hotel, for the general's inspection, a dozen wagons.
With vigilant guarding, we kept them a couple of days, and found them a tolerably efficient transportation force, though the men, mostly owners of the teams and wagons they managed, were ten times as great cowards as the average army mule-driver — a statement some old soldiers will be inclined to question, as they will hardly believe in greater cowardice than that displayed by the noble corps of patriots referred to. We struck out over the knobs that night, in a northeasterly direction, in order to reach the old Pomeroy
stage road in the morning at Portland
, on the Sciota Valley Railroad, by the time Morgan
should cross the road at Jackson
, a few miles further north.
We reached Portland
Smoke was rising over Jackson
, and we were not long in ascertaining that it proceeded from the depot, which some foolish vandals of Morgan
's had fired, thus revealing his whereabouts to his pursuers more accurately than they could otherwise have ascertained it.
And now began, on the morning of July 17th, the most exciting part of this exciting expedition.
The rebels knew we were neck and neck with them.
They knew Hobson
was pursuing them in the rear with the eagerness of a bloodhound.
They knew their only chance of escape lay in reaching the fords some time in advance of both pursuers.
They had the advantage of distance on Judah-the road they traveled being several miles shorter than his, which followed the bends of the river.
From the morning of the 17th, on to the final encounter, we were constantly within reach of and feeling Morgan
's right flank and rear.
, since of Fenian and Canadian
border fame, then a lieutenant in the Fifth Indiana Cavalry, was intrusted with the task of harassing the raiders, and keeping the Federal
commander informed of all the enemy's movements.
was an ideal Irish dragoon, impetuous, brave, prudent.
He did some as effective scouting and skirmishing with his command of fifty picked men along the bluffs of the Ohio
on the two last days of the great raid, as any officer did during the war. As the raiders advanced they were, beside being harassed by O'Neil
, harried by citizen militia, who felled trees across the road to halt the column, and that done poured in deadly volleys from rifles and shot-guns from secure perches on the steep hillsides.
The Confederate officers and men said the resistance and annoyance by militia on their march of over three hundred miles of northern territory was nowhere so stubborn and effective as on the last day, from near Pomeroy
to their last encampment on the Ohio
, between Buffington
and Blennerhasset shoals, though a good deal in