Joseph Cross.

Camp and field. Papers from the portfolio of an army chaplain (Volume bk.3-4) online

. (page 20 of 24)
Online LibraryJoseph CrossCamp and field. Papers from the portfolio of an army chaplain (Volume bk.3-4) → online text (page 20 of 24)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

Dr. Bond to "cultivate whiskers by the acre for the
benelit of the missionary cause!" Two years he
Jabors in the service of the American Seamen's
Friend Society, travelling extensively, pleading
for the sailor, and collecting many tbousand dol-
lars^ for the noble charity he represents. During
these two 3'ears'he translates from the "Welsh the
Sermons of CiiKiST^rAS Eva"ns, and writes the Life
of that famous preacher; but his Yankee pub-
lisher, Janjes Harm stead, clandestinely secures a
copyright in his own name, and then refuses to
pa\' the translator and author one dollar for the

Soon after the severan-ce of the Church he
comes to the South, and is stationed in New Or-
leans. At the "instance of Dr. Bascom, without
any intimation of sucli intention, the trustees and
faculty of Transylvania University confer upo^
him the honorary title of Ariium Magister^ -and
after a few months he is called to the chair of
BeUe.s-Lettresm that institution. On the 7th day

THK t;UAI'I,AI\. 317

of Sf'ptembor, 1847, having armed himself with
mercniT aiKl mnstaixl against tlie yellow-fever,
then fi'ightfully desolating the city, he embarks on
board the steamer '' Wijig and Wing" for his dis-
tant field of labor. At seven o'clock that evening
he is suddenly seir.ed with the premonitory chill,
and soon follow the unmistakable accompanimentB
of the epidemic. lie retires to his state-room,
calls for a servant, endows him with a liberal bonus,
engages his services for the siege, and orders a tub
of hot water. The boy, well pleased with his
gold-piece, promises to stand by him faithfully,
and attend to all his wants. Having furnished the
bath, however, he instantly disappears, and the pa-
tient sees hie face no more. In a few liours the
latter has lost all consciousness, and his oidy rec-
ollection of the next four days is that of the sliad-
owA' apparition of a hand and a spoon, with the taste
of something very bitter and nauseating. Sadden-
ly, a^ if awaking from a confuted dream, he hears
the clatter of the taljle, and sickens at the odor of
the viands. Soon afterward a Kheet of paper,
covered with chloride of lime, is pushed iindcr
the door into his state-room. In a few momenlB
this act ia repeated. Then the door opens, and an
angel stands l)v his side, gazing silently down upon
a sole-leather face which he fails to recognize. The
invalid feebly articulates — "Bishop Paine !" TLq
latter, tor it is he, utters an exclamation of surprise,
and drops a tear upon hia pillow. Never was epis-
copal visitation more opportune or more welcome!
The good bishop* sits, a "nursing father," by the


sick man's couch, till we reach Cairo ; where he
takes him ashore, and remains with him till he he-
gins to recuperate bravely ; then puts him on board
of another boat, and carries him up to Louisville,
and thence to Plarrodsburg ; where gentle-hearted
strangers minister to his comfort, and whence, in
a few weeks, he repairs to his post of dut}^, look-
ing back into the dim valley where he has been
walking hand in hand with death, and penitently
thanking God for the renewal of his probation.

It was not till fifteen years after this that I re-
ceived from the bishop's own lips the story of his
connection with the case. He had boarded the
steamer at Memphis, on his way to the Kentucky
Conference. She was overcrowded with passen-
gers fleeing from the epidemic. The bishop ex-
pected to find yellow-fever among them, but in-
quired for it iu vain. lie sat reading in the cabin
till a late hour of the night, occasionally casting a
glance of suspicion at a state-room which he had
observed locked up as if unoccupied. At length,
about twelve o'clock, the clerk came, opened the
door slightly, thrust in his hand with a spoon in
it, then relocked the door and withdrew. The
bishop followed him, and inquired if there was
some one sick in Ko. 29.

" Yes," replied the clerk, "there is a very sick
man there."

" Who is he ? ])o you know him ?"

"!N"o, sir; but I believe he is a Catholic priest
from iSTew Orleans."

" Has he yellow-fever ?"



" Well, I suppose he has ; and ho 'a going to die

"•Are you doing anything for him?"

" Yes, I give liini a powerful dose of calomel
and laudanum every niglit after the passengers
have retired."

" "Would it not be well to inform some of the
passengers of his case ? Perhaps the poor fellow
might be saved by a little attention. Nursing,
probably, is what he needs."

