Flag of the 2nd Maine Infantry

1 03 2023

The Flag of the Second Maine Regiment*, captured on the Plains of Manassas at the great battle by the Palmetto Guard*, which was exhibited for some days at the Mercury office, and which has been in the possession of Capt. P. B. Lalane for some weeks past, has been demanded from Col. Kershaw by Gen. Beauregard. A formal requisition for the flag was, in consequence, made to Capt. Lalane, who complied by sending it to Virginia on Thursday, by the Southern Express.

Charleston (SC) Mercury, 9/20/1861

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*The Palmetto Guards were Co. I, 2nd SC Infantry (Col. Kershaw). The 2nd SC engaged O. O. Howard’s brigade on Chinn Ridge. The 2nd ME was part of Keyes’s brigade, which did not engage the 2nd SC. If a Maine flag was captured by the 2nd SC during the fighting, it was likely one of either the 3rd, 4th or 5th ME of Howard’s Brigade.

The Confederate Flag

13 01 2023

The Confederate Flag.

We believe we speak the sentiments of three-fourths of the Southern people, when we state that the Confederate Flag has not only failed to satisfy, but has greatly disappointed them. The idea of a committee having been occupied for weeks in composing and selecting from the hundred different specimens, a flag to be at once original and striking; finally, rejecting all assistance from artists and others, who had furnished abundance of good material, and adopting, as a result of their labor, what? the Union and three stripes of LINCOLN’S Abolition Flag. Mr. Russell, in one of his letters, has well styled it “the counterpart of the U. S. Flag;” and so perfectly is it so, that in a calm at sea, it is not distinguishable from it. But not only is it stolen from the U. S. Flag, it is also a theft of the coat of arms of another despotism – we mean the House of Austria, whose arms are red, with a white bar, running through the centre. Nor is this all. The U. S. Flag itself was directly stolen from the British East India Company, with the poor addition of thirteen stars for distinction. Now, if the coat of arms of the Confederate States be drawn with the three bars horizontal we pilfer the arms of the House of Austria; and if we adopt the plans of the United States and draw the coat of arms with the bars perpendicular, we pilfer the arms of the town of Beauvais in France. So that, whichever way we twist it, we will be laughed at by everybody, and despised by those whose emblems we have borrowed, not to say stolen. We are living under a Provisional Government – may we not hope that this may be a Provisional Flag? Our Congress is soon to meet, and we sincerely hope that this question will be brought up by some patriotic and able member, and not allowed to rest until we obtain with the permanent Government, a flag fit to be retained as permanent also. We think the Southern people, generally, were anxious that the Southern Cross should have been conspicuous in their flag, which form would at once dispense with the Union part of it, and all the stripes, by simply making the flag red, with a white cross, containing on it the stars of blue, thereby retaining all the three emblems of Republicans, red, white, and blue. And, in the language of one of Virginia’s bards –

The “Cross of the South” shall triumphantly wave,
As the flag of the free and the pall of the brave!

We are informed by one skilled in Heraldry, that such a flag is in rule; and if desirable to change the arrangement of colors, the ground could be blue, and the stars red – cross white in either, so as to be metal on color – an imperative requisition in correct Heraldry.

The Charleston (SC) Mercury, 8/20/1861

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Brig. Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard, On Bull’s Run as a Battlefield Name

12 01 2023

Bulls Run as a Battlefield. – The Camden Journal tells us of a pleasant little conversation which occurred between Col. Kershaw and Gen. Beauregard, on the occasion of a visit to the camp. Talking about the probability of this point becoming famous in the history of the war, Col. K. remarked that the place should have a more classic name than Bulls Run, when Gen. B. promptly remarked that it is quite as good as Cowpens. This settled the question.

The Clarke County (Grove Hill, AL) Democrat, 7/18/1861

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Martha Thornberry and Federal Prisoners

11 01 2023

An Incident of the Retreat. – The Richmond correspondence of the Columbia South Carolinian relates the following:

On the retreat, a tired Yankee stopped at a farm house and begged for water, Mrs. Thornton, the owner handed him a tumbler, pouring a little brandy into it, as he seemed very exhausted. As she offered it, he shrank back for a moment, but took it and drank it. She asked him why he did, and he replied, “to be candid with you, I feared you had put poison into it. She replied, “Sir, you do not know you are speaking to a Virginia lady; to be equally candid with you, you go no further.” She then called two of her servants and directed them to disarm him which they did. Another coming up for water, she made the servants treat him similarly, and this took two prisoners. A few minutes after another Yankee went to the spring, and a servant girl gave him water. He said, “Good-bye, girl;” when she said, “No, you must go to my mistress, and thank her, not me.” She marched him up, and as she got near the party, cried out, “Mistress, here is my prisoner,” and this another was bagged, and the three guarded until a squad of cavalry came and marched them to headquarters.

