of the district of Louisiana, and issued an encouraging address to the troops.
troops generally in Louisiana
commenced a movement to Texas
, and by March 15th a large number of them had reached Camp Grice, 2 1/2 miles east of Hempstead
Not long afterward a rumor reached them of the surrender of Generals Lee
Some doubted, but soon the news came as upon the wings of the wind, confirming it as a certainty.
Their spirits sank in sadness and regret.
Generals Kirby Smith
were there, and made addresses to the assembled soldiers, appealing to them to stand to their colors as good soldiers, and even holding out as encouragement the promise of aid from the East
, so that a firm stand by them might be the means of gaining sufficient strength to retrieve misfortune and still maintain the cause for which they had so nobly fought.
They were advised in any event to hold to their organizations, and on going home to carry with them their honorable discharges.
These in substance were the views presented to them.
The officers and soldiers of the line listened respectfully to the addresses of their generals; but the Texas
soldiers were not mere men-machines, to be manipulated by high officers upon a great emergency.
They were more than Texas
soldiers; they were Texas
citizens, and did not submerge their citizenship entirely in becoming soldiers.
They had protected Texas
from the invasion of the enemy, and when they went to Arkansas
and other States in the Confederate
service, they were still protecting Texas
There were no lonely chimneys standing in Texas
amidst the ashes of houses burned in the vandal-like marches of the enemy, as they had seen in Louisiana
There were no farms, homes and towns made desolate by the ravages of a cruel warfare.
It was easy for even soldiers of the line to understand that if General Grant
should thrust his armed host upon Texas
, its broad