Tried and True,
LOVE AND LOYALTY
A Story of the Great Rebellion.
MRS. BELLA Z. SPEXCER.
W. J. HOLLAND,
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1S6G, by
MRS. BELLA Z. SPENCER,
In the Clerk's office of the District Court of the District of Massa-
SAMUEL BOTTLES AND COMPANY,
PRINTERS AND ISINDEES.
I VENTURE before the public once more, in the character
of an author, with much diffidence, and shall depend largely
upon the truthfulness of the narrative, for public favor, apart
from any claim to literary merit. Frecpnent visits to the
Army of the South-west durinsr the war, together with un-
usual advantages for becoming familiar with the singular
events which marked the progress of our national strife, have
placed me in possession of the plot, and nearly all of the de-
tails, of this story. I spent several weeks at Paducah in
1862, leaving it after the battle of Shiloh; and it was while
traveling thither, I first came to know the heroine of my story.
Afterwards I met her at Corinth, at which place I spent a part
of two summers â the first before the battle of Corinth â the
second in the year following, while General G. M. Dodge was
there in command, and with whom my husband then served
as Chief of Staff. "While there, and afterward when in Ten-
nessee and Alabama, life at head-quarters with Mrs. Dodge
opened to me facilities for gathering the materials used in this
work, which I could not have gained in any other position.
Many visits were made to the sick and wounded, and the
miserable Refugees who swarmed through our lines. Man?
were the long horseback rides into the country, passing fearv-
lcssly beyond our pickets to any place which our fancy might
select ; and it is to such a life I owe what knowledge I possess
of the suffering, wrong and oppression of a people whose posi-
tion was worse than that of the slave.
In the narrative, I have touched but lightly upon the condi-
tion of the Refugees. Here, however, 1 ftsl constrained to say
a word in their favor, hoping to win for them a sentiment of
pity, at least, from those who may read. It is true that many
of them seemed ungrateful for the care bestowed upon them.
If they were not, ignorance must be their excuse for the lack
of expression to their feelings. But, in the majority of cases, I
found no cause for complaint. They were ignorant indeed â
driven from their homes in the most forlorn and destitute con-
dition, while the fact that their husbands, sons, brothers, were
in the rebel army, served to cut them off from all sympathy.
Often the met that those men were not left to choose, seemed
to have been forgotten ; and a conscripted rebel was as much
a rebel as those who had willingly taken up arms against the
Government. "We did not pause to remember that their help-
less position rather rendered them subjects of pity than dis-
trust, depending, in most cases, upon the wealthy planters for
the very roofs which sheltered them. They were too poor to
emigrate when the hour of danger drew near, and had no other
alternative for persecution and abuse than to allow themselves
to be driven forth like cattle to the slaughter, leaving their
families behind. Then, as our army advanced, and those who
had the means fled before it, the wretched beings, who had no
friends and no means for following, were forced to remain and
share the traitors' fate. Sickness, want, even starvation, came
upon them, when the hand of humanity was withheld. They
were compelled to leave their homes, and wander friendless
through the land. Still worse was it for those who had
braved the rebels and entered the Union army. Their houses
were burned â the one cow and h\v pigs slaughtered â if they
had a horse, it was taken from them, and thus were they set
adrift upon the world. Perhaps the clothes they wore were
all that was left them upon earth, and thus they came through
our lines, weary, foot-sore, ragged, with babes dying upon the
breast, and little children famished for want of food. What
wonder if they died by dozens! What wonder if many
seemed ungrateful, when help was extended to them with
doubtful sympathy, and few would believe their story of
loyalty ! Surely it was not on those â poor, ignorant, lowly â
the burthen of treachery should have rested. They were the
victims, and no thought of chiding ever entered my heart, if
they failed to utter the thanks which I knew it must be hard
to feel under the circumstances. It seems to me I could not
have been grateful for what they received; and yet the ma-
jority were grateful in their way. A poor woman's "I don't
know what we'd "a' done ef it hadn't 'a' been fur you," was
equivalent to the heartiest expression of thanks. And who
could doubt the sentiments which made them cling tearfully
to one's hand- and garments when the hour of parting came,
sobbing out blessings and prayers that alone could have arisen
out of gratitude? I do not exaggerate when I say that the
Refugees were more pitiable than the Negroes.
