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LLurtiiV I! VI. sun Post

Soldiers and Their Deeds


W. STRALEY, Hico, Texas


Hico News-Review






The text and pictures in this booklet were orig^inally printed
in the "Old Soldiers Edition" of the Hico News-Review as a
compliment to the "Boys of '61-'65," and wishing" to further com-
pliment the veterans we are presenting these sketches in a
much handier form, which will prove a fitting" souvenir of this
memorable occasion.

We wish to extend thanks to those who have helped make it
possible for us to thus preserve these pages of history (some of
it never appearing in print before) by furnishing us data and
photos; to Mr. Wiseman, the photographer, for the excellent
copies made from old-time pictures; to the Houston Post for the
courtesy in the use of cuts; and to all others who have in any
way contributed to the success of this little work.

In conclusion, we trust you will read these pages with as
much pleasure as the compiler has experienced in the gath-
ering and publising thereof.

W. Straley.
Hico, Texas, July 29, 1913.


fi^ ' — ' — ^


iSk. '




Soldiers and Their Deeds,


"Kebellion: foul, dishonoring- word.
Whose wrongful biiyhi so oi't has stained
The holiest cause that tongue or swoi-d -
That mortal ever lost or won.
How many a spirit, born to Dless.
Has sunk beneath thai. wiihevinK name.
Whom but a daj-"s, an hour's success
Ha<i wafted to eternal faniel"

''On the first day of February,
1861, Texas took sides with her
sister states. The time had come
when all the Southern states must
"iiang together" in one common
cause, or else "hang separately."
They hung together, cemented by
the great principle that, "when-
ever any form of government be-
comes destructive of its ends, it
is the right of the people to alter
or abolish it."

As the news of the capture of
Fort Sumpter spread with the ve-
locity of the hurricane, it roused
the energies of the Southern peo-
ple to the highest tone of patrio-
tism, and to deeds of the most
lofy action. The lawgiver left the
Senate-house, the lawyer the court,
the judge the bench, the mechanic
his shop, the husbandman his ploy
and rushed forward to the seat
of danger, to join their Southern
brethren on the "tented field."

The bright star of victory led
them onward through the dark
shades of war, casting light and
hope athwart the path of the
war-worn Texas soldier.

Texas should be proud of the
noble men who went forth for her,
to battle for right and liberty.
They have taken the name al-
ready famous, and made it the
most glorious of the age. They
have borne aloft her banner —
through toilsome marches,through

times of starvation, in rags, often
shoeless and coatless — into the
heart of danger, and planted it on
the topmost pinnacle of fame.
The sons of the "Lone Star State"
distinguished themselves on every
battlefield, from the battle of
Manassas to the last one at Pal-
metto Ranch, on the Rio Grande.
And here I wish to note, that it is
a singular fact that the last bat-
tle of the war was, though the
contending parties did not number
over fifteen hundred men, as de-
cisive a victory for the Confed-
erates, in comparison with the
numbers engaged, as the first bat-
tle of Manassas; but, alas! both
were unavailing offerings to the
god of war.

The proud achievements of the
troops of Texas are above all
praise. History furnishes no
nobler example of heroism and
Constance. I know of no battle
where they have been engaged,
that they have not been chosen
to bring on the fight. What bat-
tery has stood the force of their
resistless charge? What retreat
have they failed to cover? The
flower of the foe have been cut
down by their determined valor.
Patient and endurino^ on the toil-
some march, swift and certain in
the surprise, and terrible as the
tempest-blast in the charge, they
have proven themselves worthy of
the name of Soldiers of Liberty.
If the w^orld has ever known their
superiors in valor, history gives
not the example.

Texans are born soldiers ; from
early boyhood they are taught the
use of the rifle and six-shooter.

SolMevs anbTIbeir JDcc^s

They know that much depends on
their skill in the use of arms -
the safety of themselves and their
families * from the murdering
Lipans, or the ruthless Comanche.
They learn in early childhood
what has contributed so largely
to the fame of the French soldier
— perfect selfreliance at all time;?
and under all circumstances.
This, perhaps, is the most valu-
able quality a soldier can passess.
Without it the most thorough
bull-dog courage often ends in a
worse than useless sacrifice of
life. The Texan possesses another
high quality of a soldier — power
of endurance, and ability to march
when suffering for food and water,
that would prostrate the men not
trained to travel the immense
prairies of Texas, where they are
often for days without either.

