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[48] the Cis-Mississippi Department became known as an undoubted fact. This period was long known in Texas as ‘the breakup.’ Regiments, companies, brigades disintegrated and disbanded with incredible rapidity. In some commands there was not a man left on the scene of a former encampment in an hour's time, the soldiers, seizing wagons, mules and other government property and scattering in squads, couples and singly, all going towards their respective homes in a peaceful and orderly manner. The disbandment of their regiment was attended by disorder, in some cases the troops defying such officers as pleaded with them to remain. Some left without consultation with their officers. Lieutenant-Colonel Fontaine, in charge of three batteries of artillery, awoke one morning to find the men in only one remaining, the members of the others having departed with the horses, wagons and camp equipage, leaving the guns and caissons. In some commands, notably in Hardeman's and DeBray's brigades, the private soldiers stood by their colors until their officers agreed that it was useless to remain longer and went through the form of giving them honorable discharge from the service, and when at last they departed, realizing that the stars and bars represented the government of a proud people no longer, the farewells spoken were most affecting, and their homeward march was made with broken spirits and heavy hearts. The different regiments composing the army were so scattered, having been posted during the preceding winter at the most available points for subsistence, there could be no concert of action, but as the tidings of the ‘breakup’ elsewhere reached a command, it followed the general movement either at once or after a short period of delay. Where the soldiers were quartered in towns, or near depots of government supplies, many took possession of quartermaster, commissary and ordnance stores and appropriated such effects as they desired. At Anderson a magazine exploded, causing loss of life and destruction of property. At Galveston a blockade runner, which had escaped the enemy's guns, was pillaged upon reaching the wharf in front of the city. At Houston the government stores were appropriated not only by the soldiers, but by women and boys, the families of soldiers who were serving in distant commands. The ordnance stores there were either carried off or destroyed, and guns, shot and shell were thrown into Buffalo bayou. Gunpowder in large quantities was spilled and scattered about in the magazines, and the city had a narrow escape from a terrific explosion.

The troops reasoned that they had fought and suffered all kinds

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