An aid of Gen. Beauregard told us that he had just been over to thank the lady, in the General’s name. for her heroic conduct.

The Vicksburg (MS) Weekly Citizen, 9/2/1861

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Thomas Saltus Lubbock and Benjamin Franklin Terry, Longstreet’s Brigade, On a Scout

27 12 2022

Texans on a Scouting Expedition. – A correspondent writing from Fairfax Court House to the Charleston Mercury, says:

Yesterday Messrs. Thomas Lubbock and Col Terry, of Texas, who had come on to negotiate for the acceptance of a company of Texas Rangers, got up a party and started on a scout. They penetrated to within four or five miles of Alexandria; passed between the sentries and their pickets; turned upon the sentries; shot two, wounding them at least, and took two prisoners, whom they brought to camp, to the great relief of friends who saw them start, and were conscious of the perilous adventure upon which they started. Col. Terry’s horse took the bit between his teeth and carried his rider at full speed into the picket guard of the enemy, but they broke at his approach, and soon after bringing his horse to his senses with the butt of his pistol, he rejoined his friends in safety. Captain Lubbock is brother of the present candidate for Governor in Texas, and Col. Terry is brother of Judge Terry who killed Broderick in California[*]. It is hoped their offer of their company to the government will be accepted upon the terms upon which it is offered, and that they will soon be on the field.

The (Prattville, AL) Autauga Citizen, 7/25/1861

*Lubbock-Broderick Duel at Wikipedia

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Thomas Salton Lubbock at Ancestry.com

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Thomas Saltus Lubbock at FindAGrave

Thomas Saltus Lubbock at Wikipedia

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Benjamin Franklin Terry at Ancestry.com

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Benjamin Franklin Terry at Wikipedia

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Burying the Dead

23 12 2022
Federal Graves in Rear of Sudley Church, Thornberry Children (LOC)

[Correspondence of the Savannah Republican.]

Thrilling Scenes – Burying the Dead at Manassas.

It commenced to rain early on Monday morning – the day after the battle – and continued to pour down in torrents all that day and night. Tuesday the sun came out, and it was very hot, as it was on Wednesday, when I made my second visit to the field. All of our wounded that could be found were cared for on Sunday night, though many of them were exposed to the drenching rain of Monday, their tents not having arrived. This was no disadvantage, however, as the rain served to keep down fever and to prevent mortification.

On Monday our dead were buried, or boxed up and sent home for interment, and many of the enemy’s wounded were brought in an attended to. All day Tuesday was devoted to burying the dead on the other side, and yet the work had not been half finished when I arrived on the field Wednesday morning. So intolerable was the stench arising from the dead, and especially from the horses, that our men had been compelled to suspend their humane labors. I did hear that some of the prisoners we had taken were subsequently sent out and ordered to finish the work, though reluctantly.

It was a sad sight – the battle field that day. The enemy’s dead still lay scattered in every direction, and the silent vultures had begun to circle above them. They were well clad, and were large and stouter men than ours. Nearly all of them were lying on their backs, some of them with their legs and arms stretched out to the utmost. Many had their feet drawn up somewhat, while their arms, from the elbows, were raised, and the hands rather closed, after the fashion of boxes. It was singular, and yet the prevailing attitude. Most of them had sandy or red hair, and I have observed that this is the predominant color among our own soldiers. those who were not killed instantly had almost invariably torn open their shirt collars, and loosened their clothing about the waist. There was nothing marked in addition to this, by which we could tell whether their death was sudden or lingering. It was the color of the face. If the body had time to become cool and quiet before death, the corpse was pale, though not so much so as those who die from disease. Those who were killed instantly, however, and while heated and excited, were purple and black in the face. In such cases, the blood being in full circulation, there was not time for it to return to the heart before the body had ceased all its functions. At least, I suppose such is the explanation, and a physician confirms me in it.