" I am afraid to let the passengers know it, sir.
It would produce a panic on board, and two-thirds
of them would quit the boat at the next landing."

The bishop dissented from this view of the mat-
ter, and gently remonstrated against such inhu-
manity. To which the clerk replied, that it was
no business of the passengers, and if they would
attend to their own affairs he would try to dis-
charge his duties without their assistance. Thus
rebuffed, the bishop repaired to the captain, laid
the case before him, and with much dilticulty ob-
tained a promise of admission to the sick man's
room in the morning. The morning came, and
with it my ministering angel, as already related.
The passengers, learning the facts, were much in-
censed at the conduct of the clerk, and some of
them threatened him with a cold bath in the Mis-
sissippi. During the four days of my unconscious
continement I must have taken a great quantity
of calomel ; for my mouth was dreadfully excori-
ated, and it was a long time before I could eat any
solid food.



Is it not somewhat remarkable, that just seven
years, to an hour, from the time of my first attack
of yellow-fever, I was seized a second time, in ju'e-
cisely th^ same manner, and not less violently
than before ? Several years' residence in Ken-
tucky and Tennessee had produced such a change'
in my constitution as to render me liable to the
disease again ; and when the yellow fiend made
his appearance in Charleston in 1854, as if in re-
venge for my former escape, he clutched so rough-
ly at me, and fastened so fiercely upon me, that
.the physician in attendance despaired of my recov-
ery, and on three successive days I was reported

I am spinning this yarn too long. Another turn
or two shall finish it.

Having spent three years in Kentucky, the writer
is transferred to the Tennessee Conference, and
stationed in is'ashville ; where he remains two
years, and publishes; hi§ second book, Portraiture
AND Pencillings OF M'es. L. A. L. Cross. Thence
he is removed to South Carolina; preaches four
years in Charleston ; receives the title of Doctor
in Divinity from the University of ISTorth Caroli-
na; publishes The Hebrew Missionary, Head-
lands OF Faith, JPisgah-views of the Promised
Inheritance ; and writes The More Excellent
"Way, which yet remains in manuscript. Then
he goes to Europe, and spends the happiest jeai'
of his life amid the classic scenes of Italy, the
wild sublimities of the Alps, the solitudes of an-
cient ruins, the gayeties of modern capitals, and


the priTi)ros<?f]innk8 of his boyliooU. Returning*
he publishes his travels — a duodecinio vohiine of
five hundred pages — under the title of A Year in
Europe; takes a position in the Spartanburg Fe-
male College, of ^vliich ho is soon after elected
presiUeiit; and continues there long enough to
learn tlie impolicy of employing Yankee teachers
in Southern institutions, and discover what "poi-
son of asps" is within the lips of a wicked woman.
Thence, aifter two ^-ears, he migrates to Texas,
and plays the pedagogue in San Antonia ; but
Providence smiles not upon his enterprise; and
he returns to Tennessee ; takes charge of a church
in Gallatin ; undertakes to publish a volume of
discourses entitled Pulpit Cartoons; and tlie stere-
otype plates are all finished, and the last proofs
revised, and the printijig begun, when the shock
of a sermon which ^he preaches in Sumner stops
the steam-press in Cincinnati !

Hark I It is the voice of artillevN' from Charles-
ton harbor I "The Lord ^of hosts mustereth the
host of the battle!" Volunteer regiments are
organizing and departing. The young men of
my flock have all enlisted. At their own solici-
tation, and that of their noble colonel, I follow
tliem to the^ baidcs of the Potomac.

And the rest of the acts of tlie chaplain, and what
he did at Dumfries, and what he saw at Manassas,
and what he suffered at Corinth, and how he labor-
ed at Columbus, and da1)bled in blood at Perryville,
and dodged bullets at Murfreesboro', with his out-
looks from Tory town, his hair-breadth escapes

3!W • CAMP AND Fn:LI>.

among the mountains, his frightful misfortune in
McLemore's Cove, the picturesque manner in which
he forded the Chickamauga, and ten thousand ex-
periences and observations very important to be
" known and read of all men " — behold, are they
not written in the ill-starred Banner of the Regi-
ment, and the three preceding books of Camp and
Field ?



August, 1884.

" For never can true reconcilement grow,
Where wounds of deadly hate have jiierccd so deoj)." — Milton.

