VY~ ~ ~ if-TI
The Baldwin Library
9 61 U d.k
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
; -j .
THE SOUTH CAROLINA INSTITUTE OR SECESSION HALL. Front
THE SOUTH CAROLINA INSTITUTE O SECESSION HALL. Frontispiee.
FITZ-HUGII ST. CLAIR,
THE SOUTH CAROLINA REBEL BOY;
IT IS NO CRIME TO BE BORN A GENTLEMAN.
MRS. SALLIE F. CHAPIN.
"The right of strict social discrimination of all things and persons, according to
their merits, native or acquired, is one of the most precious Republican privi-
leges . insist on my Democratic liberty of choice, and go for the
man with the gallery of Family Portraits against the one with the twenty-
five cent daguerreotype, unless I find out the last is the better of the two."
OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES.
CLAXTON, REMSEN & HAFFELFINGER.
CHARLESTON, S. C.: JOHN M. GREER & SON.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1872, by
CLAXTON, REMSEN & IIAFFELFINGER,
in the Office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington.
STEREOTYPED BY J. FAGAN & SON, PHILADELPHIA.
hldren of th southernn 4onfederacg,
Whose FAthers were Brave, and True enough to fight for the Prin-
ciples they believed to be right; I dedicate my LITTLE BOOK.
These Brave Fathers fell (many of them) upon Blood-Stained
Battle Fields, and in Fame's broad Pantheon, have failed to gain
that Immortality, which short-sighted man bestows; yet we,
who loved them, and the Glorious Cause, in which they perished,
intend to protest, and we do still protest, and shall never cease
protesting, against the judgment that would consign their pre-
cious memories to oblivion.
Heroes of a Lost Cause true they are: but that cause was ours,
and we can never forget, that their living bodies, and beating
hearts, were our bulwarks on many a hard-fought Battle Field;
and they have gone to their graves in bloody shrouds, for our
sakes. But they died, as Brave Men love to die, IN DEFENCE OF
THE RIGHT; their deeds are
Worthie on Fame's eternall bead-roll to be fyled,"
and every line written in this book, calls upon you (their chil-
dren) to emulate their valor; and sacredly to cherish their memo-
ries while life lasts; and above all, to do nothing to disgrace the
names, which they made illustrious, and in dying bequeathed
to you, as a priceless legacy, to be handed down without
blemish- to the latest generation.
There was not a single deed, in the unequal struggle, in which
they were engaged, of which you ought not to be proud, for
although the flag of the Southern Confederacy, was furled in
defeat, no stain of dishonor, sullies the virgin purity of its
folds; and one day, the world will acknowledge that it was
laid away to mould, only because
We were Outnumbered! Not Outbraved!
SALLIE F. CHAPIN.
CHARLESTON, S. C.
y- COI TTEnI S
CHAPTER I. PAGE
BOYS, AND WHAT THEY ARE GOOD FOR.......................... 13
THE HIVE OF BUSY BEES.......................................... 19
THE SECOND MONTHLY REPORT OF THE SOCIETY ......... 25
GLENDAIRE, GENERAL ST. CLAIR'S ISLAND HOME......... 80
THE ATTACK OF THE FEDERAL FLEET ....................... 45
A CHAT ABOUT CHILDREN........................................ 49
GENERAL ST. CLAIR'S EXPLANATION AS TO THE CAUSES
OF THE W AR..................................................... 54
CHAPTER VIII. PAGE
THE DEPARTURE................................................... 78
THE BATTLE OF MANASSAS...................................... 85
THE DEATH OF OLD MR. ST. CLAIR........................... 94
SPECULATORS ......................................................... 98
THE BURNING OF COLUMBIA....................................... 102
THE BURIAL OF BABY MAY................................... 113
D EFEAT................................................................ 119
THE MOVE TO CHARLESTON....................................... 132
THE TRIP NORTH................................................... 143
HUNTING A SITUATION.............................................. 153
RESISTING TEMPTATION............................................. 172
CHAPTER XIX. PAGE
THE HOTEL DINNER................................. .............. 195
MR. WINTHROP'S HISTORY OF HIMSELF ..................... 209
THE MEETING BETWEEN FITZ AND HIS MOTHER .......... 223
LIFE AT NEWPORT....... ........................................... 231
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
BOYS, AND WHAT THEY ARE GOOD FOR.
DON'T you wish you were a girl? asked little curly-
headed Lillie of a sullen-looking boy, whose
angry countenance plainly indicated entire dissatis-
faction, either with his sex or something else.
"Do I wish I was a girl ?" repeated Willie, in the
most contemptuous tone. "Of course I do not, and I
can't imagine what could have put such a stupid notion
into your head, Lillie. If it will be any satisfaction for
you to know, let me inform you that if the choice were
given me either to be a girl, or a horse, I should not
hesitate a second, but would trot into the stable right
away. I have such a contempt for feminine gender
children that I wish there was not one in the world."
"You don't say so, Mr. Gallantry; why, you would
make a good Moslem. But it is not often, Mr. Turk,
14 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
that people come so near having their wishes gratified;
for, if you are not a horse, you are a fair specimen of
his long-eared cousin. I suppose, to carry out the idea,
you wish your gentle mamma was a great, burly, big-
whiskered six-footer like your papa, and your little
sisters had all been born brothers, as amiable and
interesting as yourself," said Kate Lee, the most
sprightly and beautiful girl in town, who had offended
Willie, and for whom his spiteful remarks were in-
No, Miss Smartness, I wish no such thing; for my
mother and sisters are not all the time cutting their
wit at people as you are. Another thing, I was not
speaking to you, but to Lillie, and it is very meddle-
some in you to take up my remarks. I would mind
my own business if I were you, and not interfere with
"There, I would not copy you, Will, for I think
you would be meddling on a grand scale to exterminate
the whole race of women (except the feminines of
your own family), as you pretend you would like to
do. Why, my dear child, you have not thought of
the result of such a wiping out. Surely, Campbell's
world without a s(u)n would be a paradise compared
to the world you would make without a daughter.
No, better let things be as they are, Willie, for if there
were no girls in this world I am afraid you would
follow the example of that illustrious cry-baby we read
about in our history this morning, and go to whining
'for another world'-one with g-u-r-r-l-s in it."
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 15
"You are very much mistaken, Miss Conceit, if you
entertain any such idea."
"Excuse me, my name is Lee Miss Kate Lee, at
your service, and neither Miss Smartness nor Miss
"Yes, and Miss Kate Lee it would always remain
if it depended on me -"
Which it don't," said the torment; my last re-
jection of your suit was final. But, come, don't be so
spiteful, we girls have beaten you in a fair fight.
Boys are helpless, inefficient creatures, although you
think it such an honor to have been born a masculine
gender child. You don't s(e)w as girls do, consequently
you cannot reap as they have done. But you can't
help it; it all comes of your being boys, and it is
simply pre-pos-ter-ous for boys to pretend to keep
pace with girls in energy, or indeed anything else, so
stop your unmanly whining, and do as the newspapers
are continually preaching up to the grown folks to do-
'accept the situation;' it is a good plan when there's
nothing else to accept, and you are obliged to accept
it, whether you will or not."
"Katie darling," said little Lillie, "don't you, in fact,
like boys ? I do think they are real nice, only they
don't know how to do anything."
"Don't they, pet?" said Kate, laughing heartily
at the unconscious endorsement the little innocent was
giving to the charges she had just made. "Their being
so useless is the very reason Katie don't like them;
you stumbled right on the truth, you wise little Lillie,
16. FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
What in the world have the boys been doing, Miss
Kate, to have rendered themselves so obnoxious to
you?" asked a graceful, handsome boy, who had
entered the academy while the contest of words between
Kate and Willie was going on.
"What have they been doing? Fitz, you surely
did n't mean to ask that question, did you? Boys
doing! Why, did you ever know them guilty of
doing anything useful ?"
"Most assuredly I have. Why should they not?
they are capable of doing anything in the world they
I grant that; but when, my dear friend, does it
ever 'please' a boy to do anything, except monopolize
the spare moments of his poor, tired mother, in darn-
ing, patching, making and cleaning clothes for the
great, lazy fellow to loaf around in; yet, if we girls
only ask one of the young gentlemen of elegant leisure
to 'do an errand for us,' or in any way relieve us of
one of the thousand duties we are called upon daily
to perform, they immediately fall back upon their
reserved rights, and, with great dignity, coolly inform
us they are not girls,' as if it would be any disgrace
to them if they were."
Indeed, Katie, I disagree with you entirely," said
Rena St. Clair, the sister of Fitz, and you would not
speak as you do if you had such a dear, good brother
as I have. Why, there is not a day passes that mamma
does not say she 'could not get along at all without
our dear Fitz,' and he is a boy. He gets up at dawn,
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 17
"Stop! stop! stop! you dear, partial, little sister,
you," said Fitz, coming up behind her, and putting
both hands over her mouth, have you no mercy ?
Don't you know Fitz is your brother, and your testi-
mony cannot be unbiassed; besides, Miss Kate is talking
of 'boys,' not brothers, for she is fortunate enough
not to be annoyed with a brother."
"I never saw but one that I would not consider an
annoyance," replied Kate.
We all know who that is," said Willie, glancing
knowingly at Fitz; "but we are not so sure, Katie,
that 'a brother' is the kinship you would like to have
established between you; that would preclude a 'nearer
one still and a dearer,' you know," and he laughed
triumphantly, as he saw he was not misunderstood,
and had succeeded (for the first time in his life) in
placing at a disadvantage the incorrigible tease.
"I will not condescend to answer your impertinent
insinuation," she replied, with crimson cheek and
flashing eye; "for I do not think I am at all singular
in appreciating merit, particularly when as in this
case it is rendered so conspicuous by contrast with
inefficiency and impudence," and, so saying, she left
"Willie, you surely forgot you were speaking to a
young lady," said Fitz.
No, I did not, Fitz; but I am sorry I victimized
you, old fellow. Why, I have made you blush like a
girl. The fact is, Kate provokes me until I scarcely
know what I am saying or doing, half the time I am
18 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
with her, and that abominable report she read to-day
would have exasperated an angel. I could not resist
the temptation to pay her off, even at your expense;
so, excuse me, for I would not have hit you if you had
not been standing right between me and the game I
was trying to bring down."
THE HIVE OF BUSY BEES.
