previous next

An hour before the appointed time that splendid company— mustering considerably more than its previous roll strength, for a number of new recruits had enlisted in its ranks—marched to the depot where an immense crowd had assembled to see them off. An aged minister of the gospel (now gone to his reward) spoke words of earnest counsel, and led in a fervent prayer that the God of Jacob might go forth with these young men, keep them in the way whither they went, and bring them back to their homes in peace and safety—but, above all, that he would shield them from the vices of the camp and lead them into paths of righteousness.

The man of God is interrupted by the shrill whistle of the iron horse—the train dashes up to the depot—all are soon aboard, and, amid tender farewells and suppressed sobs of anxious friends, and the waving of handkerchiefs and vociferous cheers by the vast crowd, those patriot-soldiers hurry forth at the bidding of their loved and honored Virginia.

At Gordonsville they were met by companies from Augusta and Albemarle, and two companies of students from the University of Virginia, who marched forth from those classic shades to illustrate a bright page in the history of their Alma Mater.

Orange, Culpeper and other counties along the route swelled their numbers as they rushed to the capture of Harper's Ferry and the defence of the border.

The call of Virginia now echoes through the land—from seaboard to mountain-valley, from Alleghany to Chesapeake, from the Potomac to the North Carolina border, the tramp of her sons is heard. Maryland, the Carolinas, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri and Texas catch the sound, and her sons in every clime heed the call of their Mother State. The farmer leaves his plow in the furrow, the mechanic his job unfinished, the merchant his books unposted, the lawyer his brief unargued, the physician his patient unattended, the professor his chair unfilled, the student his classes, and the preacher his pulpit, and there rush to our northern frontier, not Hessian or Milesian mercenaries, not men bought up for so much ‘bounty money,’ but the wealth, the intelligence, the refinement and culture, the virtue and patriotism, the very flower of our Southern youth and manhood.

Thus was formed what was afterwards called the Army of

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Alma Mater (1)
Albemarle (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: