LIFE IN THE ARMY.
Being the Observations and Experi-
ences of a Private Soldier.
BY J. K. MAGIE.
In my interviews with some of the Union citizens of New Haven the name of Orville Price had been mentioned to me as a true and reliable Union man, but that his brother, Loyd Price, was an unprincipled rebel. As near as I could calculate from the map, which I have previously mentioned, I thought the house of Orville Price could not be over a mile distant, and as our horses needed food I concluded to make the venture and seek Mr. Price and obtain some corn if possible. The rebels were scouting the country thereabouts at that time, and it would probably not have been very healthy for me to have fallen into their hands, if they should have ascertained that I was a Yankee soldier. But it will be remembered that I as at this time dressed in the garb peculiar to that locality – straw hat and butternut. I had no difficulty in finding the house of Mr. Price. But I wished to be sure that I was at the right place. I reached the door without being discovered, and thus suddenly came upon a number of women who appeared to have congregated at this place for mutual safety and protection. They were somewhat disturbed at my presence, for they took me to be one of John Morgan’s thieves. I inquired if that was the house of Mr. Orville Price and was promptly informed by Mrs. Price that it was. In answer to my inquiries I was told that Mr. Price had gone to the town of New Haven and they were expecting him back every minute. They evidently thought it would be a hint for me to leave to let me know that Mr. Price was expected.
“Well,” I said, “if Mr. Price is expected home so soon I will wait until he comes,” and so walked in and invited myself to a seat. I saw that Mrs. Price was much disturbed in her feelings. She thought, probably supposing me to be a rebel, that I had some evil designs towards Mr. Price, as he was well known as an active Union man. A daughter of Mrs. Price, a handsome young lady of about eighteen years, was upset, and she looked at me with tiger eyes which were as black as coal. In my conversation, I assumed as well as I could, the peculiar dialect of the Kentuckians, and all present believed without a doubt that I was one of Morgan’s cutthroats. I had no disposition to add to the terror of the ladies, but I did not deem it expedient just then to convince them that I was a true Union Yankee. I asked in regard to the sentiment in that neighborhood on the question of “Southern rights,” whether the “Unionists” or “Southern rights” people were predominant.
“Oh,” says Mrs. Price, “we women folks don’t know much about these questions. – We don’t bother ourselves with them. – Mr. Price is a very quiet sort of man, and he lets other people think just as they please.”
I saw that this remark did not please the daughter. She looked more fierce than ever. At length her tongue loosened. Looking straight at me she gave me a piece of her mind as follows: –
“If you want to know it, Mr. Price, my father , is a Union man, and he aint so very quiet either. He hates rebels as he hates pizen, and he would kill one just as quick as he would kill a rattle-snake.”
“Bully for him,” says I.
The old lady was alarmed. She was evidently afraid the rashness of her daughter would get them into trouble.
“Oh, Susan,” says she, for that was her name, “how you talk. You know that father don’t wish to hurt anybody.”
“I know that he has no love for the mean, rotten, stinking secesh, and nobody that deserves to live has any love for them.”
“Well, my young lady,” says I, I can understand very well that you are strong enough for the Union.”
“So I am,” says he, “and I don’t care who knows it.”
The old lady was moved to remonstrate with Susan. “Susan,” says she, “you always was too rash and impetuous. I have no doubt there are some very good and honest Southern rights people. This gentleman may be in favor of Southern rights, and it is not polite, any how, for you to talk so about them.”
“Polite or not polite, I will tell the truth,” and with this remark the young lady darted out of the room, and into another part of the house.
The old lady commenced all sorts of apologies for Susan, actuated wholly by her fears. The other ladies present had said nothing so far, but I put the question plainly and bluntly to them to know if they were for the Union, like Susan. They hesitated a little at first, but at length one of them spoke, “If you must know it, sir, we are all Union people here, We don’t believe that secession is right. It has brought us a good deal of trouble, all for no good.”
“Well, ladies,” says I, “you are just of my way of thinking. Although you may take to be a rebel, I can assure you that I am not one, but am in fact a yankee soldier.”
They looked at me in surprise, still evidently regarding me with some doubt and suspicion. I continued the conversation until I saw they were satisfied of my true character. About this time Susan returned to the room, and one of the ladies bent over and whispered something in her ear. – She turned her her away in a rather spiteful manner, saying in quite a loud tone, “I don’t believe a ward of it.” There was evidently no lack of spunk or loyalty in that girl.
