a gathering of all nations. It was opened in May, 1893,
and closed October 30. The features of the Fair were varied, and its
inception and fulfillment were on a gigantic scale. Nearly every country
on earth sent some representation to the Fair, and during its existence
millions of strangers visited the city.

{353}

[Illustration: 0363]

There was a long and earnest contest as to what city should have the
honor of being selected to hold the great World's Fair, St. Louis,
Cincinnati, New York, Washington and Chicago, each presenting powerful
reasons why the choice should fall upon it. But Congress settled the
question by giving to Chicago the coveted honor, and without delay
commissioners were chosen, and {354}officials and citizens went busily
to work, hand in hand, to make the fair the grandest ever projected.

The grounds selected were at Jackson Park, Chicago, and comprised 640
acres. Magnificent buildings were erected, costing from $10,000 to
$300,000 each, and every State engaged with the others in a friendly
rivalry. There were forty-seven State and Territorial buildings, each
one noted for a style of architecture dissimilar to any of the rest, and
yet all remarkably beautiful.

It was well represented by foreign peoples, fifty-one nations and
thirty-nine colonies participating. The edifices erected by the
directors, such as Transportation, Machinery Hall, Electrical Building,
etc., were numerous and costly. The beauties of the Art Gallery were a
revelation to the busy, pushing American, and the man or woman who spent
but a few days among the wonders of the great World's Fair of 1893 found
food for reflection and pleasant memories to last a lifetime. Nature was
not overlooked and the horticultural show was a marvel of beauty. The
Fisheries Building was deemed among the handsomest on the grounds,
costing $225,000, but where all were so fine and-so well adapted to
their intended use, it is impossible to particularize.

The fair, it was expected, would be opened by President Cleveland in
person, but State reasons forbidding his presence, it was arranged that
he should touch an electric button in Washington which should start the
machinery here, which was done. The fair was dedicated on the 20th of
October, 1892, with imposing and lengthy ceremonies, and opened to the
world in May, 1893.

Figures do not appeal to the youthful mind, but still they are necessary
for comparison, and when I tell my young readers that the Vienna
exposition in 1873 expended $7,850,000, while Chicago's outlay was
$17,000,000, it will easily be seen that the Worlds Fair of 1893, held
at Chicago, was carried out with a magnificence never before equaled.



PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN OF 1896.

[Illustration: 9365]

HEN {355}in the campaign of 1896 for President of our great republic,
excitement ran high, as the "silverites" had put a candidate in the
field in opposition to the Republican nominee, the latter party having
adopted a platform which upheld the gold standard, and which pledged
itself to make every effort to obtain recognition for silver as money
by gold-standard countries, at a ratio to be agreed upon later; it also
declared in favor of a protective tariff.

The year of 1893 had brought a terrible panic, which caused more
suffering in its train, than any that had preceded it. Business was
not to be had, labor was not sought, and failures were of everyday
occurrence. People began to ask why this state of affairs existed.
The advocates of silver answered that it was because that metal was
legislated against, while the protective tariff people asserted that
the troubles were due to the fact that the tariff was faulty--it neither
provided money for governmental uses, nor work for the toilers.

At once a fierce contest of words and arguments began. The silver men
formed clubs, papers presenting their arguments were scattered all over
the land, able speakers were employed, and nothing was heard but the
all-absorbing currency question.

The Democrats held a convention at Chicago in July with the silver men
in the majority. William J. Bryan of Nebraska proved so convincing
a speaker in the debates, that he held the attention of vast and
enthusiastic audiences.

In return for his efforts {356}he was nominated for President, and
Arthur Sewall of Maine for Vice, as William McKinley of Ohio, had
been named in the Republican body that met at St. Louis, in June, with
Garrett A. Hobart of New Jersey as Vice-President.

[Illustration: 9366]

The platform sanctioned by the party was the free coinage of silver
at the ratio of "sixteen to one," and that the tariff was to remain
unchanged. The watch 7 word of the party became "sixteen to one."

When the Populists held their convention they chose Mr. Bryan for the
Presidential chair, and Thomas Watson of Georgia for the position of
Vice-President. The Silver party indorsed the choice of Bryan, and
the whole country became engaged in the conflict. The excitement was
intense, and party spirit ran high. The States seemed equally divided,
the Eastern and Central coming out for gold, while the Western and
Southern espoused the claims of the white metal.

Still another party arose, called the Gold Democrats, who convened at
Indianapolis in September, and selected John M. Palmer of Illinois for
their Presidential leader, and Simon B. Buckner of Kentucky for Vice.
This party came out squarely for the gold standard only.

[Illustration: 8336]

Mr. Bryan took the stump and addressed the people of the country at
large. Mr. McKinley remained quietly in his own home at Canton, and
received delegations. It seemed as though every man, woman and child
took sides in the great question at stake, and each was equally sure of
success. Debates noticeable {357}for their bitter intensity were heard,
meetings were held day and night, and each party felt certain that in
an acceptance of its particular views alone rested the safety and
perpetuity of our country.

The battle culminated on November 5, 1896, when William McKinley was
elected by a large majority. The rancor and bitterness died out, all
parties accepted the people's choice, and he was inaugurated President
March 4, 1897, amid a scene of splendor.

Of his patriotism, his clear-sightedness, his wisdom, his administration
is daily giving proof, and his conduct of our late war with Spain is the
best vindication of the calm, unbiased, just and grand character of our
chief executive.

[Illustration: 367]

{358}

[Illustration: 0368]



"HOME, SWEET HOME."

FRANCES E. WILLARD.

In {359}the spring of 1863 two great armies were encamped on either
side of the Rappahannock River, one dressed in blue and the other
dressed in gray. As twilight fell, the bands of music on the Union side
began to play the martial music, "The Star Spangled Banner," and "Rally
Round the Flag;" and that challenge of music was taken up by those upon
the other side, and they responded with "The Bonnie Blue Flag," and
"Away Down South in Dixie." It was borne in upon the soul of a single
soldier in one of those bands of music to begin a sweeter and a more
tender air, and slowly as he played it they joined in a sort of chorus
of all the instruments upon the Union side, until finally a great and
mighty chorus swelled up and down our army--"Home, Sweet Home." When
they had finished there was no challenge yonder, for every band upon
that farther shore had taken up the lovely air so attuned to all that is
holiest and dearest, and one great chorus of the two great hosts went up
to God; and when they had finished the sweet and holy melody, from the
boys in gray there came a challenge, "Three cheers for home!" and as
they went reverberating through the skies from both sides of the river,
"something upon the soldiers' cheeks washed off the stains of powder."



THE REV. O. H. TIFFANY, D. D.

|HOW solemn a thing is death!--and yet, how wonderful a thing {360}is
life! God appoints it, man develops it, death seals its destiny,
eternity unfolds its ultimate issues. Each human soul in which this
power of life is has "its secrets and histories and marvels of destiny,
heaven's splendors are over its dead, hell's terrors are under its feet,
tragedies and poetries are in it, and a history for eternity."
Every social organism, every grand national aggregation of lives but
generalizes the history of the individual, and thus the history of all
life and of all living, whether in individuals, families, societies or
nations, is one history, and that history the record of its conflicts,
its defeats, its victories. The dawn of this life is a struggle for
being, its growth a constant warfare with antagonisms, its maintenance
is by continued defenses. And each and all of these create crises of
destiny which may retard or advance, destroy or establish the whole.

Our national birth was a contest with physical difficulties, our
establishment a victory over political antagonisms; the last desperate
struggle was a conflict of ideas, a contest of moral principles; and we
may hope that its issue shall be one of prosperity and peace.

Mountains are rock-ribbed and enduring because the earthquake has
settled them on their foundations; the pines that crest them like a
coronet withstand the rudest blasts, because they have been rooted by
the storms which toss their giant branches. So universal freedom has
been made sure by the passing turbulence of rebellion, and our national
prosperity established by the rude blast of war.

It was a war such as the world never before witnessed; it was fought by
such armies as never before were marshaled on the field. But the end has
come. These great armies have returned covered with honor and laureled
with renown. They are merged again in the business and activities of
life; they have disappeared from view like the snow in springtime,
or the dew of the morning in the {361}summer's sun; now and then the
halting step upon the sidewalk, here and there an empty sleeve, remind
us in our daily walks of the stern realities of war.

After war, peace!

Peace to the dead. Peace through their labors to the living. These "have
fought their last fight," the salvos of artillery which soon shall sound
from the guns they loved so well shall not awake them. The grass shall
grow green in springtime, the birds of summer shall sing their sweetest
notes, the bright glories of autumn shall tint the foliage above them,
and the white snow of winter shall lie unbroken on their graves, but
these shall sleep on in peace.

