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to the commencement of spring and the reopening of the campaign with intense longing. On the 15th of March Stuart left for Culpepper, where he had to appear as a witness at a court-martial; and Pelham, who was very anxious to see our lady friends there again, accompanied him — a pleasure which I was not allowed to share, as the General had placed me in charge over the pickets at the different fords up the Rappahannock, from Fredericksburg to the mouth of the Rapidan. On the morning of the 17th, which was one of those mild, hazy March days that betoken the approach of spring, we were suddenly stirred up, in the midst of our lazy, listless existence, by the sound of a cannonade which seemed to come from the direction of United States Ford on the Rappahannock, about ten miles above Fredericksburg. I was in my saddle in a moment, fancying that the enemy was attempting to force a passage at one of the points placed under my charge; but when I had galloped in hot haste up to the river,
Chapter 19: Life in camp during January and February. an English visitor. ride to a wedding. a new English visitor. a fortnight at Culpepper Court-house. fight at Kelley's Ford. Pelham's death and funeral honours in Richmond. breaking — up of winter quarters. With the New Year set in a continuance of bad weather. The cold increased, snow and damp alternated in rapid succession, and our poor animals continued exposed to the severest hardships. As for my own plight, I had returned to my large tent, where I managed by a variety of ingenious shifts, the offspring of hard necessity, to surround myself with not a few practical comforts. A planked floor was laid down, and over it was spread the rough resemblance of a carpet in the shape of a large square of old canvass; a packing-case which had served for the despatch of saddlery from the ordnance department did duty very efficiently for a bedstead; and with an empty whisky-cask, which, by sawing down on one side
Chapter 19: Life in camp during January and February. an English visitor. ride to a wedding. a new English visitor. a fortnight at Culpepper Court-house. fight at Kelley's Ford. Pelham's death and funeral honours in Richmond. breaking — up of winter quarters. With the New Year set in a continuance of bad weaty miles of the Rappahannock, with very few opportunities of procuring provisions. In consequence of this state of things, I was ordered, in the commencement of February, by Stuart to proceed in that direction on a tour of inspection. It was a mournful sight to see more than half the horses of this splendid command totally unfitt old Culpepper, and the hardships and monotony of our camp life fell on us the more heavily after an interval of comparative ease and abundance. The remnant of February and a part of March dragged slowly by, so dull and eventless that existence was scarcely tolerable, and we looked forward to the commencement of spring and the
s was killed on the day before I myself received a wound which at the time was regarded as mortal. Although we expected Stuart back in a few days, it was a fortnight before we heard from him, when we received a telegram ordering us back to headquarters at Fredericksburg. We felt very sad at leaving pleasant old Culpepper, and the hardships and monotony of our camp life fell on us the more heavily after an interval of comparative ease and abundance. The remnant of February and a part of March dragged slowly by, so dull and eventless that existence was scarcely tolerable, and we looked forward to the commencement of spring and the reopening of the campaign with intense longing. On the 15th of March Stuart left for Culpepper, where he had to appear as a witness at a court-martial; and Pelham, who was very anxious to see our lady friends there again, accompanied him — a pleasure which I was not allowed to share, as the General had placed me in charge over the pickets at the differ
March 15th (search for this): chapter 20
eived a telegram ordering us back to headquarters at Fredericksburg. We felt very sad at leaving pleasant old Culpepper, and the hardships and monotony of our camp life fell on us the more heavily after an interval of comparative ease and abundance. The remnant of February and a part of March dragged slowly by, so dull and eventless that existence was scarcely tolerable, and we looked forward to the commencement of spring and the reopening of the campaign with intense longing. On the 15th of March Stuart left for Culpepper, where he had to appear as a witness at a court-martial; and Pelham, who was very anxious to see our lady friends there again, accompanied him — a pleasure which I was not allowed to share, as the General had placed me in charge over the pickets at the different fords up the Rappahannock, from Fredericksburg to the mouth of the Rapidan. On the morning of the 17th, which was one of those mild, hazy March days that betoken the approach of spring, we were suddenly
e himself was killed, one son was wounded, and the other taken prisoner. Not long afterwards we heard of the death of Lieutenant Turner, a promising young officer of our Staff, who had been despatched with certain instructions to the well-known guerilla chief Mosby, and had been severely wounded in a skirmish which took place the very day of his arrival. Having been left at a plantation within the enemy's lines, he was in a fair way of recovery, when a small party of Federal cavalry entered the house, tore him from his bed, and so ill-treated the poor fellow that his wounds reopened and he died shortly after. All these misfortunes did not fail to cast a gloom over our little military family; and it was an intense relief to us when, on the 9th of April, we received orders to march to Culpepper Court-house; and the ringing of the bugle sounding to horse and announcing the commencement of a new campaign, with all its wild excitement, raised our spirits once more to the highest pitch.
