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[494] from General Wilcox, asking, “can't you catch a Yankee to-night for General Lee? Some of the enemy are moving, and he wants to know what command it is.” I at once sent for Major Wooten. When he had read the note, I asked if he thought it could be done without loss, and added, I wouldn't have one of your brave fellows hurt for half a dozen Yankees. “Nor I,” was his prompt reply, “I love those fellows as much as you do.” A long silence followed, as the Major sat, looking upon the tent flow, with his head between his hands. But his face finally brightened, and as he looked up, he said, “I can get him.” He took only a part of his corps of Sharp-shooters with him, though all wished to accompany him. The moon was shining brightly, and when he reached the skirt of woods in front of my headquarters, he found it was too far from the enemy's rifle pits to make the dash. In whispers the men were directed to crawl, and when they had gone some distance on all fours, the Major, who was in the lead, sprang to his feet and cried out, “Boys, we have got them.” Away they went, at a run, in double ranks, and when the left had reached the line of pits, the two ranks faced outward, and wheeling right and left, just as you would open the lids of a book, they came back, bringing their prisoners with them. This mode of attacking the enemy's skirmish line, adopted by the Major, was known in our brigade as “Wooten's seine-hauling.” The enemy fired, but no one was hurt. About day Wooten reported to me that he had not been able to catch a Yankee, but that he had seven Dutchmen. Whether General Lee was able to get any information from them, I never heard. I only know that no one at our headquarters could understand their “foreign gibberish.”

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F. M. Wooten (3)
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