Peace, white-robed and olive-crowned, has come to us who linger. Peace,
with its cares and toils, peace, with its plenty and prosperity, peace,
with its duties for to-day and its destinies for to-morrow. Let us
welcome it and become worthy of it. Let there be in all our lives,
thoughts, hopes, endeavors, such devotion to duty as called and sent
these brave men to the battlefield and sustained them there; and then we
may safely leave our future to the care of those who, coming after us,
shall pause, amid the ruins time may make, to trace upon the marble in
our cemeteries the names of the heroic dead.

``God gives us peace! Not such as lulls to sleep,

``But sword on thigh and brows with purpose knit.

`And let our Ship of State to harbor sweep,

``Her ports all up! Her battle lanterns lit!

`And her leashed thunders gathered for their leap.



THE UNION SOLDIER.

ROBERT G. INGERSOLL.

|THE past rises before me like a dream. Again we are in the great
struggle for national life. We hear the sounds of preparation, the
music of the boisterous drum, the silver voices of heroic bugles. We see
thousands of assemblages, and hear the appeals of orators; we see the
pale cheeks of women and the {362}flushed faces of men; and in those
assemblages we see all the dead whose dust we have covered with flowers.
We lose sight of them no more. We are with them when they enlist in the
great army of freedom. We see them part with those they love. Some are
walking for the last time in quiet, woody places with the maidens they
adore. We hear the whisperings and the sweet vows of eternal love as
they lingeringly part forever. Others are bending over cradles, kissing
babies that are asleep; some are receiving the blessings of old men;
some are parting with mothers who hold them and press them to their
hearts again and again, and say nothing, and some are talking with
wives, and endeavoring with brave words spoken in the old tones to drive
from their hearts the awful fear. We see them part. We see the wife
standing in the door, with the babe in her arms--standing in the
sunlight sobbing--at the turn of the road a hand waves--she answers by
holding high in her loving hands the child. He is gone, and forever.
We see them all as they march proudly away under the flaunting flags,
keeping time to the wild, grand music of war, marching down the streets
of the great cities, through the towns and across the prairies, down to
the fields of glory, to do and to die for the eternal right. We go with
them, one and all. We are by their side on all the gory fields, in the
hospitals, on all the weary marches. We stand guard with them in the
wild storm, and under the quiet stars. We are with them in ravines
running with blood, in the furrows of old fields; we are with them
between contesting hosts unable to move, wild with thirst, the life
ebbing slowly away among the withered leaves. We see them pierced
by balls and torn with shells in the trenches by forts, and in the
whirlwind of the charge, where men become iron, with nerves of steel.

We are with them in the prisons of hatred and famine; but human speech
can never tell what they endured. We are at home when the news comes
that they are dead. We see the maiden in the shadow of her first sorrow.
We see the silvered head of the old man bowed with the first grief.

The past rises before us, and we see four millions of human beings
governed by the lash; we see them bound hand and foot; we hear the
strokes of cruel whips; we see the hounds tracking women {363}through
the tangled swamps; we see babes sold from the breasts of mothers.
Cruelty unspeakable! Outrage infinite! Four million bodies in
chains--four million souls in fetters. All the sacred relations of wife,
mother, father and child trampled beneath the brutal feet of might. All
this was done under our own beautiful banner of the free. The past rises
before us; we hear the roar and shriek of the bursting shell; the broken
fetters fall; these heroes died. We look--instead of slaves we see men,
women and children. The wand of progress touches the auction block,
the slave pen, the whipping post, and we see homes and firesides, and
schoolhouses and books, and where all was want and crime and cruelty and
fetters, we see the faces of the free. These heroes are dead; they died
for liberty; they died for us; they are at rest; they sleep in the land
they made free under the flag they rendered stainless, under the solemn
pines, the sad hemlocks, the tearful willows and the embracing vines;
they sleep beneath the shadows of the clouds, careless alike of sunshine
or storm, each in the windowless palace of rest. Earth may run red with
other wars, they are at peace. In the midst of battle they found the
severity of death. I have one sentiment for the soldiers, living and
dead--cheers for the living, and tears for the dead.

Our Noble, Heroic and Self-Sacrificing Women.



EMORY A. STORRS.

|BRIGHT and shying on our resplendent annals shall appear the names
of those thousands of noble, heroic and self-sacrificing women, who
organized and carried forward to triumphant success a colossal sanitary
and charitable scheme, the like of which, in nobility of conception
and perfectness of execution, the world had never before witnessed, and
which carried all around the globe the fame and the name of the women of
America.

From camp to camp, from battlefield to battlefield, through the long and
toilsome march, by day and by night, these sacred charities followed,
and the prayers of the devoted and the true were ceaselessly with you
through all dangers.

Leagues {364}and leagues separated you from home, but the blessings
there invoked upon you hovered over and around you, and sweetened your
sleep like angels' visits.

While the boy soldier slept by his camp fire at night and dreaming of
home, and what his valor would achieve for his country, uttered even in
his dreams prayers for the loved ones who had made that home so dear to
him, the mother dreaming of her son breathed at the same time prayers
for his safety, and for the triumph of his cause. The prayers and
blessings of mother and son, borne heavenward, met in the bosom of their
common God and Father.



ANTIETAM.

|I'VE wandered to Antietam, John,

`And stood where foe met foe

``Upon the fields of Maryland

```So many years ago.=

`The circling hills rise just the same

```As they did on that day,

``When you were fighting blue, old

````boy,

``And I was fighting gray.=



``The winding stream runs 'neath the

````bridge

```Where Burnside won his fame;

``The locust trees upon the ridge

```Beyond are there the same.=

``The birds were singing 'mid the

````trees--

``'Twas bullets on that day,

``When you were fighting blue, old

````boy,

``And I was fighting gray.=

``I saw again the Dunker Church

```That stood beside the wood,

``Where Hooker made the famous

````charge

``That Hill so well withstood.=



``'Tis scarred and marred by war and

````time,

```As we are, John, to-day;

``For you were fighting blue, old boy,

```As I was fighting gray.=



``I stood beneath the signal tree

```Where I that day was laid,

``And 'twas your arms, old boy, that

````brought

```Me'to this friendly shade.=

``Tho' leaves are gone and limbs are

````bare,

```Its heart is true to-day

``As your your's was then, tho' fighting blue,

```To me, tho fighting gray.=



``I marked the spot where Mansfield

````fell,

```Where Richardson was slain,

``With Stark and Douglas 'mid the

````corn,

```And Brant amid the grain.=


``The names are sacred to us, John;

```They led us in the fray, [blue

``When you were fighting Northern

```And I the Southern gray.=



``I {365}thought of Burnside, Hooker, '

````Meade,

```Of Sedgwick, old and grave;

``Of Stonewall Jackson, tried and true,

```That tried the day to save.=


``I bared my head--they rest in peace--

```Each one has passed away;

``Death musters those who wore the

````blue

```With those who wore the gray.=



``The old Pry mansion rears its walls

```Beside Antietam's stream,

``And far away along the South

```I saw the tombstones gleam.=



``They mark each place where "Little

````Mac"

```And Robert Lee that day

``Made proud the South, tho' wearing

````blue,

```The North, tho' wearing gray.=



``Yes; John, it gave me joy to stand

```Where we once fiercely fought.

``The nation now is one again--

```The lesson has been taught.=


``Sweet peace doth fair Antietam crown,

```And we can say to-day [blue

``We're friends, tho' one was fighting

```And one was fighting gray.=



THE SWORDS OF GRANT AND LEE.

"_Fame Hath Crowned with Laurel the Swords of Grant and Lee._"

[Illustration: 9375]

ETHINKS to-night I catch a gleam of steel among the pines,

`And yonder by the lilied stream repose the foemen's lines;

`The ghostly guards who pace the ground a moment stop to see

`If all is safe and still around the tents of Grant and Lee.=



`'Tis but a dream; no armies camp where once their bay'nets

```shone;

`And Hesper's calm and lovely lamp shines on the dead alone;

`A cricket chirps on yonder rise beneath a cedar tree

`Where glinted 'neath the summer skies the swords of Grant and Lee.=



`Forever sheathed those famous blades that led the eager van!

