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Chapter 60: Honorable mention.

Did my space permit, I would pay special and glad homage to the men who fought and nobly sustained defeat, or now bear their wounds in cheerful poverty, or who fell, examples of all the noble qualities that exalt a nation. But the scope of these memoirs does not permit more than a glimpse of a few of the gallant figures that crowd the memory of every Confederate who looks backward on the field of war.

Louisiana gave us Richard Taylor, who fought under the eye of Stonewall Jackson in the Valley, and whose men charged and took Shields's batteries at Port Republic, and who in Louisiana hurled back in disorder the magnificent army of Banks.

Bishop General Polk, our saintly gallant veteran, whose death left our country, and especially the Church, mourning; Harry T. Hayes, Yorke, Nicholls, Gibson, Gladden, and Moulton, who charged with his men up the hill at Winchester into the fort deemed impregnable, and put Milroy's army to flight; [599] C. E. Fenner,1 who, with his Batteries of “Donaldsonville,” under Maurin and Prosper Landry, achieved distinction; the Louisiana Guard, under D'Aquin, Thompson, and Green, all gallant gentlemen whose renown their countrymen treasure above price.

From Georgia came Commander Tattnall, John B. Gordon, that gallant knight whose bravery and skill forced him through rank to rank to the highest command. Wounded in every battle, until at the last, at Appomattox, he beat back Sheridan's cavalry and captured artillery from him until within the last halfhour's life of the Army of Northern Virginia, when he reported his corps fought to a “frazzle.” Then, and then only, was the emblem of truce displayed.

Joseph Wheeler, the young “Murat” of the cavalry, General Lawton and his no less distinguished brother-in-law, E. Porter Alexander, the skilful engineer and accomplished artillery officer, for gallantry promoted to be Brigadier-General and Chief of Artillery of Longstreet's Corps; and Hardee, the scientific dauntless soldier; Walker, David R. Jones, Young, Denning, Colquitt, and a shining list I have not space to name.

Mississippi gave her Ferguson, Barksdale, Martin, the two Adams, Featherston, Posey, [600] and Fizer, who led an army on the ramparts of Knoxville but left his arm there, and a host of gallant men.

Alabama sent us Deas, Law, Gracie, and James Longstreet, dubbed by Lee upon the field of Sharpsburg his “old war horse,” a stubborn fighter, who held the centre there with a scant force and a single battery of artillery; the gallant Twenty-seventh regiment of North Carolina troops, under Colonel Cooke, stood as support, without ammunition, but with flags waving to deceive the enemy. Three times he repulsed the attacks of a whole corps. When the cannoneers were shot down, and help was needed at the guns, his staff dismounted and took their places.

At Petersburg, when the end was near, and Lee's lines were broken, he hurried with the division of General Field to the breach, and formed his troops across the line of the enemy's victorious approach, held them at arm's length until midnight, when the last man and the last gun of Lee's army had crossed the Appomattox, and he became like Marshal Ney, the rear-guard of the once “Grand army;” and Rodes, ever in the front, who laid down his life at Winchester while led by the indomitable Early, he was fighting the overwhelming force of Sheridan.

“The gallant Pelham,” the boy artillerist [601] who with one gun took position on the left flank of Burnside's army at Fredericksburg, and held his ground, annoyed, and threw into confusion the troops of the enemy advancing to charge Jackson's forces upon the hills at Hamilton's Crossing. Just after receiving his promotion as Lieutenant-Colonel of artillery, “for gallantry and skill,” he met his death, leading a squadron in a charge. Shouting “Forward, boys! Forward to victory and glory!” a fragment of shell penetrated his skull, and his brave spirit took its flight.

Tennessee gave us Forrest, the great leader of cavalry, Frazier, Cheatham, Jackson, Green, A. J. Vaughn, O. F. Strahl, Archer, and the last, but not least, on this very incomplete list, Cadmus Wilcox, who led his brigade at Gettysburg on July 2d, right into the enemy's lines, capturing prisoners and guns, and only failing in great results from lack of the support looked for.

Kentucky gave us John B. Hood, one of the bravest and most dashing division commanders in the army. Always in the front, he lost a limb at Chickamauga; John C. Breckinridge, “Charley” Field, S. B. Buckner, Morgan, Duke, and Preston; the latter with his fine brigades under Gracie, Trigg, and Kelly, gave the enemy the coup de grdce which terminated the battle of Chickamauga. [602]

Missouri gave us Bowen, and Green, and Price, that grand old man, worshipped and followed to the death by his brave patriotic Missourians.

