Earl Van Dorn
, whose chivalry was only equaled by his unswerving courage.
Edmund, the youngest of the family, five years of age, was, of course, still in the home nest, but proved to be the innocent cause of much suffering to his patriotic father.
It occurred in this wise: Judge Fulton
's sons had obtained, for the first time during the struggle, furloughs to visit home and parents, and were staying at the plantation home of their father.
Their presence at this place was kept a profound secret, on account of the proximity of the Union
troops stationed at Natchez
and Mrs. Fulton
were domiciled in there city home at this time, but made frequent visits to the plantation during the stay of sons, and at each trip managed to carry through the lines numerous contraband articles, such as firearms, ammunition, Confederate gray cloth, hats, boots and many other things so much needed by the Confederate
would purchase these articles in Natchez
and conceal them beneath her clothing, with what she designated her ‘smuggling string.’
Thus habilimented she would seat herself, with little Edmund on her lap, accompanied by the Judge
, in her carriage, and pass the guards without arousing the slightest suspicion.
The vehicle was always thoroughly searched, but, finding nothing objectionable, was allowed to pass the pickets.
By dint of these frequent trips, Judge Fulton
's sons were well equipped and supplied with all things needful to the outer as well as the inner man.
At the expiration of their leaves of absence they each returned to their respective commands, much improved in appearance, after their pleasant and profitable visit to home and friends.
and Mrs. Fulton
were well satisfied with their exploits, as strategems of war, and thought all was well, but alas!
the sequel proved otherwise.
A short time subsequent to these events General Tuttle
and his staff had occasion to visit, on official business, the city home of Judge Fulton
During their stay these Union officers were politely and hospitably entertained, as was the wont of the Southern
During the evening, while Judge Fulton
was busily engaged in discussing important matters of business with General Tuttle
, one of the staff officers had placed little Edmund Fulton
on his knee, while an animated conversation was passing between them.