`They shine no more among the glades that fringe the Rapidan;

`To-day their battle work is done, go draw them forth and see

`That not a stain appears upon the swords of Grant and Lee.=



`The gallant men who saw them flash in comradeship to-day

`Recall the wild, impetuous dash of val'rous blue and gray;

`And 'neath the flag that proudly waves above a Nation free,

`They oft recall the missing braves who fought with Grant and Lee.=



`They sleep among the tender grass, they slumber 'neath the pines,

`They're camping in the mountain pass where crouched the serried lines;

`They {366}rest where loud the tempests blow, destructive in their
glee--

`The men who followed long ago the swords of Grant and Lee.=



`Their graves are lying side by side where once they met as foes,

`And where they in the wildwood died springs up a blood-red rose;

`O'er them the bee on golden wing doth flit, and in yon tree

`A gentle robin seems to sing to them of Grant and Lee.=



`To-day no strifes of sections rise, to-day no shadows fall

`Upon our land, and 'neath the skies one flag waves over all;

`The Blue and Gray as comrades stand, as comrades bend the knee,

`And ask God's blessings on the land that gave us Grant and Lee.=



`So long as southward, wide and clear, Potomac's river runs,

`Their deeds will live because they were Columbia's hero sons;

`So long as bend the Northern pines, and blooms the orange tree,

`The swords will shine that led the lines of valiant Grant and Lee.=



`Methinks I hear a bugle blow, methinks I hear a drum;

`And there, with martial step and slow, two ghostly armies come;

`They are the men who met as foes, for 'tis the dead I see,

`And side by side in peace repose the swords of Grant and Lee.=



`Above them let Old Glory wave, and let each deathless star

`Forever shine upon the brave who lead the ranks of war;

`Their fame resounds from coast to coast, from mountain top to sea

`No other land than ours can boast the swords of Grant and Lee!=


[Illustration: 0376]



WAR WITH SPAIN.

[Illustration: 9377]

NLY {367}those who know the power of peace can realize the dread of war.
For four centuries Spain has borne down upon her colonies, with a heavy
hand. The brightest of them, Cuba, "the Pearl of the Antilles," has
been the victim of two cruel and merciless wars at her hands, waged
with relentless barbarity. We could not, as a Christian nation, help
protesting against her inhumanity to a people whose home was so near our
shores.

For thirty years the sounds of war had been silent in our domain,
but justice demanded that we interfere in behalf of a people who are
struggling against oppression, and in the noble cause of humanity.
Spain's cruelty and Spain's greed are matters of history.



THE MAINE DISASTER.

|On the 25th of January the Maine, an American battleship, entered the
harbor of Havana, Cuba, and anchored in her waters at a spot indicated
by the harbor-master. The usual exchange of salutes and formal visits
expected between two powers, took place, and there was no apparent
unfriendliness shown. Just three weeks from that day, in the evening of
the 15th of February, an explosion took place, which tore the boat to
atoms, killing 266 of her crew and two officers. At once treachery
was suspected, {368}but the American people was asked to suspend its
judgment until the long and searching investigation which was conducted
by the naval board of inquiry was ended, when every evidence was
produced proving that the awful calamity was due wholly to Spanish
treachery.

This led to a severing of all diplomatic relations, which was ended by
the Spanish minister's request for his passport. Spain declared war
upon the United States on April 24, 1898, and it took the House of
Representatives one minute and forty-one seconds to pass a declaration
of war in reply to Spain, and the Senate acted with equal promptness.

Events of such vast importance have rarely followed each other with such
rapidity as have those of our late war with Spain. In less than three
months a nation which deemed itself invincible, threw down the gauntlet
which was as speedily picked up, and engagements and battles trod almost
upon each other's heels, until its boast was proved a vain one, and
victory was ours.

Our people were ready to accept the challenge. From North and South came
the glad response. Once more the blue and the gray fought side by side,
as brothers.



THE FIRST GUN FIRED.

|Our history would be incomplete if I did not tell my young readers who
fired the first shot in our war with Spain. The United States cruiser,
Nashville, of the North Atlantic squadron at Key West, can lay proud
claim to that honor.

It was a clear and beautiful morning in April when the American fleet
left Key West, and proceeding southward across the straits of Florida,
first saw the city of Havana and the battlements of the famous Morro
Castle, on the afternoon of the same day. The fleet presented a gallant
sight, and when at three in the morning Admiral Sampson's flagship, the
New York, flashed forth her signal lights, the answering signals were
given from all the ships of the fleet, black smoke began to pour from
the smokestacks, and the crews needed no further hint that they had work
before them. {369}

[Illustration: 0379]

{370}

[Illustration: 0380]

{371}

[Illustration: 0381]

These volunteers in company with the Sixteenth and Sixth Regiments were
ordered to "charge the Block House'" and up the hill they charged with
military precision.

After {372}the Nashville returned to Key West, the rest of the squadron
proceeded to the Cuban coast. Coming within fifteen miles of Morro
Castle, the fleet scattered so as to form a complete blockade of the
port. Every day brought new prizes to our squadron, and the blockade of
Havana proved effectual.

It is well to call the attention of the boys to a few of the changes in
phraseology between the old sea terms and the new. Once in the English
navy (and ours was modeled after it) the term admiral was unknown--the
word constable or justice was used. So with the title of captain, which
is in reality a military one. In the earlier times this personage was
called a master. The term commodore we have borrowed from that very
nation with whom we have just measured arms--the Spanish, and comes from
their word _comendador_. Cadets were not known by that name, but were
called volunteers. Another item which furnishes food for reflection,
is the origin of the United States navy. On October 13, 1775, the
continental congress voted to fit out two vessels, one to carry ten
guns, the other fourteen, for the purpose of taking English supply
vessels. The same month it added two more vessels to its extensive
equipment. On March 27, 1794, after our troubles with the Algerine
pirates, six frigates were ordered, each to carry thirty-two guns.
Congress appropriated $700,000 for the purpose of organizing a navy.
Compare this feeble beginning with our splendid navy of to-day.

It is proper to explain here what the practice of nations is with regard
to prize money. It is a strict rule of war that neutral powers must not
interfere nor give help to either party that is engaged in a war. To
furnish ships, ammunition, or supplies is a grave offence, and all such
goods are termed "contraband of war." {373}

[Illustration: 0383]

Any boat at sea suspected of carrying "contraband" articles can be
searched, but properly commissioned vessels only can perform this duty.
Another thing which will subject a vessel to being seized or confiscated
is an attempt at blockade running, or trying to pass the line
established by the war vessels stationed in an entrance to a harbor or
along the coast. These are {374}rules of war common to all nations, and
must be rigidly observed.

All neutral governments are notified that such blockade exists,
and exactly how far it extends. But "paper blockades," or the mere
declaration that a blockade is in force, are of no account. At the
treaty of Paris, in 1856, the powers declared that "blockades, in order
to be binding, must be effective," or in plainer words, a force must
actually be stationed on the blockaded ground strong enough to make it
dangerous to attempt to pass it.

"Prize money" sounds very tempting, and its meaning will be given.
When a war is in progress properly commissioned ships are empowered to
capture not only the armed vessels of the enemy, but its merchantmen
as well. These vessels are taken to the country of their captors, the
courts pass judgment upon their value, and if it is proven to be a
lawful prize, it is sold, and the proceeds is called "prize money," and
is awarded to the captors, the officers and crew, in proportion to their
rank.

The prize money adjudged to them is thus given out in the following
manner:

"1. The commander of a fleet or squadron, one-twentieth part prize money
awarded to any vessel or vessels under his immediate command.

"2. To the commander of a division of a fleet or squadron, a sum equal
to one-fiftieth of any prize money awarded to a vessel of the division
under his command, to be paid from the moiety due the United States, if
there be such moiety; if not, from the amount awarded the captors.

"3. To the fleet captain, one-hundredth part of all prize money awarded
to any vessel of the fleet in which he is serving, in which case he
shall share in proportion to his pay, with the other officers and men on
board such vessel.

"4. To the commander of a single vessel, one-tenth of all the prize
money awarded to the vessel. {375}

[Illustration: 0385]

"5. After the foregoing deductions, the residue is distributed among the
others doing duty on board, and borne upon the {376}books of the ship,
in proportion to their respective rates of pay.

"All vessels of the navy within signal distance of the vessel making the
capture, and in such condition as to be able to render, effective aid if
required, will share, in the prize. Any person temporarily absent from
his vessel may share in the captures made during his absence. The prize
court determines what vessel shall share in a prize, and also whether
a prize was superior or inferior to the vessel or vessels making the
capture.

"The share of prize money awarded to the United States is set apart
forever as a fund for the payment of pensions to naval officers, seamen
and marines entitled to pensions."

On April 27 our forces bombarded the important city of Matanzas, a rich
and flourishing point, the outlet of the agricultural districts. April
29 the city of Cienfuegos yielded to our shells, and on the 30th of
April the frowning batteries of Cabanas were attacked.



DEWEY'S VICTORY AT MANILA.

|The first great naval battle of the war took place on the 1st of May.
Those whose opinion was considered valuable, declared that on this
battle depended the result of the war--some even prophesying that a
victory here would practically end it.

Another matter which engrossed the attention of the governments abroad,
was the fact that this encounter would serve as a test of the merits of
the modern fighting machine. Should it prove all that was claimed for
it, then in truth, a new departure in naval warfare had come.