From Arkansas came the gallant Cleburne, McNair, McRea, and Finnegan, the hero of Olustee, Fla., and Ben McCullough, the old Indian fighter who yielded his life on the battle-field of Elkhorn.

From Maryland came brave Commander Buchanan, Generals Trimble, Elzey, Charles Winder, who laid down his life upon the field, and George Stewart, Bradley Johnson, who proved himself a very Bayard in feats of arms, and our Colonel of the Signal Corps, William Norris, who, by systematizing the signals which he displayed under the most furious fire, rendered inestimable service. To Maryland we owe also Snowdon Andrews, the brave and skilled artillery officer, who was so desperately wounded upon the field of Cedar Run that his surgeon reported “hardly enough of his body left to hold his soul.”

South Carolina gave us Stephen Elliott, who remained in beleaguered Sumter, and when invited to take rest only did so because promoted and ordered elsewhere; the Hamptons, Kershaw, Hugers, Ramseur, M. C. Butler, Bee, Bonham, Bartow, Drayton, the Prestons, “DickAnderson, Jenkins, and Stephen [603] D. Lee, commander of artillery in Virginia and corps commander in the Army of Tennessee, a body of fine gentlemen who illustrated the proverbial daring of their class. She also gave Colonel Lucius B. Northrop, a gallant soldier of the old army, and one who, as Commissary General, possessed Mr. Davis's confidence unto the end of our struggle.

North Carolina sent Pettigrew, who commanded Heth's division in the charge at Gettysburg, wounded there, he lost his life before recrossing the Potomac; and D. H. Hill, Holmes, Hoke, Pender, Cooke, Ransom, Lane, Scales, Green, Daniel, and the roll of honor stretches out a shining list as I gaze into the past. “When shall their glory fade?”

Texas gave us Albert Sidney Johnston, and Gregg, Robertson, William “old tige” whom his soldiers loved Cabbell; it is easier to specify who was not a brilliant jewel in the gorgeous crown of glory than to name them all.

Florida gave Kirby Smith and Anderson and many other gallant and true men.

And “Old Virginia” gave us her Lees, Jackson, Early, Ewell, Pickett, Ed. Johnson, Archer, Heth, Lomax, Dearing, Ashby, Mumford, Rosser, the brothers Pegram; and the gallant men who fell on the heights of Gettysburg, Garnett, Kemper, and Armistead; and Dabney H. Maury, who with 7,600 infantry [604] and artillery held Mobile for eighteen days against General Canby. Had our cause succeeded, Virginia's gallant son would have been promoted to be Lieutenant-General.

A. P. Hill, the fierce young fighter, who, famous in many battles, came opportunely from Harper's Ferry to Sharpsburg, beat back Burnside, and saved the flank of Lee's army, but fell at last on the field of Petersburg; from the first hour to his last not only doing his best, but all that man could accomplish, to serve his country.

Patriotic enthusiasm could present no grander picture than that of General Wade Hampton, a fit representative man of the much ridiculed but living and beloved chivalry of the South, who, while looking through his glass during a cavalry battle near Petersburg, saw his son Preston, who, possessed of great personal beauty, much mind, and keen wit, had just reached his twenty-first year, fall dead on the field, and his brother Wade stoop over him and fall across his beautiful young brother's body. The bereaved father thought them both slain, and unsheathing his sword, rode straight, not to receive their dying words, but for the hottest part of the battle, and fought with all his might in a hand to hand encounter, and himself came out-probably the only division commander in the world to [605] whom a like incident has occurred — with a deep sabre cut which accentuates rather than mars the noble contour of his face.

Or what could be more touching than the meeting of General Lee with his young son Robert, on the bloody field of Fredericksburg, mounted on one of the artillery caissons of the battery in which he was serving as a private. He was so begrimed with smoke and powder that the General did not know his boy. Robert asked, “General, are you going to put us in again?” “Yes,” said his father, “but my boy, who are you?” “Why, do you not know me, father? I am Robbie.” “God defend you, my son,” answered the General, “you must go in again.”

1 Now Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Louisiana.

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