On the sunnnit of the Monte Sani-An(jelo, tower-
ing five thousand feet above the ])h]C waters of the
Mediterranean, my Cicerone lialiano took me by the
hand, and led me down from steep to steep, from
cliff to cliir, till I stood upon a projecting rock, at
whose base, a tlionsand feet below, beat the surf of
the unsounded sea. Even so, in this fourth book,
O most docile and confiding reader! have I con-
ducted thee adown the several terraces of military
promotion — general, colonel, major, captain, ei
altera — from "the cloud-l;apt eminence" of the
commander-in-chief to the rankless position of the
chaplain. And now, as no traveller's guide ever
did, from this last point of the promontory, waving
thee an affectionate adieu, I make the infinite
plunge, and disappear in Yankee Doodle \

I propose not to sketch this gentleman's history,
nor to delineate at length his cliaractcr ; but only
to furnish, from the unwritten annals of the pres-
ent war, a few additional facts, illustrative of his
superior civilization and transcendent moral excel-


Ill the troatj' of peace between the United States
and Mexico, seventeen years since, it was expressly
stipulated — that " upon the entrance of either army
into the territories of the other, women andehil-
(b-en, scholars of ever}" faculty, cnltiyators of the
earth, merchants, artisans, manufacturers, and fish-
ermen, unarmed and inhabiting the fortified towns,
villages, or other places ; and, in general, all people
whose occupations are for the common subsistence
and benefit of mankind ; should be allowed to con-
tinue their employments, unmolesited in their per-
sons "=— that " tlieir houses or goods should not be
burned or otherwise destroyed, nor tlieir cattle*
taken, nor their fields wasted, by the armed forces'
into whose power, by the events of war, they might
happen to fall; but if the necessity should arise to
take anything from them for the use of such armed
force, the same should be paid for at an equitable
price " — that " all churches, hospitals, schools, col-
leges, libraries, and other establishments for chari-
table' and other purposes, should be respected;
and all persons connected with the same protected
in the discharge of their duties and the pursuit of
their vocations." • ::'C'i: .bii

Yankee Doodle and his sister Dixie, Avho were
then living in comparative amity upon difierent
pans of the paternal inheritance, though some jeal-
ousies and heart-burnings concerning their respec-
tive rights and privileges-had for a long time exist-
ed between them, jointly constituted one of the
parties to this important negotiation. Yankee
Doodle soon began to treat Dixie very unjustly and


■cruelly, claimincr tlic control of property bequeath-
ed to her by Uor father's will, kidnapping hernian-
servants and her maid-servants, and committing
frequent depredations upon her premises. Dixie
made loud com])laints of Doodle, but proposed'au
amicable adjustment of the difficulty by aji equita-
ble division of the farm and its appurtenances.
Doodle liereupon flew into a passion, and swore
there should be no partition of the e8tati3, but he
would control it all himself, and his sister along
■with it. He employed as his overseer a certain Abe
lulow — alias Lincoln — a potent rail-splitter, who
promised to stand by him, setting his foot down
-firmly, and vowing that Dixie should submit to her
brother, or he would beat out her brains with his
maul. Whereupon Dixie became dignified, de-
clared herself independent, and began building a
wall between herself and her brother. She stoutly
maintained her right to be free, and declared she
would have nothing more to do with so unscrupu-
lous a rascal — would never again cook and wash for
him, nor darn his stockings, nor hem his bandana
handkerchiefs. Doodle now asseverated, with sun-
dry unseemly expletives, that such contumacy was
quite intolerable, and that he did well to be angry
even unto death — that is, the death of Dixie ; and,
utterly regardless of the principles avowed by Tiira-
aelf and his sister when +hey settled their quarrel
with, neighbor Mexico, and of the rules by which
they together agreed to be governed in case of any
future misunderstanding wiih that gentleman, he
ordered the ruffian lulow to collect all hands and


go over and wreak his vengeance upon Dixie, steal-
ing her horses, killing her cattle, destroying her
harvests, kidnapping her negroes, robbing her
smoke-honse and corn-crib, tearing her costly
robes to pieces, taking away her last article ot
jewelry, burning her habitation over her head, and,
if possible, planting a dagger in her heart!