The eyes of the world were upon the fleet, which, under the command of
Commodore George Dewey, was hastening toward Manila, the capital of the
Philippines. Just after daylight, Sunday morning of May 1, Manila time,
6 p.m. Saturday, Chicago time, the Olympia opened fire, when two miles
away from the enemy. As she drew nearer, she trained every battery
upon the Spanish fleet, with deadly effect. When the battle was almost
decided, the Reina Christina came out to engage our flagship. {377}

[Illustration: 0387]

She {378}advanced with great bravery, but to no purpose. The big guns
on the Olympia struck her fore and aft, totally wrecking her and setting
fire to her magazine. The Spanish Admiral, Montejo, was standing on the
bridge of his boat, when it was shot from under him. The Spanish sailors
escaped into their boats, fleeing from the burning ship. Montejo carried
his pennant to the Castilla, but five minutes after that ship was set on
fire by the shells.

After two hours' hard fighting, a rest was taken, when the attack was
renewed, and at the expiration of a half hour the long-dreaded and
much-boasted of Spanish fleet was a name only--nothing was left to tell
the tale of her greatness save the transport Manila.

This battle was fought off Cavite, ten miles to the southwest of Manila.
The Spanish fleet, of which so much was predicted by Spain, and which
met with such a crushing defeat, consisted of the following vessels:
Reina Mercedes, cruiser; Reina Christina, cruiser; Isla de Cuba,
cruiser; Isla de Luzon, cruiser; Castilla, cruiser; Don Antonio De
Ulloa, cruiser; Don Juan de Austria, cruiser; Velasco, cruiser; Elcano,
gunboat; General Lezo, gunboat; Marquis del Duero, gunboat; Quiros,
gunboat; Villalobos, torpedo gunboat; General Alava, transport; Cebu,
transport; Manila, transport; Isla de Mindanao, converted cruiser.

The United States fleet was composed of the Olympia, (flagship),
first-class cruiser, Captain C. N. Gridley; Baltimore, protected
cruiser, Captain N. M. Dyer; Boston, protected cruiser, Captain Frank
Wildes; Raleigh, protected cruiser, Captain J. B. Coghlan; Concord,
gunboat, Commander Asa Walker; Petrel, gunboat, Commander E. P. Wood;
McCulloch, dispatch boat; Nanshan, collier; Zafiro, collier. The
magnificent victory of the American Admiral has made his name famous.
His achievement is unparalleled in naval annals, and entitles him to the
proud rank of being the greatest of fleet commanders, a worthy pupil of
his invincible teacher, David G. Farragut. {379}

[Illustration: 0389]

The gratitude and admiration of the nation are his. President
{380}McKinley, as a fitting acknowledgment of his splendid deed, at once
appointed him Rear Admiral in the United States Navy, with access of
pay.

When the Stars and Stripes were hoisted over the Philippine capital, the
rejoicings at home were unbounded. But when the news reached Spain, it
produced a contrary effect; the indignation of that power was profound.
An uprising of the people was feared, and the governors of all provinces
were ordered to place them under martial law at the first serious
outbreak. The cable at Manila was cut by orders of Admiral Dewey, and
thus the court at Madrid was kept in uncertainty as to what was actually
transpiring.

The victory so bravely won was but the predecessor of others which gave
every true American a thrill of pride. Admiral Sampson, commander of the
North Atlantic squadron, arrived at San Juan de Puerto Rico on the 12th
of May, making an early call, as he commenced operations before sunrise,
bombarding the fortifications. The first shot was fired from the Iowa,
captained by Bob Evans ("Fighting Bob"), and it was followed by the
Indiana.

From the halyards of the flagship New York the signal flashed
forth--"Remember the Maine!" The big guns pealed forth seven shots, and
the works felt their force. Fort Morro was left full of gaps, where the
shells had struck it, and torn away the masonry. The frightened populace
fled to the interior, beyond the range of the guns. Word had been sent
ahead by the commander of the American squadron that the works were to
be attacked, thus giving the non-combatants a chance to seek safety.
{381}

[Illustration: 0391]

The first blood on our side was shed at Cardenas, May 12. After a short
encounter of thirty-five minutes between the torpedo boat Winslow, the
tug Hudson and the gunboat Wilmington on the American side, and the
batteries at Cardenas and four Spanish gunboats, our arms were again
victorious. Five Americans fell in this engagement. Ensign Worth Bagley
of the Winslow, a brave North Carolinian, was the first officer to yield
up {382}his life. It is stated that even after the Winslow's starboard
engine and steering gear were useless, the crew kept hurling shot at the
Spaniards on shore, until she was totally disabled.

On the next day, May 13, the Flying Squadron left Hampton Roads, and
made Key West on the 18th. Santiago was the intended point of attack,
and on the 18th also Admiral Sampson thought it time to turn his
attention to that place. The second squadron sent out by Spain,
under Cervera, lay at that time in the harbor of Santiago, in fancied
security.



ROOSEVELT'S ROUGH RIDERS.

|On Friday, June 24, a desperate engagement took place between four
troops of the First Cavalry, four of the Tenth and eight of Roosevelt's
"Rough Riders," who attacked a force of 2,000 Spanish soldiers, twice
their number, and sixteen men were killed, among whom were Captain Allyn
M. Capron and Hamilton Fish, Jr., belonging to the Rough Riders.

The Rough Riders followed the trail over steep hills that towered many
hundred feet high. The weather was intensely warm, and each man carried
200 rounds of ammunition and his heavy camp equipment. On they toiled up
the narrow path, often so narrow that they could only go in single file,
while the sharp thorns of the prickly cactus tore and scratched them as
they passed through the thick underbrush.

As the day grew hotter they threw away blankets and tent rolls, and even
emptied their canteens. Soon they heard a call like a cuckoo. Every man
was on the alert. They knew now that Spaniards were near, for that was
their cry. A charge was ordered, and they dashed into the thicket.
The rush was so sudden and bold that a panic ensued among the Spanish
soldiers, and after fighting about an hour, they fled, firing as they
ran, leaving fifty dead upon the field. {383}

[Illustration: 0393]

The crack of the Mauser rifles was heard, and the leaves flew from the
trees and chips from the fence post were showered over the heads of the
Rough Riders. The fire was a heavy one. Sergeant Fish was the first man
to fall on our side--shot through the {384}heart. Although the enemy was
but 200 yards away, yet they were so securely hidden in the brush that
only a glimpse of them now and then could be seen. Colonel Wood showed
remarkable coolness, walking along the lines as he gave orders.
Lieutenant Roosevelt rushed into the thicket cheering his men on, who
were as anxious as he to reach the hidden foe. Captain Capron held his
revolver in hand, and sent several of the Spaniards to the ground.
Suddenly his weapon dropped from his hands and he fell, shot through the
body. With his dying breath he cried--"Don't mind me, boys, go on and
fight." After fifteen minutes more, of hot fighting Lieutenant Roosevelt
ordered his men back, and just missed a bullet which buried itself in a
tree alongside his head. The Spaniards fell back, and ran down one hill
and up another to the blockhouse, it was supposed with the intention of
making a stand there. Instantly the Americans followed them closely, and
poured a storm of bullets into the blockhouse; the Spaniards fled in
haste, and the battle was over. This was the first battle which the
Rough Riders had taken part in, and they proved their valor and bravery
in a brilliant manner.



HOBSON MADE FAMOUS.

|One of the most brilliant exhibitions of pure, unselfish courage ever
exhibited was the act of Lieutenant Richmond P. Hobson. That officer,
who was assistant naval constructor, had succeeded in convincing Admiral
Sampson that there was but one way to prevent Admiral Cervera's escape.
His daring scheme gave the fleet of the Spanish admiral its death
blow. Under the direction of Admiral Sampson he volunteered to take the
collier Merrimac into the channel leading into the harbor, and sink it,
so as to prevent his escape with his ships; In other words, he literally
"bottled" the unlucky Admiral up. {385}

[Illustration: 0395]

He needed but six men to help him accomplish his purpose. Admiral
Sampson explained to the brave sailors that it was a desperate mission,
that death was almost certain, and yet when only six volunteers were
asked for, over 1,000 responded, anxious, glad {386}to be of service to
the cause. Tears filled their eyes as they begged for the honor of
going with the brave commander who had been chosen for the perilous
undertaking, and dying, if need be. It was a gallant deed, and as
the Merrimac steamed into the channel, a furious cannonading from the
Spanish forts greeted their coming, but on they went into the "very jaws
of death," and amid shot and shell Lieutenant Hobson went to the point
indicated by Admiral Sampson, anchored, and swung across the channel.
Then a hole was blown in the ship's bottom, and a dash was made for
a boat. They were loudly cheered by the Spaniards, who were lost in
admiration of their heroism, and Cervera himself, although he took them
prisoners, sent a flag of truce to Admiral Sampson, by his chief of
staff, Captain Oviedo, in honor of their bravery, offering to exchange
them without delay for Spanish prisoners in the hands of the United
States.

The names of the gallant men who offered their lives so freely
were--Daniel Montague, George Charette, J. E. Murphy, Oscar Deignan,
John P. Phillips, and John Kelly.