Such of the poor wretches as had been buried were placed in long ditches or trenches, some twenty or thirty in the same trench. Of course it was impossible to procure coffins or boxes for them. they were laid away in the same attitude in which they were found, and in which their bodies had become stiff and rigid – one with his arms and leges stretched out – another bent nearly double – a third with hands stretched out, as described above. One poor fellow had died with his arms clasped around a small tree, and others with their hands clasped tightly about their muskets, or such twigs or roots as were within their reach. One was found with his bible open on his breast. Some had their hands crossed and the whole body composed after the manner of a corpse. A few were found upon whom there was not the least wound or mark. Whether they had died from sun stroke, or from exhaustion, or simple fright, it was impossible to say, though probably it was from the first cause.

I was glad to see that most of our own dead had been buried upon the battleground – many of them where they had fallen. In some instance those belonging to the same company or regiment were gathered up and buried near each other, each little hillock being marked by a board or stone with the name of the hero cut upon it. What more fitting cemetery could be found for the gallant dead than the field which had been sanctified by the precious blood and rendered forever immortal by their deeds of valor! I can sympathize with the tender sentiment that would gather up the honored ashes of its loved ones, and transport them for interment in the old family burying ground in the far South; and yet I can but admire that stern patriotism – if it may be thus called – which would prefer the torn and bloody plains of Manassas to the proudest mausoleum below the sun.

The Wheeling (VA) Daily Intelligencer, 9/10/1861

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South Carolina Claims Virginia Too Soft on Yankee Prisoners

20 12 2022


We have been provoked, for the last two or three days, beyond further endurance, by reading, in certain Virginia papers, the most complacent and gratulatory comments on the charming charity and benevolence displayed by certain citizens and officials, in Virginia, towards the invaders of their soil – the plunderers of their estates – the destroyers of their homes and firesides, and the polluters of their women. Most humane and christian individuals! Below we copy, from the Richmond Examiner, its timely strictures upon these strange proceedings. In Alexandria, the very site of their inhuman and brutal outrages, upon the evening of the very day when the flaunting hosts of the enemy marched forth insolently, in all the pride of confident ferocity, with thirty thousand manacles in charge, to slaughter the kindred of her citizens, crush their country, and enslave their race, with all the brutalities of wild barbarians – upon that very evening of their precipitate return, what do we hear but boastings of the tenderness of these sweet people of Alexandria, in extending every kindness in their power to these exhausted and fatigued ravishers and destroyers! And why? Because, forsooth, they were foiled in their amiable expedition of rapine and murder, and driven back in haste, and were, consequently, somewhat soiled, wearied and thirsty from their long and hot run. This we learn from the papers of Alexandria, and how, also, water and food, and comforts generally, were humanely offered them. Verily does it stir the gall within a man to find our counsels and our proceedings marred by such milksop folly. If men’s weak bowels will gush out with such incontinent compassion, why, in the name of common decency, can they not, in secret and in darkness, perform such offices as ill befit the public vision?

Even in Richmond, we are sorry, very sorry to say, we have seen indications of this same parading of a sickly humanitarianism, and boastings of what extreme kindness is extended to these Northern plunderers. Are there no crying brutalities to be stopped on the part of our enemies? Is there no comprehension of the potency of retribution? Are we so weak as to not see the saving efficacy of requiring an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth? For what other law is left us? Where will this folly end? There are now in the Tombs of New York, manacled in loathsome dungeons, fifteen citizens of South Carolina, who were taken prisoners of war, bearing arms under the commission of President Davis. They have been for two months dragged through the streets of New York, backwards and forwards, almost weekly, manacled like slaves, to be hooted at, at the pleasure of a greasy rabble – beasts on exhibition. They are now, we repeat, in manacles, in loathsome dungeons. Two of Carolina’s citizens have just been hung, like malefactors, to tree-tops upon the high road. How long are these things to continue, whilst Northern prisoners are to be treated “with the most distinguished consideration”? Not only are their persons most carefully made comfortable (as we are so repeatedly assured), but even their tenderest sensibilities are not to be ruffled. They are distinguished but unfortunate gentlemen, and require all the courtesies due their romantic misfortunes and distinguished positions. In the meantime, our poor boys hang swinging the tree-tops, or lie immersed in dungeons, pining away in chains. Is it supposed that all this is soothing to the minds of Carolinians? Is this further to be tolerated? Why is not every prisoner in Richmond already incarcerated and lying now in irons? How long is this mode of warfare to be permitted and encouraged? Are our troops to be driven to a murderous desperation? If so, let it at once be understood – let the Government inform them that they must redress themselves. For they most assuredly will shortly do it.