T\ hile in North Alabama visiting my husband's regiment,
which was composed mainly of native Alabamians, just before
man took the field for the great campaign, I saw, on the
banks of the Tennessee Eiver, the ruins of "Passiver Hall" â
abandoned by the rebels, and burned by them to prevent its
falling into our hands when we took possession of that country.
As much as possible, I have avoided going into the revolt-
ing details of the cruel abuses of the slave. Every southern
sympathizer will deny the truth of those stories, and every
northern heart is sick of contemplating them, even through
the medium of the pen. This much I must say, that even
Mrs. Stowe's representations â claimed to be the exceptions â
cannot give any exaggerated idea of the truth.
Up to my sixteenth year, my home, from early childhood,
was in the South, and in the midst of slavery. What knowl-
edge I claim is personal ; and it is because of this knowledge
I am now, and ever have been, a decided republican. It was
bad enough before the war, and extended throughout the
South. After the war began, those who kept their slaves
with them, were often fiendish. Two strong cases were
brought to our notice in Middle Tennessee, while we had
our head-quarters at Pulaski. Mrs. Bane, whose husband
commanded the Fiftieth Illinois Regiment in the Sixteenth
Army Corps, was then at Lynnville, and one day when Mrs.
Dodge and I drove up to see her, we found a queer, bright
little specimen of humanity in her house, in whom we became
greatly interested. That little creature, the daughter of a
pretty mulatto woman, was left friendless and alone in the
world. Her master, also her father, was in the rebel army.
Her mother had been tied across a barrel by a brutal overseer,
and beaten severely, and then left in that position all night.
When morning came, she was dead. The mistress, a very
short time afterwards, while angrily flourishing what they call
a "bull whip" on those plantations, over a couple of small
negro boys, fell dead with it grasped in her hand. Thus little
Georgie was cast adrift upon the world, and as Mrs. Bane
was about to leave the place, with no prospect of being settled
for some time, we took the child with us to head-quarters
where we kept her until Ave were sent North, and Mrs. Linton,
another of our corps ladies, took her home with the intention
of rearing her with the care her intelligence required.
The other instance was in Pulaski, the town we occupied,
and the lady was a Mrs. Jackson, who ostentatiously came out
upon the sidewalk to welcome our troops when they entered
the place, claiming to be loyal. She sent invitations fre-
quently to General Dodge and his officers to dine and take
tea with her, until she had won the confidence of nearly all in
her professions of loyalty. But a short time after I joined
Mrs. Dodixe there in 1S64, news was brought to the General
that she was cruelly abusing a negro girl, whom she had beaten
shamefully, then locked in the smoke-house, and kept upon
bread and water for forty-eight hours ! She sent numberless
notes to the General pleading excuses, and begins; for inter-
views, until he ordered a stern and prompt cessation of the
correspondence through his Chief of Staff.
I might give many other such instances, with authentic
names, dates, etc., were it necessary; but too much of this is
known to allow the matter now to drop ere the negro shall
have accorded to him all rights before the laws of his country.
Perhaps many will think that, since the institution of slavery
has been abolished, cruelty is at an end. If so, the following
paragraph from a letter just received by my husband from the
surgeon of his old regiment, a native Alabamian, and still a
resident there, may not be devoid of interest :
"The rebels here are rebels yet, and we find as much dis-
affection as ever. Union men are scarcely safe in the country.
They have arrogated to themselves a great deal, and are very
sanguine of another revolution, which shall, somehow, end in
the re-enslavement of the negroes. Meanwhile, they so man-
age matters, that the negroes who arc able to work, are in the
horrible position of slaves without masters â slaves as to their
labor and treatment, without the benefits which the interests
and cupidity of their masters formerly secured to them in the
way of medical attendance, good food, clothing, etc. The
weak, infirm, aged, and the women and children who cannot
work, are turned adrift to shift for themselves or starve. The
Union men who lift their voices in their behalf, are marked,
persecuted and threatened with death. Doctor I. W. Stewart
and his father-in-law, Emory, are displaying more cruelty to
the negroes than I have ever before known in this country.