After being kept prisoners from June 2 until July 6, Lieutenant Hobson
and the six men who were made prisoners with him, were surrendered by
the Spanish military authorities in exchange for prisoners which we
held. Captain Chadwick, of the New York, escorted them through our
lines. The soldiers were wild with joy, and paid no attention to
discipline or order, so anxious were they to see the heroes of the
Merrimac, whom they wildly cheered. Lieutenant Hobson talked very little
about his experiences, but said the Spanish authorities had treated them
well, and their health was excellent.

The bombardment of Santiago's forts was vigorously kept up. On the 22d
and 23d General Shafter landed at Baiquiri, and moved toward Santiago.
He attacked the Spanish outposts July 1, and a fierce fight raged all
day. He demanded the surrender of the latter place. General Lawton
carried the heights of San Juan, after a determined charge.



DESTRUCTION OF CERVERA'S FLEET.

|Another {387}notable victory, and one of the greatest naval battles
ever recorded, was the total destruction of Cervera's proud fleet, which
was accomplished by Commodore Schley, on the 3d of July. The American
fleet's commander, Sampson, was absent conferring with General Shafter
regarding future movements. Meantime the government at Madrid realized
that the city must fall sooner or later, and it had ordered Cervera to
make one bold dash out of the harbor. This he attempted to do, but was
received so warmly by Schley that in two hours the "invincible" fleet of
the Spanish admiral was a series of wrecks, strewn along the beach for
fifty miles, with a loss of 600 killed, and 1,100 prisoners taken by our
forces, among whom was Cervera himself. The attempted escape was made
with great courage on the part of the Spaniards, who fought to the
last, and when hope was gone, threw themselves upon the mercy of their
captors, who accorded them protection from the Cuban insurgents who had
watched the battle in all its terrible earnestness.



SURRENDER OF SANTIAGO.

|Santiago had not yet yielded, however, and on the 10th of July
bombardment of that town was resumed.

The 14th of July saw the long-expected surrender of Santiago to General
Shafter, and at 12 o'clock noon, the glorious Stars and Stripes were
hoisted over the Governor's palace, and we held the situation. The
American general rode into the city escorted by the Second Cavalry. The
people were very quiet, many of them even showing satisfaction at
the event. Courtesies were exchanged between the Spanish and American
officers, and General Shafter returned to General Toral his sword.
The Spanish flag was displaced by the American--the eternal symbol of
liberty.

On the 26th of July the Spanish government made overtures for peace,
through the French ambassador, M. Cambon, who called on our President
and by proper authority stated that Spain {388}was willing to treat with
the United States, and would like to consider terms. After discussing
the proposal with the Cabinet, President McKinley notified the French
ambassador of his ultimatum. The terms of the protocol were these:

"1. That Spain will relinquish all claims of sovereignty over or title
to Cuba.

"2. That Puerto Rico and other Spanish islands in the West Indies, and
an island in the Ladrones, to be selected by the United States, shall be
ceded to the latter.

"3. That the United States will occupy and hold the city, bay, and
harbor of Manila pending the conclusion of a treaty of peace which shall
determine the control, disposition and government of the Philippines.

"4. That Cuba, Puerto Rico, and other Spanish islands in the West Indies
shall be immediately evacuated, and that commissioners to be appointed
within ten days shall, within thirty days from the signing of the
protocol, meet at Havana and San Juan, respectively, to arrange and
execute the details of the evacuation.

"5. That the United States and Spain will each appoint not more than
five commissioners to negotiate and conclude a treaty of peace. The
commissioners are to meet at Paris not later than the 1st of October.

"6. On the signing of the protocol hostilities will be suspended,
and notice to that effect will be given as soon as possible by each
government to the commanders of its military and naval forces."

The government of Spain sought to evade the payment of the Cuban debt,
but President McKinley was firm, and declined to discuss the matter
until Spain had accepted his ultimatum. Days passed before our
government received notification through M. Cambon that the Spanish
ministry had approved of his management of the negotiations, and he
had been authorized to sign the protocol. At 4:33 of the same day the
agreement was signed by Secretary of State Day on behalf of the United
States, and M. Cambon, of France, on behalf of Spain. {389}

[Illustration: 0399]

Our {390}President at once issued a proclamation stating that the United
States and Spain had formally agreed upon terms for negotiations
through which peace between the two countries should be established, and
official orders were sent to the various commanders of the forces of the
United States, that all military operations be suspended.



SURRENDER OF MANILA.

|But the latter order did not reach Admiral Dewey in time to prevent his
adding more luster to his name by uniting his naval forces with the land
forces of General Merritt.

July 31 a battle was waged at Malate, a small town half way between
Cavite and Manila. Here General Greene was posted with 4,000 men. Our
troops were strengthening their position, when the Spaniards attempted
to give the Americans a surprise. The rain was pouring down in sheets,
the typhoon was raging furiously, and it seemed a most auspicious time
for the attack. Three thousand Spaniards were massed in the vicinity.
They forced the American pickets in, and assaulted the soldiers in
the trenches. But they did not know the men they attacked. The Tenth
Pennsylvania stood their ground, and were reinforced by the First
California and two companies of the Third Artillery. The mud was up to
the axles, the rain and wind raged wildly, and the enemy was on top of
the trenches, while they sent a withering fire into the ranks of the
Americans, who never wavered, but returned it with earnestness.

The Spaniards retreated in confusion, but were not pursued, as our
infantry had exhausted its ammunition. The scene was a thrilling one.
Darkness covered the earth, save when a flash of lightning lit up the
faces of the dead and wounded, who lay side by side, in the trenches
half filled with water which was red with their blood. Not a cry was
heard from the lips of the wounded, but they spoke words of cheer to
those who were still able to fight.

The fighting began again August 1, but the enemy kept at long range. The
next night they made another attack, but were repulsed, {391}with severe
loss, 350 killed, 900 wounded, while we lost fourteen, and forty-four
wounded.

August 8, Admiral Dewey and General Merritt notified the authorities
in Manila that unless they surrendered the city to them in forty-eight
hours a combined attack by the land and naval forces might be expected.
When that time had expired the Spanish officials asked one day more
so that they might remove the women and children, which request was
granted.

When the foreign warships were appraised of the intended attack, they
prudently got out of range. The English and Japanese warships joined our
fleet at Cavite, while the French and German ships went to the north of
the city, where they were safe. At 9:35 on Saturday, the 13th, a shell
was fired from the Olympia and hissed dangerously near the fort at
Malate. The other boats began a rapid fire upon the intrenchments. A few
feeble replies came from the Spaniards.

The battle was short. In half an hour General Greene ordered an advance,
and six companies of a colored regiment sprang over the breastworks
and sought the shelter of some hedges about 300 yards from the Spanish
lines. Then the remaining six companies moved along the shore, partly
hid by a ridge of sand and at 11 o'clock were in the stronghold.

At this critical moment 2,000 Spanish soldiers came on the scene, but
they did not engage the Americans. As soon as the white flag was seen,
General Merritt, who had made the steamer Zafiro his headquarters,
sent General Whittier, with flag lieutenant Brumby to meet the captain
general and discuss a plan of capitulation. The terms were agreed to by
Jaudenes, and were as follows:

"An agreement for the capitulation of the Philippines:

"A provision for disarming the men who remain organized under the
command of their officers, no parole being exacted.

"Necessary supplies to be furnished from the captured treasury funds,
any possible deficiency being made good by the Americans.

"The {392}safety of life and property of the Spanish soldiers and
citizens to be guaranteed as far as possible.

"The question of transporting the troops to Spain to be referred to
decision of the Washington government, and that of returning their arms
to the soldiers to be left to the discretion of General Merritt.

"Banks and similar institutions to continue operations under existing
regulations, unless these are changed by the United States authorities."

At once Lieutenant Brumby hastened away to take down the Spanish flag.
Two signal men accompanied him. At Fort Santiago, in the north part of
the city, they, were vigorously hissed when the flag of Spain was hauled
down, and the flag of the free rose grandly in its place.

This day's battle resulted in a loss on the American side of eight
killed and thirty-four wounded, while the Spanish had 150 killed and 300
wounded.

The Americans captured 11,000 prisoners, 7,000 of them being regulars;
20,000 Mauser rifles, 3,000 Remingtons, eighteen modern cannon, and many
of the old pattern.

Thus ended a war which has covered us with glory--a war we did not
invite, but which was forced upon us in the interests of humanity; a war
which has taught European nations to respect us as a great power. May it
be the last which our nation is drawn into. May the dawn of peace herald
the day when wars shall be no more; when wise counsels and generous
arbitration shall decide questions of moment between nations.

War has a terrible meaning; it means desolated homes, and bitter
tears shed for those who come not; it means angry passions and cruel
expressions of them; it means want and suffering and the humiliation of
defeat for one side or the other. May the days of rancor end forever!
{393}

[Illustration: 0403]



ANNEXATION OF HAWAII.

|In connection with the war so recently concluded, we should mention
the annexation of the Hawaiian Islands, a measure which {394}has been
agitated for many years, and the conflict only increased the sentiment
in favor of making them part and parcel of our Republic.