In reference to what we have said, we wish to be distinctly understood upon two points:

1st. We have no reflection whatever to make upon Virginia or the people of that State in this matter. She is now doing all that patriotism and honor and gallantry and her ancient renown require at her hands. None more cordially appreciate this than ourselves. But there are mawkish milksops in Virginia, as there are here, and elsewhere – people whom it is doing great public wrong, at this time, to countenance in any way, far less to encourage and commend – people whose weak natures and lukewarm feelings in this matter, give them no stomach for this fight.

2d. We wish it to be understood that we regard this as no matter of mere feeling, either for pity or revenge. Justice, humanity, civilization alike cry aloud for the stern execution of retribution. All this barbarity and outrage on the part of our enemy must be stopped. The sternest retribution is the quickest and surest method to enforce humanity, and compel a christian mode of warfare. Justice must be executed or lawlessness will run riot, and violence and vengeance will take the place of judgment. It is the peculiar privilege of women to forgive – it is the duty of man to execute justice.

In affairs of this sort between nations, there is but one law in operation under the sun. The lex talionis can alone protect the people and achieve humanity – for between nations we come back to first principles.

We sincerely hope we shall not be compelled to speak further upon this subject, for we have long felt it.

In this connection, it is a matter of gratification to learn that our great general, Beauregard, is, at last, bringing traitors to accountability. We learn that he “has caused three traitors to be hung recently, having first received the most indubitable evidence of their treachery. One of the parties was an engineer on the Manassas Gap Railroad, another a preacher of the Gospel, and the third a farmer. They had all furnished valuable aid to the enemy.”

Had this mode of procedure been inaugurated six weeks ago, the enemy would not have learned our countersign in the battle of the 21st, which caused so much loss of life in our own ranks at the hands of our own men. Hundreds of gallant men have fallen at the hands of their own friends, because a few traitors were not previously shot. The very battle itself was very nearly lost – a battle involving thousands of lives, millions of property. and the very integrity of the State of Virginia, imperiling, in fact, the whole cause – by the bold treachery of a railroad conductor. How many valuable lives has this cost? Let the mourners over the sad tombs of Bee, Bartow and Johnson answer. War is the rule of iron. And for that work we must have men of iron nerve, and none other. We have too long been dallying in kid glove and pump-boot diplomacy, and ginger-bread politeness. What we want is hard steel – not sentimental stuff. So far as Gen. Beauregard is concerned, we have no doubt he has seen enough, and knows how to cure that disease. He is the man to do it. We are fatigued, exhausted, sick, disgusted, ad nauseam, with all such unmitigated trifling as here described by the Examiner:

Every pains seems to be taken for the comfort and consolation of our Yankee prisoners. It is not sufficient that their physical comfort should be consulted, but the finer feelings of these unfortunate men and the affectionate anxieties of their families are also consulted and assuaged by a new system of custody. Certainly, General Winder deserves great credit for his humanity. – While he debars all access to the prisoners on the part of reporters of the press, perhaps to protect the unfortunate men from the annoyance and mortification of being too freely spoken of in the newspapers, he has not found it in his heart to hesitate to give permits for visits to carry messages from Northern relatives to the prisoners, and to satisfy inquiries about their “health,” or any other little interesting circumstances of their condition. What delicacy of humanity! It is positively a refreshing circumstance in the hardships and asperities of war – an oasis in a moral desert – a kind return of the rude jokes of the Yankee in treating our prisoners as “pirates” and jestingly threatening to murder them in the streets of Washington.

We are assured of the happening of our little incident of humanity that shows that the tenderest charity may dwell beneath a military uniform, however that garb may be a stranger to the common intercourse of politeness among civilians. It was but a few minutes before the request of a reporter to visit the Federal prisoners was refused, and the polite note making the application [?] shoved back to him, that there happened in the office, where permits are granted, the charming instance of humanity of granting a permit to a person to see one of the prisoners, that he might telegraph his health and condition, and any other interesting circumstance, to the anxious father of the unfortunate man in New York. It was deprecatingly mentioned by the applicant that the young Yankee had “got into a bad box” – certainly a mild and considerate way of putting the circumstance of a murderer having been taken in arms.