THE precocious young people, to whom we were
introduced -in the preceding chapter, were in
attendance at a juvenile "Soldiers' Relief Society,"
which was holding its weekly meeting in the Female
Academy. It was at the commencement of the war,
when the entire State, from mountain to seaboard, was
intensely excited. Young and old, great and small,
rich and poor, white and black, bond and free, the
scalawag of to-day and the true man, all talked
" secession" then, and were eager to shed their own, or
somebody else's blood. The brave men who were in
the army, risking their lives in defence of a cause we
believed so just and holy, had the sympathy of all,
and societies for their relief were organized in every
city, town, and village.
"People gave who never gave before,
And those who always gave, now gave the more."
Our little folk called their society The Hive of
20 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
Busy Bees," and one part of their Constitution read
No person over sixteen years of age will, under
any circumstances, be permitted to join this Society."
The very first act under this rule was the election
of Miss Birch, their teacher, a maiden of sixty, first as
a member, and subsequently as their President. This
procedure removed every lingering doubt as to the
genuineness of their Constitution, for George Wilson,
who loved to use big words, said it was the very "fact
smiley" of the Constitution of the United States; to
which Miss Birch, with an arch look, replied, "and
quite as elastic. However, constitutions, to suit every-
body, ought to be made to mean different things to
different people, and everybody ought to be allowed
to construe them to suit their peculiar circumstances.
So I guess, children, the difference between sixteen
and sixty is not too great to be reconciled. If the dis-
crepancy had occurred in the Constitution of the
United States, it would not have been deemed worthy
of a consideration, so we will follow that example, and
if we get in a tight place we will do as Congress does,
and as you boys do to your kites, tack on a bob, and
call it an amendment; for bobs and amendments an-
swer the same purpose they make whatever they are
tacked on to go up as high as a kite."
Little Lillie had been quietly listening to the above
conversation, and seemed to be revolving a problem in
her mind which she was not able satisfactorily to de-
monstrate. At last she spoke out, and said, Miss
Birch, how old is you?"
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 21
"Why, Lillie, I am sixteen," replied Miss Birch;
"did you think I was not old enough to join your
Society, little pet? I was sixteen so long ago I have
almost forgotten it."
Yes, and you have been sixteen a good many times
since, I 'spect, haven't you, Miss Birch ? said the little
philosopher, wagging her head.
"Yes, darling, every sixteen years since."
"And I am not six yet. When I am sixteen, will
I have to begin over and be one? Mamma don't do
that way. She gets one year older every yeAr, she
says, and papa, too; and great-grandma is ever so old;
I 'spect she is 'most a thousand."
"Dear, dear me! what an old lady she must be, to
be sure; older than Methuselah, who was only nine
hundred and sixty-nine," said Miss Birch.
"Yes, her name is in the same Bible with Methu-
salum's, because papa went to the Bible the other day,
and he said great-grandma's age was in the Bible."
At this the children laughed heartily, and Miss
Birch called the Society to order.
Willie Wagner proposed that "the dues of the So-
ciety should be paid in Confederate money," and the
President requested all in favor of the motion to raise
their right hands. Up went every hand, and it seemed
as if the whole Hive were about to take flight. Such
as were not quite certain which was their right hand
raised each alternately, for fear of losing their vote.
By the payment of one dollar they became members of
the Society. Tommy Tucker had two one-dollar bills
22 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
on the Bank of Charleston. He offered one in pay-
ment of his dues, but it was refused. With quivering
lip, and tears running down his cheeks, he said, "I
will give you both of my two dollars, if you will only
let me join."
But the Society was incorrigible. Nothing but Con-
federate money would be tolerated by the little
It was a terrible disappointment to poor Tom, but
there was no help for it. He was among children, and
there is no "running with the hare and holding with
the hound among them. If he had only been among
grown people, some one would certainly have offered
to shave his bill for him, or lend him the amount at
five per cent. a month. As it was he had to run
home and exchange his bills.
The Society had been organized just two months
when our story commenced, and it was Kate Lee's
" monthly report" as Secretary and Treasurer that had
so offended Willie Chisoln. The fact is, the boys, up
to date, had done nothing in the world but pay their
admission fees, while the girls had handed into the
treasury twenty dollars, which, by their industry, they
had earned. The report read thus: "The Treasurer
has in hand twenty dollars, avails of work manufac-
tured and sold by the young ladies. The young gen-
tlemen have honored the Society with their presence,
and if they will reduce the honor to its cent. per cent.
valuation in dollars and cents (which is the currency of
this association), we will be happy to place it to their
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 23
credit on the books of the Society." The girls had not
concealed from the boys the fact that they considered
them "the drones" in the Hive, and never left an op-
portunity unimproved to impress them with a sense
of their worthlessness; but this report was the culmi-
nation of their disgrace. They were mortified to death,
and sat twirling their hats, groping in their pockets,
and looking, for all the world, like the
"Four-and-twenty fiddlers, all in a row."
To say they were satisfied" with simply holding
their membership would be doing them injustice;
they were anxious to do something, but what, they did
It was the first meeting Fitz-Hugh St. Clair had
attended, and the boys hailed his presence with delight,
and urged him to join them.
What! place my name upon such a roll of in-
famy?" he asked, laughingly; "the inducement is
"Yes," they all said, "but with you to plan for us,
Fitz, what can we not do? Only consent to lead us,
and we will follow you, as Stonewall Jackson said he
would Lee -'with eyes shut.' So come, old fellow,
raise the battle-flag and lead us to victory."
What flag are you under now?" asked Kate.
"The white flag, and we plead for quarter," replied
"Granted, provided that if our positions, by the
fortunes of war, should become reversed, you will not
24 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
raise the black flag. You know my opinion of boys;
they become arrogant upon a very small capital."
"We will try, Miss Kate, and be at least as mag-
nanimous as you have been."
"Magnanimous! P-h-e-w!" whistled Will, "you
had better say rantankerous; but, old lady, our day
is coming, and I warn you, beware of the 'ides of
"I sha'n't forget there is a Richmond in the field,
Will. But we shall see what we shall see, and until
then I am yours most respectfully," and, courtesying
very low, she left the boys to plan their campaign.
THE SECOND MONTHLY REPORT OF THE SOCIETY.
F ITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR was a manly, noble
boy, and a universal favorite. The girls admired
his beauty, the boys his bravery, mothers trusted their
sons with him, and held him up as an example for
imitation; and all agreed he was the best boy in town.
No one ever saw him with a cigar in his mouth, or
heard him use profane language. In conversing, he
looked you in the face, as though he would say, "I
have nothing to conceal; look right through my eyes
into my breast, and see for yourself."
He had been reared, in great affluence, but by pious
and intelligent parents, who had taught him to
"Consider the day lost, whose low, descending sun
Saw by his hand no deed of duty done."
When the boys met to consult as to the ways and
means of extricating themselves from the dilemma
into which their laziness had brought them, Fitz rated
them soundly for their listlessness and want of energy,
26 FITZ-HUGII ST. CLAIR.
and only consented to become a member of the Society
on condition that they went immediately to work, with
might and main, and left no effort unemployed to place
themselves in a proper position before the young
They were willing to do, or promise, anything in the
world, and entering into all of his plans they caught
his inspiration, and were only surprised that some of
his suggestions "had not presented themselves," they
seemed so simple.
The girls looked forward to the next report-day
with considerable anxiety, and, it 'must be acknowl-
edged, not without a few misgivings, as to their being
able to bear off the honors as they had previously done.
That the boys were hard at work, somewhere, and at
something, was certain, for they were no longer met
loafing at the street-corners; but no efforts of the girls
could find out their whereabouts or employment.
At last the important day arrived; curiosity was on
tiptoe. There was a quiet twinkle in the eyes of the
boys, and a look which seemed to say, We are not
afraid of you to-day, girls."
"How much have you boys earned ?" was asked a
dozen times by the inquisitive girls, but the answer
given was invariably, "Fitz is our treasurer, you must
ask him ;" and he, most provokingly, staid away until
the meeting had commenced.
"I would like to have your report, Fitz," said
Kate, in a tone decidedly more subdued than was
usual with her.
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 27
"Sure enough, this is report-day," said he, in the
coolest manner imaginable, just as though he had not
made it an era, from which they would in future date.
Let me see," said he, if I have not left my account
at home," and he felt first in one pocket, and then in
the other, while the boys, with eyes as big as saucers,
looked the admiration they felt for one so infinitely
superior to them as to be entirely self-sustained, while
they could scarcely keep their seats. "Here it is,"
said he, at last, taking it from the pocket he had first
explored, and, with a quiet smile, handing it to Kate,
"The boys desire to hand in to the treasurer the
sum of $60.30," (a large amount, if it had not been
"By the request of the young ladies they have
'reduced to its cent. per cent. value' their services for
the past two months, and find the amount as reported."
It was a study to see the amused look with which
Fitz regarded Kate, as she read the report. When
she concluded, he said, Will the secretary be kind
enough to inform the boys how much they now lack
of reaching the amount brought in by the young
"Nothing at all, Mr. Innocence," she replied, in a
quick, nervous manner. Your triumph is complete.
You have $16.00 more in the treasury than we have.
I congratulate you upon your success."
"You are not very enthusiastic in your congratu-
lations, Katie, and you seem as anxious to change
28 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
Master St. Clair's name as you pretended I was to
change yours. I told you, you were mistaken in saying
you wanted Fitz for a brother," said Will, the incor-
"At all events, I was not mistaken in calling you
'insolent,' Willie. I don't see what you are putting on
such airs for. You are presuming on another's capital,
for you boys were all lying like capsized turtles on your
backs, until Fitz came to the rescue, and, by his tact
and energy, put you all on your feet."
Yes; but once we did get on our feet, we went it,
you are obliged to admit, Katie, and it was history
repeating itself--'the Hare and the Tortoise' over
again;" and he jumped and capered, as if he had
gone beside himself.
"Is we under the black flag, Katie, because we got
beat?" asked Lillie.
"No," said Willie, you are under the yellow flag,
because you are in a declining condition, and your
secretary is jealous."
Don't mind him, Lillie," said Fitz, "it is not so.
We are all under one 'glorious flag' the Confed-
erate flag, and must each do the very best we can to
aid the cause it represents. We cannot fight; but we
can earn money to buy good weapons for those who
are fighting, so that they may not fight at too great a
"Yes, children," said Miss Birch, "you can each
one, no matter'how small, do something. Do you rec-
ollect the verses you learned last Sunday, Lillie ? Can
you repeat them ? They are quite to the point."
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 29
"I will try," said Lillie; and, standing up, she re-
cited, without a single mistake, the following beautiful
lines, which we hope every child who reads this book
THE TERRIBLE IFS.
