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George H. Gordon, From Brook Farm to Cedar Mountain, Chapter 1: from Massachusetts to Virginia. (search)
laughed on post, and left their posts, as the humor suited them. To what went on around or within their lines they were cheerfully oblivious and wonderfully indifferent. From acres of such encampments arose, during the night, song and laughter and boisterous shouts. Lights flashed out, men came and went, and all moved merrily on; while within my lines not a sound arose nor a whisper was heard nor a light burned, nor was there a sentinel who was not walking his round. On the fourteenth of July, 1861, three days from my arrival at Martinsburg, an order was given to march south to Bunker Hill en route to Winchester, to engage Joe Johnston, the rebel commander of forces there. While the tents were being packed, while wagons filled the parade-ground, and luggage encumbered the earth; while there was motion everywhere, as far as the eye could see,--galloping horses bearing orderlies with dispatches, artillery rumbling, and long lines of infantry moving out to the inspiring milit