CHAPTER XLI

Vicksburg, Miss.

1.  Now it came to pass, that after the great and mighty cities of New Orleans and Memphis, as well as all the province of Tennessee looking toward the West, and al the land of Mississippi lying toward the North, had fallen into the hands of the Federals:

2.  Great fear fell upon the people of Vicksburg, lest their city should also be taken.

3.  And they collected a great many negroes, and commenced building walls and digging ditches, and preparing themselves to fight against the Federal forces.

4.  Vicksburg was a goodly city on the Eastern shore of the great river:  it standeth on a bluff, and overlooketh the surrounding regions.

5.  And there was much wealth, and also much intelligence at this place, for the people had good schools, and they educated their children with great care.

6.  But, as they owned many slaves, they had not been accustomed to labor with their own hands;

7.  And they had been in the habit of commanding and not of being commanded;

8.  Hence, they resolved to collect a great army and fight for the possession of their city.

9.  And they sent to Jefferson to aid them; and Jefferson sent them a great many troops, and a great many mighty guns, and huge engines of war, and powder and balls an infinite quantity.

10.  An the rebels made stupendous works of defence, and called Vicksburg the "Gibraltar of America."

11.  When Farragut, commonly called "Commodore," heard of these things, and how the rebels were making preparations for defence, his wrath was kindled against them.

12.  And he said, who are these rebels that they should thus defy the forces of Uncle Sam?

13.  And he swore in his wrath that he "would smite them in battle, and lay waste their city," before the ides of March.

14.  And he collected a great many gunboats, and took many men, and hastened to Vicksburg, swearing that he would level the disloyal city with the dust.

15.  An the Confederates heard of his coming, and got ready to receive him.

16.  And when he had come near to the city, he threw a bombshell at it to get the range, and the rebels threw shells at the ships;

17.  And the bombardment progressed many days, but as the forces were far apart, little damage was done.

18.  And the Confederates continued to strengthen their fortifications by day and by night;

19.  And Jefferson sent them military men, regular "West Pointers." to command them, and to advise them, and to assist them in making their fortifications, the wonder of all mankind.

20.  And when the Federal commanders saw that the rebels would make resistance so formidable, they hesitated to attack them in their stronghold.

CHAPTER XLII.

Siege of Vicksburg

1.  Now it came to pass, that word was brought to Abraham, that Vicksburg was strongly fortified, and that the rebels had a large army ready to fight.

2.  And the matter vexed Abraham, and when food was set before him he refused to eat, and the spirit of sleep departed from him.

3.  And William, his Prime Minister, came into his presence, and gave him a pomegranate, and a little parched corn, and a glass of lemonade.

4.  And when Abraham was a little revived, William said, "O Abraham, live forever!"

5.  And Abraham said, "Say on, William, for thou art my most faithful friend, and my wisest counsellor."

6.  And Abraham fell on William's neck and kissed him.

7.  And William lifted up his voice, and said unto Abraham, "Our army and our boats can be made to pass this cruel and wicked city without shedding blood;

8.  For, if your excellency seeth fit, a canal can be dug from the river above Vicksburg to the river below, because the river bendeth in the shape of a horse-shoe.

9.  And the water from the great river, will flow into this canal, and boats can pass along, and not have to come under the guns of the rebel fort.

10.  And, moreover, William said, if the water is once let into the canal, it will by its own action, deepen the channel, and widen it banks;

11.  And, as teh ancient "Father of Waters" is famous for odd whims, he will forsake his wonted channel, and run in that prepared by Federal soldiers.

12.  Then will the wicked, rebel city stand miles away from the river, and become a deserted town;

13.  And grass will grow in its streets, and the wild owl will hoot from its housetops, and the stork will make her nest in the palaces of the rich.

14.  And the thing pleased Abraham, and he commanded a gold chain to be put upon Williams neck, and his photograph to be taken.

15.  And Abraham sent messengers to Vicksburg, and commanded the Generals to set the men to work to dig the canal.

16.  And the canal was dug.

17.  But the water would not flow into it so as to be deep enough to float the mighty ships.

18.  An Vicksburg still remained with its frowning fortifications and mighty guns.

CHAPTER XLIII

BRAGG INVADES KENTUCKY

1.  About this time, Peter, whose surname is Beauregard, left the rebel army for a time.

2.  And when Peter was gone, the command devolved upon Braxton, whose surname is Bragg.

3.  Braxton was a brave man and a great warrior.  He was with Gen. Taylor in Mexico, and won imperishable fame in the battle of that war.