If the little cowslip should hang its golden cup,
And say I am such a tiny flower I'd better not grow up,
How many a weary traveller would miss its fragrant smell,
How many a little child would grieve to miss it from the dell.
And if the little breezes, upon a summer day,
Should think themselves too small to cool the traveller on his way,
Who would not miss the softest and gentlest ones that blow,
And think they made a great mistake, if they were acting so?
So, many deeds of kindness the smallest child may do,
Although it has so little strength, and little wisdom, too;
If it is but in earnest, and works with all its power,
The smallest child will bless the world it lives in every hour.
GLENDAIRE, GENERAL ST. CLAIR'S ISLAND HOME.
THE St. Clair family were refugees from the coast
of South Carolina, near
Where bold Port Royal spreads its mimic sea-
Far in the north, the lengthening bay and sky,
Blent into one, its shining waters lie;
And southward, breaking on the shelving shore,
Meet the sea-wave, and swell its endless roar.
On either hand gay groups of islands show
Their charms reflected in the streams below.
No summer land, no lovelier isles than these,
No happier homes the weary traveller sees.
The stately mansion occupied by General St. Clair's
family, at the breaking out of the war, was built upon
the ruins of an ancestral home, which had withstood
the desolations of the Revolutionary struggle. Every
foot of the soil was sacred to him. It was more than
a property it was a record and bound to his soul
by all the traditions of the past. A broad colonnade
extended around three sides of the dwelling, and
marble steps led from it to the terrace, which extended
GLENDAIRE. Page 30.
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 31
to the very edge of the water. A wide hall, with its
tessellated floor, divided the lower story, and on either
side were suits of apartments, elegantly furnished. In
the left wing was a picture-gallery, containing some
of the finest pictures on the continent, the collection of
over a century, and from both the New and Old
But to all who have visited Glendaire, the library
will be the spot to which memory will most lovingly
take them, for it was indeed a charming retreat; every
taste was gratified, and it was perfect in all its appoint-
ments. The richly carved book-cases were filled with
the rarest books, while scattered around upon consoles
and tables were exquisitely bound magazines, English,
French, and Italian. A grand piano and an organ filled
the alcoves; the ceilings were lofty, and the walls, with
their classical frescoes, were a delicate blue, empanelled
in French gray, with gilt beading; the drapery of the
windows was in harmony with a carpet of the softest
texture, and the most luxurious chairs, divans, and
lounges, were ensconced in every nook. Busts of Ital-
ian marble looked down from their lofty heights, sur-
rounding cabinet and book-case, and the finest bronzes
adorned the mantel. In the bow-windows were
well-stocked aquaria, and just outside, hung fancy
cages containing mocking-birds, whose wild and in-
spiring songs were a whole orchestra in themselves.
The south portion of this large and elegant apartment
had been divided off by French plate-glass doors, and
turned into a conservatory; the rarest exotics grew
32 FITZ-HUGIT T. CLAIR.
here, and almost burdened t. -" with their delicious
Both General and Mrs. St. Clail were accomplished
musicians, and I now recall with delight the many
twilight hours spent in that grand old library, sitting
in a sleepy hollow chair, breathing the perfumed air,
and listening to them as they played and sang together.
Sad memory now takes me back to the last evening
thus spent. Mrs. St. Clair played upon the organ the
soprano air from the Messiah -"I know that my
Redeemer liveth," and they sang it together. I had
never before heard it so rendered, and I never shall
Mrs. St. Clair had been educated abroad, principally
in Florence, where her mother's relatives resided. Her
style in music was the tender, impassioned Italian.
She never sacrificed expression to execution, and her
trills and cadences were like the warblings of a bird.
The grounds surrounding the family mansion were
in harmony with it. There were groves of orange and
lemon, in which the mock-bird (Phoebus of the Woods)
trilled her thousand notes the summer long. Mag-
nolias, with their glossy dark leaves lined with brown,
and trees of japonicas, over fifteen feet in height, grew,
with heliotropes, citrenas, geraniums, and myrtle, in
the open air. Patriarchal live-oaks,- the Druids of
our Southern woods, whose gigantic limbs were
adorned with a graceful drapery of moss, gave a look
of dignity and antiquity, which the gay Pagoda boat-
houses could not dispel. The children called their
THE NEGRO QUARTERS AT GLENDAIRE. Page 33.
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 33
rustic seats, built in the spreading boughs of the trees,
eyriess; -there they fed their tame squirrels, while
pet fawns tinkled their silver bells, as they sported on
the lawn below.
About half a mile from the dwelling was a village,
containing over one hundred dazzlingly white cottages,
each surrounded by a paling fence, enclosing an acre
of ground. These cottages were occupied by the slaves
belonging to the estate. To each family was allotted a
cottage, and they grew their own vegetables, raised
their own poultry and pigs, and many of them culti-
vated a few flowers, of which the colored race are quite
fond. In every enclosure, you would find suspended
from tall cypress poles a number of calabashes, which
furnished homes to thousands of swallows, whose mu-
sical twittering was not only pleasant, but useful, for
they kept away the hawk from the growing poultry.
"Calm in his peaceful home, the slave prepares
His garden spot, and plies his rustic cares.
The comb and honey that his bees afford,
The eggs in ample gourd compactly stored,
His pigs and poultry, with a huckster's art,
He sells, or barters at the village mart,
S Or at the master's mansion never fails
An ampler price to find, and readier sales."
So sa Grayson, who described "Carolina Planta-
tion Life" as only one of her own sons could, and
contrasted the life of the working-class at the South
with the miners of England, who herd together in
hovels unfit for swine. Fifty men sleeping in sixteen
34 FITZ-HUGII ST. CLAIR.
beds on the damp earth," and in Devonshire "whole
families of six and eight sleeping in one bed;" and a
traveller-writes that in White Chapel an empty cask
placed along the street would in a few hours find a
tenant, while many poor creatures whom I saw were
eating with avidity the offal from the gutters," and yet,
children, this very same English nation, ignoring its
own starving millions, shrieked out in agony over the
dreadful sufferings of your fathers' servants, in their
clean white cabins, and, in many of the books which
they wrote for you to read, they pictured the horrors
of slavery, until those of you who were too young to
remember the old plantation life are almost brought to
believe your parents the savage monsters they painted.
Even in our own country this is too much the case,
and we can scarcely take up a child's book to read for
instruction or pleasure, but that the facts regarding the
South are so distorted, we lay it down with disgust;
and that brings us to a point in our story where-
(although a digression) I will give my reasons for
writing this little book. Sailing up the Hudson a few
summers ago, with a party from the South, I was at-
tracted by a little fellow who was I.,.li._, with the
most intense interest, a book his grandparents had
purchased in New York, and given him to read, with-
out first reading it themselves. The little boy was
only ten years old, a gentlemanly little fellow, and
quite fond of reading. We passed point after point
of interest on the river; sometimes he was left entirely
alone, while the passengers all went on the other side,
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 35
to look at some place we were passing. Boys have
always had an attraction for me; I love to study them,
and this child was so unlike the wild, romping boys
who were on board that day, and were urging him
every five minutes to join them, that I took my seat and
determined to make his acquaintance. While I sat
turning it over in my own mind, whether I had any
right, just for my own pleasure, to interrupt his read-
ing," I saw him knit his brow, clinch his fist, and set
his teeth firmly on his lip. I moved over, and took
my seat by him. What are you reading, my son ?"
I asked. I am reading a story about the war, and
just think," he said, looking up to me, with his brown
eyes flashing, "our Confederate soldiers cut down all
the trees 'round a pen, and made the Yankee soldiers
go in it; then they tied them to a tree, and fastened
their eyes open, so the sun could blaze right into them.
I never thought they would have done such a thing,
did you ? It must have been after my papa was killed,
for he would never let us be cruel even to an animal.
I am ashamed of them, for this book is full of the
awfullest things about Southern people. Why, you
don't know how they used to do the poor slaves;
they would hitch them into ploughs, and make them
plough up the ground, instead of using mules," said
he, in the most excited manner. "Why, what made
them do that? I asked, "when they could buy twenty
mules for the same money that they would have to pay
for one good negro, strong enough to draw a plough
through a furrow."
36 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
He looked at me a minute, and said, "I don't
know. What do you think?"
I took the book from him, closed it, and said, "It
is a wicked book, full of lies, my son, and it is just
such bad books as these that brought on the terrible
war, in which your dear, kind father was killed.
Women, and men, who want to make money, sit down
and write these falsehoods about places, and people,
they have never seen, and as long as they can sell their
books they do not care how much harm they do.
People must have something to read. In this way
the Northern people have been taught to look upon
the Southern people as a parcel of slave-drivers, and
slavery as a system of chains, whips, and tortures; and
they have dealt so much in metaphorical fetters, and
prisons, that they have actually taught themselves to
believe our negroes worked in chains, and lived in
dungeons. When Frederika Bremer visited Charles-
ton, years ago, she quite horrified one old auntie by
asking her 'if the colored people did not live under-
ground and eat worms?' Eat wurrums !' shrieked
out Aunt Chloe. My God, ole missis, I nebber hear
tell ob such a ting in all my life. What dey gwine to
eat wurrums for? Wurrums eat colored people, and
white people too, after they get under the ground; but
I nebber hear tell of no colored iusson eat wurrums.'
And she showed so much contempt at the question,
that Miss Bremer ventured no further inquiries. Miss
Bremer had read just such books as you are reading
now, and, being a good and truthful lady herself, she
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 37
believed these vile, lying authors, until she came and
saw for herself."
Then why don't our Southern people write us some
books?" he asked. "I never could get a 'Child's
History of the War,' at home. I had to buy this one
in New York." And he handed me an "Illustrated
History of the War," written by John Bonner, and
published by the Harpers.
I opened it casually, and upon the second page read,
that the people of South Carolina caused the war, be-
cause they hated the Union, and wanted to establish a
separate nation, in which every white man should own
slaves, and live in idleness on the black man's labor,
without paying him for it. When a Republican Presi-
dent was elected, these bad and foolish men said the
long-wished for pretext had come, and the Union must
be dissolved. The Governor (one Gist) called his
Legislature, and sent word to them, 'the State ought
to secede.' Then one Magrath, a United States judge,
who had taken a solemn oath to be faithful to the
United States, stripped off his robes in open court, and
said, 'United States officers had no business in South
Carolina,' &c., &c. .... The South Carolina Congress-
men resigned, which was a good riddance. No one
raised a hand to stop these crazy people. The Southern
politicians, and the newspapers, inflamed their minds by
lying and abusing the North; and whenever a State
pretended to secede, the Governors and other ring-
leaders fell to robbing the United States," &c.
