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n I approached. with as Christian an expression as my principles would allow, and asked the question--Shall I try to make you more comfortable, sir? all I got for my pains was a gruff- No; I'll do it myself. Here's your Southern chivalry, with a witness, thought I, dumping the basin down before him, thereby quenching a strong desire to give him a summary baptism, in return for his ungraciousness; for my angry passions rose, at this rebuff, in a way that would have scandalized good Dr. Watts. He was a disappointment in all respects, (the rebel, not the blessed Doctor,) for he was neither fiendish, romantic, pathetic, or anything interesting; but a long, fat man, with a head like a burning bush, and a perfectly expressionless face: so I could dislike him without the slightest drawback, and ignored his existence from that day forth. One redeeming trait he certainly did possess, as the floor speedily testified; for his ablutions were so vigorously performed, that his bed soon
Josephine Skinner (search for this): chapter 3
when I brought one, regarded his swollen face with a dolorous expression, as he muttered- I vow to gosh, that's too bad I warn't a bad looking chap before, and now I'm done for; won't there be a thunderin‘ scar? and what on earth will Josephine Skinner say? He looked up at me with his one eye so appealingly, that I controlled my risibles, and assured him that if Josephine was a girl of sense, she would admire the honorable scar, as a lasting proof that he had faced the enemy, for all women thought a wound the best decoration a brave soldier could wear. I hope Miss Skinner verified the good opinion I so rashly expressed of her, but I shall never know. The next scrubbee was a nice-looking lad, with a curly brown mane, honest blue eyes, and a merry mouth. He lay on a bed, with one leg gone, and the right arm so shattered that it must evidently follow: yet the little sergeant was as merry as if his afflictions were not worth lamenting over; and when a drop or two of salt w
such times as the owners thereof were ready to depart homeward or campward again. The letters dictated to me, and revised by me, that afternoon, would have made an excellent chapter for some future history of the war; for, like that which Thackeray's Ensign Spooney wrote his mother just before Waterloo, they were full of affection, pluck, and bad spelling ; nearly all giving lively accounts of the battle, and ending with a somewhat sudden plunge from patriotism to provender, desiring Marm, Mary Ann, or ( Aunt Peters, to send along some pies, pickles, sweet stuff, and apples, to yourn in haste, Joe, Sam, or Ned, as the case might be. My little Sergeant insisted on trying to scribble something with his left hand, and patiently accomplished some half dozen lines of hieroglyphics, which he gave me to fold and direct, with a boyish blush, that rendered a glimpse of My dearest Jane, unnecessary, to assure me that the heroic lad had been more successful in the service of Commander-in-Chi
ment was reduced to a very fragmentary condition, both by the blacks and whites, who ornamented our hospital with their presence. Pocket books, purses, miniatures, and watches, were sealed u), labelled, and handed over to the matron, till such times as the owners thereof were ready to depart homeward or campward again. The letters dictated to me, and revised by me, that afternoon, would have made an excellent chapter for some future history of the war; for, like that which Thackeray's Ensign Spooney wrote his mother just before Waterloo, they were full of affection, pluck, and bad spelling ; nearly all giving lively accounts of the battle, and ending with a somewhat sudden plunge from patriotism to provender, desiring Marm, Mary Ann, or ( Aunt Peters, to send along some pies, pickles, sweet stuff, and apples, to yourn in haste, Joe, Sam, or Ned, as the case might be. My little Sergeant insisted on trying to scribble something with his left hand, and patiently accomplished some h
ucked me over them fences was a caution, I tell you. Next day I was most as black as that darkey yonder, lickin‘ plates on the sly. This is bully coffee, ain't it? Give us another pull at it, and I'll be obleeged to you. I did; and, as the last gulp subsided, he said, with a rub of his old handkerchief over eyes as well as mouth: Look a here; I've got a pair a earbobs and a handkercher pin I'm a goin‘ to give you, if you'll have them; for you're the very moral oa Lizy Sylvester, poor Eph's wife: that's why I signalled you to come over here. They aint much, I guess, but they'll do to memorize the rebs by. Burrowing under his pillow, he produced a little bundle of what he called truck, and gallantly presented me with a pair of earrings, each representing a cluster of corpulent grapes, and the pin a basket of astonishing fruit, the whole large and coppery enough for a small warming-pan. Feeling delicate about depriving him of such valuable relics, I accepted the earrings al
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