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United States (United States) (search for this): chapter 14
ained for the purpose, follow up the scent until they have made out in which tree the frightened fugitive has taken refuge, and commence at once a most dismal howling at the foot. The tree is then cut down, and the opossum, which invariably simulates death, falls an easy prey into the clutches of his enemies. (This ruse of the animal in appearing to be dead gives rise to the well-known American phrase of playing ‘possum, when any one affects unconsciousness.) The stranger, unaccustomed to the manner of hunting the opossum, might suppose, from the horrible din that assails his ears — the blowing of horns, the yell of human voices, and the furious barking of the dogs — that the wild jager of Germany, or some equally ferocious beast of the European forest, had come over on a visit to the backwoods of America. Very frequently in the opossum-hunt the dogs start a racoon, which more closely resembles the fox, and makes always a gallant fight, at times punishing his assailants seve
Petersburg, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
e returned on Dearing's horses to our headquarters. Captain Dearing, who was a very gallant and distinguished officer of artillery, was transferred at a later period of the war to the cavalry. He became the colonel of a North Carolina cavalry regiment, and soon afterwards a general of brigade, in which position he gained a high reputation for daring enterprise and celerity of movement. A Federal bullet ended at once his brilliant military career and his life, in one of the fights near Petersburg, a short time before the termination of the struggle. On Sunday the 14th, General Stuart said to me that, as all was quiet along the lines, he wished me to go to Richmond for a few days on some matters of business. As I had never once asked for leave of absence since the commencement of my eventful campaigning, the General, at my request, very readily extended the term of my sojourn at the capital to ten days. Brien and Vizetelly having determined to accompany me, the gay trio soon ro
Washington (United States) (search for this): chapter 14
a telegram was brought me from General Stuart, ordering me to proceed by rail, not to Culpepper Court-house, as I had intended, but to the vicinity of Fredericksburg, to which place he was upon the eve of transferring his headquarters. General McClellan had already, on the 7th of November, been superseded as Federal Commander-in-Chief by General Burnside, who, ambitious of a glory that in his wild dreams his exalted position seemed to promise him, and vehemently urged by the Government at Washington to rouse himself from his inactivity, and undertake something conclusive with his largely reinforced and splendidly equipped army, had decided to try the shortest and most direct route to the long-coveted Confederate capital. Accordingly the new commander had moved the greater part of his force by rapid marches down the Rappahannock towards Fredericksburg, hoping to cross the river and occupy the town before Lee should be able to divine his intentions. But Mr Burnside had not counted on
Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
n which he talked with Mrs Stuart. Our friend Lawley having announced by telegram his coming in this day's train from Richmond, I drove over to the station at Culpepper Court-house to meet so welcome a guest, who had promised to give us the pleasure of his company for several days. To do him proper honour, I substituted on this occasion for the rough-going, yellow-painted waggon in which Pelham and I were accustomed to make most of our journeys, a top-buggy which Stuart had brought from Pennsylvania. On the 12th the General started on a reconnaissance to stir up the Yankees a little, as he expressed himself, in which he was accompanied by Lawley, who desired to get an idea of our mode of cavalry fighting. My orders were to remain at headquarters in the performance of some important duties there. I disliked this exceedingly, but I was soon compensated by the unexpected arrival of Vizetelly and Brien, who, after a very amusing ride through the valley and across the Blue Ridge, ha
Richmond (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
ters near Culpepper Court-house. ten days in Richmond. return to headquarters. a disagreeable jou telegram his coming in this day's train from Richmond, I drove over to the station at Culpepper Cou quiet along the lines, he wished me to go to Richmond for a few days on some matters of business. t myself in this plight to the good people of Richmond, I was obliged to spend the greater part of te changed so much for the better. I found Richmond very little altered; especially had its generken leave of my kind friends of both sexes in Richmond, and the negro waiter at the Spotswood Hotel o postpone yet a little while his rapid On to Richmond, thus giving General Lee time to move his whocountry. There being nothing to detain me in Richmond, I took advantage of my additional holiday tothe Telegraph Road leading from that place to Richmond. The white tents gleamed pleasantly amid they and accomplished young ladies I had seen in Richmond, the very mention of whose names caused the h
South Carolina (South Carolina, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