The Secretary of the Treasury, Howell Cobb, tried
38 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
to ruin the credit of the United States, and when he
had done all the mischief he could, he resigned ....
The Secretary of War, Floyd, stole money and arms,
sent them South, and then ran away;" and so on, in
this same style, were all Southern officials represented
(or rather misrepresented). "Jefferson Davis was
chiefly known as a firm foe to the i y iiit of honest
Alexander H. Stephens was a weak politician from
Georgia, who had just denounced the rebellion in the
strongest terms ...... The first gun of the war was
fired by a crack-brained old man, who fired another
shot, after the war, into his own brains."
"In Mississippi, before the war, it was not thought
disgraceful to shoot a man in the street; to drink from
morning until night; to whip, outrage, and maim
women, young girls, and even children, if they were
colored." All this, and a great deal more, I read in
this Popular History," which (I saw by the papers)
was "introduced into all schools, and regarded as the
most correct, complete, and interesting history of the
Rebellion published." In another, one of Rene's new
books, in which the author professed to be writing his-
tory, there was an account given of the shooting of
Willie Shelton, "a bright, beautiful boy of twelve, by'
order of Colonel Allen, of North Carolina. The poor
little fellow clung to the knees of the brutal colonel,
and implored him not to have him shot in the face.
They tore his hands from their grasp, forced him to
stand up, and fired at him, as he stood trembling and
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 39
covering his face with his little hands. The face of
the poor little child was literally torn to pieces. He
was not killed, however, and pleaded piteously with his
murderers to spare his life, but, at the command of the
Rebel colonel, beastly soldiers dragged him up, tied
his little body to a tree, and riddled it with bullets, all
because his parents were supposed to be loyal." We
have found out since that an account of this fiendish
shooting is given almost word for word in Bonner's
history also; and yet, after months of correspondence,
and the most scrutinizing search for the authenticity
of the statements, we are constrained to pronounce the
whole narrative a vile fabrication, from beginning to
end. Even the characters never existed, except in the
fertile imagination of the so-called historian.
"Let us have peace," Forget the animosities of the
past," Accept the situation," is advice given by the
North to the South, in every book, paper, speech, and
sermon. It sounds like a mockery to us, who are so
earnestly pleading for peace.. "Forget the animosities
of the past! They are not past, but are daily being
heaped upon us, even when our humiliation, poverty,
and oppression might move to pity. "Forget." How
gladly would we forget, if they would only permit it.
"Accept the situation." Have we not accepted it,
with its disgrace, degradation, and torture? At the
command of our masters, have we not confiscated, with
our own hands, property to the amount of billions, and
by the product of our mortgaged cotton-fields helped
to pay the debt incurred in our subjugation ? What
40 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
more must we accept? As History, the books denounc-
ing our sainted dead ? Surely, you cannot demand this.
Why, if we should keep silence, while our children
were being taught that their hero fathers were fiends,
brutes, thieves, and murderers," the very stones would
cry out against us. No, we cannot let our children be-
lieve your History of the War, even though taught by
some from whom we expected better, and who ought to
pity, if they cannot love their poor, suffering people, and
not, in the hour of our humiliation, add their influence to
the weight of prejudice already so bitter and unrelenting.
At the request of little Rene we have written this
book, and we earnestly beg our boys not to skip the
historical part. Every Southern boy ought to be able
to defend from defamation the memory of his father,
and the brave heroes who fell in defence of Southern
rights," and you cannot do it successfully unless you
acquaint yourself with the history of the war, its causes,
and the way in which it was carried on. I have con-
sulted, as authority, the best historians, North* as well
as South; and if you will carefully read and study
what I have written, you will not be duped, as our
little Alabama boy was, by authors who, for the sake
of making money,
"Cheat with delusive lips the public mind,
Invent the cruelty they fail to find;
Slander in pious garb, with prayer and hymn,
And blast our people's fortunes for a whim."
"* Lunt, and I believe one other intelligent, honest historian of the
North, has had the courage to be true to history, although they
incurred condemnation for it.
SFITZ-UUGH ST. CLAIR. 41
And now we will take you back to Glendaire, for
we love to write, talk, and think of it as it was, when
all was happiness and peace, before the devastations of
the dreadful war had made a wilderness of it. Be-
tween General St. Clair and his slaves there existed,
on the one hand, a kind of sympathizing, protecting
care, and, on the other, an affection as devoted and
sincere as the clansman to his Highland chief.
About half a mile from the dwelling-house, em-
bosomed in trees, was the Mission Chapel," as the
plantation churches were called. It was not a proud
temple, with its marble dome emulating the skies, but
a plain, substantial frame building, where owners and
slaves met to worship together the Great God who
"No rites of pomp or pride beguiled the soul;
No organ pealed, no clouds of incense roll;
But, line by line, untutored voices raise,
Like the wild birds, their simple notes of praise;
And hearts of love, with true devotion, bring
Incense more pure to Heaven's Eternal King."
"Preaching day," on this plantation, was not Sab-
bath day, for the clergyman who preached had charge
also of the spiritual interests of three other plantations,
therefore Sabbath preaching came to Glendaire only
every fourth Sunday. But once a week, regularly, on
Wednesday, the horn called the hands from the fields,
and, after washing themselves, they put on their best
clothes, and went to the chapel, where they heard a
sermon adapted to their capacities, and the children
42 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
were catechized by the missionary, the ladies of the
family often becoming his assistants. On Sunday the
negroes conducted their own services in their own way,
(for upon a large plantation, there were seldom less
than half a dozen preachers, or exhorters.") Sunday
was a great day at Glendaire; there was some religious
service going on in the chapel from morning until
night. Women, as well as men, took part in these ex-
ercises, and some of the "experiences" were rich. Old
Aunt Charity used to tell how she "had been riding
the Gospel Horse eighteen hundred and thirty-three
years, and it had never throwed her, 'cept when she
fell off herself." One young man, who was censured
by his leader for going over to the other plantations'
on Sunday, instead of hearing his own preachers, said,
"My religion ain't no squeezed-up little concern. I
am a Methodist with the Methodisses, a Baptist with
the Baptisses, and a 'Piscopalian with the 'Piscopals."
Yes, my brudder," interrupted Aunt Charity, the
dairy-maid, "milk nebber does cream till he settle;
do think 'pon dat, when you run 'bout so like a gos-
pel-gadder; it ain't 'spectable, brudder."
Negroes sing as naturally as birds, and there is no
music this side of the pearly gates more inspiring than
I have heard at Glendaire, when several hundred
negroes, under the grand old oaks, in sight of the
broad ocean, sang "The Old Ship of Zion," their
bodies swaying back and forth, and keeping time with
the music, the different parts being all carried on and
sustained. Well might Lady Murray say : "I never
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 43
saw servants in any old English family more comfort-
able, or more devoted. She declared it really a relief
to see anything so patriarchal, after seeing the saucy,
grumbling 'help' in the Northern States."
A pleasure-boat was as indispensable to an island
planter as a carriage. The waters abound in every
variety of the most delicious fish. One hour on the
bay will at any time provide an
Fit for the table of a prince or priest."
The negroes had their canoes, in which to "go
fishing," and nothing could be more romantically
delightful than their boat-hormis on the water at mid-
night, or the cheerful boat-songs, to which their oars
kept time as they rowed to the oyster-beds. They are a
sensual, pleasure-loving people, and under the old planta-
tion police, their pastimes were of necessity all innocent.
No drinking or gambling was allowed, but they always
had in anticipation some frolic peculiar to the season.
In June, with lighted torch, they searched the beach
for the turtle, who came up to deposit their eggs in the
sand, and were captured by the hundred ; or the ring-
ing axe told us they had discovered the luscious store-
house of the bee, and were robbing it of its treasure.
In winter, a "possum up the gum-tree," or a "rac-
coon in the hollow," would be attraction sufficient
to keep them up until midnight. These, with corn
shockings" harvest homes," and the protracted
Christmas frolics, gave the old plantation darkies more
44 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
seasons of enjoyment than usually fell to any other
working class in the world, for
"Nature had, with loving, bounteous hand,
Poured richest blessings on this Southern land.
Magnolias bright, with glossy leaves and flowers,
Fragrant as Eden in its happiest hours;
The gloomy cypress, towering to the skies,
The maple, loveliest in autumnal dyes,
The palm armorial, with its tufted head,
Vines over all in wild luxuriance spread,
And columned pines a mystic wood one sees,
That sighs, and whispers, to the passing breeze.
In this bright home, how changed the negro's fate!
How much more blessed than in his native state,
Where mummeries dupe, and fetich charms affright,
And rites obscene, diffuse their moral blight;
In sloth and error sunk, for countless years
His race had lived, but light at last appears.
In this South land, religion undefiled
Dawned in the heart of Congo's simple child--
Its glorious truths he hears with glad surprise,
And lifts his eyes with rapture to the skies."
THE ATTACK OF THE FEDERAL FLEET.
ON the 7th of November, 1861, as Fitz was in the
observatory on top of the house, from which could
be obtained a splendid view of the magnificent bay
and harbor of Port Royal, a harbor which Ribault
said was fit to contain the argosies of the world,"--
he saw a number of vessels entering, and not know-
ing what it meant, he called his father's attention to
them. It is a Federal fleet, I am afraid, my son,"
replied the General; and it proved to be the formidable
fleet under command of Admiral Dupont.
General St. Clair knew that there were but two
sand batteries to oppose their entrance, and if at all
skilfully managed, the whole fleet with a full head
of steam -could in less than one hour, wlrout firing
a gun, pass rapidly up, and place themselves beyond
the very longest range of the guns of both batteries
reversed, capture their garrisons, and threaten Savan-
nah by the way of Calabogue Sound. This brilliant
coup d'(tat was not accomplished, however, the Admiral
46 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
satisfying himself by fighting for hours our poor
little dirt forts, and opening up a way to the town of
Beaufort. The Confederate authorities immediately
ordered the inhabitants to "leave their homes;" no
option was left them, or any time allowed to make
preparations. With barely a change of clothing, they
left their homes, expecting to return in a few weeks.
It was General St. Clair's firm belief that "years,"
and not days would elapse before this cruel and un.
natural war would cease; so he purchased for his exiled
family a home in the interior of the State, and after
furnishing it, and seeing them comfortably established
in it, he made his arrangements to return to his military
The thought of his leaving them, now that they were
refugees from home, and among strangers, plunged
them into the deepest grief. Mrs. St. Clair was a
frail, delicate woman, the only child of a doting father.
