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Ordered to Northern Virginia—friendship for Gen. Stone.

His first connection with the army of Northern Virginia was when, early in December, 1861, he was ordered to report to General Johnston at Manassas, and was assigned to command at Leesburg on the left of the line. While he was stationed there an incident occurred which evinced the strength and warmth of General Hill's affection for his early friends, even in the Federal army. General Stone was in charge of the force on the opposite side of the river, and after writing an official letter sent under flag of truce, General Hill appended a postscript to the effect that, if the fortunes of war should place his old academy chum in his custody, he should feel more inclined to take him into his own tent than to consign him to prison. This led to the interchange of several kind messages appended to similar communications. Unfortunately Stone was a pronounced Democrat, and, like McClellan, was unwilling to recant or repent. Seizing upon this excuse Stanton arrested him on a charge of disloyalty and gave him no opportunity to vindicate himself till the close [122] of the war, when he resigned and spent his last days in command of the army of the Khedive of Egypt.

On the night of the battle of Gaines' Mill, Major Clitz and General Reynolds, old army comrades of General Hill, were brought as prisoners to his quarters. He received both very kindly and sent for a surgeon to dress Major Clitz's wound, while he comforted Reynolds, who was mortified at being caught asleep, by reminding him that his gallant conduct in Mexico and on the border would protect his good name from a shade of suspicion. Both were placed in an ambulance, paroled to report to General Winder at Richmond, and furnished with the address of a friend of General Hill's who would honor their drafts for money. These incidents are reproduced because they bring to view traits of General Hill's character of which the world generally knows so little, his warm sympathy for suffering and his lasting and unswerving fidelity to his friends.


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