“Hello, Johnny; don't shoot!
We want to make peace with you.”
We hallooed back: “All right.”
Then he rode out in the fence corner in plain view and hallooed:
“Johnny, what command is that?”
“The Eleventh Texas.”
He hallooed back: “What is the matter with you boys this morning?”
“We are drunk and reckless, and if you want to fight come over!”
“I thought there was something the matter, for we never saw you boys so lively before; go into camp, the war is over for to-day.”
He turned and went away.
In a few minutes we turned out of line and went back.
Soon we came to General Wheeler and other officers, and went into camp on a hillside among small trees.
Towards night word came that General Johnston had surrendered and that in the morning we would have to stack arms.
Our camp was turned into a camp of mourning; men and officers mingled their tears together.
Old, weather-beaten and battle-scarred soldiers who had prided themselves on their six-shooters, horses, and valor as soldiers, threw their belts aside as something to get rid of, and wept like whipped children.
The colonel came out and made a speech.
Among other things he said: “ Napoleon boasted that his Old Guard had been under fire a hundred times, but he could boast of this regiment as having been under fire in battles and skirmishes more than three hundred times.”
But Mr. Sadler
has an even more interesting reminiscence than this, and one that I have never seen in any history—nothing less than a proposal by General Joe Wheeler
to recapture President Jefferson Davis
, rush him rapidly through Texas
, and place him on Mexican
soil, where he would be safe from harm.
says that on the day of Johnston
's surrender the news spread through the camp at Durham
that General Wheeler
wanted volunteers to escort Mr. Davis
War-worn as were these old veterans, he could have secured all of them if necessary.
But he chose only 151, most of them from the Eleventh Texas.
The speech of General Wheeler
to this little band of followers Mr. Sadler
quotes as follows:
The Confederate Government for the present is powerless to act, but its head is alive and shall not die. We will take President