Antoinette (search for this): chapter 20
h our high ridingbootings covered with mud, and splashed uniforms, presented a contrast to the elegant dresses of the ladies and the correct costumes of the gentlemen, the favour with which we were regarded was none the less marked. Stuart was in his element, and the gayest of the gay. When the ceremony was over we amused ourselves with music, songs, and tableaux vivants. In one of the latter I had the honour of performing a prominent part in conjunction with a very pretty young lady, Miss Antoinette P., with whom it was my pleasing office to form a group imitating the coat of arms of the State of Virginia, bearing the motto, Sic semper tyrannis, which the soldiers translated, Take your foot off my neck, from the action of the principal figure in the group in question, representing Liberty, who, with a lance in her right hand, is standing over the conquered and prostrate tyrant, and apparently trampling on him with her heel. To play the part of the poor tyrant who is suffering this
headquarters, and the distance thence to our friend's house was not less than five-and-forty miles. Nevertheless, to leave still a chance open, and hoping I might persuade Stuart to undertake the ride, I sent a courier with a relay of horses to Bowling-Green, a village about half-way between Moss-Neck and the spot we were to reach. It seemed as if the review would never be over; hour after hour flitted by, till at last it was a quarter to three by the time all was over, when Stuart rode over f ready, only observing that as the wedding ceremony was appointed at seven o'clock we should have some difficulty in being present. Oh, that's nothing. rejoined the General-let's be off. And away we started at the rate of ten miles an hour. Bowling-Green was reached in capital time, where we mounted our relays; and before the clock struck the appointed hour of seven we rode through the gate of the hospitable Dundee. A joyful and most demonstrative reception awaited us, for our arrival
were unabated. Joyous sounds of song and laughter broke forth continuously from amidst the camps, and the bands of all the different regiments played merrily every evening. A theatre even was erected, where the performances of negro minstrels and other entertainments afforded immense delight to officers and men, and attracted all the young ladies of the neighbourhood. About the middle of the month some interruption to the usual monotonous routine of our camp was made by the visit of Colonel Bramston, of the battalion of Grenadier Guards stationed in Canada, with whom I, with great pleasure, shared the accommodation of my tent. The shortness of his furlough, however, deprived us of his presence a few days after his arrival. Just at this time a pressing invitation came to the General and myself from our friends at Dundee, in Hanover County, where Dr P.‘s eldest daughter was to be married to Dr Fontaine, one of our comrades then acting as surgeon to Fitz Lee's brigade. That we coul
Redmond Burke (search for this): chapter 20
nd on the day following, still deeply affected by the loss of his young friend, and greatly grieved that he had not been able to attend the funeral ceremonies. Having obtained leave to remain in Richmond a few days, I saw many of my old friends again, and among them Lawley, through whom I made acquaintance with Prince Polignac, who was serving as a brigadier-general of infantry in the Western Army. On my return to headquarters another sad message came to us, announcing the death of Captain Redmond Burke, who was attached to our Staff. While with a scouting party on the Upper Potomac with two of his sons, he had been imprudent enough to remain during the night at a house close to the enemy's position at Shepherdstown. The Yankees, informed by treachery of his presence, sent a body of cavalry after him, who surrounded the house and summoned the inmates to surrender; but the brave trio sought to break through the compact circle, and in the attempt Burke himself was killed, one son wa
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