The islands comprise a group of eight, and were discovered by Captain
Cook in 1788. They are important to us from their commercial value, and
also from their strategic uses, and the necessity for a closer relation
has been recognized by nearly every President and Secretary of State
through all the successive administrations.

After many long and arduous debates, the vote for and against annexation
was taken by Congress, and an overwhelming majority declared in favor
of annexation, and Hayti with her vast commerce, her rich agricultural
productions became a member of our great body politic, and on Friday,
August 12, the American flag waved over Honolulu, the capital of the new
"Territory of Hawaii."



PUERTO RICO.

|The city of Santiago had not yet fallen. Bombarding had, however, long
since ceased, and negotiations for the peaceful surrender of the city
had been going on for several days, when General Miles arrived and
assumed personal command of the army that was massed there. General
Shafter of our forces and General Toral, of the Spanish, could not
easily agree as to terms, but on the 16th the conditions of surrender
were decided upon. By this agreement, about 5,000 square miles, the
capital of the province and the entire army of Toral, fell to our share.

Santiago was ours. The ceremony sealing the surrender was impressive,
though simple. Early as 9 o'clock the division and brigade commanders
reported to General Shafter, and all took up the line of march toward
the city. About halfway, under a lofty tree, General Toral with some of
his officers awaited their coming. As General Shafter approached this
tree the Spanish general raised his hat with dignified politeness,
and the American general returned the bow. Quickly the soldiers of the
Spanish side came through the hedge, preceded by the king's guard,
200 {395}strong, {396}while two trumpeters and a color bearer led the
column. Marching and countermarching they halted in front of our men,
and only ten yards away.

[Illustration: 0405]

Thus they stood, curiosity and excitement plainly visible in their
faces, although they were motionless as statues. The trumpets then rang
out, a Spanish officer gave a word of command; their colors were lowered
to salute ours, they presented arms and their officers removed their
hats. Captain Brett gave the word, "Present sabers," and downward
flashed our sabers. General Shafter removed his hat, as did his staff.
The stillness of the morning air was broken by the command of the
officer in charge of the king's guard, they filed past our soldiers,
who presented arms until the last man of the guard had gone by. Then the
Spaniards marched toward Santiago, stacked their rifles which were of
the Mauser pattern, and then, with neither arms nor flags, went back to
their camp. Thus ended hostilities around Santiago.

Early in July the yellow fever began to attack the men of Shafter's
army, but it was of a mild type, but it would have done incalculable
injury had not the officers of the Fifth Army Corps addressed a protest
to General Shafter who sent it to the War Department at Washington. The
officials there hastened to transport the troops as fast as they could
back to the United States and sent "immunes" to Santiago to do garrison
duty.

An expedition commanded by Major General Nelson A. Miles left the bay
of Guantanamo July 21, and sailed for Puerto Rico, reaching the port of
Guanica July 25. This move was intended as a surprise, and a complete
one it was to the Spaniards, who did not dream of an army of invasion
attacking them. The naval part of the expedition comprised the
Columbia, Gloucester, Dixie and Yale, and was in charge of Captain F. J.
Higginson. General Miles was on board the Yale. The troops were carried
by the transports, of which there were eight. The Gloucester, with the
expectation that the harbor was full of mines, went pluckily in, and
found five fathoms of water very near shore. The first hint of an
invading army at their door, was {397}the boom of a gun, demanding that
the Spanish flag come down, from a blockhouse east of the village.

They took aim with the next two shots at the hills on either side of
the bay, so as not to injure the women and children. The Gloucester then
laid to, and sent a launch on shore, without being molested.

Quartermaster Beck sent Yeoman Lacy to haul down the obnoxious flag, and
up went our glorious Stars and Stripes, the first that ever floated over
the soil of Puerto Rico.

But the Spaniards, though apparently making no resistance, suddenly
opened fire with thirty Mauser rifles. Lieutenant Huse and his men, who
had gone ashore in the launch, returned the fire with telling effect,
their Colt gun being equal to the occasion.

Without waiting, the Gloucester opened fire with all her armament and
shelled the town. Lieutenant Huse put up a small fort, calling it Fort
Wainwright, and laid down barbed wire so as to repel the cavalry
attack, which he expected. A few of the cavalrymen joined those who were
fighting, but reinforcements had come for the Americans, and after some
more vigorous fighting, at 9:45, with the exception of a few scattering
shots, the town was won, and silence succeeded the din of battle.

The plans of General Miles had been faithfully carried out, and he went
ashore at noon. He next turned his eyes toward Ponce, determined to
shell that town if necessary. While he had given the inhabitants of
Puerto Rico a surprise, he received one in return at the hands of the
people of Ponce, for when the Wasp steamed up to the shore, instead of a
force of soldiers arrayed against them, they found everybody in town
had turned out, and was waiting to receive them with open arms. Ensign
Curtin stepped nimbly on the beach, as though he did not doubt their
sincerity, and was surrounded by people forcing presents upon him and
his men, and saluting them with shouts of welcome.

A message was sent to the Spanish commander demanding that the town
surrender, and Colonel San Martin acceded at once upon General Miles'
assurance that the garrison should be allowed {398}to leave, that the
civil government be permitted to continue its functions, that the police
and fire brigade patrolled without weapons, and that the captain of the
post should not be held a prisoner.

These conditions were reasonable enough, and were acceded to, and the
rejoicings of the populace were enthusiastic. It was a genuine ovation,
and more like a grand festive occasion than the surrender of a town to a
foe.

When General Wilson landed, the local band played "The Star Spangled
Banner." The celebration went on, even after the United States troops
landed. The people dressed in their finest garments as though it were a
holiday, and kept open house.

General Miles issued a proclamation to the effect that our army came not
to devastate the land or to interfere with existing laws or customs,
and all that he required was obedience and order. He told them that the
military forces were brought there to overthrow the arms of Spain and
to give them the fullest amount of liberty consistent with the military.
occupation of their island.

An invitation from the city officials at the city hall was given him,
and when he entered the park which surrounded it, the local band played
"See, the Conquering Hero Comes," to which he responded by taking off
his hat, and saluting the vast crowd. The band then played several of
our national airs.

The news that peace was near was a disappointment to General Miles,
as he had planned a masterly movement with great care, and had it been
carried out it would have taught the Spaniards an invaluable lesson.
Puerto Rico was occupied with a very small loss--two killed and
thirty-seven wounded. {399}

[Illustration: 0409]



GENERAL FITZHUGH LEE.

|When a successor to the Cuban consul-generalship was needed, President
Cleveland selected Fitzhugh Lee for this important post. The health of
Ramon Williams, former consul-general, had failed so visibly that he
could no longer attend to its arduous {400}demands, and so in the spring
of 1896 the choice of the president fell upon Mr. Lee, as the most
suitable man for the place.

Fitzhugh Lee was born in Stafford County, Virginia, in 1835, and came of
an illustrious family. His grandfather had served in the Revolutionary
war, being the famous "Lighthorse Harry," and he himself was the nephew
of General Robert E. Lee--both of which facts insure the existence of
courage and tact in the subject of our present sketch. His wise and
patriotic administration of the duties of his office as consul won for
him in a very brief time the confidence and admiration of the entire
country, and the judgment of Mr. Cleveland was long since indorsed by
it.

His father was an officer in the navy, but the young boy had no taste
for a sea-life--his leaning was toward the army. So to West Point he
went, from which he graduated in 1856 with a high record, and became
a lieutenant of cavalry on the frontier, for five years, repelling the
attacks of the Comanche Indians. He received an arrow in his lungs, in
one of these engagements, but youth and a good constitution prevailed,
and he recovered. He became an instructor in cavalry tactics at West
Point, when only twenty-six years of age. But when the civil war
broke out, he resigned his commission, and joined the fortunes of the
confederacy, where his record as a brave and dashing soldier is well
known. It is said of him that he always showed great coolness and
composure, in times of battle, never seeming to have any anxiety as to
the result. His resolute and daring demeanor was contagious, and he was
much beloved by the men whom he commanded.

He is a magnificent horseman. During the war of 1861 he owned a fine
mare, Nellie, a graceful creature, to whom he was much attached. She
was struck by a shell at the battle of Winchester, and a fragment of the
same shell tore her master's leg badly. {401}

[Illustration: 0411]

All through the war he was a fearless, honest adversary, and when peace
came he retired to his native county, where he led {402}the quiet,
unpretending life of a farmer and miller. He was married in 1871, and
was peculiarly happy in his home, devoted to his wife and children.

