Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 40.djvu/269
THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Here let me call attention to General Lee's Order No. 73, in which he charged his soldiers not to molest private property. "The duties exacted of us," said he, "by civilization and Christianity are not less obligatory in the country of the enemy than in our own. The Commanding General considers that no greater disgrace could befall the army and through it our whole people than the perpetration of the barbarous outrages upon the innocent and defenceless, and the wanton destruction of private property, that have marked the course of the enemy in our own country * * * We make war on armed men and we cannot take vengeance for the wrongs our people have suffered, without lowering ourselves in the eyes of all whose abhorrence has been excited by the atrocities of the enemy, and offending against Him to whom vengeance belongeth."
This order of their noble commander was strictly obeyed by the soldiers of the Confederate army. Again and again in this Pennsylvania campaign the citizens told us that we treated them far better than their own soldiers did. I can truly say I did not see a fence rail burned between Hagerstown and Gettysburg. What a contrast was presented in this respect to the armies of Napoleon of whom the historian says, describing one of their campaigns: "The Emperor's army soon took to plundering the country wholesale, considering the vanquished as having no rights worth mentioning." Commenting on this, Count von Wartenburg says, Napoleon "could only reach his highest aims by demanding enormous efforts, and could exact this only by fanning all the passions of his soldiers, and permitting them to satisfy them. He could only conquer the world by abandoning its constituent parts to his instruments as their booty."What a sublime contrast to all this is presented by this Southern army of invasion! They performed deeds of arms equal to any achieved by the armies of Napoleon; they made marches as long, as arduous, and as rapid, as any that his soldiers made; they endured hardships far greater than any endured by his army. But they did and endured all these things, not because their commander fanned the passions of his soldiers, and permitted them to satisfy these passions by abandoning the
- "Napoleon as a General" (pp. 310-11, 379).