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[426] wall, except three who formed a relief guard for the sentry's post at the door. Above the heads of the guard, along the wall, ran a low school desk, on which each man of them stood his carbine and laid his revolver before disposing himself to sleep. A fire before the door dimly lighted the room, and the scene as they dropped gradually to sleep was warlike in the extreme, and made a Rembrandt picture on my memory which will never be effaced.

I had taken care, on lying down, to place myself between McCauley and Brown, and the moment the rebels began to snore and the sentry to nod over his pipe, we were in earnest and deep conversation. McCauley proposed to unite our party and make a simultaneous rush for the carbines, and take our chances of stampeding the guard and making our escape; but on passing the whisper quietly along our line, only three men were found willing to assent to it. As the odds were so largely against us, it was useless to urge the subject.

The intrepid McCauley then proposed to go himself alone in the darkness among the sleeping rebels, and bring over to our party every revolver and every carbine before any alarm should be given, if we would only use the weapons when placed in our hands; but again timidity prevailed, and I must confess that I myself hesitated before this hardy courage, and refused to peril the brave boy's life in so rash a venture, as a single false step or the least alarm, in favor of which the chances were as a thousand to one, would have been to him, and probably to all of us, instant death.

I forbade the attempt, but could not help clasping the brave fellow to my heart, and kissing him like a

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George W. McCauley (2)
John Brown (1)
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