A few days since, they tied one across a log, and well-nigh
beat him to death for the most trivial offense, such as would
not have been noticed in a state of slavery. They threaten
me with death because I am known as the consistent friend of
the Government and the Freedmen, and we are all expecting
to be obliged to make up a party and leave the country for a
home somewhere in the West."
Such is the present state of affairs in the South, where the
men who have dared to remain loyal, cannot go back to their
homes in peace, though peace has been declared. If, there-
fore, any attribute to the coloring of imagination the events
of the story which I have given them, it is still within their
power to prove, by personal observation, the entire truthful-
ness of the pictures drawn.
For the description of the battles of Shiloh and Fort Fisher.
I am much more largely indebted to the author of "Sher-
man's Campaigns" and Mr. Abbot, than to my own ability.
All the events of Fort Fisher I owe to Mr. Abbot, though it
is not in his words that I have given them. The descrip-
tion of Shiloh in "Sherman's Campaigns," by one of his
officers, being the finest I have anywhere seen, I have taken
the liberty of adding to it, the meager contents of my private
memoranda, as made from accounts of various officers at the
time of the battle. Here, also, I have changed the phrase-
ology somewhat, perhaps to the author's disgrace, but in using
it, surely I may lay claim to a high appreciation of his more
accurate knowledge of the position of the forces, than it was
possible for me to gain without being engaged in the strife â
which, luckily, is not a woman's province. For the description
of Corinth, I have depended entirely upon memory, touching
more upon the individual results than the general strife.
If, from the whole combined, I have been enabled to interest
the readers, and give a correct picture of life during those
" stormy times " which can only be remembered as a dream by
those who were not personally involved in them, I shall feel
satisfied with the hope that my work has not been wholly
without purpose. B. z. S.
Philadelphia, Apri', 1SG6.
AUTHOR TO THE READER.
TRUTHFULNESS OF TIIE STORY â ITS SINGULAR EVENTS DE-
SCRIBED FROM ACTUAL OBSERVATION* â AUTHOR'S RESIDENCE
AT TIIE SOUTH BEFORE THE GREAT REBELLION â HER POSI-
TION IN THE AVAR PASSIVER HALL UNIONISTS AND REFU-
GEES TREATMENT OF TIIE SLAVES CONDUCT OF EX-REBELS
SINCE THE DECLARATION OF PEACE, 3
A NIGHT OX THE MISSISSIPPI.
HEROES AND HEROINES â THE SPIRIT IN WHICH OUR YOUNG MEN
ENGAGED IN TIIE CONTEST THE FEDERAL OFFICER TIIE
WOMEN FOR THE UNION AND LIBERTY, WITH HEART AND
HAND â AN UNKNOWN HEROINE, 17
BURNING OF A MISSISSIPPI STEAMER.
NOBILITY OF CHARACTER PREPARING FOR A FEARFUL EMER-
GENCY DESTRUCTION OF TIIE STEAMER, 25
AFTER THE DISASTER.
A GLOOMY AND COMFORTLESS NIGHT â PATIENT SUFFERING â
WAITING AND HOPING FOR SUCCOR â A MESSENGER OF RELIEF
â ALONE WITH HER SORROW, .' 33
SURMISES AND QUESTIONINGS NOBLY MET. PAGE
HEART-WORK AND BRAIN-WORK â APPROACHING CAIRO â LIFE'S
PURPOSES AXD REQUIREMENTS â UNSATISFACTORY ADIEUX â
LOOKING HOPEFULLY IXTO THE FUTURE," 45
LIFE AND DEATH IN A MILITARY LTOSPITAL.
LAST J-ZOUR5 OF A SOLDIER â A XEW FIELD OF LABOR â AMONG
THE HOSPITALS AT PADUCAH â TURNING FROM THE PAST TO
THE PEESEXT â SOUTIIERX BLOOD AT BOILLXG HEAT, 57
HOSPITAL LIFE AT PADUCAH.
