CHAPTER XXVI

Evacuation of Columbus

1.  When Leonidas whose surname was Polk, heard that Fort Henry was taken, he was sore vexed.

2.  And he rent his clothes, and put ashes on his head, and smashed his brandy demi-john.

3.  And he would take no meat, but was in much trouble.

4.  For he was in fear that Ulysses would come against him, and cast him into outer darkness.

5.  Then he called a council of war.  And when his Brigadiers, and Adjutants, and Colonels, and all the shoulder-strappers came unto his tent,

6.  He showed them how much he lover Jefferson, and how much he hate Abraham;

7.  Moreover, he told them that Fort Henry had fallen, and that the Federals were planning to fall upon Columbus, and utterly demolish it. 

8.  Then great fear fell upon the Council, and they looked one upon another in great consternation.

9.  And certain spake unto Leonidas, and said, would it not be well, O most excellent Leonidas, to pull up stakes and leave these diggins immediately, if not sooner?

10.  And Leonidas gave his consent, and he commanded to sound the trumpet, and when the army was drawn up, he commanded the chief musician to play a tune called in the Yankee tongue, "The Grand Skeedaddle."

11.  And while the melody of this Southern favorite was filling the air, the great army of Leonidas, with all the spearmen and archers, and sharp-shooters, and engineers, and drummers, arose and marched away from Columbus, and took their course toward the land of "Dixie."

12.  Now it is known to all the dwellers in these parts, that there is an Island on the Mississippi river, below Columbus, called "Island No. 10."

13.  And the water ran on this side of the island and on that,--on the right hand and on the left.

14.  When Leonidas saw the Island, he sent men to build a garrison there, long before he left Columbus; for, he said, lest Columbus may fall into the enemy's hands.

15.  And the Island was fortified, and a great force was placed there;

16.  And Leonidas sent to all that lived down the river, greeting, saying, Fear not, for Island No. 10 cannot fall.

17.  Then the people said one to another, behold we are safe, for Leonidas is a man of truth.

18.  But when Leonidas left Columbus and traveled toward Dixie, great fear seized the people.

19.  And the Federals came and took possession of Columbus, and prepared to move against Island No. 10.

20.  And they descended the river and they cannonaded the fort on the Island, and beseiged it, and the seige lasted many weeks.

21.  And the two forces threw shells at each other, and made much noise.

22.  And the Federals took Island No. 10, and all its men they made prisoners of war, and they carried away all its stores of meat and flour, and powder and ball.

23.  Then great fear came upon all the dwellers in West Tennessee and North Mississippi, for they said, behold the Yankees will come hither also.

CHAPTER XXVII

Fall of Fort Pillow and Capture of Memphis

1.  Leonidas had fortified a place on the river, below Island No. 1-, on the Tennessee shore, and had called it Fort Pillow.

2.  And Fort Pillow was made of vast strength  so as to withstand a mighty force.

3.  And Leonidas had sent into all the regions round about, commanding all to send their negro men to Fort Pillow, to work on the fortifications.

4.  There were the sable sons of Ham gathered together by twenties, and by fifties, and by hundreds, carrying pickaxes and spades, and marching to Fort Pillow.

5.  And they came to the fort and digged a mighty ditch, for it was deep and wide; and they built a high wall, and set up a tower.

6.  And they put up their largest guns, and made ready to fight the Federals.

7.  But the Federals said, Wherefore shall we be discouraged?  Have we not taken divers forts?  Has not Fort Henry and also For Donelson fallen before us?

8.  And Island No. 10, behold it could not stand before us.  Shall we fear to attack Fort Pillow.

9.  And they arose and marched against Fort Pillow, and threw shells at it.

10.  And the rebels threw shells at the Federals, and there was strife between them many days.

11.  Then certain of the rebels said, why should we stay here, and suffer these uncircumcised Yankees to lead us away into captivity, to make us hewers of wood and drawers of water?

12.  For we cannot withstand them,--they wer more numerous than we.

13.  Let us arise by night and get away into the land of Dixie, that we may not come alive into the hands of our enemy.

14.  Then the rebels rose up a great while before day, when it was yet dark, and spiked their great guns, and spoiled all their goods, and fled from Fort Pillow.

15.  And when the morning was come, and the Federals looked toward the Fort, behold it was empty, for the rebels had fled.

16.  Then went forth a might rumor, behold Fort Pillow hath fallen into the hands of the Federals.

17.  And the people were alarmed, and many of them arose and fled from their homes, and went far South into the land of Dixie.

