Yankee raid into Northumberland.
[correspondence of the Richmond Dispatch.]
Camp Grigg Caroline Co., Va., February 25, 1863.
The almost incessant rains and snows have rendered the roads impassable in many places.
A citizen has just arrived in camp from Northumberland county
and reports that on Wednesday last the Yankee
cavalry made a raid down on the Northern Neck
, in search of the conscripts and enrolling officers.
When they arrived at Lancaster
countenance they found the officers busily engaged in taking down the names of such conscripts as were present.
Here they succeeded in capturing one of the officers and many of his men, the others effecting their escape by secreting themselves in a cellar.
The men they immediately paroled.
They soon left here, directing their course towards Heathsville
where a number of conscripts had already collected, awaiting the arrival of the enrolling officers.
They dashed into the little village and captured all of the conscripts; after paroling them, they broke into the Court-House
and destroyed the records.
They next visited the house of Mr. James Harding
, living in the neighborhood, arrested the old man, and endeavored to make him take the oath of allegiance.
This he positively refused to do. They then broke into the house where his bacon was stowed and carried off all of it. They then left, taking with them the most of his negroes.
They next visited Mr. James Smith
, arrested him and, after destroying everything of value about the house, left, taking Mr. Smith
with them, and forcing all his negroes, eighty-four in number, to follow them against their wish.
They next came to the residence of Col Richard L. Claybrook
, and arrived at the yard gate before the inmates of the house were aware of it. His daughter (a girl of sixteen) begged her father to conceal himself in the house, while she would meet the invaders.
She procured her father's pistol, and met them at the door with it cocked.
They asked her what she meant by meeting them with a cocked pistol?
She replied that she understood they were in the habit of insulting ladies wherever they had been, and she stood there ready to defend herself and sister to the last gasp, and the first man who entered that door she would send him into eternity with all of his sins upon his head.
This decided, cool piece of bravery convinced them that it was dangerous to advance farther — so they made a hasty retreat.