4.  And  Braxton was in the battle of Shiloh, and all the world knew that he was as brave as Caesar.

5.  Now, as he was in the chief command, he desired to distinguish himself still more, and to reap brighter laurels than ever hitherto.

6.  So he determined to march his men to Chattanooga, which is a city of no mean repute in East Tennessee, and on the Tennessee river.

7.  Chattanooga is in the midst of mountains, and two great railroads cross each other at this point, for which cause, it was a point of interest to any force holding the adjacent country.

8.  And Braxton marched his army to Chattanooga, and for sometime, his head-quarters were there.

9.  But as the Federals were a great way off, there was no prospect of a battle.

10.  And Braxton being a man of war, was not satisfied, and he marched his army still further to the North.

11.  And seeing that Gen. Buell was in Middle Tennessee, and all the Confederates needed clothes, Braxton made up his mind to make a raid into Kentucky.

12.  Now the people of Kentucky are very industrious, and they are exceeding skillful in manufacturing cotton and woollen fabrics;

13.  And Braxton said to himself, if I can get ahead of General Buell, and march into the interior of Kentucky, I can supply my men with clothing and many other needful things.

14.  And he made haste to march into Kentucky, and he carried consternation whithersoever he went.

15.  And the people of Louisville were greatly alarmed, for they said, ours is a great city, and we have all kinds of provender for man and beast.

16.  But, if the rebel army come hither, they will spoil our city, burn up our temples, plunder our stores, and do us much harm.

17.  Now, there is a great city on the Ohio, above Louisville, called, in the Anglo-Saxon, Cincinnati, but surnamed the "Queen City."

18.  And the "Queen City" is the greatest in all the West, it deals in furniture, dry goods, provisions, and swine's flesh;

19.  The merchants of that city are princes, and all the people are rich, and their very eyes stick out with fatness.

20.  And when the people of Cincinnati, heard that Braxton was laying Kentucky waste, they feared that he would march even against their city; for it is over against Kentucky.

21.  Then they collected themselves together, and took arms, and made ready to give the rebels battle.

22.  And there was no little commotion among the people, and they ceased not day and night, to think and talk of these things.

23.  Now, Gen. Buell marched forth with a mighty army, and prepared to give battle to Braxton;

24.  And they met at Perryville, in the province of Kentucky, and they joined battle there;

25.  And the battle raged with great fury, and men of the same race slew each other by hundreds;

26.  And the blood of brothers was made to mingle, and the bosom of our common mother was baptized in the blood of her children;

27.  Then was the land filled with the voice of mourning, lamentation, and woe; for mothers wept for their sons, and would not be comforted.

28.  And the cry of fatherless orphans arose up to Him who sits enthroned in the distant Heavens, and whose tender mercies are over all his works.

*

30.  The victory was warmly contested, nor was it decisive; but Braxton determined not to invade Kentucky further, and fell back into Tennessee, carrying with him many thousand yards of Kentucky jeans.

*  NOTE FROM JAYNE:   There was not a verse 29 here.  It jumped from 28 to 30.

CHAPTER XLIV

JOHN H. MORGAN

1.  It has been written in these Chronicles, that Kentucky would not secede with the Gulf States, nor would she afford aid to Abraham to subdue them.

2.  Nevertheless, there were many of her sons that did not lie idle, but took part in this deadly strife of brothers. 

3.  Some could not consent that this old Union should be dissolved; they loved the flag under which their fathers fought, and which had waved over the from the years of their infancy.

4.  These left Kentucky and joined themselves to Abraham's army, some in one place and some in another.

5.  There were others that loved the South, for, they said, it was a goodly land, a genial clime, and its sons were magnanimous and brave, and its daughters fair, and they would not lift up arms against her.

6.  Of these not a few arose, and went down to "Dixie," and joined the rebel army.

7.  And among those that joined the rebel army, was John, whose surname is Morgan.

8.  John was a man who loved pleasure, and sought to obtain money by many devices.

9.  And he had learned many games upon cards, and was exceeding cunning therein, whereby he won large sums of money.

10.  And he was a man of unbounded wit, and loved to jest and make sport, and no man ever lived upon the whole earth, that could circumvent him.