Let us drop the figure. Many of my readers
must have met with the lately published letter of
Major-General "W. T. Sherman. His adjutant at
Huntsville had written to him in Mississippi for
instructions concerning the course to be pursued '
by subordinate commanders toward "di'sloyal citi-
zens " in North Alabama and elsewhere. His reply
is worthy of preservation, but I have not room for
it here, nor even for lengthy extracts. He main-
tains, with conclusive rhetoric — that " the United
States have a right to the lands and the lives of
rebels " — that " it is both just and politic to banish
them and appropriate their possessions " — that our
asserted " right to self-government " is a pestilent
"political heresy," which " nothing but death and
ruin will extinguish " — that "• self-rights, state-
rights, freedom of conscience, and freedom of the
press," are all the veriest " nonsense and trash " —
that these "false notions," nowise to be tolerated,
" have deluded the Southern people into war,
anarchy, and bloodshed" — that in endeavoring to
establish a distinct and independent government,
we have been guilty of " the foulest crimes that
have disgraced any time or people " — that having
"appealed to war," we can not be allowed the


privilege of "appealing to thescoustitutiou " — that
"war is simply power, unrestrained by constitution
or compact" — that the rebels "a year ago might
have saved their slaves, but now it is too late " —
that "next year their lands will be taken, and
another year they may beg in vain for their lives " —
that " to petulant and persistent secessionists death
itself would be mercy, and the sooner they are
disposed of the better" — finally, that " satan and
the rebellious saints of heaven were allowed a
continuance of existence in hell merely to aug-
ment their just punishment, and to such as rebel
against the beneficent government of the United
States an equal punishment would not be unjust."
Bravo ! bravo ! General Sherman ! clap your
hands, all ye people ! shout unto Doodle with the
voice of triumph ! iy[eanwhile, behold thyself
damned, Dixie ! to the unfathomable depths of
Oixihus — doomed, with Sodom and Gomorrah, to
"tlic vengeance of eternal fire ;" while thy brother
Doodle — the immortal plenipotentiary of the al-
mighty devil — charioted by harnessed fiends ai\d
armed with triple thunderbolts, pursues thee
through the flaming infinite —

"A nakod. wfindcring. inolnnclioly phost :"

Is such, then, the mercy, the morality, the Chris-
tianity, the lofty. civilization of Yankee Doodle?
Is this the sublirtie beneficence of the go8[>el which
he proclaims —

" With thou«ftnd mouths and thousand Vonfryxea,
With l>ra7,cn tlirfrnt.- and iron lun^f " —

from press, and pulpit, and congress hall, and


head-quarters in the field ? The reader perceives
how well his preaching agrees with the terms of
the treaty quoted ; let us see if his practice in this
war does not correspond somewhat better with his

I. How has he treated our " women and chil-
dren ?" Has he left them undisturbed in the quiet
possession of their homes ? Has he respected their
feelings, shielded their helplessness, and guarded
their honor ?

Kay, verily ; he has insulted them in their own
homes ; deprived them of the means of subsistence ;
refused them protection against the brutalities of
his foreign hirelings ; denied them all right to
property, liberty, and life; threatened them with
punishment for the patriotism of their husbands,
fathers, brotliers, and sqyns; menaced them with
extermination ; annoyed them with negro guards ;
burned their houses over their heads ; driven th'<?m
destitute into exile ; shut them up in prison ; curs-
ed, whipped, murdered, dishonored, and doomed
them to a living death ! • .

Raiding through JSTortli Carolina^in the person of
General Wilde, he encouraged his kidnapped ne-
groes to abuse defenceless females, strip them of
their jewelry, tear off their clothing, and offer them
indignities of which decency forbids the record.
On pain of imprisonment for " disrespectful beha-
vior toward United States troops," young ladies
were obliged to walk and ride with those " milin-
tary gemmen ob color," to entertain them in- their
parlors and at their tables, and regale their delicate


auricles with their pianos and guitars. When a
party reported at liead-qnartcrs, after a nija^ht of
robberies and outrages too liorril)le to writ^ of,
their general kindly inquired whether they had
been anywhere treated otherwise than as gentle-
men ; and any lady who had declined Sambo's gal-
lantries was liable to arrest and punishment.

By night they entered a house occupied by a
mother with several children ; and, in the poor
woman's presence, cut a hole in the floor, tilled it
with pine-knots, and set it on fire. The husband
and father, returning at daybreak, found his wife
and little ones, within sight of the still smoking
ruins, cowering in a fence-corner from the bitter
Decendjcr blast. • Another dwelling they tired
without giving any notice to the sleeping inmates
— a lady and six children — who escaped the fright-
ful catastrophe only by the timely waking of a
faithful slave.

These outlaws were at length overtaken by a
small Confederate force, \\^io killed and captured
a large number of them. A -bright mulatto, mis-
taken for a white man, was sent on to Richmond.
Wilde immediately arrested three excellent ladies,
ordered his woolly-headed ruflians to tie them hand
and foot, kept them in this condition forty-eight
hours, then carried them to Norfolk in irons, coii-
tined them there as hostages for his ca])turcd mulat-
to, and announced that ho would hang them if the
latter were not treated a« a prisoner of war.