It was not long before Mr. Price made his appearance. He was a man of about forty years, and his appearance indicated energy and intelligence. He looked at me with a frown, as if to inquire my business. I immediately informed him that I was a soldier belonging to the 78th Ill. regiment, and my business was to purchase of him some corn for my horses, which were secreted in the woods. He looked at me earnestly for a moment, and then said he “I have not a great deal of corn but I will sell you some.” He filled two bags with the desired article, and each of us shouldering a bag we soon reached our rendezvous in the mountains. My companions, McClintock and Houk, had in the meantime constructed a little shanty from pine boughs, which served to shelter us from the chilly air which prevailed at that time. Mr. Price remained with us for two or three hours, relating to us many interesting incidents respecting the trials and perplexities of the Unionists in that section.
In the afternoon I struck out for the camp at New Haven, to learn the situation of things there. I took a rather circuitous route and struck the Bardstown pike about a mile and a half north of town. I had not proceeded far on the pike before I discovered a man in a field making for the road in advance of me. I quickened my pace a little and managed to come up to him just as he was getting over the fence. This proved to be a Mr. Sawtell, an earnest Union citizen. He suspected at once that I was a rebel, and he immediately concluded to arrest and hand me over to the soldiers as soon as we should reach New Haven. As we walked along together I made numerous inquiries of him respecting the geography of the country thereabouts, and how the people stood on the Union question. His replies were rather evasive, as though he was ignorant of the matters I inquired about. We soon reached the house of Dr. Elliott, and I inquired particularly respecting the occupants, and was given to understand that they were of the secesh order. It was my purpose to stop and see the Doctor, but I wished to encourage Mr. Sawtell in his belief that I was a rebel, as I saw plainly that he had designs upon me, and I rather relished the idea. I stopped in and related to the Doctor my adventure, and from my description of the man he pronounced him to be Mr. Sawtell, a member of the Union Vigilance Committee, and he assured me that I would be watched and arrested as soon as I left his house.
The house of Dr. Elliott was just in the northern suburbs of the town. As soon as Mr. Sawtell left me it appears that he hurried into the town, and apprised some of the other members of the Vigilance Committee that he had scented some game, and that they would soon bag it. They set a watch upon the house, and were soon delighted to see me emerge from it. They fixed their trap to catch me as soon as I should get fairly into the town, but I was disposed to baffe them a little. Our camp lay near the railroad on the west side of the town, and I concluded to reach it by taking a short cut “cross lots.” The Vigilance Committee watched me, and dispatched one or two of their number to see that I did not take refuge in the back alleys of the town. In a few minutes it became evident to them that I would soon run right upon the Federal pickets, and this to them was an exceedingly rich joke. It was the very point to which they would have taken me if they had got hold of me, and I was saving them the trouble of that by trying, as they thought, to avoid the town. They watched me as I reached the pickets, and to their consternation and surprise I was welcomed by them, and permitted to pass right on without a guard into camp. I had the pleasure of seeing Mr. Sawtell and his companions a number of times after this little occurrence, and they laughed heartily over the circumstances, but they always insisted that I was a vicious looking rebel.
TO BE CONTINUED.
→ We are indebted to our faithful friend Alex. McLean, for late New York papers.
→ The Coppinger Democracy of this county have called a convention to meet in this city on Monday next to nominate county officers. There’s no use a trying, cops, you have sinned away your day of grace.
→ The McDonough County Agricultural Fair commences in this city on Wednesday next.
Col. R. G. Ingersoll on Copperheads.
At the anniversary of the 86th Ill., regiment, on the 28th of August, Col. R. G. Ingersoll, of Peoria, made a speech, saying, among other good things, the following:
This is not a political meeting, and yet I cannot forbear saying a word or two concerning the soldiers’ friends. There are men here in our midst pretending to be your dearest and best friends. They belong to a party, some of whom, (I will not say all) were not your friends when you were fighting the battles of your country. They laughed at your wounds, they sneered at your scars; they mocked the corpses of your comrades; they prophesied your defeat; they hoped for your disgrace; they prayed for your overthrow and death; they despised the cause for which you were battling; they were the allies of your murderers.
Now you have reached home covered with glory; you are welcomed by the true people of the North; you are radiant with success, and the very men of whom I have been speaking crowd around you and say they were your friends. Beware of them all! They do not want to help you; they want you to help them. When they come, tell them that you can have no confidence in their sincerity till they bring back the thirty pieces of silver, the price of your blood; tell them to go and follow to the bitter end the example of their illustrious leader.
Hit ‘Em Again.
The Buzzard has a learned and labored editorial on the subject of their county convention. It says that they want in the future what the county has enjoyed in the past – a set of county officials who “add dignity to the position.” That is intended as a huge joke. It then closes with the following significant language:
“We want this convention to be composed of men who feel the responsibility that rests upon them, and not the mere tools of a pack of soulless, political tricksters, who care nothing for the interest and welfare of the county, so that their selfish ends are promoted.”
There is a brick-bat for somebody. You “soulless, political tricksters” stand back. You have had the ‘rule of matters’ in the Democratic party long enough. Now let the Buzzard man and all the little Buzzards take a pull at the wires.