The gallant dead — how fell they :
Heroes ! thousands of whom have
no monuments save the memory
of their everlasting valor. At the
cannon's mouth, v/here the foe
stood thickest, in the deadliest
charge, with the forlorn hope, on
the perilous scout, or at the first
breach — there lay the Texan.

"The soldier of liberty, who died for her sake.
lieavintr in ba.ttle not a blot on his name.
He looked prxjudl.v to heaven, from the death-
bed of fame.'"

May we not feel confident that
the rising and coming generations
of Texans will not attain the holy
halo that surrounds the name of
the Texas soldier, but, on the
contrary, try to emulate the deeds
he has done and accomplished, not
only on the tented field, but in
the council chamber; and that,
whether republican institutions on
this American continent survive
the present ordej^f or not, the

''Lone Star" of Texas shall ever
remain the emblem of those, wiio,
like the immortal Bayard, are
sans peur et sans reproche?

(From "The Campaifrns of Walker".^; Texas
Division. ■■ bv J. F. L'lessinKloii. published ui


An excerpt from an article by Gamaliel
Bradford. Jr.. in the Youth's Companion, en-
titled: ""The Battle of (^lettysbartr. ""

* * * Qj-^g q£ ^j-^g great
soldiers of the w^orld. This man
typified all that was best in the
South. A membcx of one of the
! most distinguished Virginia fam-
' ilies, he had the fine qualities of
[ his class, with none of its weak-
nesses. He had courage without
bluster.dignity without arrogance,
reserve without hauglitiness, traJi-
quillity without slouth. A sol-
I dier' in all his legal bearing, in
! every fiber of his body, his char-
1 acter was far larger than is es-
i sential to the profession of arms.
I In the great decisions of life he
i guided his action by what seemed
\ to him the principles of duty, and
I by those only. Political animosity
' long called him, and sometimes
i still calls him, traitor ; but if the
! word means a man who sells his
I convictions for a price, it was
1 never less deserved. For three
I years the South gave him abso-
1 lute trust, and no people ever
i trusted more wisely.

As a soldier. Lee was bold to
excess. Working with the swift
agency of "Stonewall" Jackson,
he struck blow after blow, each
more aggressive and more auda-
cious than the preceding one, till
he came to feel that the shifting
and uncertain Union leader.ship
was no match for him anywhere.

SolMers anb XTbeir Beebs

With Jackson's aid he won the {
splendid victory of Chancellors- I
ville. Then, although Jackson |
was gone, Lee thought he could j
invade the North, destroy Hooker |
and his demoralized army, and
perhaps dictate terms of peace in
Washington, or even in Philadel-
phia or New York. With triump
in his heart, and ixi the hearts of
his soldiers, he crossed the Poto-
mac, and marched north to the
vicinity of the little town of Get- ;
tysburg. I

1863. I

]\lr. Otto Praeger, representa- 1
tive of the Dallas-Galveston News, |
•it the recent Gett^.sburg reunion,
wrote his papers as follows under
date of July 2, 1913 :

"This is the fiftieth anniversary
of the appearance of the Texas
troops upon the battlefield of Get-
lysburg. They came upon Sem-
inary Ridge, a short distance to
the south of where the Texas
headquarters today are situated.
It was Gen. Jerome B. Robert-
son's Brigade, composed of the
First. Fourth and t ifth Texas and
the Third Arkansas Regiments:
of Infantry. Thej' came up after
a hot, dusty march and were at
once sent off to the right to take
Little Round Top. It was 3:30
o'clock in the afternoon, and th'.'
fight lasted two hours. The Texans
rolled up the Federal regiments,
that intervened between them and
the hill, took five pieces of Smith's
battery that was stationed on
nil eminence before Little Round
Top and made the desperate at-
tempt to rlrive the Federals off of

the coveted goal. Making for
Hazlett's battery on the top of
the hill, carrying their guns in
one hand and using the other to
aid them in clambering over the
immense boulders up the steep
hill, the thinned out ranks of the
Texas Brigade arrived almost at
the very crest of Little Round Top
when they were hurled back by a
bayonet charge in a fierce hand-to-
hand conflict.

"The following day the Texans
were assigned to the extreme
right wing of the Confederate
army and repulsed a Federal
cavalry charge that had been in-
tended to turn tLe Confederate
right. The First Texas, under
Lieut. Col. P. A. W. Work, lost
1)3. including Lieut. B. A. Camp-
bell, killed. ^ The Fourth Texas,
Col. J. C. G. Kay, who was dialJed
and succeeded by Lieut. Col. B. F.
Carter, also wounded, and suc-
ceeded by Major J. B. Lane, lost
87 men. The First Texas, com-
manded by CoL\ R. M: Powell,
mortally wounded while climbing
Round Top, and then succeeded by
^lajor J. C. Rodgers, lost 109 men.
These are the losses of the Texans
at Gettys])urg."