"Her life had been a summer's story told in flowers."
At the age of ten she went abroad to be educated, and
until a few months previous to the breaking out of the
war, when her fond father was suddenly taken from
her by death, she had known nothing of sorrow or
death in her family. Now they were following each
other in rapid succession, for troubles always march
She could not bring herself to consent to a separation
so fraught with danger to her husband, and misery to
herself. The sacrifice, she felt, was too great, and in
agony she prayed, "Let the cup pass from me."
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 47
The family consisted of four children Fitz-Hugh,
sixteen years of age; Rena, who inherited with her
mother's rare beauty her delicate constitution, and
whose health was just now the cause of many anxious
forebodings; Harry, and Clara the two-year-old baby.
These, with old Mr. St. Clair, the father of the Gen-
eral, composed the family.
General St. Clair was a devoted father, and his
children warmly reciprocated his love. He was the
confidant of their childish griefs, and entered with
delight into all their pleasures. When in their own
beautiful island home, he devoted to them a part of
every day, giving them lessons of wisdom, which a
less interested teacher would not have taken the trouble
to impart. To these hours "with papa in the library,"
they looked forward with delight, and their teacher
had only to threaten keeping them in the school-room
" papa's hour," to make them pay all the attention she
Fitz, being the oldest, had been treated by both
father and mother more like a companion than a
child. If at any time his mind was not clear upon
any subject, he had not the slightest hesitancy in
applying to his father for the necessary information.
At this time he was greatly exercised as to what was
really his father's duty. It seemed almost unfeeling
in him to leave them in their present condition, de-
prived of almost all the comforts to which they had
been accustomed all their lives. So he resolved, if
possible, to have his doubts removed, and modestly
48 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
approaching his father, he asked him "if he did not
regard the request an improper one, to be kind enough
to give him his reasons for leaving his family when
they stood so much in need of his love and protection."
"Your request is by no means an improper one, my
son," replied the General. You have a right to
know the motives that actuate me, and I will take
pleasure in convincing you that nothing but a most
imperative sense of duty would tear me from my dear
family. Prepare all your questions, and to-morrow
evening propound them, and I will answer them, one
and all, to the best of my ability."
/ -. -
A CHAT ABOUT CHILDREN.
SAY to any one who may call this evening that I
am engaged, and cannot see company," said Gen-
eral St. Clair, upon leaving the tea-room, to the butler.
"Are you going out, Arthur ?" asked his wife.
Not farther than the library, little wife. I have an
engagement with Fitz this evening; please see that we
are not interrupted."
"What a peculiar man your husband is, Mrs. St.
Clair," said a young lady guest, as the General left
the room. "Who ever heard of such a thing -
excuse, or deny himself to visitors because of an en-
gagement with his child. He could not pay greater
deference to the President."
Why should he wish to, Blanche? There is no
one who has a higher opinion of President Davis than
my husband, but he would not break an engagement
with Fitz, even to entertain him, under ordinary
"Are you not afraid that treating your children
"5 D 49
50 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
with so much respect will make them think themselves
of too much importance?"
Not at all. I think there is more danger of
underrating, than of overrating children. As a general
thing, children do not have respect enough paid them;
instead of treating them as our juniors, we treat them
as our inferiors."
"Then you go in for spoiling the little ones, I see,
and would teach them that they may with impunity
obtrude their wants, and make demands upon our at-
tention whenever they feel disposed?"
Oh, no, by no manner of means; I abhor a spoiled
child. But children are human beings, and naturally
have wants; many of these, true, are unreasonable,
but some of them are not; it is our duty as parents to
teach them this. Now, our children know we love
them, and are willing to do anything reasonable that
will add to their happiness. If we cannot comply
with their requests, we never think it a condescension
to explain to them the reason why we do not think it
right to do so. I think there is a great deal of
tyranny and clap-trap in this preached-up, 'blind
faith,' and 'unquestioning obedience,' and the rest
of that sort of stuff. I think God requires us to have
an intelligent faith, and in order to this we are com-
manded to 'search the Scriptures.' "
Our children have been taught the sacredness of
a promise by us in this way: We never break one
made to them, any more than we would to a stranger.
Having their rights recognized, impresses them with a
proper self-respect, and they learn to be truthful."
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 51
There is certainly something in that. Sue Miller
told me her little Sophie taught her a lesson yesterday
she should not soon forget. Old Mrs. Gossip has been
in the habit of inflicting two of her interminable visits
upon Sue every week, and never seems to think she
has anything to do but listen to her everlasting yarns
about the neighbors. Yesterday, Sue made up her
mind she would not be bored by her, so she told
Sophie, who was playing in the garden, that if Mrs.
Gossip came she must not let her come up to the house,
but tell her at the gate that 'mamma was not at home.'
A while after Sophie came in, and quietly seated
herself in the window.
"'Are you tired of playing with your new ball
already, Sophie?' asked her mamma.
"'Then why do you come in, darling?'
"'Because, mamma, I did not want to be out there
when Mrs. Gossip came. She is deaf, and if I hol-
lowed out a lie to her, God would hear it, and the little
angels would be so sorry, because I am a Sunday
school scholar;' and the truthful, brown eyes filled
with tears at the thought.
Sue says she never felt worse in her life, and tried
to explain to Sophie that 'not at home' was a society
phrase for busy, engaged, or not at home to see com-
pany,' and did not mean really 'absent from the house.'
Then, mamma, I will tell her mamma is at home,
but not at home to see company: can't I?'
"'No, dear, that would make Mrs. Gossip angry.'
52 FITZ-IIUGH ST. CLAIR.
"'But I am afraid God don't understand them
other ways, and I would rather a thousand times make
Mrs. Gossip vexed, than to make God angry.'
"It was a sermon with an application, if it was
preached by a little five-year-old."
"This 'fear of man' is a terrible snare, and so few
dare to be honest," said Mrs. St. Clair, with a sigh.
Mamma, mamma! only just see how Beppo has
torn up my nice new hat," said little Harry, running
in, his brown curls tossed in every direction, and hold-
ing the tattered hat in his hand.
"Why, how in the world did Beppo get the hat
from the hat-rack ?" said his mother.
He did n't, mamma; I left it in the yard, when I
came in to supper."
Why then, of course, Beppo thought you did not
care for it, but had left it for him to play with; so he
is not to blame."
"But, mamma, what will I do? Papa said this was
to last me until spring."
"I will try and sew it up. I am sorry my little
son is so careless, and I hope having to wear a shabby
hat, will teach him a lesson he will not forget."
Harry buried his little face in his apron, and, burst-
ing into tears, left the room.
"You are not in earnest about making that dear
little fellow wear that ragged hat all this season, are
you ?" said Miss Blanche.
"I wound to heal. Harry, young as he is, loves
dress, and is very heedless. You will readily see what
FITZ-IHUGII ST CLAIR. 53
a temptation this combination will be to him. If he
were careful, he could always look neat, no matter how
limited his means; but if he is profligate, and at the
same time has extravagant tastes, he will either have
to run in debt, or do worse if his income is at all strait-
ened. So I must help my boy overcome the failing
now, before it becomes a habit."
Fitz is perfection, is he not ? asked Miss Blanche.
"I do not remember ever to have heard of his doing
anything wrong, even by accident."
"Fitz is a good boy," said his mother, with emo-
tion; but he has naturally a violent temper, and only
learned to control it by strong effort and unceasing
watchfulness. Until he became a Christian, we were
exceedingly anxious; but 'God's grace is sufficient,'
and as he has professed Christ, we believe he will be
kept faithful; for we are assured that 'the angel of the
Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and
delivereth them' from temptation and sin."
GENERAL ST. CLAIR'S EXPLANATION AS TO THE
CAUSES OF THE WAR.
WHEN General St. Clair went into the library, he
found Fitz awaiting him. Going to the book-
case, he took down a number of old books, Congres-
sional documents, and some scrap-books containing
extracts from old papers. He told Fitz that he was
prepared to answer his questions by proofs for all that
he said; and in order that he might not think him
prejudiced, he intended, whenever he could, to let the
wise and good men of the North, as well as the South,
answer for him. Whatever, in the excitement of poli-
tics, people may say, there have been, and are good
and true men North, who deplore this fratricidal war
as much as we do, and have done all in their power to
prevent it; this also, my son, I want to prove to you."
The General was not a fire-eater; he was a first-honor
graduate of Yale College, and had travelled too much
to be either narrow or sectional in his feelings. He
knew that no one particular countr- had a monopoly
FITZ-ItUGH ST. CLAIR. 55
either of all that was good, or of all that was bad. To
the very last he had hoped that war would be avoided;
but he did not wish the craven's peace; and when every
effort to secure our rights, honorably, had failed, and
war was forced upon us, he knew his duty, and, like a
brave man, did it.
"The first question I want to ask, father, is this.
How are the States united? I do not think my ideas
What are they, my son? If you will state them,
I will endeavor to put you right where you err."
"Well, I supposed the United States Government
was like a church government, and the different States
were represented by the different families composing
the congregation. Joining a church does not interfere
with our family relations. Our minister takes care of
the religious interests of his people; but you would not
permit him to manage your family affairs, or correct
your children, these are your reserved rights; and
his are so distinct, it seems impossible to clash. Con-
gress (in a church) is, in my mind, represented by the
vestry; the President, by our minister; and the Con-
stitution by which we are governed I compared to the
Bible, which all Christian churches claim as their
guide and rule of life. So I thought I had the whole
thing mapped out; but, as the machinery won't work,
I suppose I was mistaken."
"You were not mistaken, my son, as to how it ought
to be. Your illustration shows both thought and
study, and is a capital one. I will carry it out in my
56 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
attempt to explain to you how the harmony between
the States, and the United States, has been interrupted.
You have been told that when your great-grandfather
built the old stone church, and the congregation was
organized, the first thing they did was to adopt a con-
stitution and draw out rules for the government of the
church. Then they called Mr. Campbell as their min-
ister. When he was installed, he solemnly promised
to preach the gospel as contained in the Holy Scrip-
tures; and every applicant for church-membership
since, has had to subscribe to the rules before they
were admitted. These rules required the members to
live in peace with each other, and not meddle or inter-
fere in each others' affairs. Now, suppose that, after a
while, some of the quarrelsome, meddlesome members,
(some of them too who had not contributed one dollar
towards the building of the church,) should take it
upon themselves to regulate the family concerns of
their brethren and sisters, according to their notion of
things, -how do you think Mr. Campbell, who was
recognized as the head and director of the affairs of the
church, ought to act?"
