Chapter XLVI

Duvall Goes to Dixie for His Family

1.  Now, when Robert was free from the rebel army, and no longer a prisoner of war, he began to consider how he should get his family away from Dixie.

2.  And he devised many means, but none of them, on due reflection, seemed feasible.

3.  For he feared both the Conscription and the violence of a lawless mob/

4.  And he feared also, that his wife and babes would be left to starve.

5.  And seeing no way to reach his family, he remained with Grant's army, but he was unhappy, because he mourned for his family lest he should see them no more.

6.  In the meanwhile, Memphis fell, and the Federal army restored the old flag to its wonted place in that city, and Robert came to Memphis;

7.  Now, was Robert much nearer his family, and began to devise means to go to there, and bring them away from Arkansas.

8.  For he was afraid to venture beyond the Federal lines, lest the iron grasp of Conscription should again lay hold upon him.

9.  And, behold, he purchased a wig full of gray hairs, and a pair of false whiskers for an old man, and disguised himself as an old man, too old to be conscripted:

10.  Then he set forth from Memphis, and traveled on foot through the Mississippi bottom, to Crawley's Ridge, and proceeded thence to White river.

11.  And those that saw him, said, This is and old man, and gray-headed, and they did not conscript him.

12.  And he traveled many days, and over many hills, and across many streams that flow from the North, and swell the tide of the Arkansas, and he came to his house.

13.  Then did he learn that the rebels had taken his horses, and his oxen, and all his valuables, and his family had procured bread with much difficulty.

14.  And he passed among his old neighbors as a very old man, and an uncle of his wife, from Tennessee, for, in his disguise, they did not know him. 

15.  And they sold their beds, and chairs, and some of their clothing; and he purchased an old horse and a very little wagon, and the whole family set out to Memphis

16.  And after many days of traveling, and much fatigue, and privations, they came to Memphis poor, but free from rebel oppression.

CHAPTER XLVII

Hon. A. H. Stephens.

1.  And it came to pass, after the South had seceded, that many of her noble sons loved the Union still.

2.  Among these was Alexander, of the tribe of Georgia, who had been a member of the great Sanhedrim at Washington.

3.  He was a man small in stature, but his nature was noble, and he was valiant, and eloquent of speech.

4.  And he was a man of mighty influence.  His fame had gone abroad into all the world, and all men delighted in his words, and believed him among the great men of the earth.

5.  And Alexander opposed Secession.  He wrote against it in the papers, and he made eloquent speeches against it in the halls of Congress, and his logic was powerful and could not be resisted.

6.  But no eloquence could resist the overwhelming tide of Secession; nor could any logic deter the infuriate leaders.

7.  Speech after Speech fell from Alexander's eloquent lips; He invoked the gods to save the country from disruption!  He conjured his countrymen by all the ties that blind man to man!

8.  But all was in vain, for Secession was their Idol, and most devoutly did they worship at its shrine.

9.  And Georgia voted herself out of the Union, and bade defiance to Federal sway.

10.  Now, when Alexander saw that he had spoken in vain, and that his State had seceded, despite his efforts to the contrary.

11.  His soul was sore vexed, and he lifted up his voice and wept, and said, "O, my country, my country! land of the Palmetto and the stately Magnolia!"

12.  "Would that I had died for thee!" And he refused to be comforted.

13.  And he said, "How can I leave thee, O my native land! Can I live when I see thee humbled in the dust, they altars desecrated, and all thy glory departed!"

14.  And he sat in sackcloth and ashes for the space of forty days.

15.  And all the world knew that Alexander, whose surname was Stephens, was a Union man, and hostile to Secussion.

16.  But it came to pass, when Georgia had really seceded, and the "Stars and Bars" had superseded the "Stars and Stripes."

17.  That Alexander became less hostile to rebel rule, for he spake no more against it, but communed often with Jefferson and other leaders of the rebellion.

18.  And when the people saw that he had ceased to oppose disunion, they said one to another, "Let us deal kindly with Alexander, and, peradventure, he may become one of our leaders."

19.  And it came to pass, that the people voted, that Alexander should be a mighty chief among them, and sit on the right hand of King Jefferson

20.  And thereupon he became a Secessionist, and so continues unto this day.

CHAPTER XLVIII

Brigadier Jeff.