on and fortifications, for we could see them talking together in suspicious groups; and after a little time several officers came up, who viewed our unconscious artist narrowly through their field-glasses; and had he not opportunely retired, at my instance, to a less exposed situation, a bullet from one of their sharpshooters would doubtless have demonstrated the impropriety or insecurity of his labours. On our return we made a little detour to the headquarters of General Jenkins of South Carolina, commanding a brigade of troops from the Palmetto State in Longstreet's corps, who received us very courteously, and insisted on our dining with him — an invitation which, after some hesitation, we accepted. Poor Jenkins met with a sad fate, after having served through the greater part of the war with the greatest gallantry and distinction, and having reached the exalted rank of major-general, he was killed through misadventure by his own men upon the same unhappy occasion when Longstre
Dundee, Yates County, New York (New York, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
s giving General Lee time to move his whole force towards Fredericksburg, where, at the end of November, the two hostile armies were confronting each other. This change of base gave me one day's longer leave of absence, as I could reach the vicinity of Fredericksburg by rail in twenty-four hours less time than Stuart by marching across the country. There being nothing to detain me in Richmond, I took advantage of my additional holiday to visit my dear friends, Dr P----and his family, at Dundee, near Hanover Court-house, where I passed Sunday the 22d most delightfully, continuing my journey next day to Hanover Junction, which point I reached unfortunately too late for the passenger-train to Fredericksburg. Being thus compelled to take a freight train, and to ride in an open flat, I felt the sharp, eager wintry air intensely. The train moved at a very slow pace, stopping at every little wayside station, so that it was late at night when we arrived at Hamilton's Crossing, the last
Hanover Court House (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
rmies were confronting each other. This change of base gave me one day's longer leave of absence, as I could reach the vicinity of Fredericksburg by rail in twenty-four hours less time than Stuart by marching across the country. There being nothing to detain me in Richmond, I took advantage of my additional holiday to visit my dear friends, Dr P----and his family, at Dundee, near Hanover Court-house, where I passed Sunday the 22d most delightfully, continuing my journey next day to Hanover Junction, which point I reached unfortunately too late for the passenger-train to Fredericksburg. Being thus compelled to take a freight train, and to ride in an open flat, I felt the sharp, eager wintry air intensely. The train moved at a very slow pace, stopping at every little wayside station, so that it was late at night when we arrived at Hamilton's Crossing, the last stopping-place before reaching Fredericksburg. Here we were obliged to bring the train to rest a quarter of a mile from
Fredericksburg, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
apid marches down the Rappahannock towards Fredericksburg, hoping to cross the river and occupy the noble leader; and when he arrived opposite Fredericksburg, demanding, in grand words, the surrender l Lee time to move his whole force towards Fredericksburg, where, at the end of November, the two ho absence, as I could reach the vicinity of Fredericksburg by rail in twenty-four hours less time thanately too late for the passenger-train to Fredericksburg. Being thus compelled to take a freight t, the last stopping-place before reaching Fredericksburg. Here we were obliged to bring the train l piece of pinewoods about five miles from Fredericksburg, on the Telegraph Road leading from that pion to drive Vizetelly and himself down to Fredricksburg, to take a good look at the town and at oun the heights across the Rappahannock. Fredericksburg, one of the oldest places in Virginia, wasksdale's Mississippi Brigade, stationed at Fredericksburg, the men of which were wandering carelessl[3 more...]
Virginia (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 14
o the celebrated yellow waggon, with two of my chargers hitched to it, was soon in readiness, and after an hour's drive, amid the plaintive outcries of my victims as we rattled along over the rough frozen road, we reached the elevated ridge in front of the town, from which we had an excellent view of the town itself, the valley wherein it is situated, and the white tents and swarming numbers of the enemy on the heights across the Rappahannock. Fredericksburg, one of the oldest places in Virginia, was before the war a pretty town of about 5000 inhabitants, which enjoyed a considerable local trade, and was distinguished for the hospitality and refinement that belonged to its society. It was now comparatively deserted. The larger part of its citizens had been driven off by the continued threats of bombardment which had hung like a Damocles's sword above their heads for several weeks, and the few who had been compelled to remain behind plainly exhibited in their features that the ap
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