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Chapter 23: around Richmond. Seven Pines war at the very gates harrowing scenes woman's heroism crowded hospitals a lull Jackson's Meteor campaign Ashn that the enemy had been driven back and badly punished. The history of Seven Pines is familiar to all. Some days previous, General Keyes' division had been thrent up that the Destroyer might not prevail. The stillness that followed Seven Pines was not unbroken. The armies were so near together that the least movement , and the dull incessant boom of artillery told of hot work even nearer than Seven Pines. So sharp and clear were the reports that it seemed the fight must be on thoad its load of misery. Manassas had hinted the slaughter of a great fight; Seven Pines had sketched all the hard outlines of the picture; but the Seven Days put ine chain of regular hospitals and even the temporary one-nearly emptied since Seven Pines-now rapidly filled and overflowed. Private houses swung wide their doors an
Grant, throwing his works up on a slight curve extending from Atlee's, on the Central Railroad, across the old Cold Harbor field-averaging some nine miles from Richmond. Our general was satisfied with the results of the campaign thus far; the army was buoyant and confident, and the people were more reliant than they had been since Grant had crossed the Rapidan. They felt that the nearness of his army to Richmond in no sense argued its entrance into her coveted defenses; and memories of Seven Pines, and of that other Cold Harbor, arose to comfort them. In the North, great was the jubilee. It was asserted that Grant could now crush Lee and capture his stronghold at a single blow; that the present position was only the result of his splendid strategy and matchless daring; and the vapid boast, I will fight it out on this line if it takes all summer --actually uttered while he was blindly groping his way, by the left, to the Pamunkey!-was swallowed whole by the credulous masses of
safety of families they were forced to leave behind; women crept out into the midnight, to conceal the little jewelry, money or silver left them, fearing general sack of the city and treachery of even the most trusted negroes. For none knew but that a brutal and drunken mob might be let loose upon the hated, long-coveted Capital, in their power at last! None knew but that the black rule of Butler might be re-enacted-excelled; and women — who had sat calm and restful, while the battle of Seven Pines and the roar of Seven Days, and the later Cold Harbor, shook their windows-now broke down under that dreadful parting with the last defenders of their hearths! Death and flame they had never blanched before; but the nameless terrors of passing under the Yankee yoke vanquished them now. Pitiful were leave-takings of fathers with their children, husbands with new-made brides, lovers with those who clung to them in even greater helplessness. Ties welded in moments of danger and doubt —