Why, he ought to discipline them, for violating the
rules they were pledged to keep, and compel them to
"But suppose these 'constitution breakers,' who
were in the majority, should call a meeting, and decide
'not to conform their conduct to the constitution, but
to change the constitution to suit their conduct,' declar-
ing that they 'had advanced in civilization since the
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 57
Saviour's time, and therefore they wanted "a higher
law" than His to guide them.' They wanted a Bible to
read, 'Thou shalt covet thy neighbor's man-servant and
his maid-servant,' and 'Thou shalt steal.' They also
wanted a Saviour who would condemn slavery, for the
Christ of the Bible did not do it, and in recognizing it
,He condemned them. What could Mr. Campbell do?"
Why, if he had the power, he ought to expel them;
or compel them to keep the constitution inviolate, I
But suppose he was politic enough to go with the
majority, and, from his pulpit, Sabbath after Sabbath,
denounce the minority, until it became a constant
source of annoyance, what redress would they have,
think you? "
Why, appeal to their sense of right, papa, and tell
them 'our money and efforts built this church: you
found it ready to your hand, and we allowed you equal
rights with ourselves; it is not right for you, after all
our liberality, to treat us so.' "
Suppose every appeal should be made in vain, -
Why, if they could not stay in peace in the church,
they ought to leave, and build another."
But suppose Mr. Campbell and the majority of his
vestry should say, You shall not leave the church;
we won't permit you. You shall come to church, and
hear yourselves abused, whether you like it or not;
and you shall pay well for it, too. You are in the
minority, and we will bring you here, in front of fixed
58 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
bayonets.' This, Fitz, is exactly the position the
United States Government has assumed towards the
Southern States. Does there seem to be any help,
except to oppose bayonets with bayonets ?"
"I think not, papa. Why did not the States re-
main separate? would it not have been a great deal
As it has turned out, it would; but you know,
'union is strength,' and if we were really united in
heart, as well as territory, it would be so. The States
certainly banded together for mutual benefit; but it
has been proved that, so far as the South is concerned,
there is neither peace, nor profit, in the alliance; and,
therefore, we are anxious to dissolve the bond."
"Why fight about it then, sir ? We entered the
Union with our own consent, and without compulsion.
Can we not go out in the same way ?"
We have the right, most assuredly, my son; for
in the Declaration of Independence made by the Col-
onies in 1776, they say, Whenever any form of gov-
ernment becomes destructive of the ends for which it
was established, it is the right of the people to alter or
abolish it, and institute a new government;' moreover,
the treaty signed by Great Britain calls the thirteen
original States, 'free, sovereign, and independent
"If we are 'free, sovereign, and independent,' then
of course we can do as we please, can we not ?"
"It appears not. Congress has usurped all our
rights, and will neither let us remain peacefully in the
Union, nor go out of it."
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 59
"Then how is this a free government, father? I
should call it a despotism. How does Congress man-
age about the Constitution ?"
Well, Garrison says, 'the Constitution is a cove-
nant with death and an agreement with hell.' Others
say we want none but an anti-slavery God and an
anti-slavery Bible; and the Federal government has
become our enemy, seeking our destruction. Our last
hope departed when Lincoln was elected."
Why do you say that, father? What objection
have you to Lincoln ?"
Because he represents a party who are resolved to
deprive us of our rights, and even our lives. The Con-
stitution is abolished, we are in the minority, and there
is no redress in the world for us. Lincoln himself says,
'the government cannot exist half slave and half free.'
Governor Andrews, one of the Radical leaders, in
his address to the Legislature of Massachusetts, says:
' If emancipation does not come voluntarily, it must
come by the bloody process of San Domingo.' John
Quincy Adams said he was ready for abolition, though
five hundred millions of Southerners perished.' Jim
Lane, of Kansas, one of Mr. Lincoln's senators, said:
'I would like to see every white man in South Caro-
lina in hell, and the negroes inhabiting their terri-
How do they mean to free the negroes, father?
Do they intend to buy them back from us, and then
liberate them ?"
"Not they, my son. History tells us, 'England
paid twenty million pounds to liberate four hundred
60 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
thousand negroes in the West Indies,' and there are
more than forty times that number in the South; but
the Abolitionists wish us to make beggars of ourselves,
and destroy our whole agricultural system, just to
please a set of miserable fanatics, who would not give
one copper cent to free a thousand, and who, if they
were not raving about the negro, would rave about
something else. No, indeed; their philanthropy is of
the most economical kind.
They dragged the negro from his native shore,
Made him a slave, and now his fate deplore;
Sold him in Southern lands, and now, when sold,
Revile the buyers, but retain the gold.'
Here is a letter, written in December, 1859, by Rev.
Richard Fuller, D. D., of Beaufort, South Carolina, to
the Hon. Edward Everett, of Massachusetts. I will
read you some extracts from it.
"I am willing to make great sacrifices, even to
reduce my family to comparative poverty, if the con-
dition of my slaves would be improved by it."
"I have publicly and privately, again and again,
made overtures to the most wealthy Abolitionists -
those of influence and begged them, in all sincerity,
to be willing to part with a pittance of their wealth to
set on foot or encourage an enterprise looking to the
freedom of the slaves. But not one single copper have
I ever been able to induce one of them to contribute."
"They contribute liberally for the purchase of
deadly weapons to be employed in secret crusades
against the South."
"They denounce the South in the most bitter terms
for not at once immolating four thousand millions of
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 61
property, a great deal of it purchased from them, and
all of it guaranteed to us by the Constitution; thus
ruining ourselves, and abandoning to weeds and bram-
bles millions of fertile acres, breaking up our entire
social system, driving our servants from our homes and
protection, and making them indolent, discontented va-
grants, for I conscientiously believe the guardianship of
a good master is the greatest blessing to the negro."
"In almost every family the negroes are taught to
read, and some of my servants write a better hand
than I do."
"Jesus, when upon earth, saw slavery all around
him. He said, 'All power in heaven and earth is
given unto me,' yet he made no effort to abolish
slavery, nor did he once denounce it."
"You see, by Dr. Fuller's letter, my son, that abo-
litionism is the very cheapest kind of philanthropy.
At the time of the Revolutionary War, slavery ex-
isted in every one of the American colonies; and as
long as it was profitable to Europeans and Americans,
they carried on the traffic in negroes.
"In 1770, South Carolina passed a law forbidding
the importation of slaves into the State from any
quarter, but she could not prevent it, for the Yankees
owned a great many slave-ships, and made immense
fortunes, selling negroes to the South, while the South
protested against the traffic, and insisted it should be
"The North excused the vile trade, apologized with
pious cant for it, and insisted 'it was a blessing.'
Here is an old paper, published in 1805, in Boston.
Let me read you an extract:
62 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
":' The operation of the "slave-trade" is a great
blessing to the negro, who, in his own country, is a
pagan cannibal, scarce distinguished from the brute.'
You must bear in mind this was when they were
making money by the trade. Now,
'No more allowed the negro to enslave,
They damn the master, and for "Freedom" rave.'
"Here is another New England paper, date 1807,
which says: 'Slavery confers on the negro civiliza-
tion and Christianity, and is to him a most inestimable
blessing; for the slave earns a better living, free from
care, than the peasantry of any other country.' What
a pity Joseph's brethren had not
'Known the modern art
To play with skill the philanthropic part;
And bold, bad Judah raved in Freedom's cause,
While Levi cursed the foul Egyptian laws;
And Issachar, in speech, or long report,
Condemned the masters found in Pharaoh's court,
And cursed the king who dared to hold
Enslaved the brother they had basely sold,
Proving that sins of traffic never lie
On knaves who sell, but on the dupes who buy.'
"From 1804 to 1807, our statistics show that there were
thirty-nine thousand slaves brought into Charleston.
England imported over 19,000 slaves.
France 2,000 "
Boston 2,000 "
Rhode Island 8,000 "
Connecticut 550 "
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 63
Pennsylvania imported over 800 slaves.
Foreigners 4,000 "
"Facts are stubborn things, and in this case prove
that Charleston had but little hand in bringing down
upon herself 'the curse of slavery.'
From a Charleston paper of 1806 we learn that the
'Rhode Islanders were so much afraid that they would
not realize the very highest price the auction-block
would bring, that they had twenty-eight of their own
trusty natives as their consignees.'
In the convention of 1787, when the vote was
taken to extend slavery, Massachusetts, Connecticut,
and New Hampshire voted to extend it.
"Again, we read in these Congressional documents,
'North and South Carolina protested against the
slave trade," and wanted the importation of slaves to
cease before 1808;' while Connecticut, and several
other Northern States, voted for its extension."
Father, we read in our history to-day that the States
of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and
Minnesota were all formed from territory presented to
the United States by Virginia. Why did not Vir-
ginia stipulate that these should all be slave States?"
"Virginia, the grand old State that gave America
her Washington, gave, without any recompense, and
without making any exactions, territory enough to
form seven States. She does not know how to be
anything else than generous, and could not conceive
of meanness, or she would have hedged her gift by
64 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
pledges that would have prevented such base ingrati-
tude. But now Virginia
'Sees her own feather on the fatal dart,
And winged the shaft that quivers in her heart.
Keen are her pangs, but keener far to feel
She nursed the pinion that impelled the steel.'
"No sooner had these States been settled than the
stormy petrels of Abolitionism tried to have resolutions
passed in Congress to prevent Virginians, or any other
Southerners, taking their slaves into them, which vir-
tually meant, we are resolved none but Abolitionists
shall live here; and this mean, ungrateful usurpation
was, in fact, the first seed of the present war, for the
South became convinced by the unparalleled injustice
that there was no such th;ng as obtaining her rights
in the Union. Wherever Congress met, petitions
would be sent by all sorts of people, abusing the
South, and petitioning Congress to abolish slavery,
which it had no more right to do than it had to say
Monday should not be washing-day in New England,
and the Pennsylvania Quakers should wear dress-
coats. The Southern members entreated, that these
insulting petitions should not be noticed.
"Hon. Henry Clay said, 'if these cruel and wanton
attacks upon the South are not stopped, the collision
of opinion will soon be followed by the clash of arms.'