These delicacies of consideration to our Yankee prisoners, we trust, will not be lost on the North. Let the citizens of Richmond immediately send on their messages of comfort and consolation to our prisoners in New York and Washington. they will be constantly advised of their health. Their custodians will protect them from the painful curiosity of the newspapers and from the irreverent visits of the reporters. They will be treated with all the refinements of humanity; and all enquiries, except from their families, will be repulsed as impertinent, and denied with the emphasis of military impoliteness. What happy exchanges of humanity we are to have! What good fortune to fall into the hands of Yankees after they have been edified by the improved system of prison discipline inaugurated by the military humanitarians of Richmond!

The Charleston (SC) Mercury, 8/2/1861

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Death of Pvt. Levin Bryan Lane, Co. D, 4th Alabama Infantry

14 12 2022

Hon. W. M, Brooks, of Perry county, pays a handsome tribute in the Marion Commonwealth to the memory of Levin B. Lane Jr., of Marengo, a member of the Fourth Alabama Regiment, who fell heroically at Manassas, receiving a wound in the leg, which had afterwards to be amputated, causing his death. It is related that when lying helpless upon the ground, a member of the New York 69th Regiment came up and offered to assist him. He replied, “you would not assist me if you knew who I was; I am a Southerner and a strong secessionist.” The man responded “that account is settled – you are wounded, what can I do for you?” The New Yorker furnished him with water, and after giving him his address, offering to send his valuables to his friends, and making him as comfortable as he could, departed. Late in the evening President Davis riding by, discovered Lane lying on the ground, and dismounted, took him by the hand and uttered words of deepest sympathy and kindness. As the President mounted and started off in the direction of the flying enemy, Lane raised himself up and enthusiastically cheered him on. When informed he must die, he received the announcement with calmness, and declared if it were to do over, he would pursue the same course though he knew he should be killed – that the only regret he felt was the pain his death would cause his father and sisters – that as for himself, he felt that he had fallen in a just and righteous cause. He sent affectionate messages to his absent friends and relatives, and on the 31st day of July, 1861, the pure, unselfish and brave young patriot, the only son of a fond and doating father, breathed his last on the soil of Virginia.

The (Jackson, MS) Weekly Mississippian, 9/18/1861

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Levin Bryan Lane at Ancestry.com

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Pvt. John S. Armstong, Co. D, 2nd Virginia Infantry, His Narrow Escape

7 12 2022

An Exploit. – A correspondent at the University of Virginia sends the Richmond Dispatch of the following account of an exploit of private John Armstrong, of the Berkeley Border Guard, Capt. Nadenbush, Col. Allen’s 2d Virginia Regiment, at the battle of Manassas on the 21st July.

Mr. Armstrong after aiding in the re-capture of a part of Sherman’s Battery, (consisting of Zouaves,) became separated from his regiment and secreted himself behind a fence, he discharged five or six effective shots, His position being discovered, a volley was fired upon him, which destroyed his gun but left him untouched. At this time five Yankees crossed the fence about thirty yards from where he lay, running to join their regiment not far off. One of them dropped his gun. Armstrong picked it up, and shot him dead, when all four wheeled and fired on him, one ball taking effect in his left arm. Nothing daunted, he still pursued until he overtook the hindmost, whom he succeeded, after a struggle, in killing with the bayonet, the remaining three making their escape.

The above statement is corroborated by several of his company, who believe it entirely reliable. Mr. Armstrong has three bullet holes through his shirt, besides the one which wounded him; but at what period of the battle he received them he does not know. His wound, though serious is not dangerous, and he is now receiving, with many others, kind and skillful treatment at the University Hospital, and will soon be ready to meet his county’s foe wherever he may show his face.

The Vicksburg (MS) Weekly Citizen, 9/2/1861

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John S. Armstong at Ancestry.com

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A Southern Reporter’s Visit to the Battlefield.

1 10 2020

The Battle Field.

The writer of this, on Monday last, passed over the scene of the battle of the 21st near Bull Run. It was gratifying to fins, contrary to rumors which have gained some circulation, that the dead, not only of our own army, but also of the enemy, have all been decently buried. In the whole area of that terrible onset, no human corpse, and not even a mangled limb was to be seen. The earth had received them all, and so far as the human combatants were concerned, nothing remained to tell of those who had fallen victims of the shock of the battle, save the mounds of fresh earth which showed where they had been laid away in their last sleep.

Many of these mounds gave evidence of the pious care of surviving comrades. Enclosures were built around the graves, and branches of evergreens cover the spot. Sometimes boards marked the head and foot on which were carved or painted the name and fellowship of the deceased. Sometimes boards nailed to a neighboring tree told that the ground adjacent contained the fallen of a certain regiment or company.

