Perhaps the event in the Colonel
's life which his friends will remember with most pleasure is his courageous refusal to make war on helpless women and children at Chambersburg, Pa.
When his commanding general ordered him to apply the torch to that town, he promptly and firmly declined to obey the order.
He realized that obedience to this edict of war against the town, deserted as it was by all except women and children, would mean a repetition of the awful scenes of looting, rapine, and desolation that had followed the burning of southern towns by northern soldiery.
The Virginia soldier and gentleman preferred the imminent personal risk of violating the orders of his superior officer to responsibility for devoting the defenseless inhabitants of Chambersburg
to so direful a fate.