1.  And it came to pass in those days, when Claiborne, whose surname is Jackson, was Tetrarch over all Missouri, which being interpreted was Governor thereof,

2.  That there was one "Jeff.," whose surname is Thompson, a man of repute among the Secessionists.

3.  Now, "Jeff." was a man exceeding tall in stature, but he was spare made, and exceeding slender.

4.  Before the war, he had been much in the regions about the "Lead Mines," and knew exactly the location of every grog-shop in all that land.

5.  Now "Jeff." was a "blackleg," which (being interpreted) means a gambler.

6.  And brandy and old Bourbon was sweeter to his taste than honey or the honey comb.

7.  And it came to pass, that when these were not at hand, "Jeff." scrupled not to imbibe large quantities of the vilest "tangle-foot."

8.  And "Jeff." was a rebel, and he was brave, impulsive, and fond of adventure.

9.  Now, when the rebellion broke out, and Missouri was hesitating whether to secede or not, "Jeff." gathered a band of desperadoes around him, and they carried desolation through all those parts.

10.  And when Jefferson the Great, at Richmond, heard of these things, he sent unto him a commission as a Brigadier.

11.  Then did many rebels flock to the standard of Brigadier "Jeff.," and they carried on a regular war against all Union men in South-Eastern Missouri.

12.  And they performed many daring exploits in the regions round about New Madrid and Cape Giradeau.

13.  And when the people heard of these things, they praised "Jeff," saying one to another, behold he is the "Marion" of this war.

14.  And "Jeff." often came down to Memphis, for as yet, that city had not fallen into the hands of the Federals.

15.  And when he was in the city, he always imbibed too freely, and was not unfrequently unable to navigate.

16.  Now it came to pass, that when the Federals came to smite Memphis, "Jeff." was there.

17.  And when the battle waxed warm, he rode a spotted pony, ad scampered around upon the Bluff, and discharged his pistol at the approaching fleet.

18.  And when they came near to the shore, it came to pass that "Jeff." wheeled to the "right about," and skeddaddled far away into the land of Dixie, and prepared to perform other deeds of noble daring.

CHAPTER XLIX

Peggy and Little Jimmy.

1.  And it came to pass, when Tennessee had joined the Southern Confederacy, that her young men in thousands flocked to the rebel army.

2.  And Jefferson sent them Generals, and arms, and ammunition, and bade them God-speed.

3.  Now, there dwelt in a certain city, a man named James, but in the Anglo-Saxon, he was called Carson.

4.  And James was a cultivator of the soil, and continually coaxed the earth to produce corn, flax, potatoes, cabbage, and other things of the like character.

5.  And James was an industrious man, for no one ever saw him lying at the door of a grog-shop, or lounging in a saloon;

6.  And he was an honest man, doing unto all men according to the golden rule.

7.  And James read the newspapers, attended church, voted at elections, and served on juries.

8.  And everybody called him "honest, red-headed, good-natured Jimmy."

9.  And it came to pass, when Isham, whose surname is Harris, the Governor of Tennessee, had called for volunteers,

10.  And all James' neighbors were volunteering, that James also joined a company, and made ready to go to the wars.

11.  Now, James loved Peggy his wife, and little Jimmy, his son, and, when he thought of leaving them, his eyes grew read, and tears rolled down his cheeks.

12.  And it came to pass that the company was organized, and the regiment was formed, and the officers commissioned, and all were mustered into service.

13.  And the regiment was sent to Union City, a place of little repute, which standeth in West Tennessee, hard by the Obian country.

14.  And in process of time, the regiment was removed to Columbus, and was in the great battle of Belmont.

15.  And after many months, Columbus was evacuated, and the rebel army fell back by degrees, to Corinth, in North Mississippi.

16.  An Braxton, whose surname is Bragg, was in command at Corinth, and all the men and Generals submitted to him.

17.  And while the army was at Corinth, behold there came a messenger to James, saying, "Arise, and get thee home, for Peggy and little Jimmy are both lying sick of a fever, and nigh unto death."

18.  And James arose and procured a furlough for ten days, and hastened home to see his wife and child.

19.  And it came to pass that little Jimmy died.  His little eyes became dim, and their light went out forever.

20.  And they put linen white and clean upon the child, and laid him in a little coffin, and then it was placed in the cold and silent grave.

21.  Now, when James had seen his little boy die and go down to the tomb, he mourned for him and refused to be comforted.