One day in the summer of 1862,
Steel's troops (Federal) were be
ing transported up White River,
guarded by a gunboat, and intend-
ing to land one mile below Du-
Vall's BlulT.

Bell's regiment of Confederates
w^ere well fortified on the bluff,
and as the gunboat made the turn
in the bend of the river, a boy

SolMers ant) XTbeir Wccbs

manning a 64-pound gun in the ar-
tillery division put a shot into the
porthole of the gunboat, which
went through the boiler and dis-
abled the vessel, besides scalding
to death manj- of those on board ;
a panic ensued as the men tried
to escape the steam and scalding
water ; the boats were lowered and
soldiers and crew endeavored to
land, but the Johnnies were on the
spot and rained shot into their
midst with deadly effect. Seven
or eight of the Confederates were
killed, among whom our informer
recalls the following: Richard
Kingle, J. H. Yarborough and
John Hill.

After the vessel was disabled it
driften down the stream and was
supposed to have been piloted to
safety by the transports.


(From an ai-ticle in the Youth's Comp.inion.
written by Ganiliel Uradford, Jr.)

Forth rode Pickett, with his
long locks and his chivalrous
bearing. At his back were reg-
iments with the best blo^ of Vir-
ginia and the Carolii^as — men
ready to die for what they believ-
ed as good a cause as any man
ever died for. In front of them
rose the slopes of Cemetery Hill,
crowned by walls and fences, and
defended by men whose courage
was equal to their own. On swept
that splendid column, winning
the admiration of friend and foe
alike. Shell hissed over them,shot
tore through them, men fell to
right md left, ranks thinned,
whole regiments w^avered ; still
they pressed on, reached the foot
of the hill, swarmed up it, and
for a moment mingled with the

defenders. Then they rolled back,
the few that were left of them,
not routed, not flying, but sul-
lenly, slowly, back across the
blood-soaked plain, among the
heaps of dead and dying. Gettys-
burg was over.


In May, 1862, the command to
which D. J .Brown of this city was
attached, was stationed at Bridge-
port, Alabama, where they had a
''brush" with the enemy on the
eighth day of said month. After
this fight they removed to Kings-
ton, Ga., and it was there, so Mr.
Brown states, that one day, while
he and several others were stand-
ing on the station platform, the
locomotive "Hiawatha" went by
with five men aboard, besides the
engineer and fireman. Realizing
that something unusual was trans-
piring, as it should have been the
regular passenger, they (Mr.
Brow^n having had some experi-
ence as fireman) took the engine
''Nickejack," which had just ar-
rived from Rome, and gave chase.
On this escaped Mr. B. was accom-
panied by eleven other men.

After an exciting chase about
ninety miles they overtook them
near Graysville, Ga., and the pur-
sued crew were down carrying
water in their hats to fill the ten-
der of their engine. Upon the
Johnnies appearance they left the
locomotive standing and ran up
the creek for about half a mile,
wading across and disappearing.
The Confeds pursued, crossed
a mountain to a creek called
Wolftever, which they followed to
the confluence Avith the Tennessee
river. After tAvo davs chase they



From a photo taken just before his death.

SolMers an5 Ubciv WccbB

returned to Dalton, where they
remained until the battle of
Stranger's Hill, above Chatanooga
on the Tennessee river, where they
were on September 17, 1863, when
they went to Crawfish Springs,
where they were when the battle
of Chieamauga began — this fight
opened on September 20, 1863, and
continued until the night of the
23rd. After the battle they re-
turned to Chicamauga, where they
remained until December 20, 1863,
when they marched to the top of
IMissionary Ridge, remaining until
the 23rd at daybreak, when they
left without stopping to tell the
folks good-bye ; then fell back to
Ringgold Gap in White Oak
^Mountains, where ^liey arrived at
two o'clock on December 24, re-
maining until two o'clock Christ-
mas Day, when they left without
ceremony, going to Snake Creek
Gap; left the gap at two that

Mr. B. went home, which was
only two and a half miles from
camp, on sick leave — this was on
the 27th.

On January 2, 1864, some men
came along dressed in blue and
told him to go somewhere else —
and he went. Further, Mr. B.
hasn't been back since, until he
nttended the great reunion at
Chatanooga in May, this year.