"Abolition emissaries, like the plagues of Egypt,
swept down upon the South, in the disguise of preach-
ers, teachers, school-marms, and peddlers. They came
to instigate insurrection, and make the negroes dis-
FITZ-IIUGH ST. CLAIR. 65
contented. Negroes guilty of murdering their owners
acknowledged upon the gallows that they had been
incited by the Abolitionists to commit the bloody
deeds. At last it culminated in the 'John Brown
raid,' in which that miserable fanatic was the tool of
the Radicals to accomplish their work of bloodshed,
and draw the fire of the South. Some of the par-
ticipants in this raid fled from justice, and found
shelter and concealment in Ohio and Iowa, where
they were received as 'martyrs,' and screened from
the laws they had insulted, and put at defiance in
direct violation of the Constitution.
"In Boston, minute-guns were fired, and churches
were draped in mourning for this midnight assassin.
"The South sent commissioners to the Northern
States, entreating them to take into consideration the
conduct of the Abolitionists, whose wicked intermed-
dling was rendering life at the South unsafe, and pre-
paring the way for a servile insurrection. They
appealed to their justice as men; to their sympathy as
brethren; to their patriotism as citizens; to the mem-
ory of the common perils of their common ancestors;
to all the better emotions of their nature, to use their
influence to prevent the Abolitionists from interfering
in the affairs of the South. Daniel Webster, in a
speech in 1851, said: 'I do not hesitate to say, and
repeat, that if the Northern States refuse deliberately
to carry into effect that part of the Constitution
which respects the restoration of fugitive slaves, the
South would no longer be bound to keep the com-
66 FITZ-IIUGH ST. CLAIR.
pact, for a bargain broken on one side is broken on all
"The North would promise to interfere, and see
that we had equal rights granted us; and at four dif-
ferent times entered into compromises, which in every
case they violated. Not only did they allow the na-
tive Abolitionists to harass and annoy us, but they im-
ported fanatics to assist them. Thompson, from Lon-
don, said, in a public speech, that the slaves ought
to throw off their bondage by the most violent means,
and every slaveholder ought to have his throat cut;'
and instead of shaving his head, and putting him in
prison, for his unblushing impudence in thus insulting
their own people and attempting to incite a servile re-
bellion, he was feted, applauded, honored, and lionized,
North, until the London papers exclaimed against
them, for 'allowing such mischievous license to a for-
eigner;' and further said,--'an American pursuing
any such line of conduct in England would be sent to
Botany Bay;' and Henry Clay said, he 'did not know
what in the world the Abolitionists expected to accom-
plish by holding the South up to the scorn and con-
tempt of the whole civilized world.'
Governor Marcy, of New York, afterwards Secre-
tary of War, appealed to his Legislature, in the most
forcible language, to put a stop to the abolition move-
ments. He said, slavery was not abolished in New
York until 1827, and the South did not interfere; for
if any State, North or South, had done so, New York
would have regarded it as an invasion of her rights,
and indignantly resented the interference.
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 67
Mr. Everett, Governor of Massachusetts, called on
his Legislature to protect the South against the pesti-
lent fanatics. But these appeals were all made in vain;
and the planter, living with his innocent family upon
his own plantation, was constantly in dread that some
of these wretches, who were prowling around, would in-
cite his slaves to insurrection: all sense of security was
gone. In Georgia, Atlanta, Griffin, Newnau, and War-
renton, were all fired at the same time; and now Lincoln
is elected, the Abolitionists will have it all their own
way unrebuked, for he is commander-in-chief of both
army and navy; and there is no earthly hope for us."
"Why are they not willing to give us up, father,
when they pretend to feel so disgraced in a Union with
slaveholders ? I think it is very strange; do you not ?"
"I do. When Texas was admitted into the Union,
John Quincy Adams and thirty New England senators
entered their protest against it, and assured the Presi-
dent, if it was admitted, the New England States
would secede.' If it was proper for them to secede
from us then, we surely have just the same right to
secede from them now, under so much greater provo-
cation. In their threat, then, they admitted what they
now deny, namely, that 'sovereign States have the right
to resume, when they please, the power delegated to
them by the General Government.'
"John P. Hale, the Republican senator, and candi-
date for the Presidency, said, in a speech in Massachu-
setts, 'The South talks of dissolving the Union, if
Lincoln is elected; but the Union is more likely to be
68 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
dissolved if he is not.' The New York Tribune, on
the 2d of March, 1861, acknowledges our right to
secede, and says: 'The Slave States have a moral
right, if they choose, to form an independent nation.'
The Albany Evening Journal, edited by Mr. Weed,
December 2, 1860, says: 'There is imminent danger
of a dissolution of the Union, originating in the am-
bition and cupidity of men who desire a Southern
despotism, and in the fanatic zeal of Northern Aboli-
tionists, who seek the emancipation of the Southern
slaves regardless of consequences.'
"I hope now, my son, with all this proof, you are
thoroughly convinced that the Abolitionists have brought
on this war, for it will be a terrible reckoning, some
of these days, and the lives of thousands of innocent
men must be accounted for. At the door of these men
let the sin lie. We are innocent. I have brought the
proofs given you for this assertion from Northern au-
thority, to show you that there are some right-thinking
people there, who deplore, as much as we do, this fra-
tricidal war; but they are in the minority, and have
had to yield. We are not fighting the whole North,
as many think: the best men of the North are opposed
to the war, quite as much as we are. In the New
York Herald, April 7, 1861, we read: 'With the
Lincoln administration rests the responsibility of pre-
cipitating a collision and the fearful evils of civil war;
for Mr. Davis, President of the Southern Confederacy,
says, There shall be no collision, or blood shed, un-
less Mr. Lincoln makes the first demonstration."' "
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 69
"Did he, father?"
"He did, my son. The South sent commissioners
to Washington to inform Congress that they had re-
sumed the power so long delegated to them, and in
future would take charge of their own affairs, and
trouble the North no more, and requested the United
States Government to withdraw its troops from our
forts. Mr. Seward, Secretary of State, authorized Mr.
Campbell, member of Congress from Alabama, to
assure the Southern commissioners that Fort Sumter
would be immediately evacuated.' Mr. Campbell be-
lieved him, and was very much surprised, therefore, to
learn, a day or two after, that 'ships of war, steam-
cutters, and three steam transports, had sailed South
from New York.' He immediately wrote to Mr.
Seward, and asked him what it all meant? Mr.
Seward, wishing to deceive the South, replied, falsely,
'Faith as to Sumter fully kept. Wait and see.' We
waited, and did see, on the 12th of April, a fleet con-
sisting of two sloops-of-war, one steam-cutter, and
three steam transports, off Charleston Harbor. Upon
the appearance of this formidable fleet, accompanied
with the further information that 'many other and
larger vessels of war, attended by transports containing
troops, surf-boats, and all the necessary means of land-
ing forces, had already sailed from Northern ports,'
we knew we were again, as we had always been, vic-
tims to the treachery of a government which had
proved faithless to us in every promise; and this was
such a palpable violation of the most solemn assurance
70 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
that 'no attack was contemplated,' that the military
authorities in Charleston immediately telegraphed the
state of affairs to the Confederate Congress, then in
session at Montgomery, and asked for orders, which
came in these memorable words: 'Demand the imme-
diate surrender of the fort, and if the demand is not
complied with, take it.' "
"Father, I see they would have no other alterna-
tive; but do you think, if we were to free the negroes,
they would let us alone?"
No; they would find something else to rant about.
John C. Calhoun, the purest, noblest, and truest
patriot that ever lived, said: Be assured, emancipation
will not satisfy these fanatics; that gained, the next
step will be to raise the negro to a social and political
equality with the whites; and that being effected, we
would soon find the present condition of the two races
reversed. They, and their Northern allies, would be
the masters, and we the slaves, then. The condition
of the white race in the British. West India Islands, as
bad as it is, would be happiness as compared to ours;
for there the mother country will see to it the su-
premacy of the white race is maintained; but it will
not be so here.' Mr. Calhoun saw the storm approach-
ing, and foretold its deadly nature. All the energies
of his mighty intellect were put forth to arrest its pro-
gress, for he knew it would end in the destruction of
the Union, and the conviction that all his labors were
in vain shortened his life. Now all admit that the
measures he proposed, and the theories he taught, were
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 71
the only ones that could have saved the country. The
Constitution, as our fathers gave it to us, was as dear
to him as his right eye, and the incident that occurred,
when they were trying to rescue his statue from its
ocean bed, was as touching as it was significant. The
first part of the statue that appeared above the turbu-
lent waves was his right hand, upholding the Consti-
tution he had spent his whole political life in defending.
'Sublime the scene, and glorious the time,
When o'er the waves Calhoun's right hand appeared,
Upholding firmly still, as in his prime,
The Constitution to his soul endeared.'
"And now, my son, you see the whole argument
resolves itself to this: The Abolitionists say to us,
'Consent to let us take back the negroes we sold you,
and place them over you as your masters. We will
give them your land, and put a tax on whatever else
you own, so that they may not have to work too hard.
If you submit quietly and thankfully to this treatment
of our sable pets, we will let you stay in the Union in
peace, until we can find something else to run mad
over and fight you about.' These terms, or war as the
alternative, is all that is left us. There is no middle
ground. What do you say, my boy ?"
"The dreadful alternative, papa," said Fitz, with
"Yes, my son, dishonor is worse than death. I
love the Union and the dear old flag, and would gladly
lay down my life to preserve them as our Revolution-
ary sires left them. I deeply regret we have not re-
72 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
trained 'the stars and stripes' as our national emblem.
They belong to us, for we are fighting for the Consti-
tution -the Abolitionists against it. There is not one
clause in it they have not violated. They despise it,
trample it under foot, and claim in its stead a 'higher
law.' Here, in Lincoln's Proclamation, we read: 'It
is unanimously resolved by the Government of the
United States that this war is waged, not in the spirit
of conquest or subjugation, nor for the purpose of over-
throwing or interfering with the rights or institutions
of the States; but to maintain and defend the suprem-
acy of the Constitution, and to preserve the Union,
with all the dignity, equality, and rights of the several
States unimpaired.' Now there is not one word of
truth in this rigmarole. I will paste it in this scrap-
book, and time will prove it a lie. They are fighting
for our subjugation, and to destroy our social institu-
tions, against the Constitution, and to deprive us of
our rights as sovereign States. They would not dare
tell the truth, and say, we are fighting because we hate
the South. We want to free their negroes, whom they
bought and paid us for, and would make them slaves.'
Wendell Phillips said he 'had been trying to dissolve
the Union for nineteen years,' and now they pretend
to be fighting for 'the Union and the Constitution.'
