Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 23.djvu/115
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like men .ind make .1 forced inarch to save our country." This was certainly tin substance of it, and we responded with a cheer and with quickening footsteps.
We forded the Slu-nandoah that night at Berry's Ferry, and reached tin- eastern side of tin- Blue Ridge Mountain at a small place called Paris, about 2 or 3 o'clock next morning. Here the company rested till sun rise, then inarched a tew miles down the eastern slope of the mountain to a good, old-fashioned country place occupied by a maiden lady. She, and her neighbors who lived further from the road than she did, and who had come over to cheer, or to see, the soldiers as they passed, prepared abundant supplies of food. It was of a sort known as "chicken-fixings" at first, but as the day wore on and the soldiers, not of our battery alone, but from the rest of the Army of the Shenandoah, kept falling in to get a taste of the savory edibles, the patriotic enthusiasm of these good people is said to have become nearly exhausted. It is safe to say that not one of the boys in grey had been compelled by hunger to ask for rations so far during his army life, but they all quickly learned that safe rule for a soldier never to omit to eat when you get a chance, especially if you can get something better than you have in your haversack.
Our company rested that day under the trees in a pretty yard, or strolled about the neighborhood till about dusk, when it again set out on the march, allowed, however, to ride on the caissons when weary of 'walking. We marched all night, with the exception of an hour or two after midnight in a little village called The Plains, where we halted, without unharnessing the teams, however, and rested on porches or at the roadside for an hour. We halted next morning somewhere to water and feed the horses, and kept on with our weary, hot march all day, arriving at Manassas Junction about 4 or 5 o'clock in the afternoon of Saturday, June 2oth. We were hot and dusty and thirsty, and found the few wells of water at the place guarded by sentinels, who refused at first to let us get any water to drink. After a hot and unrefreshing halt in the sunshine for several hours, during which our captain was seeking some orders as to our future movements, we set out across what had been fields, northward, and about dusk arrived at the south bank of Bull Run west, some dis- tance from the railroad and just above Mitchell's ford. Here we went into camp, and the captain was so considerate as to omit the evening roll-call and prayers, and to let us sleep just as we were and where we had fallen. No sounder sleeping was ever done than we