→ The Buzzard makes a serious charge against our candidate for county judge. It says he has “deservedly denounced” the principles of the republican party as “unfit for demons to advocate.” True enough. – If he had said the principles of the copperhead party were just fit for demons to advocate, he would have hit the nail square on the head.
Who can point to a single instance where a soldier has been put forth as a candidate for office on the republican ticket in a county which has a republican majority? Not a single instance can be cited. – Buzzard.
The above is a good illustration of the Buzzard’s regard for truth. In every republican county in this state which have a held conventions this year soldiers have been nominated. In Henderson county, which is strongly Republican, out of seven candidates five of them are soldiers, and the most of these were privates. We challenge the Buzzard to name a single Republican county where a ticket has been put forth that has not a soldier upon it.
→ The Buzzard meanly insinuates that the boys of Co. I, 78th Regt., refused to subscribe for our paper. We doubt whether the Buzzard has the name of a single soldier of Co. I upon its books, but if the dirty editor of that dirty sheet will wash himself and then step into our office we will show him the names of nearly half that company upon our books, and all of them paid in advance, like gentlemen. The Buzzard is worried. The soldiers won’t take his dirty sheet.
The Buzzard inquires – “Will he tell us why General Steadman called him a low sneaking contemptible yankee.
Yes. We were rash enough to express an opinion that there were some copperhead editors who loved the soldiers.
We made a short visit to this enterprising town one day last week, and for the first time in our history had the privilege of looking about the place. A ride upon the cars through the town does not impress one favorably with its appearance. The long row of miserable shanties in which the chief business of the town is transacted, and which is so plainly presented to view from the railroad, gives it the appearance of an old-fashioned one-horse town, in which the chief articles of trade are coon skins, tobacco, whisky and shoe thread. But this appearance really does the town injustice. – There is probably no town of the same size in the state that enjoys a larger retail trade than Bushnell. There are a number of business houses now in process of construction, which will be a vast improvement and will add materially to the appearance of the town. We noticed one substantial brick building going up, which stands conspicuous in the row of shanties aforesaid. The eastern part of the town has some fine streets and elegant residences, and a number more in process of building. In the matter of fine and tasteful residences, Bushnell rather bears the palm from Macomb.
We called upon our old friend Swan, of the Press, and found his office in excellent order, neat as a pin, and himself in congenial mood. Since last we saw him he has found his other and better half, and his appearance is greatly improved thereby. – Friend Swan has drove his stake in Bushnell, and he means to live or die with that place. We think the business of Bushnell is larger and more varied than the columns of the Press would indicate. We saw a number of business houses while there whose cards we have never seen in print. They will pay a liberal price for a wooden sign, when a printed sign in a news paper will bring them a hundred per cent. more money.
Upon the whole we think Bushnell is a right smart town, but it is too near Macomb ever to grow as large as Chicago.
Let all Remember.
That the miserable sneaks who ran away to avoid the draft are disfranchised by law. The editor of the Buzzard is one of the sneaks. He sneaked off to Idaho, and when all danger of the draft was over he sneaked back again, and will probably be trying to vote at the coming election. Look out for him.
Gives it up.
The Buzzard gives up the election. Its only hope now is that four years hence they may get their mouth on the public teat. Hear it:
“If Capt. Ervin should be elected them we will have a good chance next time.”
Wont’ take it.
We learn from authentic sources that the publisher of the Buzzard received over twenty notices from indignant subscribers during the past week, notifying him not to send his dirty paper to them again. The editor can’t get anybody in the city to carry his filthy trash to subscribers, and so he ‘totes’ them around himself. We learn that he was kicked out of a house in the eastern part of town a week or two since for presuming to ask the family to subscribe for his nasty Buzzard. Served him right.
Magie, don’t you know that the soldiers despise and detest you – Buzzard.
We reckon not. Any how we never had to set up all night armed with clubs, brickbats and pistols, to defend our office against the soldiers.
→ The editor of the Buzzard learning that the hog cholera was approaching went to an agent of the stock Insurance Co. to get insured. His application was refused. His carcass was found to be too rotten.
Information Wanted. – the mother of Daniel Estabrook; a lad 10 years old, is very desirous of hearing from him. He has been gone for some months, and his absence causes his mother much grief. Any information of his whereabouts will be most thankfully received by Lucy Estabrook, Princeton, Ill.
Soldiers Monument Association.
