It was ‘an open secret’ at Cavalry Headquarters, that of all the splendid and capable staff officers there—Heros Von Borcke (of the ‘Madgeburg Dragoons’) and Henry McClellan and young ‘The.’ Garnett—Venable was closest to Stuart. Whenever most perlious service was to the fore, Venable was selected for that service, and wherever the Headquarter guidon of Lee's horse blazed in the van of trampling squadrons, there always was Andrew Venable, riding ‘bit to bit,’ by the bridle-rein of the gay and debonnair Rupert of the South. It is sad, in a way, to his surviving comrades, that the story of his brilliant career will never be told. But it is no worse in this case than in that of ‘Willy’ Pegram, or ‘Jim’ Breathed, or Beckham, or ‘Jimmy Thompson,’ or Victor Girardey, and many, many others, whose names were ‘household words’ as stubborn fighters, in an army of stubborn fighters, who are yet unknown to-day to the people for whose liberties they yielded up their lives. Still, one may be allowed to cite one or two instances in that career—if only for his children's sake—to evidence how absolute was his Chief's confidence in the readiness of resource and cool daring of this favorite staff officer in desperate and critical events. In the Gettysburg Campaign, when Stuart had lost touch with Lee's columns (because of his daring raid towards the Susquehanna), and had finally recognized the imperious necessity of communicating with the commanding general, Venable was the officer chosen to make his way through the hostile country, swarming with the enemy, and carry to Lee the first direct message from his Chief of Cavalry. The perilous ride was successfully accomplished, and Lee's official report tells us that on the evening of July 1st, Venable reported to him the exact whereabouts of his cavalry. Stuart himself, in his official report of the campaign (dated August 20th, 1863), says: ‘The untiring energy, force of character and devotion to duty of Major Andrew R. Venable, Inspector-General, and of Lieutenant G. M. Ryal, C. S. Army, Provost Marshal, deserves my special gratitude and praise.’
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Table of Contents:
Stuart 's cavalry in the Gettysburg campaign .
Black Eagle Company .
Mr. Slingluffs letter.
Story of battle of five Forks.
War time story of Dahlgren 's raid.
An incident of the battle of Winchester , or Opequon .
Marylanders in the Confederate army .
Jefferson Davis .
The Color Episode of the one hundred and Forty-Ninth regiment , Pennsylvania Volunteers .
Affidavit of Supervisors of Co. C , 149th regiment . Pa. Vols.
Munford 's Marylanders never surrendered to foe. From Richmond, Va. , Times-dispatch, February 6 , 1910 .
Further Recollections of second Cold Harbor .
Suffering in Fredericksburg .
Treachery of W. H. Seward brought fire on Sumter .
Forrest 's men rank with Bravest of brave.
Heth intended to cover his error.
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