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[102] train and started back. After passing Seaboard, a small station about ten miles east of Weldon, Colonel Whitford, who was riding on the engine, saw one or two men run across the track some six or seven hundred yards ahead. He at once ordered the train stopped. This precaution was not taken any too soon, for as soon as some of the infantry were put off as skirmishers and the situation was taken in, it was discovered that the track for some distance just ahead of us was torn up and that the enemy had ambuscaded both sides. We had passed Seaboard about a mile. As soon as the train was stopped the enemy opened fire upon us. Colonel Whitford caused the train to be run back to Seaboard, where the remainder of the command was put in position to await the return of the skirmishers, who were ordered to fall back as soon as they could ascertain with some certainity the force and purpose of the enemy. They soon reported that the enemy, consisting of a regiment of cavalry, had retired in the direction of Jackson, which was distance some eight miles in a southeast direction from where we were, and away from Weldon. Colonel Whitford concluded to follow on after them, but I suspect with no hearty desire to meet up with them, for he could but know that our force was not able to cope successfully with a full regiment. Upon reaching Jackson, we learned there that the regiment was the Third New York Cavalry, about six hundred strong, well mounted and thoroughly equipped with Spencer repeating carbines, and had passed through that town some hours before, and then must be near Murfreesboro, some twenty-five miles distant. After waiting several hours at Jackson, our guns were ordered back overland to Weldon, while the infantry, under Colonel Whitford's command, retired to Halifax. I shall always remember with pleasure one little incident connected with this affair. Several weeks before, as we had more men than were required or needed to man the guns, about sixty of our company had been armed with rifles and acted with the infantry. When the train was halted and skirmishers thrown off, I was anxious to join them, and endeavored to get one of the riflemen to exchange places with me. I knew he was disaffected, and it occurred to me that he would not hesitate to shirk danger; but I reckoned without my host. He rejected the overture with some indignation, and remarked that if anybody had to use his rifle he proposed to do it himself; and I ascertained that he behaved as gallantly as any man. This but illustrates that it was not cowardice that caused a great many of our soldiers to waiver in their allegiance toward the close of the war, but the terrible hardships to which they were subjected, the

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