Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 19.djvu/66

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60 Southern Historical Society Papers.

Mr. John Gneme, one of the associate editors of the Whig, being a member of the organization.

The result of it all was that with my consent (though I had throughout favored Colonel Pendleton's proposition) the "Home Guard" was disbanded, and its guns, horses, harness and entire equipment, completed or in preparation, was turned over to the Governor to be placed at General Johnston's disposal.

I have the honor to be your obedient servant,

THOMAS H. ELLIS.

MAGRUDER'S PENINSULA CAMPAIGN IN 1862.

The Peninsula campaign, conducted on the Confederate side by General John Bankhead Magruder, though unduly subordinated in the already-written history of the war, conspicuously comprised a rapidly-recurring series of some of the most brilliant achievements of the soldiership of the South.

The Peninsula, between York river on one side and James river on the other, with Hampton Roads, or the southern extremity of Chesapeake Bay, making its seaboard boundary, is, in some of its associations, as historic ground, perhaps, as any similar-sized district of country within the limits of the United States. The sad site of Jamestown, in its almost vestigeless ruins, is in itself a poem ot pathos, carrying us back to the first successful attempt to establish an English colony in the New World, with all the perils and priva- tions, all the heroic and romantic reminiscences of the contests be- tween the white man and the red man, interwoven with that eventful epoch. It need not be forgotten, either, that into this same James river, washing the southern shore of this same Peninsula, the first cargo of negro slaves was brought into this country by a Dutch ship that ought to have sunk to the bottom of the sea with the pandora- box she was bringing here. And here we see in the subtle touch oi things wide apart in time the weird weaving of that web of fate that makes romance of history and almost justifies superstition in intelligent minds ; for where is the human intellect that is capable of tracing in continuity the connecting line of logic in events and insti- tutions dating back to the slave-ship, panoplied in the laws, sailing