Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 19.djvu/264

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258 Southern Historical Society Papers.

for his mess. He was also a singer, but never sang but one song, or rather the refrain of one, which was, "Shoo, Fly, Don't Bother Me ;" this he was humming all the time in a low voice. Hines " never missed a battle or shirked a fight, but he never did

any fighting.

When the fighting commenced he would begin to hunt for plun- der all over the field. No danger daunted him, nothing came amiss in the way of clothing or camp equipage ; friend and foe fared alike. Gathering up his booty he would seat himself on the ground in the most exposed situation near the battery, and calmly proceed to overhauling and mending the overcoats and other garments he had picked up, singing the while "Shoo, Fly, Don't Bother Me." The thunder of artillery and rattle of musketry were nothing to " Old Hines." Guns dismounted, caissons blown up in thirty yards of him were matters of indifference. If a shell burst very near him, "Old Hines" would cock up his eye, give a vigorous shake of the head, troll out "Shoo, Fly, Don't Bother Me," and proceed to sew on a button or mend a rent place in the garment.


While " Old Hines " never did any fighting, he was useful ; he was an inspiration and a perpetual joy to those who did. Everybody knew him cavalry, infantry and artillery, all smiled when " Old Hines" took up his position. As the fighting grew heavier and the bullets flew thicker, "Old Hines'" spirits arose in proportion, he would ply his needle with greater industry and sing " Shoo, Fly" with redoubled energy.


"Old Hines" and Fredericksburg, the grotesque and dramatic, are inseparably linked in my memory. When the fogs lifted from the banks of the Rappahannock the grandest battle-scene ever wit- nessed on this continent was revealed. The broad plain, level as a floor, stretching from the river to the position held by Lee and ex- tending for miles to the right and left was literally blackened by the advancing lines of battle of Burnside's splendid army. In our front, covering the left flank of the advancing Federal infantry, were massed the field-batteries of the enemy, which we were soon to en- gage, long lines of cavalry protected their left flank, while Stuart's