18.  And the Federals collected their gunboats, and their men, and made ready to go down the river to Memphis, and take the city.

19.  And it was on the sixth day of June, in the second year of the reign of Abraham, that they came against Memphis.

20.  And when they had come in sight of the city, they fired their cannon, and march against it.

21.  And the rebels that were on their gunboats before the city, moved out to meet the Federals, and a battle was fought between them.

22.  But the Federal powers prevailed, and some of the rebel gunboats they sank, and some they took captive.

23.  And the fleet of the rebels was dispersed, and the Federals took the city, and hoisted the "Stars and Stripes" on the Post Office.

24.  And they mayor and other chief men of the city, made friends with the Federals, and they entered into covenant with them.

25.  But many were they who fled from the city, and left their homes and all their household stuff, that they might not come alive into the hands of the Federals.

CHAPTER XXVIII

Federal Dominion in Memphis

1.  Now it has been written in these Chronicles, that the Federals had troops at Cairo, and they would not permit any steamboats to come down the river to Memphis.

2.  And, as the people South, do not cultivate the land for much corn or wheat, but for cotton, when supplies came not down the river, the prices became exceeding high, so that no poor man could buy.

3.  And many began to be in want.  And there were speculators in those days, men who did not have the fear of God before them, and cared for nothing but old Bourbon and money.

4.  And these speculators bought up all the corn and meat, and wine, and flour, and corn meal, and sold them at a five-fold price to those who had money to buy.

5.  Now, hunger began to press upon the poorer classes, and those whose business the war had destroyed or injured, and their wives and little ones had no bread;

6.  But when the Federals had taken the city, boats from Cincinnati, and from Louisville, and from the "Sucker" State, came down the river, and brought provisions for man and beast.

7.  An when the people beheld that the stock of provisions was better, and the price cheaper than when the rebels held the city, they were contented, and bade the Federals welcome.

8.  An the Federals put a guard of armed men around the city, and would not let any one pass out of the city, unless he would swear to keep a covenant with Abraham and all Union men.

9.  Nor would they allow any one to carry out of the city any goods, lest, peradventure, the rebels should receive comfort and aid therefrom.

10.  Then with the price of cotton very high, for it was scarce, inasmuch, as the rebels had burnt all the cotton.

CHAPTER XXIX

George Drury and Ellen Grainger

1.  About the time that James, whose surname is Buchanan, was the embodiment of Uncle Samuel, which (being interpreted) was President of the United States,

2.  There dwelt a family named Grainger, in the great State of Pennsylvania.

3.  And the family consisted of a mother, who was a widow, a son whose name was Lindley, and two daughters named Susan and Ellen, and they were all grown.

4.  And they were poor, because the mother owned but a small farm, and a few cattle, and a neat cottage.

5.  But Lindley was well educated and intelligent, and his sisters were skilled in the arts and sciences, and Ellen, the younger, handled the harp and played upon the piano, and was fair and beautiful to look upon.

6.  Now, Susan and Ellen said "let us teach school, and bring in some aid to our brother in supporting ourselves and our mother."

7.  And they taught a small school and were pleased with the business of instruction, and their students loved them.

8.  And it came to pass that a stranger passed that way, and he was from the South country, even from the province of Alabama;

9.  And when he saw the two young girls, and had heard the people speak so much in their praise,

10.  He aid to them, what compensation do these people give you for your services to their children?

11.  And Susan, the elder, said, they pay us the sum of twenty dollars each per month.

12.  And the stranger said, if you will arise, and come to Alabama, then will the people give you fifty dollars a month.  And he encouraged Susan and Ellen to go South.

13.  And when he had returned home, he spake to his neighbors of Susan and Ellen and the people made them a school.

14.  And the stranger wrote to the two girls, and they packed up their trunks, and went to Alabama;

15.  And they took a school and the people loved Susan and Ellen; because they were kind and attentive to their children, and taught them with great care.

16.  Now, there dwelt hard by their school-house. a rich cotton planter, whose name was George, but his surname was Drury.  And George was five and twenty years of age, and possessed a manly form and a goodly countenance. 

17.  And he had a large estate, and a hundred slaves, and lived in a great house, made of brick. and he had never been married;

18.  And when George saw Ellen, and heard all the neighbors speak in her favor, he loved her;

19.  And he went to the house in which she boarded, and talked with her, and she played on the piano, and sang songs to his great delectation. 

