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 himself off as a Texan ranger; ascertained the strength of his command, and after narrowly escaping capture two or three times, succeeded in reaching the Union lines near Nashville. General Mitchell, who was one of the most active and energetic of commanders, now determined to explore the roads and bridges leading to Shelbyville, preparatory to a movement upon that town, and sent Corporal Pike to perform that service-one of great difficulty and danger, inasmuch as it was remote from the Union lines, and all the roads were picketed by the Texan Rangers and Morgan's battalion. But danger only added new zest to any enterprise, and he undertook it cheerfully. His encounters on this expedition were many and startling, but when meeting the rebels in considerable numbers, he passed himself off as Captain Bonham, of the First Louisiana Cavalry, just escaped from the Union lines; and told his story so plausibly that it met with perfect credence. If there were but one or two, he trusted to his pistols and the speed of his good horse; and on one occasion, meeting at night a part of Morgan's battalion, the audacious fellow professed to be on picket duty, and demanded the countersign; but finding them ignorant of it, compelled them to file past, and when they were nearly across a rickety bridge in the vicinity, he put spurs to his horse and rode in an opposite direction. On the 8th of April, 1862, General Mitchell sent Pike to Decatur, Alabama, to get information as to the state of the country, and destroy the railroad bridge at that point if possible. Some of his adventures on this expedition we-e so characteristic of the shrewdness and
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