OXE OF THE MAXY WAR-VILLAINS â CHECKED IX niS yTLLAIN-
OUS PRACTICES â DOUBTS, SURMISES AXD SUSPICIOXS â LABOR-
IXG AXD WAITING â AX UNEXPECTED ARRIVAL, 69
DEFYING A HOSPITAL KNAVE A LITTLE PROGRESS IN
COXTEMPT, XOT HATRED LOVE MAKIXG STRAXGE nAVOC ABOUT
ART AXD ARTISTS â A NOBLE AMBITION â BAFFLED AXD KEPT
AT BAY â NIGHT VIGILS, 80
TAKING A YOUNG SOLDIER HOME TO DIE RUMORS OF A
LOVE CONQUERING AMBITION â WITH THE SICK SOLDIER BOY â
THE CALM BEFORE A STORM TURNING TO TOE HOSPITAL FOR
RELIEF â "FOR HIS COUNTRY" â FIGHTING AT PITTSBURG LAND-
THE BATTLE OF PITTSBURG LANDING.
TnE FIRST DAY'S BATTLE â CAPTAIN WILFER TAKEN PRISOXER â
HOW THE VICTORY AT SIIILOII WAS WOX SACRIFICES TO THE
GOD OF WAR, 108
GOING TO THE BATTLE-FIELD. PAGE>
after the fight â painful suspense and forebodings â on
the way to the field â making new acquaintances â
characterization of companions: two nurses from high
society; surgeons; an englishman â society from differ-
ent STAND-POINTS â TRUTHS PLAINLY SPOKEN â AT PITTSBURG
INCIDENTS AND HORRORS OF A BATTLE-FIELD.
AMONG THE WOUNDED â "A TRUMP" SOLDIER â A PATENT MEDI-
CINE PEDDLER â BURYING THE DEAD â A NARROW ESCAPE â
MAIMED FOR LIFE â MAJOR NOBLE, 131
AMONG TIIE WOUNDED AND DYING.
FEMININE HEROES â AN APPEAL FOR WOMAN â UNTIRING IN
WORKS OF MERCY â HELPLESS AND DEPENDENT â " FAITHFUL
TO THE LAST" â TANTALIZED AND DISAPPOINTED, 147
PRISON PENS AND REFUGEES.
PRISON RATIONS â DYING BY INCHES â DESTITUTION OF SOUTHERN
REFUGEES â AN UNLOOKED FOR YISITOR, 1G3
ESCAPING FROM PRISON.
THE MANNER OF ESCAPE â A SECOND TIME CAPTURED â FIENDISH
AND BRUTAL MURDERS â ONCE MORE AT LIBERTY â A CONFLICT
OF LOVE AND DUTY, 172
PLEADING FOR THE LIFE OF A REBEL PRISONER.
PLEADING IN VAIN â ONE MORE EFFORT â AN UNPLEASANT PRE-
DICAMENT AN UNEXPECTED MEETING OLD MEMORIES RE-
REFUGEES AND THEIR PITIFUL CONDITION DISAP-
POINTMENT AND FAITHLESSNESS. PAGE .
"WHITE TRASH" A PITIFUL SIGHT â HOMELESS AND FRIENDLESS
â ANOTHER FIERY ORDEAL â LASTING SYMPATHY AND KIND-
NESS â A FLAG OF TRUCE â A CRUSHING DISAPPOINTMENT, . . . 19S
A SERIOUS COMPLICATION AND ITS RESULT.
AN INTERVIEW WITH GENERAL GRANT â FOR THE SAKE OF RE-
VENGE A DISCOMFITED MEDDLER A FRANK CONFESSION
KIND AND CONSIDERATE, 215
A HOME OF AFFLUENCE ITS BEAUTIES AND ITS
A HOME OF AFFLUENCE â OPPORTUNITIES FOR DOING GOOD â THE
CLOVEN FOOT APPEARING â OUT UPON A SEA OF TROUBLE â
CRUELTY AND HARD-HEARTEDNESS â UNHOLY AMBITION AND
SELFISHNESS â SOMETHING WRONG, 227
SOME OF THE WORKINGS OF THE "PECULIAR INSTI-
NEW AND BRIGHT HOPES CRUSHED â UNPLEASANT MEDITATIONS
SUFFERING IN SILENCE DOMESTIC DISCORD AGAIN FRESH
INDIGNATION AND DEFIANCE â BRUTALITY AND FIENDISHNESS, 212
MORE DETAILS OF LIFE AT PASSIVER HALL.