20.  And George dreamed every night of Ellen's soft blue eyes, and her little delicate hands, and the music of her sweet young voice;

21.  And George was restless by day when at home, for he said, it is not good for me to be alone. 

22.  And George was in love with Ellen, and he said unto her "O Ellen, live forever!" 

23.  Moreover, he said, "Why shouldst thou toil through winter's cold and summer's heat to obtain a living?  For behold I have enough for thee and me,

24.  "Arise, Ellen, thou loved one, and come to my house, and become my wife, and thou shalt have white bread and fresh butter, and live on the cream of the South."

25.  And the saying pleased Ellen, and she lifted up her voice and said "Amen!?

CHAPTER XXX

George and Ellen --  (continued)

1.  And it came to pass, that Ellen communed with Susan and told her what George had proposed to here.

2.  And Susan replied to Ellen, the thing is good, for George is a just man, and he will be to thee a kind husband;

3.  And Susan said further to her sister, behold we are away from out mother, and from out brother, and we are strangers in the sunny South;

4.  Now, that we may test the love that George professeth for thee, say unto him, I cannot wed thee away from my mother's house, but if thou wilt wait until our session closes, and will then come to Pennsylvania, then will I be wedded to thee in the presence of my mother, and we will receive her blessing.

5.  For she said to herself, if George hath much love for me, he will not hesitate to make the trip and incur the expense, for he is a man of large means.

6.  And when she had said these words to George, his love for her was increased a thousand fold, and he told her that he would be willing to follow her to the remotest verge of the green earth.

7.  Then did they contract a marriage, and gave to each other the solemn pledge of fidelity, and they called upon the sweet little stars that were watching them from Heaven's canopy, to witness their plighted love.

8.  And Time's chariot, whose wheels have never missed a revolution since creation was born, rolled on, and the session was near its close.

9.  And Susan and Ellen wrote letters to their mother and brother, and they breathed the spirit of hope and love;

10.  Then did the mother of these two girls and their lone brother rejoice at the prospect of receiving them to their home again.

11.  Now, about this time Abraham's Proclamation calling for seventy-five thousand spearmen, was sent abroad, and war between the North and the South was about to commence.

12.  Then came a dispatch to Susan and Ellen from their mother, requesting them to hasten home lest they should be overtaken by the calamities of the war in the South;

13.  And Ellen sent for George and communed with him; and George told her that a call was made upon the young men of Alabama, to go forth against the force of Abraham, and to fight for the South,

14.  And that he had volunteered and had been elected Captain of a company;

15.  And it was agreed between them, that their should be postponed until the close of the war.

16.  Then did they exchange ambrotypes, and renew their pledges of love and constancy, and the hour of separation came, and they separated to meet no more until the earthquake of war should have convulsed our once happy contry.

17.  And Susan and Ellen hastened away to their native State, and to their mother and they found the people greatly agitated because of the war;

18.  And their brother Lindley had volunteered, and he was elected Captain.

19.  And the sisters were diligent in preparing clothes and equipments for their soldier brother.

20.  Now it was in the first year of the reign of Abraham, and in the month of July, and on the twenty=first day of the self-same month, that a great battle was fought at Manassas;

21.  And many were the dead, and the blood flowed in rivulets, and the slain were spread over a great extent of surface;

22.  And on the morrow, George walked over the field of battle and looked upon the fallen slain, and they were the slain of Abraham's forces.

23.  And among them he saw a goodly young man, whose sword was yet held in his hand, now cold in death'

24.  And his features bore evidence of the goodness of his heart.

25.  And as George looked down upon him, he said, how cruel is war! This is a war of brother, --it is unnatural, unchristian, and will bring a lasting disgrace upon our people.

26.  And he said to those who were with him, I would that I could take the body of his fallen Captain, and send it to his friends; but this cannot be seeing I know not his name, nor who are his friends, nor where they live;

27.  Then did George stoop down and loose the sash from the fallen foe, and it was new and beautifully wrought;

28.  And when he examined it the more closely, behold he found embroidered upon the sash, in beautiful letters of (...?...) the words, "Lindley Grainger, embroidered by his sister, Ellen."

29.  Then did George know that it was the body of his lover's brother, and he wept upon it.

30.  And he went to Richmond and procured a metallic case, and put the body of Lindley therein, and sent it home to his mother and sisters to be interred with kindred dust.

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