dined with him one day at General Mahone
's at the house on Sycamore street, now owned and occupied by Mr.
S. W. V ——. He was riding slowly along the line of inextricably tangled wagons, as if going to the rear, no one with him, as far as I can remember, and I was near enough to look into his face.
He rode erect, as if incapable of fatigue, and with the same dignified mien that I had so often noted on the streets of Petersburg
From his manner, no man would have discovered that, which he so well knew, viz: that his army was melting away, that his resources were exhausted, and that in a few days he would be compelled to deliver up to the enemy, which he had so often defeated, the remnants of those ragged jackets, who had followed him for four long years, and who had never failed him except ‘in their own annihilation.’
Another incident was this.
Sometime during the night, on some high hills, in the county of Cumberland
or Prince Edward, I know not which, it was very cold, and Dr. Lewis
, one of our party, found a captain and quartermaster, whom he introduced to me as Captain
O——, of North Carolina
, who had some whiskey, and who invited me to take a swig from his canteen.
It was the first drink I had taken in many months, and I suspect the whiskey was as good as any, but it had the most peculiar effect upon me. I had congratulated myself up to that night, that I had not suffered from fatigue, from hunger, from want of sleep, from fear; and yet in ten minutes after I took that swallow of whiskey, I was hungry, tired, scared, and so sleepy that I had to get off my horse and walk to keep awake.
Well, we got into Farmville
, as I said, about daylight, and my man Burkhardt
said that, if we would halt there awhile, he would go into somebody's kitchen and bake some biscuit from a little flour that he had foraged.
We turned off on a by-street, and I lay down on the sidewalk, first fastening my reins around my body, to assure my awaking in case of any one's attempting to steal my horse, a precaution which I learned the night before, an officer informing me that some one had stolen his horse from his side whilst he was asleep.
I slept for several hours, and when I awoke, the whole town was full of soldiers, and the army, infantry and artillery, was crossing the county bridge as rapidly as possible over into Buckingham
As we started to follow, my man, with his eye ever on the commissary, informed me that Major Scott
was issuing rations at the railroad depot, and that we had better go by and see what we could get. It was true the Major
was dealing out hurriedly, and I suspect, without requisition in duplicate, the little that was left, and, at my