Outrages committed by the ‘"Grand Army"’ in Fairfax county.
Fairfax C. H., Va., July 6.
To the Editors of the Dispatch:
Though full details of our recent glorious victories over the army of the so-called United States
have been given to the public, I have seen no published account of the depredations committed by these Hessians on their march and retreat through this county.
To mention each individual case would fill space too great for your columns.
Never in the annals of the world did an invading army commit acts more horrible than did these hordes of the North
The house of Mr. Albert T. Willcoxon
, a brick building recently erected and fitted up in handsome style, was entered by them, the window glass
and sash almost entirely demolished, the doors torn from their hinges, the stair banister broken down, and the furniture not removed split to pieces.
So with the handsome residence of Thos. R. Love
, adjoining the village.
Embraced in his loss, in addition, was a valuable law library, and the entire wearing apparel
of himself and family.
The law offices of Thomas J. Murray
and Capt. Wm. H. Dulany
were also entered, and the library and papers of each office destroyed.
But few houses in the village escaped their vandalism — furniture cut and split up, beds opened and their contents scattered, mattresses stolen, wearing apparel
appropriated to their own use, whole sets of china broken to atoms, preserves and canned fruits taken or destroyed, books stolen, papers torn up, groceries carried off, constitute the complaint of nearly every housekeeper, not only in the village, but all along the line of march.
The loss of Mr. Archer Broadwater
will fall but little short of one thousand dollars. Every article of silver belonging to his family, and his family carriage, were taken.
So with the residence of Mr. Geo. Baily
Even the tops of castors were taken, doubtless supposed to be silver.
In his house his side-board, covered with cut-glass, was wantonly turned over in the floor and contents broken to atoms.
Nor were the widow and orphan suffered to escape the fiendish and diabolical acts of these immaculate followers of old Abe and Fuss and Feathers.
The cottage residence of Mrs. Beckly
was entered, every article of furniture she owned broken and destroyed, and her home left a perfect wreck or ruin.
So with the furniture and provisions of Mrs. Colonel John Millan
Here they exhibited their fiendish purposes to the fullest extent, in the demolishing of furniture, breaking up of crockery and glassware, stealing bacon, and killing sheep and other stock.
The residence of Col. James Thrift
, now a Captain of Virginia volunteers, was an object of their peculiar hatred.
Here a squad entered, and after searching for arms proceeded to break open drawers, steal coats, jewelry, towels, liquors and bacon, destroy papers, looking glasses
, and such things as would gratify their fiendish purposes, leaving the house and yard strewn with the fragments of their work.
The likeness of Capt. Thrift
, taken when a Captain in the Mexican
war, was stolen by them, but this has since been restored to him, having been taken from the haversack of one of the killed on the battlefield of the 21st.
I forgot to mention that the residence of Capt. M. D. Ball
, at the Court-House
, was made subject to their especial venom and vandalism.
After destroying most of his goods, the residue were put up at auction and sold for mere nominal prices — the piano for two dollars, and beds for fifty cents. Nor did our merchants escape.
The stores of E. R. Ford
and John R. Taylor
The loss of the former is estimated at $500, of the latter at $1,500.
I have thus hastily given a few of the cases along the line of march of the Hessians through this county, to give an idea of the sufferings and loss of our people, and to exhibit to a Christian world the nature of the war being now waged by a so-called Christian President
against a people who are acting on the defensive and fighting for the liberty of themselves, their families and firesides.
No portion of our county, where a squad had time to reach before called off by the fight and inglorious retreat, escaped.
All have suffered either in the loss of horses or servants to pressed into their service.
It is due, however, to the slaves of this county to say that many, or a large proportion of them, have remained true and loyal to their owners, in many instances preserving their property by claiming it as their own. But for the servants of the writer of this, he would now be called to lament the loss of much which to him is invaluable.
They did all he could ask.