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176. the charge on the Twelve hundred;
or, the Fairfax Stampede.

Twelve hundred “gentlemen,” real F. F. V.'s,
Taking at Fairfax their elegant ease,
Early one morning, aroused by a drum,
Mustered to slay forty-five of “the scum.”
Daring Twelve Hundred!

What did those fire-eating gentlemen do,
Who were in numbers as fifty to two?
Say, did they pitch the vile underbred foe
Straight to the place where the bad people go?
Furious Twelve Hundred!

Oh, not at all; and that wasn't the worst:
Into their camp the vulgarians burst,
This way and that way like centaurs they wheeled,
While from the battle-shock helplessly reeled
Treason's Twelve Hundred!

Some of the “heroes” broke cover, and fled;
Several who didn't, were knocked on the head;
Others, caught up by their soap-locks, were borne
Off from the battle-ground captives forlorn.
Hapless Twelve Hundred!

Twenty or thirty were “wiped out,” and five
Sneaked from the village, much scared, but alive;
What of the rest of those Bayards became,
Has not been breathed by the trumpet of Fame,
Ill-used Twelve Hundred!

Brave F. F. V.'s, how your passions must boil!
Scattered like sheep on that “sacredest soil,”
Upset by “mudsills,” unpedigreed loons,
Twelve hundred licked by a troop of dragoons!
Nonplussed Twelve Hundred!

Henceforth, O “chivalry,” be not so proud;
If you are panic-proof, don't say it loud;
Don't call us Northmen mere “dastardly hordes;”
Think, how from forty-five Northerners' swords,
Fled your Twelve Hundred!

Though we may not be all “gentlemen born,”
Don't upon that account laugh us to scorn;
Scoffers, believe us, “elite” of the South
Oftentimes laugh on the wrong side the mouth;
Ask the Twelve Hundred!

Look at our muscles, all strung for the right;
Look in our eyes, full of terrible light;
Though we've no serfs to turn pale at our nod,
Yet we can fight for home, Freedom, and God,
Four to One Hundred!

--Vanity Fair.

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