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n before he woke. He was not long, however, to remain in doubt, or be compelled to question his instincts. He opened his eyes to find the blanket suddenly drawn away from his face, and to hear a harsh and sarcastic voice exclaim: How are you, Johnny Reb? Come, get up, and we will give you more comfortable accommodations than out here in the rain! S— was wide-awake in an instant, and through his halfclosed lids reconnoitred, counting his opponents. They were six in number, all armed and r pulled the blanket up again over his shoulders, and turning his back, muttered in a sleepy voice: Oh! Go away, and let me sleep, will you! This reply highly tickled his adversaries; and so much did they relish the evident impression of the Johnny Reb that he was among his own comrades in the Confederate camp, that they shook all over in the excess of their mirth. S-was a dangerous man, however, to jest with; and no doubt believed in the proverb which declares that they laugh best who laugh
s in which their hopes and the future were placed-this was more than they could bear; and a thick darkness that could be felt brooded over the land. But as yet this feeling had not begun in any way to react upon the army. The hardy soldiers had enough to do to keep them busy; and besides had laid up a stock of glorious reminiscences, upon which to fall back when bad news reached them. Only the bare facts of these rapid and — terrible blows reached the camps; and stubborn, hard-fisted Johnny Reb, looked upon them smilingly as reverses to be made up to-morrow, or the next time he caught Mr. Yank. To the Louisiana soldiers, the news of the fall of their beautiful city had a far deeper and more bitter import. Some of the business men of New Orleans, who remained in the city, yielded to the promptings of interest and fell to worshipping the brazen calf, the Washington high priest had set up for them. Some refused to degrade themselves and remained to be taught that might is righ
n the scanty ration the soldiers had become inured to had been reduced by necessities of their rapid march; and that knowledge caused every corps that passed through to receive substantial tokens of the sympathy and good will of the townspeople. Ladies and children thronged the sidewalks, pressing on their defenders everything which the scanty Confederate larder could supply; while, from many of the houses, gloves, socks and comforters rained down upon the worst clad of the companies. Johnny Reb was ever a cheerful animal, with a general spice of sardonic humor. Thus refreshed, inwardly and outwardly, the men would march down the street; answering the waving handkerchiefs at every window with wild cheers, swelling sometimes into the indescribable rebel yell! Nor did they spare any amount of good-natured chaff to those luckless stay-at-homes encountered on the streets. Come out'r that black coat! I see yer in it! --I know ye're a conscript . Don't yer want er go for a sojer
rom the hearts of the people to know how long, O, Lord! were these terrible scenes-killings, not battles; and with no result but blood and disaster!-to be reenacted. After its retreat from Kentucky, Bragg's army rested for over a month at Murfreesboro, the men recruiting from the fatigues of that exhausting campaign; and enjoying themselves with every species of amusement the town and its kindhearted inhabitants offered — in that careless reaction from disaster that ever characterized Johnny Reb. There was no fresh defeat to discourage the anxious watchers at a distance; while the lightning dashes of John Morgan, wherever there was an enemy's railroad or wagon train; and the flail-like blows of Forrest, gave both the army and the people breathing space. But fresh masses of Federals were hovering upon the track of the ill-starred Bragg, threatening to pounce down upon and destroy him-even while he believed so much in their inaction as to think of forcing them into an advance.