That gifted staff correspondent,
]\rr. Otto Praeger, of the Dallas-
Galveston News, who represented
his papers at the recent Gettys-
burg Reunion, gives this choice
sketch of an incident which took
place at this memorable meeting

of the men who wore the blue and
the gray :

Typifying the spirit of the Get-
tysburg reunion is the prize coin-
cidence : Late last night an old
Confederate veteran, becoming
lost on the streets of tents,
stumbled into a tent occupied by
some Minnesota veterans. He was
too fatigued to proceed further
and the Minnesota Federals in-
vited the Confederate to share
their tent.

"To what troops did you be-
long?" he was asked.

"To the Twenty-eight Virginia,
Armstead's Brigade," he answer-
ed, proudly.

"Then you were in Pickett's
charge? said the Federal host.

"I was one of the fellows who
got to the rock wall, the high-
water mark," replied the Virgin-

"And what became of you fel-
lows' flags?" asked the Minneso-

"I reckon some of you darn
Yankees got it," was the reply.

"I am Captain T. H. Presnall,
Company F, First Minnesota,"
said the speaker.

"My company captured your
flag; we have got it stored at St.

The Confederate who was beat-
en back at the highwater mark
was made comfortable to the ex-
tent of a cot and a dram. The first
thing he said as he opened his
eyes this morning and saw the
Minnesota veterans ^vho helped
beat him back at Gettysburg fifty
years ago was :

"If the Yankees had to get our
flag I am all fired glad that you are
the fellows who got it."

SolDtcrs anb JLbcix Wcc^s


(Mr. C. C. Cummins in the Fort Worth Rec-
ord. Mr. C. addressed the old soldiers at the
liico reimion in 1912.)

The night of June 30 we bivou-
acked near Cashtown, about six
miles from Gettysburg. All that
day on the march I had a presen-
timent of evil to befall me in the
coming battle. Just where the
clash of arms was to be we knew
not, but every private was as mucli
aware that it was to be the de-
cisive battle of the great war as
any general. We crossed over
into the enemy's country seeking
to end it at a blow and Gettys-
burg went down in history as the
field, the fatal flodden field. All
the day of the 30th I was obses-
sed with this presentiment of evil
and I confided my forecast to
Lieutenant Colonel Fizer, saying
I preferred a wound in the arm
that I might escape being shot
again after being down, which
frequently happened when wound-
ed in the locomotive powers.Fizer
was a dressy comrade and pre-
ferred a wound in the leg, as he
did not wish to mar his shape. We
both got our preference on the
second day in the peach orchard
where we went up against Sickle's
corps in that valley of death. That
night of the second, there w^as
p'athered in a tent in a field hos-
pital on the grounds all the field
and staflp of our rectinient. the
Seventeenth Mississippi, except
Dick Jones, the ddjutant killed
on the field. Colonel Holder was
there with a wound in tlip groin ;
Fizer with a wound in the leg,
as he preferred, J.nd the writer^
sergeant major, in the hand, as f
preferred; Major Pulliam also in
the hand, and Brown Jones, the

colonel's orderly, a boy about 15,
in the body. We bivouacked at
Willoughby Run on July 1, where
was opened the first day's battle
and where a monument has been
erected to the memory of the
Federal General Reynolds, killed
there that day. I claim to be the
original reunionist, of the Gray
and Blue. For when I was shot
in the hand and while the blood
was filling my buck gautlet (I put
on my best to die like a soldier),
two New York Zouaves came run-
ning my way to avoid capture by
our gray boys, Avho had broken
through a barn on my left, and
who would have served them
roughly for the resistance they
made. I beckoned them to come
to me and I flung my arm around
the neck of each making a wound-
ed squad, which our long exper-
ience told us would save us from
being fired upon, and so I came
off the field wath my two priso-
ners. Wouldn't it be passing
strange if I should meet on-' or
both after fifty years at Gettys-
burg? Sickles will be there and
they were Sickles men. Sickles
and I exchanged compliments that
day. I gave him my hand and
pulled his leg.

All the third day of July, 1863,
we lay prone of our wounds in the
hospital tent on the field of Get-
tysburg and heard the thunder of
this legions of guns — big guns —
from both sides, such guns as were
never before heard on the Amer-
ican continent. It was what has
gone into history as '' Pickett '«
charge," and while there were
others who crossed the deadline
with Pickett to the high water
mark, yet old Virginia, our dear
old mother, bore on her sacred
bosom the bosom of war for us all.