In 1875 he was persuaded to engage in political matters, and was sent
to the national convention of 1876 as a delegate. Ten years later he was
elected governor of Virginia and served to the complete satisfaction
of his people. His political record is as worthy of the man as was his
military, and no finer example of both can be found. When Mr. Cleveland
entered upon his second term he made Fitzhugh Lee collector of internal
revenue, at Lynchburg, Virginia. His official position at Havana
remained unchanged, when Mr. McKinley entered the executive chair,
the latter being well aware that no better example of what a brave,
cultivated and level-headed American gentleman should be, was afforded
than by General Lee. He was respected by the Spanish officials for
his firmness in looking after the interests of his countrymen, and his
unvarying courtesy to every one with whom he came in contact.

He was, however, treated with great rudeness on his farewell visit to
the Spanish Captain-General Blanco, that person refusing to see him, on
the pretext of being too busy. And when he entered the boat which was
to bear him to the steamer, the Spanish rabble at the docks showered
insulting epithets upon him, but with that dignity which is native to
him, he paid no attention to them, but made the remark that he would be
back with troops before long, to uphold him.

All honor to General Lee. He has proven himself capable of self-control,
and the man who can govern himself, can govern others successfully. And
we trust that at some future day this gallant and chivalrous soldier may
receive some gift at the hands of the nation worthy of his ability.



ADMIRAL GEORGE DEWEY.

|To speak of this brave sailor as a hero, is to utter but faint praise.
He was born in Montpelier, Vermont, sixty-one years ago, and was the
youngest of three boys. Not one of his elders could have {403}foreseen,
when he was a boy, how proud they would become at a future day, of their
young townsman. As a boy he was full of mischief, loving adventure and
ever ready for anything that came along. In fact this great man was just
like all other boys--he felt the world was his, and all that was in
it, to enjoy! At school he proved himself an apt student, quick to
comprehend his lessons, and a ringleader in all kinds of sport, but
hating anything small or mean in his associates. He was also a great
favorite with older people.

He came of a prominent family, his father being a doctor, and two of his
name, both nephews, are said to inherit much of the Dewey talent. When
he was a lad, the town of Montpelier was very small, but it had great
pretensions, as it was the capital of the State, and naturally attracted
the best elements of society, men and women of education and character,
the former of whom had been chosen to represent the people of the State
in her legislative halls. In such an atmosphere of culture young Dewey
grew into manhood, and to his early advantages (his parents holding
high social standing) he owes that polish of manner which he is said to
possess in a remarkable degree.

He was much of a reader when he was a youth, and the books he read were
upon naval matters. Sea stories and tales of travel were his delight. It
is told of him about this time, to show how little he waited for events
to shape themselves, that he planned to go on a fishing excursion with
two schoolmates. The hour was to be four in the morning, but he was not
to be found, and so they started for the river without him. When they
reached the fishing grounds he had been there two hours, and had an
enormous string of trout which he had caught. At the time the boys
called it unfair, but in telling it now, the narrator calls it a good
evidence of his habit of doing for himself, and not waiting for anyone's
prompting. As he expressed it,--"You see he didn't wait till next
morning before going into Manila harbor."

His fondness for the water led him to spend his play hours on rafts and
on an old ferry which was not used by the town.

Once {404}he thought he'd cross the ferry in an old leaky buggy of his
father's. Not being able to get the horse into the water, he took the
box off the running gear and tried to run it across as a boat. He came
very near drowning, and would have perished but for timely assistance.

His birthplace has sent forth many notable people, lawyers, doctors,
statesmen, but of all the renowned names she claims, her greatest boast
is that Commodore Dewey was born within her limits.

He was sent to the military school at Norwich, Vermont, at the age of
fifteen. Here he stayed two years, at the end of which he concluded that
he would rather enter the navy than be a land soldier. His father was a
man of influence, and easily got him appointed at Annapolis.

In the year 1858 he graduated, and passed three years of service aboard
ship before the war of 1861 broke out. He received his commission as
lieutenant on the 19th of April, 1861, a few days before Fort Sumter was
fired upon. He was sent at once to the steam sloop Mississippi, which
joined the West Gulf squadron, and he was with Admiral Farragut when
that gallant sailor forced an entrance to the Mississippi River.

The boat had a hot fight in March, 1863, when it tried to pass the
Confederate batteries at Port Hudson. A heavy fog prevailed, so dense
not an object could be seen; they lost their bearings, and ran into
shore right under the guns of one of their heaviest batteries. They were
the recipients of 250 shots, which tore the boat from one end to the
other, but the gloom of the fog proved a blessing, after all, as it
enabled the crew to take to their boats and escape, after setting their
sloop on fire.

In 1870 he was given his command, when he did good work on the
Narragansett. Until 1876 he surveyed the Pacific coast, when he became
inspector of lighthouses. {405}

[Illustration: 0415]

He commanded the Juniata in 1882-83, and was made a captain in
September, 1884, when he took charge of the Dolphin. This boat was one
of the four vessels comprising the original "White Squadron." Honors
still flowed in upon him, for the next {406}year he took command of the
Pensacola, belonging to the European squadron, on which he stayed till
1888, when he was made chief of the bureau of equipment and recruiting,
as Commodore. This position he filled until 1893, when he became a
member of the lighthouse board.

It was not until February 28, 1896, that he received the commission of
Commodore, and in January, 1898, he was placed in command of the Asiatic
squadron.

But it remained for him to eclipse all records in his daring fight at
Manila, which is probably the greatest naval battle ever fought, and
ranks its commander among those names that will never be forgotten. The
action was so brilliant, so decisive, that President McKinley named him
for a rear admiral in the United States Navy, and the Senate without a
dissenting voice confirmed the nomination. He deserved it richly,
and great as is the honor, still greater is the esteem, the love,
the gratitude of the American nation for this grandest of naval
commanders--George Dewey, the generous and manly conqueror on the sea.



ACTING REAR ADMIRAL SAMPSON.

|This distinguished and gallant officer is a native of New York, he
having been born at Palmyra, that State, fifty-eight years ago.

He was a boy of very industrious habits. Loving the sea with ardor, his
sole ambition was to obtain a nautical education. But he was not rich
in this world's goods, and he could not go to Annapolis unless he could
earn the money in some way to pay for his training there. So he worked
as farmer's boy, raking hay and splitting rails, or doing any labor that
would bring him the coveted reward.

But though he was not rich, he had friends who admired his manly spirit,
and among them was Congressman E. B. Morgan, of New York, who used his
influence to get him appointed to the naval school toward which his eyes
so longingly turned. Here he proved worthy of the privilege, and when he
graduated {407}in 1860, when just twenty years of age, he held the
rank of Lieutenant, and was put on the frigate Potomac, where he became
master, then executive officer of the Patapsco. This boat met a hard
fate, being blown up in the harbor of Charleston in 1865.

His promotions came rapidly, first being made Lieutenant-Commander in
the navy, then Captain, and finally Acting Rear Admiral.

But it is not alone as a sea commander that he has won renown. He
has served as a member of the Board of Fortifications and Defences,
Superintendent of the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Chief of the Bureau
of Naval Ordinance, and he was also President of the Maine Board of
Inquiry.

He does not enjoy the sweets of domestic life to any great extent, his
time on shore being so limited; but he is very happily married, and
passes all of his leisure with his wife, and sons and daughters, in his
beautiful home in Glenridge, New Jersey.



COMMODORE W. S. SCHLEY.

|Among the "boys" of 1861 may be mentioned Admiral Schley, whose deeds
have given him a world-wide fame. He was of the class of 1860. Winfield
Scott Schley was a midshipman in the early days of the civil war, and
many are the comical stories told of his youthful days--among others,
was that this now redoubtable commander was dubbed "Peggy," owing to the
"trousers" he wore in those days, which were excessively peg-topped, or
balloon-shaped. Another story is that he had a very small foot, No. 5
fitting it easily. Of this fact he was boyishly vain. He did duty on the
Niagara at that period, and his pranks were numerous, for he had a great
love of fun, and yet was a very orderly, well-disciplined sailor.

He graduated near the foot of his class, so he could not have been very
studious, however, his after career has been one series of brilliant
successes.

Commodore Schley was born near Frederick, Maryland, in 1839, and
{408}even as a baby came under military influence, for his father,
who had served in the navy in the war of 1812, was very friendly
with General Scott, and named the child after that warrior. His early
ancestors were stanch Huguenots, coming to this country after the
revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and one of them was afterward a
Governor of Georgia.

He entered the Naval Academy in 1856, remaining there till 1861. He
was given duty then, being assigned to the frigate Potomac, and a year
later received command of the Winona, which belonged to the blockading
squadron of the West Gulf. He knew real war, for he was in many
skirmishes on the Mississippi, and in July, 1862, became Lieutenant,
serving with distinction from 1864 to 1866 as executive officer of the
Wateree, a steam gunboat, at the Pacific station.

He received a gold medal from Congress, and the position of Chief of
Bureau of Equipment from President Arthur, afterward being made Captain,
for his bravery in rescuing Lieutenant Greeley and six others at Cape
Sabine, and carrying them safely home.