ce it that the human hyenas of speculation did prey upon the dying South; that they locked up her salt while the men in the trenches perished for it; that thrice they stored the flour the people felt was theirs, in such quantities and for so long, that before their maw for gain was glutted, serious riots of the starving called for the strong hand to interfere. And to the credit of Government and southern soldier, be it said-even in that dark hour, with craving stomach and sickening soul--Johnny Reb obeyed his orders and guarded the den of the hyena — from his own hungering children, perhaps! No weak words of mine may paint the baseness and infamy of the vultures of the market. Only a Dor6, with a picture like his Frozen Hell, or Ugolino-might give it faint ideal. And with the feeling how valueless was the money, came another epidemic — not so widespread, perhaps, as the speculation fever; but equally fatal to those who caught it — the rage for gambling! Impulsive by natu<
Thomas C. DeLeon, Four years in Rebel capitals: an inside view of life in the southern confederacy, from birth to death., Chapter 31: the Chinese-Wall blockade, abroad and at home. (search)
t at the risk of a costly foreign war. There was bitter disappointment in the South, immediately succeeding dissipation of these rosy, but nebulous, hopes in the kingship of cotton. Then reaction came-strong, general and fruitful. Sturdy Johnny Reb yearned for British rifles, shoes, blankets and bacon; but he wanted them most of all, to win his own independence and to force its recognition! There are optimists everywhere; and even the dark days of Dixie proved no exception to the ruleeverance, were omitted to prevent the passage of anything living, or useful, into the South. But none of this availed against the untiring pluck and audacity of the inland blockade-breakers. Daily the lines were forced, spies evaded, and bold Johnny Reb passed back and forth, in almost guaranteed security. Such ventures brought small supplies of much-needed medicines, surgical instruments and necessaries for the sick. They brought northern newspapers-and often despatches and cipher letter
hed the camps and were eagerly devoured. Violent and hostile criticisms of Government-even expositions of glaring abuses-were worse than useless unless they could be remedied; and when these came to be the text of camp-talk, they naturally made the soldiers think somewhat as they did. Now, the greatest difficulty with that variously-constituted army, was to make its individuals the perfect machines-unthinking, unreasoning, only obeying — to which the perfect soldier must be reduced. Johnny Reb would think; and not infrequently, he would talk. The newspapers gave him aid and comfort in both breaches of discipline; and in some instances, their influence against the conscription and impressments was seriously felt in the interior. Still these hostilities had their origin in honest conviction; and abuses were held up to the light, that the Government might be made to see and correct them. The newspapers but reflected the ideas of some of the clearest thinkers in the land; and
Boiled Mule bacon, with poke greens; muleham, canvassed. Roast: Mule sirloin; mule rump, stuffed with rice; saddleof-mule, à l'armee. Vegetables: Boiled rice; rice, hard boiled; hard rice, any way. Entrees: Mule head, stuffed à la Reb; mule beef, jerked à la Yankie; mule ears, fricasseed à la getch; mule side, stewed-new style, hair on; mule liver, hashed à l'explosion. side Dishes: Mule salad; mule hoof, soused; mule brains l'omelette; mule kidneys, braises on ramrod; mulh, yes! You're all right, carelessly replied the captor. An‘ ef I'm loyil, I'm same as you 'uns? persisted the lately sworn. We're all good Union alike, eh? Oh, yes, the officer humored him. I We're all one now. Wail then, rejoined Johnny Reb slowly, didn't them darned rebs jest geen us hell sometimes? City Point, on the James river, was the landing for transports with soldiers released from northern prisons, after parole. A bustling, self-important major of United States volunt
Robert Underwood Johnson, Clarence Clough Buell, Battles and Leaders of the Civil War. Volume 3., Sedgwick at Fredericksburg and Salem Heights. (search)
to our sight from December, 1862, until the following April. During this period, with the exception of a futile movement on the right known as the Mud march, the army remained quiet. The pickets stationed on either bank of the Rappahannock were within hailing distance of each other, and dress and faces could be easily distinguished. By the comity that prevailed, there was no firing from either side. One could ride or walk down to the banks of the river with perfect security. Sometimes Johnny Reb, as he was called, would rig up a little raft, and, loading it with tobacco, start it with sails and rudder set for the other shore. When the precious freight was unloaded, the craft, generously burdened with coffee and salt, would be headed by Yank in an opposite direction, where it would be received with loud expressions of thanks. In this and other ways the asperities of the war were mollified. As time rolled on and the weather improved, arrangements were made for an advance. The me
y. The regular ration of beef and bread was cooked for the prisoners, but anything else was prepared by the prisoners themselves, or by some old negro paid by the mess. In 1862, some of the Confederate privates taken at Glendale, or Frayser's Farm, were sent to Fort Warren, in Boston Harbor, then under the command of Colonel Dimick, where they remained until after the cartel had been signed. Alexander Hunter, a private in a Virginia regiment, thus speaks of the life in Fort Warren, in Johnny Reb and Billy Yank: Those were halcyon days, those days of July, 1862; light spots in a generally dark life. Our soldier prisoners, so inured to hardship, want, and suffering, had now not a care on their minds, not a trouble in their hearts; they drew long breaths of content, and could only sigh sometimes at the thought of the dark future, which was doomed to hold so marked a contrast to that perfect rest and satisfaction. As they arrived at Aiken's Landing, on the James River, they met a nu
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