TROUBLE AT THE NEGRO QUARTERS THE GARLAND OF HOPE
FADING â A VISION OF THE NIGHT â STILL WATERS RUN DEEP, 255
SHARP PRACTICE AND BRUTAL DOINGS.
VIGILANT AND WATCHFUL ATTENTION â SUCCESSFUL STRATEGY â
NOCTURNAL MYSTERIES â A SLAVE WHIPPED TO DEATHâ MORE
WHIPPINGS THREATENED â DEFIANCE AND SARCASM â A CROWN-
ING ACT OF BRUTALITY â FORMAL APOLOGIES â GETTING RID OF
FLIGHT OF "GOODS AXD CHATTELS.*' PiCS
A SOUTHERN WOMAN' WITH NORTHERN VIEWS â ANOTHER START-
LING INCIDENT â A STEP TOWARDS FREEDOM â NOCTURNAL MYS-
TERIES AGAIN â BLOOD-HOUNDS IN SERVICE â AID TOR THE
HELPLESS â PLANS FOR ESCAPE â SUCCESSFUL NEGRO STRAT-
EGY â PREPARING FOR THE BLOOD-HOUNDS, 282
BLOOD -HOUNDS AXD nELL-HOUXDS â BANISHED
THE NEGRO-HUNTERS BAFFLED â A MESSENGER OF GLADNESS â
THREATENING CLOUDS OF WAR â BANISHED FROM HOME, . .
THE BATTLE OF CORINTH, AND SOME OF ITS
TO ANOTHER FIELD OF DUTY â OPENING OF THE BATTLE OF
CORINTH â ON THE BATTLE-FIELD AT NIGHT â DYING AT THE
TOST OF DUTY â AMONG THE DEAD AND DYING STRICKEN AND
CHASTENED ANEW â GIVING CHRISTIAN BURIAL, 312
THE CLOUD WITH A SILVER LINING.
NEITHER FORSAKEN NOR FORGOTTEN â FROM DARKNESS TO DAY-
LIGHT â A LITTLE SUNLIGHT ONCE MOREâ WISDOM FROM BIT-
TER EXPERIENCE â SAD MEMORIES REVIVED, 32S
LOVE FROM AN UNEXPECTED QUARTER.
WOOING WITHOUT WINNING â A SHADOWED PATHWAY, 339
A DAWXIXG AS OF BRIGHTER DAY-.
A SURPRISE VISIT â LOVE-GIFTS AND GIETS OF LOVE â FUTURE
HOPES AND PROMISES A QUIET WEDDING AN EVIL GENIUS
AGAIN AT WORK, 310
THE CAPTURE OF FORT FISHER. PAGE .
APPROACH OF THE FLEET â THE BOMBARDMENT â CLOSE FIGHT-
ING STIRRING SCENES â FEATS OF VALOR â THE TRIUMPH, . . 3G0
AN UNLOCKED FOR DENOUEMENT.
ONE HUSBAND TOO MANY â A CONFLICT OF NATURES AGAIN â
ON SECRET SERVICE â OFF FOR CANADA â TO "WASHINGTON AND
BACK â DETECTIVES AT WORK, . . , 369
THE LAST ACT IN THE TRAGEDY, WITH BRIGHTER
CONSPIRACIES AND MYSTERIES â DESPAIR AND REMORSE â THE
END OF THE TRANSGRESSOR â THRICE MARRIED â ONE LEFT
A NIGHT ON THE MISSISSIPPI
Kight was closing in, gloomy and cheerless. A pair of
dark, earnest eyes looked up to the starless sky with a wistful
yearning in their depths that seemed both to plead and ques-
tion. But it was a girlish face, over which the black plume
of her hat drooped softly ; and the slight figure around which
she drew her shawl with a shiver, was tall and gracefuL
Only for the earnest eyes, and the quiet dignity of manner,
there would have been little by which an observer might trace
indications of an unusual strength of character ; yet this tall,
pale girl, who stood upon the guards of the steamer that
gloomy evening in March of '62, was destined to fill no insig-
nificant position in a land struggling for liberty and peace.