He wedded a lovely young woman, Miss Nannie Franklin, at that time the
belle of Annapolis. He has two sons, one Frank, an officer in the army,
the other, Winfield Scott Schley, Jr., is a physician of great repute in
New York City. His daughter, Virginia, is the wife of an Englishman of
position.



ENSIGN WORTH BAGLEY.

|Life is sweet to all--especially so to the young. And yet it is sweeter
to die for one's country; to know that the last throb of the heart beat
for the cause of liberty and humanity. Such a fate was that of young
Ensign Worth Bagley, the first officer to fall in our late war with
Spain. The life of this young man was brief, to have achieved so much;
he was only twenty-four years old, having been born in Raleigh, North
Carolina, on the 6th of April, 1874. Yet he had known in that short time
all of life's experiences--pleasure, pain and honors--all compressed
into the {409}few years of his existence. His father was an editor and a
lawyer, and enlisted in the first company raised on the Confederate side
in the county in which he lived. He fought bravely, and never abandoned
the fortunes of the Confederacy until 1864, when he went home on parole,
and was elected to the Senate of his State.

His son, young Worth, a fitting name for the boy, had cause to be proud
of his ancestry, on both sides, his father's family being well versed
in law, politics and business, and his mother's family being originally
Quakers. She was the daughter of one of the governors of Virginia.

But Worth Bagley's boyhood engages the attention of the young, most. He
grew up under good influences, and as a boy was a model of courtesy
and gentlemanly bearing; a favorite in the schoolroom or playground, he
loved his home, and was equally beloved within its walls. Possessed of
a noble and unselfish nature, how could it be otherwise than that he met
appreciation? He was a very apt scholar, learning rapidly, and retaining
it as firmly.

His father died when he was twelve, and it is a beautiful record that he
became his mother's comfort. He was the oldest son, and seemed to feel
that she needed his counsel and protection.

When only ten he entered a classical school, with the intention of
preparing for college. He loved the sea, and was appointed a cadet at
the naval academy at Annapolis, when he was a little over fifteen, the
youngest member of his class. How happy he was when he received the
appointment. He was of a sunny temper, full of jests and laughter,
writing the most loving letters to his "dearest little mother," as he
called her. He despised anything that took on the character of tattling.
"Hazing" was strictly forbidden at the Academy, but he was subjected
to it, and when called before the commandant and asked the names of the
classmen who had participated in it, he answered firmly that he meant no
disrespect, but he considered it dishonorable to tell on his classmates.
He was threatened with punishment, unless he would tell, but he still
refused, {410}and was sent to a ship which was used as a place of severe
discipline for cadets who disobeyed any of the rules. Here he was kept
eighteen days in confinement, and possibly he would have remained a good
many days longer, had not the cadets who had done the hazing confessed
their share in it, and begged for his release.

When the time came for his examination he fell below the mark, and he
wrote at once to his mother, giving her the reasons for his failure,
and saying that he hoped the Hon. B. H. Bunn, Member of Congress whose
influence had secured him the appointment, would use it in his behalf
once more. Mrs. Bagley took the letter to that gentleman, and he
promptly made out the papers for the grateful boy. All went smoothly
after this, and he graduated in the class of 1895, when he was put on
the receiving ship Vermont, and one month after he went to the cruiser
Montgomery. Again he was transferred to the Texas in October. On the
20th of January, 1896, he was sent to the ill-fated Maine, where he
remained six months, then being sent back to the Texas, which boat
he remained with till he returned to Annapolis to take his final
examination, which was successful, for he was made an ensign on the 1st
of July, 1897.

He was quite a musician, and sang in the Naval Academy choir. His
letters home were gems of wit, breathing the most sincere devotion to
his friends.

His first service as ensign was on the Indiana, but three months of
1897, from August 17 to November 19, were passed on the Maine, as
executive clerk to Captain Sigsbee. He was then ordered to Baltimore as
inspector of the Columbian Iron Works, which firm was fitting out the
torpedo boat Winslow.

When Lieutenant Bernadou was given command of this boat he sought for
the best junior officers, and among the names presented Worth Bagley's
stood high, but he was reluctant to leave Captain Sigsbee, to whom he
was much attached, and to whom his services were almost invaluable. But
he was persuaded to accept the post offered, and on the 28th of December
he entered on his duties.

He {411}was a hero. He went out in a lifeboat, with two sailors, and
rescued two men who were adrift on a scow some fifty miles from New
York, with a frightful storm raging, and brought them aboard. The
Secretary of the Navy wrote a letter of approval to Lieutenant Bernadou,
Ensign Bagley and the crew, commending the heroism of all on the
Winslow.

Of the fatal engagement in Cardenas Bay, May 11, 1898, the whole world
knows. He gave his life for his country on that day, without fear or
flinching, his last words being as cheerful as though it was a
holiday. There was some delay in heaving the towline and he called out
cheerily--"Heave her. Let her come--it's getting pretty warm here." They
were the last orders this brave and grand young officer ever gave. The
next moment the bursting of one of the enemy's shells sent Ensign Bagley
to his last home.

May his life be an incentive to the young, to do their duty in all
situations and in all places as nobly and faithfully as did this brave
boy.



OUR NAVY.

|Nearly every one understands the terms used in the military branch
of service, but since the war has had such extensive use for the naval
forces, and so many engagements have taken place on the sea, it has been
the source of much perplexity as to the various titles in use by the
navy department.

When older and wiser heads are puzzled by the many terms, it is
necessary that our young readers receive a little instruction as to
their meaning. We therefore give them in full, knowing that the boys
(and the girls also) will be pleased to learn that officers are divided
into two classes--the line or navigating, and fighting officers, and
the staff, or specialists, such as engineer, medical, pay, construction
corps, the civil engineers and chaplains. The grades of the
line officers are rear admiral, commodore, captain, commander,
lieutenant-commander, lieutenant, lieutenant junior grade, ensign, naval
cadet.

Of the staff officers the engineers have three grades--chief engineer,
{412}passed assistant engineer and assistant engineer. The medical corps
is divided into medical director, medical inspector, surgeon, passed
assistant surgeon, assistant surgeon. The pay corps includes in order
pay directors, pay inspectors, paymasters, passed assistant paymasters,
assistant paymasters. The construction corps comprises naval constructor
and assistant naval constructor. Then there are the chaplain, civil
engineer and professor of mathematics. Before one comes to the enlisted
men are the boatswain, gunner, sailmaker and carpenter; the enlisted men
or crew are divided into three classes--seamen, artificers and _special_
class.

The pay of the officers varies from $500 a year, which the naval cadets
get, to $6,000 paid rear admirals. Each officer at sea is allowed thirty
cents a day for rations. This thirty cents he may turn into cash and
pocket, for officers pay for their food and uniforms out of their own
salary. If he desires the officer may actually draw the rations instead,
but most of them prefer their private larder.

The enlisted men in the navy are paid from $9 a month--apprentices of
the third class--to $65 or $70 a month--chief machinists. The insignia
of their rank worn by the multitude of officers great and small is quite
bewildering and unintelligible to the uninstructed dweller on land, so
many and different are the stars, crosses, bands, colors and chevrons.



CONCLUSION.

|The authors labors are finished; but it is with almost a feeling of
sadness that he parts company with those for whose pleasure he has told
his experiences. In the pages of this volume the man has lived again
his days of boyhood when his heart was aglow with the fire of youth and
patriotism, as his country called him to the battlefield. Of the many
painful scenes, of the tedious marches, privations and dangers, that
war ever brings, he has told the boys and girls who have followed his
transcript of those days. Another war has been forced upon us, and the
man {413}feels the same ardor burn within his breast, the same longing
to join the ranks as he did in the far-away days of '61.

True, this war that has just ended was not so terrible in its aspect as
was that one which roused his youthful energy, for that was a contest
between brothers, the late one was between our forces and those of
another clime, but none the less sad and gloomy were its accompaniments.
But one glad ray of brightness cheered the gloom. The nation has joined
hands and those who were once divided have together fought valiantly for
one common cause--the honor of their country. From the far-off North and
the sunny South, the boys in blue and gray have taken up arms and stood
side by side, equally heroic, equally ready to defend the right. Is not
this a cause for thankfulness?

Shall we not have still greater cause for joy when strife shall cease
forever--the strife that brings bloodshed in its train? Will not the
whole earth be purer and better were it to accept the grand invitation
of the Czar of all the Russias, to consider a plan by which friendly
relations shall be established all through the world? He proposes laying
aside the weapons of war, and disbanding great armies--thus bringing
about a time of universal peace, when questions of possession and
precedence may be decided by arbitration. This noble plan is a step
toward that brotherhood of nations which alone can make them truly
great. No exigency could arise which could not be settled by an appeal
to the calm judgment and love of fair play which would prevail.

This beautiful thought is possible, and we welcome the coming of that
glad day when "wars and rumors of wars shall cease."





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