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Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, The Passing of the Armies: The Last Campaign of the Armies., Chapter 2: the overture. (search)
d the new relations with sincerity and utmost courtesy. The ground about to be traversed by us is flat and swampy, and cut up by sluggish streams which, after every rain, become nearly impassable. The soil is a mixture of clay and sand, quite apt in wet weather to take the character of sticky mire or of quicksands. The principal roads for heavy travel have to be corduroyed or overlaid with plank. The streams for the most part find their way southeasterly into the tributaries of the Chowan River. Some, however, flow northeasterly into the waters of the Appomattox. Our available route was along the divide of these waters. The principal road leading out westerly from Petersburg is the Boydton Plank Road, for the first ten miles nearly parallel with the Appomattox, and distant from it from three to six miles. The Southside Railroad is between the Boydton Road and the river. South of the Boydton is the Vaughan Road; the first section lying in rear of our main entrenchments, bu