hostile lines,--the eager explorations, the doubts, the watchfulness, the listening for every sound of coming hoofs.
Presently a horse's tread was heard in earnest, but it was a squad of our own men bringing in two captured cavalry soldiers.
One of these, a sturdy fellow, submitted quietly to his lot, only begging that, whenever we should evacuate the bluff, a note should be left behind stating that he was a prisoner.
The other, a very young man, and a member of the “Rebel Troop,” a sort of Cadet corps among the Charleston
youths, came to me in great wrath, complaining that the corporal of our squad had kicked him after he had surrendered.
His air of offended pride was very rueful, and it did indeed seem a pathetic reversal of fortunes for the two races.
To be sure, the youth was a scion of one of the foremost families of South Carolina
, and when I considered the wrongs which the black race had encountered from those of his blood, first and last, it seemed as if the most scrupulous Recording Angel might tolerate one final kick to square the account.
But I reproved the corporal, who respectfully disclaimed the charge, and said the kick was an incident of the scuffle.
It certainly was not their habit to show such poor malice; they thought too well of themselves.
His demeanor seemed less lofty, but rather piteous, when he implored me not to put him on board any vessel which was to ascend the upper stream, and hinted, by awful implications, the danger of such ascent.
This meant torpedoes, a peril which we treated, in those days, with rather mistaken contempt.
But we found none on the Edisto
, and it may be that it was only a foolish attempt to alarm us.
was toiling away at the row