Numerous dead horses, scattered over the area, show where the batteries of flying artillery were captured or disabled, or where some officer was dismounted. The prostrate fences, too, served to mark the track of the battle. Where the infantry crossed, they were broken down so that a man might step over; and wide gaps showed where the artillery carriages had thundered along.

The ground, too, tramped by the feet of rushing men and horses, evidenced where the struggles had been fiercest.

Of relics of the battle, already but few remain. The field has been searched and gleaned by daily crowds of visitors, seeking for mementoes. A few bullets that had run their errand, some fragments of exploded bombs, and a few other things, were all that an extensive ramble brought under our view. Canes cut from the battle-field are also considerably in demand.

The enemy’s column of advance, as shown by the battle-ground, presented a front of about a mile. Their onward march from the point where they encountered our advance bodies to the limit where they met our full line, and the full battle was joined and the fate of the day decided, was about a mile and a half, therefore covers the scene of the great conflict.

In this area are included five dwelling houses. All of these which were visited bore evidences of the storm which raged around them. Many were killed in the yard of a house of Mr. J. De Dogan. A bullet hole in a chamber door remains a memento of the battle. His family escaped just as the battle joined.

But it was on the hill south of the turnpike road, where the enemy’s farthest advance was checked, and where the final issue was fought, that the inwrapped dwellings showed the most plainly the fury of the fight.

A house here, late the abode of a widow lady, Mrs. Judith Henry, was riddled with cannon and musket shot. Hissing projectiles from the cannon of our enemies had passed through walls and roof, until the dwelling was a wreck. It is a sad story that we tell. This estimable lady, who had spent her long life, illustrated by the graces that adorn the meek Christian, was now bed-ridden. There she lay amid the horrid din, and no less than three of the missiles of death that scoured through her chamber inflicted their wounds upon her. It seems a strange dispensation of Providence, that one whose life had been so gentle and secluded, should have found her end amid such a storm of human passions, and that the humble abode which had witnessed her quiet pilgrimage, should have been shattered over her dying bed! Yet, even amid such terrors Heaven vindicated its laws. When the combatants had retired, the aged sufferer was still alive, and she lived long enough to say that her mind was tranquil and that she died in peace – a peace that the roar of battle and the presence of death panoplied in all his terrors had not disturbed. Noble matron! The daughters of the South will emulate your virtues, and the sons of the South will avenge your sufferings! The heaps on heaps of the enemy that were piled around your doors when you died, are but the earnest. A hundred yards to the right of the house of Mrs. Henry, lay five horses in a heap, and near by, another heap of as many more. Here a portion of Sherman’s battery made its last advance. Just as it reached the top of the hill, our riflemen approaching in the other direction reached it too. At once they poured in a fire which cut down horses and men and made the pieces unmanageable. The gallant boys followed the fire with a bayonet charge, and the guns were taken. It was here that Lieut. Ward fell. The cannon were taken and retaken several times in a furious fight; but the horses had been killed, and they could not be removed nor used.

On the left of Mrs. Henry’s, distant about a fourth oaf a mile, is a neat house belonging to a colored man named Robinson. A cannon ball drove through this also. Between these two is an orchard of small trees where Hampton’s legion fought and suffered so severely. Their graves are here. One of them which covers the remains of the Hon. J. L. Orr, is marked by a broken musket panted as a head stone.

Away on the extreme northern verge of the battle-ground, is the pine grove in which the Georgia regiment met the enemy’s advance. The gallant band there withstood the enemy’s columns, until nearly surrounded. They then retreated, not from those in front, but from those who were closing around them. In this pine grove there seemed scarce a tree that was not struck by the enemy’s balls. A number of Georgians fell here, and their graves are close by. In the grove was pointed out the spot where Lamar fell. In the rear was the dead charger of the lamented Gen. Bartow, killed under him, himself to fall soon after. But the Georgians suffered not their heroes to fall unavenged, for they piled the ground before them with the slain of the enemy.

The Battle Field.

