far into the night when the last one straggled into camp.
The investigation which followed resulted only in the captain suffering the punishment for the more guilty men. For this infraction of military law he was put under arrest and made to carry a wooden sword for two days, “and this too,” as one of his company has since assured me, “although he was entirely blameless in the matter.”
Among the few incidents of Lincoln
's career in the Black Hawk
war that have found a place in history was his manly interference to protect an old Indian who strayed, hungry and helpless, into camp one day, and whom the soldiers were conspiring to kill on the ground that he was a spy. A letter from General Cass
, recommending him for his past kind and faithful services to the whites, which the trembling old savage drew from beneath the folds of his blanket failed in any degree to appease the wrath of the men who confronted him. They had come out to fight the treacherous Indians
, and here was one who had the temerity even to steal into their camp.
“Make an example of him,” they exclaimed.
“The letter is a forgery and he is a spy.”
They might have put their threats into execution had not the tall form of their captain, his face “swarthy with resolution and rage,” interposed itself between them and their defenseless victim.
's determined look and demand that “it must not be done” were enough.
They sullenly desisted, and the Indian
, unmolested, continued on his way.
's famous wrestling match with the redoubtable Thompson
, a soldier from Union county