22.  And Peggy was sick, and her strength was gone.

23.  And James lifted up his voice and wept; and one came unto him, and said, "Why weepest thou?"

24.  And James answered and said.  "My soul is exceeding sorrowful; for my furlough expireth on the morrow, and Peggy will die, and I cannot remain with her to console her in her dying hour!"

25.  Then said his friends, "But you must not go away until Peggy dies, and sleeps in peace along with little Jimmy; then mayst thou depart and be with the army."

26.  But James answered and said, "Men will call me a deserter, and Braxton will condemn me to death!"

27.  Then said his friends, "Are not the officers men?  Have they not souls that can feel sympathy for another's woes.  Tell them of thy case, and they will not blame thee!"

28.  And James hearkened to his friends, and remained at the bedside of his dying wife.

29.  And Peggy died, and James laid her in the grave, close to their little Jimmy.

30.  And on the morrow he arose before day, and hastened away to Corinth, having overstayed his furlough one day. 

31.  And when he was come to the army, he was seized and put under guard, and accused of desertion.

32.  And a court-martial was called, and he was tried by them.

33.  And James told them of Peggy and of Jimmy, and how they died, and he had buried them.

34.  But they turned a deaf ear to all the said, and condemned him to be shot for desertion.

35.  Then his friends comforted him, saying, "Braxton is not a dog, that he should approve this sentence!  Hath he not a wife and children?"

36.  But behold!  Braxton did approve this sentence, and the hour of execution with drawing nigh.

37.  And in the night, when it was dark, and the guards slept, James arose, and laid aside the cords that bound him and fled!

38.  And the guards awaked and fired their guns at him, and wounded him on the face.

39.  But James made his escape and fled from Corinth, and he came unto Pittsburg, upon the Tennessee river, and joined himself unto the Federals.

40.  And Abraham sent him a captain's commission, and he remained with the Federal army, and fought against Braxton.

41.  And James is in the Federal army unto this day.

CHAPTER L

Clinton, Whose Surname was Chase

1.  Now when James, whose surname is Buchanan, was yet Chief Ruler, and in the last year of his reign,

2.  It came to pass that there was a certain young man in the "Buckeye" State, whose name was Clinton, but his surname was Chase.

3.  And Clinton was a young man, and he was of an honorable family, handsome and comely to look upon.

4.  Moreover he was a good scholar, for he had studied many books in the Wesleyan University, which standeth in a place called Delaware, in the province of Ohio.

5.  And Clinton had heard from the South, that teachers were highly honored, and that the Southern people gave them much money.

6.  So Clinton arose and put on his sandals, and a leathern girdle, and took his journey to the Southern country.

7.  And when he had traveled many days, he came to a part of the country, known as Eudora, in the province of Arkansas.

8.  And Clinton taught the youth of Eudora, and caused the to increase in knowledge, until his fame went abroad into all the regions round about.

9.  And it came to pass that the people of Lake Village, which standeth not a great way off from Eudora, heard of the flame of Clinton.

10.  Then said they one to another, "Let us send for Clinton, that he ay come to our town, even unto Lake Village, and instruct our children, lest they live fools and die dunces."

11.  And they sent letters to Clinton, and invited him to come; and they promised a large sum of gold, if he would teach their children. 

12.  And Clinton arose and went to Lake Village.  And the people made him a good school, and he lived with them, and taught their children.

13.  And the children loved Clinton, for he was kind unto them, and dealt with them as though he was an elder brother.

14.  And the parents loved him, because he was faithful to teach their children, and fully earned all the gold they gave him.

15.  And the young maidens loved Clinton, because he was young and handsome, and had an intellectual face and bright, black eyes, and each one hoped that she might stir up the tender passion in his bosom.

16.  And the preachers loved Clinton, because he was moral, and attended church, and listened to them with much attention and respect.

17.  And Clinton lived at Lake Village, until the war cry arose, and swept over the land of the South.

18.  And when Abraham had been chosen Chief Ruler, and South Carolina had seceded,

19.  Arkansas also, seceded, and the people were wroth with Abraham, and began to make war against him and the North.

20.  But Clinton still taught the youth of Lake Village, and they did mightily increase in knowledge.

21.  But when the young men of Lake Village were preparing to go forth to battle, they asked him to go with them, but he said nay.

22.  But the time was at hand when brother should go forth against brother, and son against father, and father against son, and the spirits of men waxed warm.

 

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