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CESSATION OF THE CONFLICT.

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ments with my trusty field-glass, I had the full opportunity of witnessing the wonderful efficiency and accuracy of this fine gun. When the wholly ineffective boni bardment of our position had been carried on for some time by the Federal batteries, I heard all at once the sharp clear report of the Whitworth, and distinctly saw the ball strike, at a distance of four miles from the gun, right in the midst of the enemy's artillery, which, changing its position again and again as the Whitworth missiles became more and more destructive, at last altogether retired. Firing ceased entirely with the coming darkness; and as we saw by the Yankees going into camp that the pursuit would not be continued by them until the following day, we determined to give rest to our weary men and horses, and the glow of our bivouac-fires was soon reflected from the mountains around us.

VOL. II.

С

CHAPTER XII.

NIGHT - RIDE TO JACKSON'S CAMP

RETURN

ACROSS

THE

MOUNTAINS-WE ARE CUT OFF BY THE ENEMY-FIGHT
AT BARBER'S CROSS - ROADS- RETREAT TOWARDS ORLEANS

AND ACROSS THE RAPPAHANNOCK-FIGHTS NEAR WATERLOO

BRIDGE AND JEFFERSON-CROSSING OF THE HAZEL RIVER

BIVOUAC IN THE SNOW-SCOUT WITH GENERAL STUART

HEADQUARTERS NEAR CULPEPPER COURT-HOUSE-RECON-
NAISSANCE IN FORCE, AND FIGHT NEAR EMMETSVILLE.

4th November.-The deep sleep which succeeded to the fatigues of the previous day had hardly fallen upon me, when I was aroused by the touch of Stuart's hand upon my shoulder. The General's wish was that I should bear him company, with several of our couriers and Dr Eliason, who was well acquainted with all the roads in the neighbouring county, to the headquarters of General Jackson, who had encamped about twelve miles off, on the opposite side of the Shenandoah, near the village of Millwood. The command of our cavalry had been temporarily transferred to Colonel Rosser, who had instructions to hold his position as long as

NIGHT-RIDE TO GENERAL JACKSON.

35

possible, and to keep General Stuart informed by frequent messengers of the progress of the impending fight.

A cold wind was blowing in our faces as we trotted through the village of Paris in the direction of the Shenandoah, and it was freezing hard when we reached the stream, about midnight, at a point where ordinarily it was easily fordable, but where we found it so much swollen by the recent rains in the mountains that we were compelled to cross it swimming. We reached the opposite bank in safety, but chilled through and with soaking garments. Such was the intensity of the frost, that in a very few minutes our cloaks and blankets were frozen quite stiff; and the water, as it dripped from the flanks of our horses, congealed into icicles, and the legs of the animals were rough with ice. But a sharp ride, as it promoted the circulation of the blood, kept us tolerably warm, and at two o'clock in the morning we arrived at Jackson's encampment. Stuart, being unwilling in his great tenderness for Old Stonewall to disturb his slumbers, proposed that we should seek rest for the remaining hours of the night; but in our frozen condition, it being first necessary that we should thaw out our garments before we could dry them, we preferred building a huge fire of logs, around whose cheerful blaze we

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STUART AT THE BREAKFAST-TABLE.

sat and smoked our pipes, though, with teeth chattering like castanets, this was smoking under difficulties. Jackson, who, in accordance with his usual habit, awoke with the earliest glimmer of day, no sooner discovered us than he expressed his regret at our evident discomfort, but gave us the readiest consolation by ordering breakfast to be immediately prepared. Nothing was better calculated to restore our good spirits than the summons to the General's large breakfast-table, where the aroma rose in clouds of vapour from an immense coffee-pot, and where stood a magnificent haunch of venison, cold, a present from a neighbouring planter.

The good cheer had the happiest effect on Stuart, who enlivened our repast with abundant anecdote and the recital of many a joke at the expense of his companions-in-arms. It was his special delight to tease me on account of the little mistakes I still frequently committed in speaking the English language, which he always cleverly turned so as to excite the merriment of his auditors. During one of our many conversations concerning Old Stonewall, his personal traits and military character, while intending to say, “It warms my heart when he talks to me," I had employed the expression, “ It makes my heart burn,” &c. Stuart now took occasion to repeat my remark, and represented me most absurdly as having

KINDNESS OF JACKSON.

37

declared that “it gave me the heartburn to hear Jackson talk,” which of course provoked the roaring laughter of our little company. Jackson himself alone did not participate in the boisterous mirth. Looking me straight in the face with his large expressive eyes, and pressing my hand warmly across the table as just the faintest smile broke over his features, he said, “Never care, Major, for Stuart's jokes; we understand each other, and I am proud of the friendship of so good a soldier and so daring a cavalier as you are.” I was conscious of a blush reddening my cheeks under my beard at this, but I felt also a glow of pride, and I would not at that moment have exchanged the simple, earnest tribute of the great warrior for all the orders and crosses of honour of Europe. “Hurrah for Old Von! and now let us be off,” said Stuart, and slapping me on the back to conceal his own slight embarrassment, he rose from the table, followed by his companions. In a few minutes we rode off at a gallop to fresh scenes of excitement and activity.

In Virginia the vicissitudes of temperature are great and sudden, the weather frequently changing from biting frost to genial warmth in a few hours ; and we experienced this pleasant alternation as we rode forth into the brilliant sunshine of the clear November morning.

To avoid the disagreeable

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