laboring all night to save the houses and protect the families of their enemies, thus suddenly deprived of shelter and often of bedding and apparel.
Thus, by a calamity, incident indeed to war, but brought about by the mad folly of one of the most reckless of the rebel commanders, who filled a city about to fall into the hands of an enemy with lint, cotton, and tinder, the capital of South Carolina
There was a retributive justice in the conflagration, which, though not designed, was felt by the soldiers; for no man in either rebel or national army but remembered that South Carolina
was the state which first seceded from the Union
, and that in 1860 the legislature at Columbia
did all in its power to precipitate the entire South
into a war which many Southerners then deprecated as earnestly as the loyal people of the North
During the 18th and 19th of February, the destruction of public property was continued.
, meanwhile, and the rebel cavalry, had retreated upon Charlotte, in North Carolina
, due north from Columbia
; and on the 20th and 21st, Sherman
followed as far as Winnsboro
, sending Kilpatrick
to the left, to keep up the delusion that a movement was contemplated in that direction, where Cheatham
's corps, from Hood
's army, was now expected to make a junction with Beauregard
At Wiinnsboro, however, Sherman
turned his principal columns northeastward towards Goldsboro
, still two hundred miles away.
Heavy rains again impeded his movements,