11.  And John sent unto Jefferson and said, "behold, I sympathize with thee and with the South, and I sand ready to serve thee."

12.  And Jefferson sent him a letter of welcome and a commission; but as John was not a "West Pointer," Jefferson would not appoint him to a high office.

13.  And John became the chief of a band of horsemen, and they went through Tennessee and Kentucky, and greatly vexed the people;

14.  For they took their horses and their mules, and entered into their store-houses and took their goods, and scrupled not to accept their "greenbacks" when they could find them.

15.  And they performed many deeds which made them a terror to the land, and exceedingly famous; but of these deeds shall they not be recorded in a future chapter?

CHAPTER XLV

ESCAPE OF A REBEL CONSCRIPT.

1.  Now it came to pass about this time, that there was great commotion in "Dixie" because of the Conscription.

2.  For men said one to another, "How can we leave our homes, and wives, and little ones, and go to war?"

3.  And they were slow to rally to the standard of King Jefferson, and he sent recruiting officers to take them by force, and make them fight against the Yankees.

4.  Then did many Southern men flee from their homes, and live in caverns, and dens, and desert places of the earth; and not a few fled to Illinois, Indiana, and other places, where no rebel recruiting officer could come.

5.  In the midst of these troublesome times there dwelt in "Dixie," in the province of Arkansas, a certain man, whose name was Robert, surnamed Duvall.

6.  And he was a just man, for he feared God, and loved his wife, attended church, and paid the preacher.

7.  And Robert was in the prime of life, for he was not young nor was he old, and he was a strong man, and capable of performing much labor.

8.  And when the Rebellion broke out, Robert was a Union man, and voted against Secession.

9.  And it grieved him to think that the old flag, once so venerated and loved,--the flag which had ever commanded respect on every ocean and in every port, should be dishonored and made to trail in the dust.

10.  And he argued with his neighbors, saying, What good is there in Secession, and how shall we be profited thereby?

11.  Has not our country prospered ever since the Revolutionary War?  Have not our possessions extended until we are a mighty nation, and feared by all men that dwell upon the face of the whole earth?

12.  Have we not great and growing cities, that are rich in silver and gold, and lambs' wool, and bears' oil, and purple, and fine linen?

13.  And are we not free, and vote for whom, we please, and no man has a right to say to any, do this or do that?

14.  And do not our courts and our laws afford us ample protection?

15.  Nay, ye cannot gainsay these things; then, why will ye lay aside this government for another?  Why will ye depart from the faith of your fathers?

16.  And his neighbors said unto him, O hard of heart, and slow to believe!  Do ye not know that Abraham is elected President?

17.  And he answered and said, I know it.

18.  Then they said unto him, Abraham is an abolitionist, and intends to set our negroes free, and he is opposed to all Southern measures; and we will not have him to rule over us!

19.  And Robert said, Abraham cannot set the negroes free, nor can he oppress the South; for behold there is a majority against him in the great Sanhedrim, and he is sworn to support the Constitution, and to execute the laws of the land, and we need fear nothing he can do.

20.  Then were they angry with Robert, and said, though art no friend to the south, but thou art a traitor and shall not continue so to speak among us.

21.  Then was Robert afraid, for well did he know that his neighbors did not fear God, and that they were possessed of the Devil.

22.  So Robert communed with his wife, and she advised him to set his house in order, and flee to the North.

23.  And Robert did all that he could to get ready, for he needed some script for his journey, and he must needs provide for his family;

24.  And when he was almost ready to leave them, a recruiting officer, with a file of men, came by night and surrounded his house, and broke open his doors, and seized him;

25.  And they took him to a rebel camp, and gave him a gun, and treated him as a soldier.

26.  And it grieved Robert sorely, and he determined never to fight against the Union.

27.  And his regiment marched to Tennessee, and they lay in camp at Columbus several months, and Robert was with them.

28.  Now when Gen. Grant came against the rebel army encamped on the great river named Mississippi, that regiment was in the battle, and Robert was in the thickest of the fight.

29.  But he fired not a gun against the Federals, although he was in much danger from their guns.

30.  And the Federals pressed sore against the Rebels, and they fled, and great confusion ensued;

31.  And when they were greatly confused, Robert threw himself in the way of the approaching legions, and allowed himself to be taken as a prisoner;

32.  Then was he taken to Cairo, and subsequently, on taking the oath of allegiance, he was released.

 

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