The visit to the battle-ground of the 21st, noticed in yesterday’s issue, included a call, buy the writer, at several of the hospitals in which the wounded are now receiving attention. – Near the ford of Bull Run where the Northern army crossed in their advance against us, (it is about two miles above the Stone Bridge,) is a large brick church, known as the Sudley Southern Methodist church. It has been appriated to the wounded of the enemy, and is still overflowing – some being under sheds erected for their shelter. The pews of the church have been taken out, and the pallets of the wounded fill the floor. The altar of the church is the medicine dispensatory. The writer had often seen this sacred building filled with devout worshippers, whose meditations were disturbed by no anticipations of such a scene as not presented; but the care here taken of the wounded and the suffering, and they our enemies, who had causelessly come to do us the most grievous injuries, illustrated more forcibly, it may be, then even pulpit ministrations, the spirit which it is the object of churches to promote. Here was seen the fruit of former teachings. The invalids were well cared for, and were in various stages of convalescence. One who sat bolt upright on a char near the front door, and who told us that they were “all doing very well,” was himself, however, a proof that his testimony needed qualification. His rolling eye, his wild unnatural look, the wheezy, gurgling voice in which he said that his wound was “in the right chest,” his labored breathing, and throbbing frame, seemed to point to the mounds in the rear of the church where many of the wounded had gone, as his own speedy resting place. In this hospital, but a little before, a very young man in his last hour, had asked a visiting Southerner to engage in prayer with him. He said he had been raised to better things than he was now evidencing, expressed his gratitude, and soon after died.

In short, in the various hospitals for the wounded enemy, we saw only exhibitions of neatness and careful attention, and of a kindness that elicits a free expression of thanks from the sufferers. We must make one exception. There was one hospital where the filth was so disgusting that out tarry was very brief. It was the stone house on the roadside, where a Northern surgeon had charge of his own people. Fortunately his victims were but few.

The writer is more particular to detail these things, because of the slanders which the Northern papers are publishing. While the Northern people desert or neglect the mangled agents and victims of their diabolical designs against us, our kind ladies and citizens are actin the part of the good Samaritan towards them – binding up their wounds, and caring for their comfort. The returns for this are fervent expressions of gratitude from the sufferers, but unblushing charges of atrocious inhumanity in the Northern press! Thus do the two sections [?]itly illustrate the vast moral difference which, like a great gulf, divides Northern and Southern character.

In the hospital at Mr. Dogan’s, we found one of our wounded officers, the gallant Major Caleb Smith, of the 49th Virginia Regiment. A ball passed through his thigh, in the terrible conflict which closed the battle. He is doing well.

Just without the verge of the battle-field is the dwelling of a widow lady, also of the name of Dogan, who performed a part in the incidents of the day. The writer knows her well, and a most estimable lady she is. A squad of the enemy’s soldiers – a lieutenant and three men – came to her door, after the battle was over, claiming to be friends, and asked for food. She detected their character, and offered what they asked, on condition, and only on condition, that they would surrender to her. After some parley, they made professions of gallantry, and yielded. She locked up their arms, and then locked up themselves, and of course supplied them with food. Another, who was crossing the field about the same time, was captured by the young ladies of the house, who threatened to turn their dogs upon him unless he submitted. The prisoners were afterward sent into camp, and General Beauregard pleasantly complimented the exploit of our heroines, by promising to send a commission to the lady of the house. These are the daughters of the land which the Northern despot thinks he can subjugate!

Some words on the battle shall close these observations. Remarks are indulged by many writers, some of them of the South, to the effect that at one period of the fight our army was fairly whipped. This statement is both inaccurate and mischievous. Our army was never whipped; and this we propose to show by a simple narration.

To illustrate what we have to say, we will in part repeat a late general description of the battle ground. Draw a line a little north of east; it will represent the turnpike road which leads from Gainesville to Centreville, a total distance of eight miles. Midway between these villages, Bull Run is crossed but the turnpike on the “Stone Bridge.” A mile and a half west of the Stone Bridge a road crosses the turnpike nearly at a right angle. Towards the south this road leads to Manassas Junction. Towards the north it leads by Sudley church to the Sudley mills ford of Bull Run, about two miles distant. The course of Bull Run makes a sweep between the Stone Bridge and the Sudley ford.

The turnpike and the cross road, above describe, almost bisect the field of battle, in their respective directions. The fight was on both sides of both roads. The enemy, by a well conceived and well executed maneouvre, marched up the east side of Bull Run, crossed at Sudley ford where we had no defences, marched up the road from Sudley, and made his appearance on the heights north of the turnpike road and about three fourths of a mile distant. His line was nearly parallel to the turnpike, and instantly spread to both sides of the cross road to which it was of course at right angles. The line of our army was then facing Bull Run, with our left flank near Stone Bridge. The enemy thus came with his line against our flank. Our defences, too, were all turned and valueless, and nothing remained but for our troops to change front as rapidly as they might, and meet the enemy in the open field.