In pursuance of the call published in the newspapers of the county, a meeting was held at the Court House, in Macomb, on Saturday, September 16th, 1865, for the purpose of organizing a Soldiers Monument Association. The meeting was called to order by Lt. Col. Roach, and Samuel Calvin, Esq., selected as chairman, and L. A. Simmons as Secretary. Mr. Roach then briefly stated the object of the meeting, referring to the address which was published by the Committee, and our obligation as citizens of McDonough county, to do something to commemorate the services and sacrifices of those who have fallen in defence of our Country. Mr. Blackburn next made a few pertinent remarks on the subject of organization, and stated that Mr. Simmons had been requested to prepare a constitution. – Mr. Simmons being called for gave his reasons why a Monument should be erected, and why a permanent organization was necessary in order to carry forward the undertaking successfully. At the request of the meeting he read a hastily drafted constitution, which the meeting proceeded to take up, amend, and adopt article by article. – When this was finished, on motion of Mr. Blackburn, the constitution was as a whole adopted as the constitution of the McDonough County Soldier’s Monument Association.
Twenty-five gentlemen present then signed said constitution, and are by the same constituted charter members of this Association. Their names are:
|G. W. Welch,||James K. Magie,|
|George W. Reid,||T. K. Roach,|
|J. D. Hainline,||C. V. Chandler,|
|William Ervin,||James Rollins,|
|W. E. Withrow,||Chas. J. Bartleson,|
|William Hunter,||Samuel R. Jones,|
|W. H. Hainline,||A. Blackburn,|
|Samuel Calvin,||W. T. Harris,|
|D. M. Reid,||Firman Casto,|
|Amos Scott,||Richard Kellough,|
|Pressly Hobbs,||J. M. Hume,|
|Chauncy Case,||Thomas Kellough,|
|L. A. Simmons,|
On motion, the Association proceeded to the election of officers by a vote, vive voce. The following were elected:
CHARLES CHANDLER, President,
Alex. Blackburn, Vice President,
L. A. Simmons, Secretary,
J. H. Cummings, Treasurer.
|James Rollins,||J. D. Hainline,|
|William Ervin,||Thos. M. Jordan.|
D. M. Wyckoff.
On motion, the Association then proceeded to select a committee of sixteen, one from each township in the county, to procure subscription, funds, &c. The following named gentlemen were selected for this committee:
Capt. J. B. Johnson, Prairie City; James Booth, Jr., Walnut Grove; John Logan, Sciota; Samuel Logan, Blandinville; Vandever Banks, Hire; G. G. Guy, Emmett; O. F. Piper, Macomb; Lewis Smith, Mound; G. P. Waters, New Salem; Samuel R. Jones, Scotland; William Hunter, Chalmers; G. W. Welch, Tennessee; Lemett Little, Lamoine; Samuel Calvin, Bethel; D. M. Creel, Industry; Samuel Frost, Eldorado. J. D. Hainline, Esq., then made a proposition, which he wished entered upon the records of this Associaton, in substance as follows: That during the ensuing three months, he will be one of twenty, who will jointly donate one thousand dollars, to the Association for the purpose of erecting a Monument, that is to say, Fifty Dollars each.
Mr. Roach then offered the following resolution which was unanimously adopted.
Resolved, That it is the sense of this meeting, that the Soldier’s Monument, which this Association proposes to erect, should be erected upon the public square, in the city of Macomb, if it be found practicable.
Various matters in connection with the proper method of raising funds, the size, height, material, &c., of the Monument, the duties of the committees, &c., were then discussed.
On motion, the secretary was directed to offer to each of the newspapers in the county, a copy of the proceedings of this meeting for publication.
On motion, the Association adjourned to meet at 10 o’clock, A. M. on Saturday, December 16th, 1865, in some room to be by the executive committee provided in the city of Macomb.
L. A. Simmons, Sec’y.
Off the Track.
On Wednesday evening the 7 o’clock Passenger train going south ran off the track about three miles and half south of this city. The whole train, engine and all, was tumbled into a ditch, but strange to say, nobody was hurt. The miry condition of the road just at that point was supposed to be the cause of the accident. The whole force of the road was summoned and a track was built around the wreck, so the next day the trains passed on time.
On last Monday night as Mr. Henry Feltges was going to his horse in the north-west part of the city he was attacked by two ruffians and an attempt made to take from his pocket book, which contained about $90. The pocket-book had slipped out of his breast pocket, and down inside the lining of his coat, and the robbers were thus baffled.
The Board of Supervisors at their recent meeting fixed the bounty for wolf scalps at $10. In the published report of the proceedings it is erroneously stated to be $15.
A Steam Engine – eight horse power – in good order. Enquire at this office.
A WIFE WANTED.
I want a wife. I am a bachelor, 27 years of age, 5 feet 10 inches high, weigh 145 pounds; I have dark brown hair, black whiskers, blue eyes and good health, and a good English education; my habits are moral and temperate; my disposition is kind, cheerful, contemplative and resolute.
Any Lady may address me, confidentially, making other inquiries by letter, and will be very respectfully answered in my hand-writing.
Address H. F. CHAVE, Augusta, Ill.