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Second in a duel.

From the moment that Jackson entered upon his duties in the army, he evinced that terrible earnestness which was the characteristic of his conduct in battle or in work.

My squadron of the Mounted Rifles escorted four siege-pieces, which he was charged to deliver safely in Monterey, and he did it with an unrelenting energy which was necessary to get them through. During the battles in the Valley, he served as a lieutenant of Magruder's battery, and won many distinctions. Having entered the service as a second lieutenant, he was brevetted first lieutenant, captain and major, in one year's field service.

While serving in the Valley of Mexico, he acted as second in a duel between two officers of one of the new infantry regiments—the 10th, I believe. General Birkett Fry told me the incident, as follows:

Lieutenant Lee, of Virginia, was the adjutant of the regiment, who, feeling himself aggrieved by Captain———, of Philadelphia, sent him a challenge. The Captain was an avowed duelist and an expert rifle shot, and accepted Lee's challenge. They were to fight with rifles at forty paces. Jackson and Fry were seconds to Lee. Jackson won the word, which he delivered, standing in the position of a soldier, in stentorian tones, audible over a forty-acre lot. The rifles cracked together, and Jackson, astounded that his man was still standing, said to Fry: ‘What shall we do now? They will demand another shot.’ ‘We will grant it with pistols at ten paces,’ said Fry, and as he said, the second of the Captain came forward [313] and demanded another shot. ‘We agree,’ said Jackson, ‘and we will fight with pistols at ten paces.’ The Captain declined the terms, the men were never reconciled. The Captain died many years after, regretting that he had not killed Lee.

Jackson was a strict constructionist of all orders and of all points of duty.


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