Shemian's men, in East TenneHsoe, tore up the
drosses of women and children, dud bu'lrned tl/em


before their eyes. They sacked a house where sev-
eral young damsels were weeping around the corpse
of t]|eir mother, which lay there awaiting inter-
ment. At ten o'clock at night, a lady whom they
had robbed of all her stores went to their general,
and begged him to furnish her a little flour or meal
for her five children, who could not go to sleep for
hunger. He dismissed her with a meagre pittance
of food, but not until he had extorted from her an
oath which she abhorred.

At Maryville, this same magnanimous oflicer o:^
the most indulgent and merciful of governments
took forcible possession of an aged widow's resi-
dence, and rudely demanded her keys. The lady
promptly told him that she was accustomed to carry
her own keys. He answered fiercely, that her
property and her life were in his hands, that he
would do just what he pleased with both, and that
if his demands were not instantly complied with,
he should use violence. "Whereupon the terrified
lady surrendered the keys, the heroic general insti-
tuted a thorough search, and ap'propriated such
articles as he fancied both from her wardrobe and
her larder.

During the late disastrous raid of Grierson and
Sturgis in North Mississippi, ladies were every-
where insulted and outraged by negroes; were
whipped, knocked down, and kicked out of doors ;
and that in the presence of their husbands, fathera,
and brothers, who were bound and gagged to pre-
vent any eifectual resistance ; and little children,
robbed of food and clothing, were driven hungry

■• YANKKi: DOODLli. H3l

and naked from their homes into tlic forest. Just
before the battle which scattered them like chaif
before the whirlwind, fugitives from their lines,
came into Forrest's camp and related outrages
which made his sternest soldiers weep like chil-
dren, and fired the calmest spirits among them, with
an uncoutrollal)le fury of revenge. Little boys were
bayoneted, women treated in a manner too sl^ock-
ing for recital, and whole families burned to death
iu their own dwellings.

Mrs. Cony, near Bethesda Church, in Virginia,
had been stripped of all means of subsistence. She
went to General "VVarreu, asking permission to buy
a small portion of her o\jrn plundered stores. " We
keep nothing for sale," replied the general. " Then
I will beg," said the lady; "give me, for God's
sake, a little something for ray starving children !"
" Madam," rejoined Warren, "in the Siege of Je-
rusalem women ate their own children!"

Mr. and Mrs. Lee, of Roanoke, had a sou, not yet
a year and a half old, whom they called Jenkins, in
honor of a well-known Ct)nfederate cavalier. A
band of Federal soldiers came and inquired for the
boy ; and when he wa-? produced, shot him dea*!
for his name. His little sister ran to save his life,
and came near losing her own, several musket-balls
passing through her dress without injuring her

Other deeds have been committed, with the con-
nivauce or the sanction of commanding officers,
too foul and fiendish for registry in these pages.
Xever, indeed, since Nirarod began the accursed


work of war — never, by any nation professing the
knowledge and worship of the True God — were
Such devnlish atrocities practised against unuliend-
"ing females and innocent children, as are constant-
ly perpetrated by the magnanimous and redoubta-
ble Yankee Doodle.

II. And how has he dealt with those " whose
occupations are for the common subsistenoe and
benefit of mankind ?" Have " cultivators of the
earth, merchants, artisans, manufacturers, and fish-
ermen," been " allowed to continue their employ-
ments unmolested in their persons?" Has their
property remained intact, or been " paid for at an
equitable price ?" Have " their houses or goods "
never been " burned or otherwise destroyed, nor
their cattle killed, nor their fields wasted ?"

Answer, ye charred ruins of a thousand mills and
manufactories ! Bear witness, ye fragments of de-
molished machinery, everywhere bestrewing the"^
desolate track of the invader ! Echo back the
voice, ye spacious mercantile establishments, emp-
tied of your dry goods and groceries, hardware and
cutlery, by the plundering horde's of the I>[orth !
What mean those heaps of ashes, in which I see
the remnants of plows and harrows, spades and
shovels, hoes and mattocks, and all the various im-
plements of husbandry ? Who has chased the fish-
ermen from their smacks all along the coast of"
Virginia, the two Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida,
and all around the northern crescent of the great
southern gulf?

A blacksmith of Middle Tennessee, at whose

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 22 23 24

Online LibraryJoseph CrossCamp and field. Papers from the portfolio of an army chaplain (Volume bk.3-4) → online text (page 20 of 24)