The forces which formed the let of our line, were of course the first to feel the enemy, and fronting to him they gave heroic battle. But while they held back the foes in their immediate front, the unresisted portion of the enemy’s line moving on, would speedily get upon their flank and threaten to surround them. This would compel our men to fall back; but as they fell back, by successive stages, they were brought in concert with others of our forces, and also strengthened by the arrival of the troops which were being rapidly brought up from the centre and right of out line on Bull Run. – Thus it was our line of battle constantly grew its length; but so long as it was shorter than that of the enemy, it was compelled to recede to avoid the raking flank fire of the overlapping portion of the enemy’s line. In this manner we slowly fell back from a point about three fourths of a mile North of the turnpike, to the parallel hill about the same distance South of that road. Here it was that our line got a length equal to that of the enemy. The out flanking, therefore, ceased, and our falling back ceased, and the full battle was joined. The conflict was terrible, but victory soon declared in our favor. Artillery and musketry poured in their fatal storm, and hand to hand conflict and the irresistible bayonet charge soon broke the thinned ranks of the enemy. – The flight now commenced. They were pursued over the whole ground by which they had advanced, and hills and hollows were filled with their slain.

If, then, we have conveyed the intended idea, the enemy’s line of battle retained a pretty uniform length of about a mile, while ours began with a very small front and widened at last to an equal width with his. While this widening progressed, our incomplete line receded; and when its object was consummated we stood, and the final issue was joined.

The inference drawn by Gen. McDowell from the receding of our troops in the first instance, that we were defeated and flying, seems therefore utterly unworthy of a military man. The dispatches which were sent back to Centreville and which seduced the boozy Congressmen there into fresh imbibitions, and were forwarded to cheer the chamber where Scott and Lincoln and Seward sat awaiting tidings, are a discredit to the intelligence of those who sent them. Our receding regiments did, indeed, suffer serious loss; but they inflicted greater! They left the mark of their heroism wherever they fought; and they fell back, not from the enemies in front, but upon their flank. To call this a defeat – to say that we were whipped – is to show a poor conception of the real condition of the battle. The battle was then not even made up! We were never whipped!

The attempt of the Northern presses to excuse their defeat by charging bad management on the part of the generals, is unwarranted by the facts. We think they managed well. They deprived us by their maneouvre of all aid from the entrenchments which we had prepared, and drew us into the open field. They got their whole line into battle long before it was possible for us to meet it with a line of equal length, and they fought the battle with by far the larger portion of their army, against by far the smaller portion of ours. – Their feigned attacks, an the tall forests which bound Bull Run and concealed their movements, enabled them to compass this. What more could they have desired? If the battle had continued and their heavier numbers had made a breach in our full line, our men behind would have arrived and restored it, and our full strength would have told at last. But the battle, as it stood, left the adversary nothing to wish in the way of opportunity. He was whipped with great slaughter, routed, chased from the field, not by a defect in his plan of battle, but by the irresistible prowess, the marvelous courage, the invincible resolve of Southern heroes, fighting for their homes and liberties. He was whipped by hard fighting. Nor were the Northern troops deficient in courage. As long as their attack on the troops in front of them was encouraged by the continuous flanking movement of their line which we have described, they stood well. They pressed with spirit upon our receding forces; and even when the full battle met, the slaughter which they suffered before they took to flight, showed a good degree of bravery. If the Northern people wish to know the source of their defeat, they must seek it, not in the disparagement of their officers or men, but in the military prowess and sublime courage of a virtuous people determined to be free, and who have not once thought of being conquered; and above all upon the favor of Heaven upon our good cause. That flight and panic among their retreating troops, which their papers so minutely describe, what resembles it so much as the panic by which Samaria was delivered from the beleaguering host of Assyria?

If we were to venture a single remark, by way of kindly caution to our own noble officers, it would be this: It is possible that in the late battle some were betrayed by personal courage, too much into individual exploit. – While Captains were cutting down the enemy, companies were in some cases losing their line, and becoming mixed up. It is well to avoid this. But we design not even to suggest a criticism. Officers and men, our army is composed of champions and heroes, and have won a victory whose transcendent glory and priceless advantage to our country, shall be a crown of honor to every participant until his dying day. To have been in the battle of Bull Run will be praise enough to fill the ambition of most men, and to ensure them favor wherever they may roam.

Richmond (VA) Enquirer, 8/2/1861

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