previous next
[507] profession of an acrobat in a circus, and, consequently, could explain how it was possible to jump from any place, however far the distance; without injury, and it consisted, simply, in always starting from a spring board. All that was necessary was to get the board, jump into the yard beneath, scale the fence surrounding it, and he was free.

And the half-crazed Brown agreed. Taking up one of the floor-planks, about two o'clock that morning, they ran it noiselessly out of the window, securing one end firmly to the window-sill. The night was dark, but the gas-lights in the yard below flickered on the paved surface of the ground, which echoed to the measured tread of the sentinels as they paced their midnight rounds. Bidding his mate “good-bye,” Brown slowly emerged from the window on his hands and knees, crawling toward the extreme end of the narrow plank-bending more and more with his weight over the dizzy height.

Reaching, at length, the end, he carefully arose into a standing position, and, following his instructor's orders, he began to spring the board more and more rapidly, finally bounding upward as high as the impetus thus acquired would carry him, and then down, down through the yielding air to the stones beneath. With terrible swiftness, just missing the point of a sentinel's bayonet as he passed, he struck the pavement. The guard, amazed and frightened, fled the length of the yard, and Brown, unhurt, sprang to his feet and dashed in headlong flight toward a pair of steps leading to the top of a shed, upon which, however, was located another sentinel, who successfully stopped his further efforts. Not a bone was broken, and he sustained no visible injury worthy of mention. Yet the leap could not have been less than forty or fifty feet, and the landing place a stone paved yard. His brain, however, was affected by the shock, and not long after he was shot and killed by one of the guards while attempting another escape — an attempt like the one above narrated, which no sane person would have dared, and the poor fellow met the very fate he so madly strove to escape.

Of the secret agents or spies in the service of the rebel government, there were some who achieved notoriety at least, and they were well represented at the Old Capitol, both male and female. Among the latter was Belle Boyd, who left the impression with those with whom she came in contact of a woman governed more by romance and love of notoriety than actual regard for the Southern cause. Undeniably good-looking, with a fine figure, and merry disposition, she could have been dangerous had she possessed equal good sense and. good judgment. I believe the extent of the damage she inflicted on the Northern cause was in tempting from his loyalty a subordinate

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
John Brown (3)
Belle Boyd (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: