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[128] weather-boards were fast being perforated by chance bullets, a strange apparition, one quite out of place in such wild scenes—a forlorn, forsaken damsel—one who was ‘neither maid, wife, nor widow,’ and who was ‘attached’ to headquarters. She looked for a moment disconsolately at her carriage, which was close at hand, as if with the vague idea in her dazed head that it was high time for her to be leaving, and then stood still in mute despair as it broke upon her that it could not move without horses. Seeing that she was in imminent danger from stray shots that were flying about, a cavalryman dismounted and conducted the poor thing, in all courtesy, to a drainage-ditch, within which she crouched in safety, as if it had been a rifle-pit. It was noticed, however, that, in spite of the risk thus incurred, she persisted in lifting her head from time to time and peered above the ditch to see what was going on, thus showing, as some one said, that female curiosity is stronger even than love of life.

The remainder of our division had come on to support the attacking detachment, and as they entered the camp a very sad and touching incident occurred. Some prisoners (they were chiefly worn-out stragglers from the infantry), whom Kilpatrick had with him, recognizing the splendid ring of the Confederate battle cry, burst from their guard, and frantic with joy, rushed forth to meet their deliverers. One poor fellow, the foremost of them all, ragged, half-starved, and lately wretched but now nearly crazed with delight, attempted to embrace a horse's neck, but mistaken in the obscurity for an assailant, met his death at the rider's hand. Perceiving too late his error, the slayer sprang to the ground and bent remorsefully over the corpse, only to recognize in the ghastly features of the dead a near neighbor and life-long friend.

There was another occurrence which had a ludicrous, as well as tragic side. A driver of a headquarter wagon was snoozing so soundly under the white topped cover, curled up snugly in the nice, warm straw within, that he did not awake until some little time after we had been in the camp. He must have been very much fatigued, from doing nothing, or perhaps had taken an over-heavy night-cap to guard against the dampness. At length, becoming aroused by all the din around him, he pushed aside the curtains and looked sleepily out, blear-eyed and frowsy from his morning nap, at a loss to make out the meaning of such a hurly-burly, and with no idea of hurting any one.

Unluckily for him, his harmless intentions were not understood until too late, as there was no time then for long-winded inquiries and

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Judson Kilpatrick (1)
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