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[27] headquarters. The old 154th was to-day transferred to the brigade of General Preston Smith.

June 21st.—Our tents arrived from Okalona, and I will sleep under shelter to-night for the first time in a month. Graybacks have invaded our camp and are hard to repel. Mr. Chrisp was complaining of the invaders when Spivey claimed exemption from the common scourge. It was too much for the old gentleman, and bristling up, he gave Spivey a piece of his mind. ‘Spivey,’ he said, ‘if there is a soldier in this army who is not troubled with these pestilent campfollowers, there is something about that man that graybacks don't like, and that is all that I have to say about it.’ I think if Mr. Chrisp had the privilege of amending the book of prayer used in the Episcopal Church, he would have this clause inserted: ‘From graybacks and all kindred species, good Lord, deliver us,’ and Spivey would say, Amen.

July 1st.—This has been a delightful day. We were visited by a refreshing shower this morning which cooled the atmosphere, and revived the life of the camp. For several days past the air has been full of rumors of a great battle in Virginia, in which McClellan was signally defeated. Last night after we had all retired to our soldier couches, we were called up to hear a dispatch from General Randolph, Secretary of War, announcing a glorious victory for our arms. The battle commenced on Friday, and after two days desperate fighting, the enemy abandoned their camp, and fled. They recrossed the Chickahominy for the purpose of getting under the protection of their gunboats on the James river. Latest reports represent our army in hot pursuit of the retreating foe, and capturing many thousands of prisoners. I have been suffering for several days from an attack of acute rheumatism, but the good news puts me on my feet again.

July 4th.—The Fourth of July, 1862, has passed unobserved and almost unknown. The principles for which our forefathers contended have been trampled beneath the feet of their unworthy descendents of the North, and we, their sons of the South are fighting their battles over again. No booming of cannon is heard, unless it be in Virginia, the mother of statesmen, where the last scenes of one of the bloodiest tradegies ever enacted on the American Continent are about closing. The curtain will drop, and the victorious army of the South will prove to the North, and to the World, that a people determined to be free can never be conquered. When our independence is achieved, then we will celebrate our independence day. I am on guard at General

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