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[302] hither and thither, detailed on various duties; the doors of the outbuildings had been forced open and they were occupied for every imaginable purpose. In the Doctor's office a lieutenantcolonel and a captain had taken up their quarters, and saddles, bridles, blankets, swords, pistols, were mingled with pill-boxes and bottles of physic. The neighboring kitchen was filled with women and children from our contraband train. The creaking pump-handle was unceasingly worked — horses were neighing and kicking — servants were bringing armfuls of fodder from the barn. Here were soldiers plucking the feathers from poultry of which they had despoiled the secesh on the march, there a group was listening to the details of the fight with the “grillas,” while near by three or four happy darkeys were singing over their boiling camp-kettle. These mingled sights and sounds, blended in rich confusion, composed a scene I shall not soon forget. But in one corner of the yard there was a different spectacle. Hither the wounded men were brought in carts and carefully removed into a small building, where they were placed upon beds of corn-fodder and attended by three surgeons. Many of the wounds were slight, but some were pronounced fatal, and one man died while I was present.

As before stated, a force of four hundred men had been sent from Elizabeth City, under command of Colonel Draper, of the Second North-Carolina, to scour the lower districts of Camden County for contrabands, with orders to unite with the main column at Indiantown. The region was found to abound with fine plantations, and the result of the first day's “canvass” was twenty teams. Encamping that night at Shiloh — a village of about twenty houses and a church — fires were built at a cross-roads near the church, while the men were quartered in the church, and pickets posted on all the approaches. About midnight the pickets were driven in by a force of guerrillas, supposed to number about one hundred men, who discharged their rifles at the camp fires, where they supposed the men to be sleeping. This was what Colonel Draper had anticipated, and thanks to his shrewdness, not the least harm was done. The fire being returned by the reserve-guard, the guerrillas fled into the swamp. The next day, resuming the march to Indiantown, at a place called Sandy Hook, where the road crossed a swamp, they were attacked by a large body of guerrillas in ambush. Colonel Draper ordered his men to lie down while loading their guns, and sent two detachments to attack the bushwhackers with the bayonet on both flanks, skirting the woods for protection. Executing this order, exposed to a sharp fire, the detachments had reached the wood in which the guerrillas were posted, when, perceiving they were flanked, they took to their heels and escaped by a path which the Colonel's men could not find at the time. The fight lasted about half an hour. Colonel Draper's loss was eight killed and seven wounded. The loss of the guerrillas, as was subsequently ascertained, was thirteen killed and wounded. Entering Indiantown, his rear-guard was fired upon and one man killed.

The Pasquotank guerrillas had fought shy of the armed “niggers,” invariably “skeddadling” at their approach; but as these of Camden seemed more bold and numerous, General Wild determined to return to Sandy Hook, and ascertain if the “State defenders” were really spoiling for a stand — up fight with an equal number of his colored boys. Accordingly, the next morning — leaving behind a sufficient force to protect the camp — the General started for the “Hook,” taking with him about four hundred men. A half a mile from the Indiantown Bridge the guerrillas were descried ahead. Colonel Draper, who commanded the advance, at once started his men on the “double-quick” for them, when, firing a few shots, they turned and fled. The main column, led by General Wild on foot, immediately joined in the chase, and a singular spectacle for Jefferson Davis to contemplate was presented; his unconquerable chivalry — any one of whom used to be called equal to six or eight picked Yankees, running for dear life from the bayonets of despised niggers! O Jeff! At length the fleetfooted guerrillas filed off into a forest path, the colored boys some distance behind, filling the air with eager shouts. A half a mile through the wood, across a corn-field, into a second wood, the pursuit was continued, when the path ended, and all traces of the “State defenders” were lost at the edge of an impassable swamp, densely wooded and flooded with water. Search was made in every direction for the secret path they had taken. At last the embers of a recent picket-fire were discovered, near which the trunk of a felled tree was found to be worn with footsteps; Following this, another tree was found felled, and then another, and another, their trunks forming a zigzag footpath through the mire and water of the swamp. Colonel Draper, at the head of the entire force, in single file, penetrated the swamp in this novel manner for half a mile, when a small island was reached.

Here, surrounded by gloom and savage wildness, was spread the camp of the guerrillas, consisting of log-huts and a number of tents. Fires were found burning, Enfield rifles scattered over the ground, and every thing indicated a hasty evacuation of the place. Between fifty and sixty rifles, a drum, a large quantity of ammunition of both English and rebel manufacture, clothing, a tent full of provisions, and; lastly, the musterroll of the company, fell into our hands. The huts were soon in flames and the camp of Sanderlin's land-pirates vanished into smoke, which rose in a vast black volume above the forest. Pursuit of the guerrillas was then resumed. They had fled by a path similar to the one by which they entered, leading across the swamp in another direction. Following this, a large farmhouse was reached belonging to Major Gregory. It having been ascertained that Sanderlin obtained here a considerable portion of his supplies, the house and barns, containing several thousand

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