Standing a little distance from her, a young Federal officer
seemed to watch the shore with its dark, panoramic beauty,
as they passed down the Mississippi. But, oftener, his eyes
were bent upon the sweet face upturned so wistfully in the
dusky light. He noted the luxuriant sweep of golden brown
hair from the white temples ; the rounded beauty of the deli-
cate features ; the full lip, warm, and firm, and tender. The
face was pale now, but a passing change of feeling could bring
the warm, bright color into the cheeks, glowing vividly through
the transparent skin, like the rich bloom of a ripe peach.
One little hand was ungloved and rested lightly upon the
guards, white and soft, and dimpled like a child's. Perhaps
18 A STORY OF THE GREAT REBELLION".
this Federal officer had a weakness for pretty hands, for his
eyes fell to where it rested more than once, and a pleasant
smile crept about his handsome mouth as he made a mental
observation with regard to the fact that she wore no ring
upon the third finger.
Both had stood there for an hour ; both had watched the
steeples of St. Louis fade from sight, and listened to the clang-
in g machinery as they steamed onward ; but neither had spoken
or given a sign. In truth, she was so deeply absorbed in her
own thoughts, she was unconscious of his close proximity ; and
he was too much of a gentleman to force himself upon her no-
tice by any remarks, without an introduction. As she shivered
and drew her shawl about her, evidently preparing to retire
within her state-room, which opened directly behind her, he
was casting about in his thoughts for a means of gratifying
the strong desire that had found a place in his heart. He
wanted to know her, to hear her speak, and watch her face
while talking. Those black eyes, he felt assured, would be
glorious in the light of any wakened interest.
As she turned away to enter her room, he heard her sigh â
one long, weary sigh, that made him feel strangely sad in re-
membering it. He unconsciously echoed the quiet plaint of a
doubting heart, as he paced slowly down the guards to the gen-
tlemen's cabin, where a number of men were busy with cards.
"Have a game, Captain?" asked one of the gentlemen,
looking up as he entered. " Take my place ; I am tired."
" No, thank you ; I never indulge in such amusements."
He passed on quietly to where the Captain of the boat sat
over a paper, with a cigar between his lips, and took a chair
" We seem to be going on nicely. What time do you ex-
pect to make Cairo ? "
" Sometime to-morrow night, if no accident occurs to pre-
vent. Anxious to get there ? "
" Rather. My men are at Bird's Point, and I have not
seen them for some time. "When our brave Lyon fell, I was
HEROES AND HEROINES. 19
badly wounded, and am only now fit for service ag;ain. It
has been a sore trial to me to remain idle all this time. But
then ; ' they also serve who stand and wait.' Perhaps my
confinement has not been altogether useless. I have had time
for reflection, and I feel that I am a better man now to stand
up for my country's weal, than I was before."
Captain Noma looked at him sharply, puffing at his cigar
with a zeal worthy a better occupation.
" Strange," he said at length, " how hot young blood is.
Not one of you, man or woman, in the bloom of life, who are
not willing to give up all for the cause you espouse. I sup-
pose if death should meet you to-morrow, you would not
shrink from it, urged on by your present hope of glory."
" Sense of right, sir ! " answered the young man, with a
glow upon his fine face. " I should not scorn the glory if
fairly won in my country's service, however. Xo man could
ask higher honor than to be crowned with the approbation
deserved in her defense. But I hope no selfish wish for per-
sonal aggrandizement actuates me in the course I am pursu-
ing. Nay, I am sure it does not."
Captain Xorris smiled a little doubtfully. He was older
and less enthusiastic ; but he was a loyal man, if practical and
worldly ; therefore we will not judge him too harshly.
" "Well, well ! I hope it will all turn out right â that your
good arm may help to save our land, and our dear land may
gloriously reward you. Heroes and heroines ! Of these there
will be many before this war is ended. Cast your eye up the
cabin. Do you see a young lady going to the piano ? That girl
will be a heroine, or I am greatly mistaken. You would not
think it, unless you could hear her talk ; but let her once speak
on the subject, and you forget her baby face, and fancy it is a
strong man's spirit speaking through her lips. She is going to
give herself to her country in her Avay â to attend the sick and
wounded wherever she can do so properly. I can't say that I