SolMers an^ Zbciv Beebs

So let her son Pickett go down in
history as the hero of us all.


(From the fact that a number
of the old veterans present at this
reunion fought in this battle, we
take the liberty to copy the des-
cription of this fight as given by ,
J. P. Blessington, in his book, en-
titled, ''The Campaigns of Walk-
er's Texas Division," which was I
published in 1875.) I

"No [^oryeous banners we unfold.

{)f crimson silk and vi-IIdw 'rold;

No vvavinji' plumes or belmeis l)ri'jht.

Nor I'liius't-rs praneintr tor the titrbt;

Hut uieij us true, and hearts as bold.

As e'er a life tor f iet'd«)iij old

At Lfuetra. or Thermopjlifi.

We brins; into the Held todii.v .

To ch;i,>e th*- m eii*-woif iroin Li^ la'r.

Or. failing, sleep forever there."

About the hour of 12 o'clock,
M., on the 30th of April, the
rattling of musketry gave us to
understand that at last we had
overtaken the enemy, rather un-
expectedly. They were in the act
of crossing the Saline Piiver, at
a point known as Jenkins' Ferry,
distant from the town of Camden
about 55 miles. As soon as the
Ft^deral General Steele discovered
that an engagement was inevitabee
he recrossed such of his troops
as had already crossed, and form-
ed his line of battle in the form
of a crescent around his pontoon
bridge. His position was a strong
one. and further strengthened by
such logs as they could convenient-
Iv i>'et at. The location was in a
^liickiv timbered bottom, and the
frround was covered with water,
from ankle to knee deep, preclud-
ing the possibility of using artil-

On arriving within about two
miles of Jenkins' Ferry, Walker's
Division filed off to the right, tak-
ing a good road that apparently
had not been used for years. At
this place we beheld our favorite
leader. General Walker, mounted
on his iron-grey war-horse, await-
ing to address a few remarks of
e^ncouragement to each regiment
as they passed by him. His pres-
ence alone on this occasion was
enough to inspire his troops wnth
the highest patriotism and love for
their old chieftain ; cheer after
cheer was freely given him. as
they passed by him. They had
implicit confidence in his judg-
ment, and that he would not tol-
erate any useless sacrifice of life
in the forthcoming battle. The
greatest vivacity and enthusiasm
prevailed throughout the whole
division. Already a rattling fire
of musketry was heard in our
front, plainly indicating that Gen-
eral Price's command was in ac-
tion. At first a few scattering
shots were heard ; quickly, volleys
of plantoons succeeded, and soon
the fire extended and increased,
until the rolling reports of long
lines of musketry could be dis-
tinctly recognized. General
Kirby Smith notified General
Walker that the Arkansas and
IMissouri troops were at it, hot and
heavy, and to press on the Texans,
to support them. The Texans mov-
ed forward with alacrity, rush-
ing headlong into action. The
3rd Brigade of the Division, com-
manded by General Scurry, dash-
ed up gallantly on the right, us-
ing their muskets quite soldierly,
and, in the language of General
Walker, sustained the fight, with-
out assistance, against 7,000 of
the enemy, for forty minutes.


SolMers an^ Uhetr 2)eebs

The 2nd Brigade, commanded by
General Waul, went into action
on their arrival, like old veteranj.

The 1st Brigade, commanded by
General Randall, was ably led by
that distinguished officer into
action. He seemed ubiquitous as
he screamed his orders here and
there, always urging his men on
the for. An incessant roar of
musketry prevailed for about six
hours. During this time the tide
of battle ebbed and flowed — now
advancing, then receding; but
at no time did the ground fought
over vary more than two hundred
and fifty yards. Owing to the
dense fog and the dense clouds
of smoke which hung in the thick
woods, many times, opposing lines
could only be discovered by the.
flash of their muskets. The firing
on both sides grew more terriffic
every moment; even the elements
were terribly convulsed. They
seemed to groan with the heavy
burden of storms which had been
gathering from the hemispheres,
to pour upon the heads of God's
erring children the vial of wrath,
as an admonition to both armies
to stay their bloodly hands. But
we continued fighting, irrespective
of the storm. In the midst of the
battle, our gallant general (Gen-
eral Walker) could be seen gal-
loping along the lines, cheering
his men forward. He was ac-
companied by his chief of stafl-*.
Major McClay.

General Kirby Smith likewise
was indefatigable, riding from
line to line, cheering on the men.
Seeing some of the Arkansas

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