It is false! Henry Ward Beecher is honest enough to
say what he thinks, fearless of consequences always;
and he says, 'The Constitution is the foundation of all
our troubles,' and the whole party believe with him."
"Do you not like the Palmetto flag, father?"
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 73
"Like it! Indeed I do. We cannot be too proud
of our own Palmetto. General Quitman says, (writing
of the Mexican War,) 'Before the smoke had ceased to
curl over the heads of the brave victors, the Palmetto
flag, emblem of South Carolina, was seen floating over
the conquered walls, the very first American flag
within the City of Mexico.' Another writes: 'The
Palmetto flag, borne by the brave Palmetto Regiment,
saved the honor of the United States Army, by sup-
porting the retreating forces of two Northern States,
and but for it General Scott never could have dictated
terms from the Halls of the Montezumas.' We need
not be ashamed of our Palmetto, for victory has always
crowned it with glory. But our fathers fought, bled,
and, dying, gave us as our national emblem the Star-
Spangled Banner, and we ought not to give it up to its
enemies. They have been false to it, and now are
making it mean all that is dishonorable, tyrannical,
and oppressive. The flag is 'a sentiment' with many,
and if we give it up we lose those friends of the flag
who are our friends; therefore I say we ought to fight
for the flag we have never dishonored, and have always
so bravely defended, and let its enemies seek another
Suppose, father, the South is defeated, what do you
think will be the consequence ?"
If we are subjugated by the party now in power,
my son, our fate will be a fearful one. Negroes will
occupy our high places, and ignorance and vice will
hold a sovereign sway. In less than four years after
74 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
we are subjugated that is the word, for I know my
men South Carolina will have negro legislators and
senators, and plantation darkies will be sent to Con-
gress, and sit where Calhoun, McDuffie, Hugh S. Le-
gare, and Hayne sat. The ruin of the country will
commence at the South, but the whole country will
feel the curse of negro rule, and the miserable fanatics
who are bringing this dreadful state of things upon us
will bitterly deplore, when it is too late, that in trying
to ruin the South they have brought destruction upon
the entire country."
"Father, I think you must be mistaken. I cannot
believe that the white people of the North would, for
one moment, consent to the negroes ruling any part of
their country, and making an Africa of the United
I am prepared to believe almost anything, for I
did not believe they would have been allowed to force
this war upon us. I thought they would return to
reason before they would see the country deluged in
blood. Now God only knows what the end will be."
"I cannot bear, dear father," said Fitz, in a voice
full of emotion, "to have you leave us. Your coun-
try needs your services, I know, but there is work to
do out of the army."
"Yes, my boy, and there are old men, invalids,
women, and boys enough to do the home work. The
only place for brave men is where the balls fall thick-
est. You do not surely wish your father to go into a
bomb-proof, do you ?"
FITZ-HUGII ST. CLAIR. 75
"No, sir," said he, decidedly; but you know Mr.
Gassy is a much more violent Secessionist than you
are; he says he made fifteen speeches last month, and
he does not intend going in the army, I think."
"No; his patriotism finds an outlet in speechifying;
it is frothy, effervesces, and slops over. You heard
him tell me yesterday that 'the country needed just
such men as I.' Why do you suppose he thinks the
country heeds me any more than it does him? He is
not sincere, for if he felt as he talks he could not be
kept out of active service; but he leaves
'His country's side when clouds around her thicken:
One of the cautious herd, who flies the noble stag when stricken.'
No matter how the struggle ends, he will come out
all right. I only pray my poor family may never be
dependent on the tender mercies of any such men.
If you should ever need help, my son, let this be your
rule--'never ask it from the man who deserted his
country in her hour of need.' The soldier's child will
find no mercy from a skulk, depend on it.
"And now, my son, I hope I have vindicated my
course to you. I want you to treasure up every word
I have said, for, if our cause should be lost, you will
find some, even at the South, who will tell you 'your
father had better have stayed at home and taken care
of his family, than have left you to starve.'
"If we obtain our independence, as I trust in God
we may, we will be the happiest nation on the globe.
Our slaves can then be taught to read and write with-
76 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
out the fear of the Abolitionists sending incendiary
books among them. Other safeguards, too, that the
miserable fanatics have compelled us to build around
us, can be removed, and I do not hesitate to say that
then our slaves will be the happiest peasantry in the
world. There is a glorious future for us if we win;
but a fierce conflict must be waged first, and with a
power whose resources are boundless. In the contest
many of the bravest and best in the land will be called
to lay their lives down on 'freedom's hungry altar.'
I, too, my son, may be called to die in defence of my
"My dear father, we could never, never give you
up; don't, please don't say another word," said Fitz,
while the tears ran down his face.
"You must not forget," said General St. Clair,
putting his arm around his weeping son, "that you
have a kind Heavenly Father, who can do more for
you than I can. Look to Him in every hour of need.
He will never forsake you, if you put your trust in
Him. I have always found Him a very present help
in every time of trouble. This separation is as painful
to me as it is to you, and I do not think either of us
can bear it in our own strength; let us take our sor-
rows to the mercy-seat, and ask our pitying Saviour to
help us bear them."
They knelt and implored strength for the terrible
trials which awaited them, and when General St. Clair,
-in faltering accents, said, "And, Father, if in Thy
Providence I am destined to return no more to my
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 77
family on earth, may they meet me in heaven, and
around Thy throne may we spend a long eternity,
unsaddened by the thought of parting," Fitz resolved,
amid his passionate weeping, that his father should not
be disappointed in him. Long after the General had
joined his family in the parlor, he lay weeping on the
sofa, for he loved his father with the deepest love, and
the bare thought that the separation might be final
had alniost broken his heart.
We may not intrude upon the sanctity of the part-
ing between the General and his family.
"A fearful sacrifice you claim, O Freedom,
From mortals in whose agonizing hearts
Nature is strong as death."
F ITZ drove with his father to the depot, the day he
left for Virginia, and long after the cars had gone,
the poor boy stood looking after them; and seeming
so forlorn and miserable, he attracted the sympathy of
all who saw him.
SThe war was very demoralizing to boys. The young
men were all in the army, and as the half-growns had
to take their places, it made them assuming and pre-
cocious. They had not judgment enough to discrim-
inate between manishness and manliness; and if they
could only get a pipe or a cigar in their months, they
were satisfied they were "all right."
The departure of General St. Clair for the army
seemed to make Fitz a man in an hour; he became
quiet and thoughtful, and devoted every spare moment
to his mother.
His father had thoroughly impressed him with the
terrible importance of the struggle in which we were
engaged, and he hoped, longed, worked, and prayed
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 79
for its success, with a fervor it would have been well
for many older than he to have emulated.
He was never absent from the Society, and was the
controlling spirit in it. I accompanied him to the
academy one morning, when they were receiving
packages to be sent to the army. An old man, with
a small bundle in his hand, entered as we did. He
"had brung a package to send to his boy in Lee's
army," he said. "'Twas only a little tobaccy and a
pipe; he never smoked when he wur home, but me
and the old woman thought it would kinder help
make him forgit how cold and hungry he is, lying in
them trenches; lie is only seventeen, and the last one
left, the other two wur both killed;" and wiping
the big tears away with his rough coat-sleeve, he left
A young girl, whose blue vail covered what we
knew was a sweet, bright face, handed in a dainty
little package,-"a book for Lieutenant Cadwallader,
Company B, 3d Regiment South Carolina Volunteers."
Ye strongly suspected that "book" contained but one
page, -that was illustrated, however, -and the lovely
eyes photographed upon it, will say more than volumes
could to the dashing young lieutenant, whom we
prayed might be spared to bless this gentle, blushing
child-woman with his love and protecting care.
Here comes old Maum Dinah, curtsying, as she
hands in her bundle. For my chile, missis; some
of his hammer's ginger-cake, doughnuts, and molasses
candy. And do, my dear missis, tell him "-(poor,
80 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
simple-hearted mamma! she thought we were going
in the boxes, I suppose,) tell him his old mammer
never forgits him, and can't sleep o' nights for think-
ing that, while she is in her warm bed, he is sleeping
on the cold ground in Firginy. Tell him I prays for
him, day and night; and he must pray for hisself, put
his trus' in the Lord, and lub his Jesus." And here
the old woman quite broke down, and burying her
face in her checked apron, cried aloud.
"Alas! old Maumer's of the past:
On her dear face we have looked our last, -
No more o'er our sick-beds we'll see
Her dark form bending tenderly;
No more with 'Baby' in her arms,
Singing, to quiet its alarms,
Will dear old Maumer come again,
To soothe and charm away our pain.
Ah, little did they understand
Who rent these ties with cruel hand."
In the fall of the year, General St. Clair came home
on furlough, and spent ten days with his family. It
was a time of great rejoicing, for they had been look-
ing forward to it for months, and saving up every
dainty. Fitz had secured every ounce of butter that
he could hear about; Rena had knit the softest socks;
Harry had a whole bag of chestnuts, and a bushel of
big red apples; and dear old grandpa had moulded
some myrtle-wax candles, which "looked like sperma-
ceti, and burned like daylight," Clara said. And now
papa had actually come; and when they dropped the
shades in the evening, and gathered around the fire,
FITZ-HUTGH ST. CLAIR. 81
they presented the most charming picture of happy
home-life that could be imagined.
The first evening, Harry had a thousand questions to
ask about camp-life, fighting, etc.; but Mrs. St. Clair's
pale, sad face, (when war was the topic,) soon made her
husband adroitly change the subject, never to renew it
The day before General St. Clair left, while in a
store, laying in family supplies, Mr. Gassy came up,
rubbing his hands, and apparently quite overjoyed at
the meeting. After the greetings were over, he said:
"I hear, General, you are going to the front in the
morning. Is it so?"
"I am going to join my brigade, sir," quietly re-
plied the General.
"How I envy you, General, I feel like a caged
lion or a chained war-steed-restive, and eager for the
fray. I am actually longing for the smell of gun-
You have had ample opportunity to have satisfied
that longing, Gassy. The war has been going on over
a year, and if you really do intend doing anything for
your country, it is time you made a beginning."
"Made a beginning, General ? Why, what in the
world do you mean? Did you not know I was
Yes, I heard so; but you did not go."
"No; but I sent a substitute, which is equivalent
to going myself. I sent my first wife's son, by a
former marriage, right to the front the front, I say,
82 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
sir, the place where the balls fall thickest; and where
I am panting to go, if it was convenient. So now, my
dear General, I hope you will not accuse me of a want
of patriotism again; for I tell you, sir, I am spoiling
"I am glad to be informed of the fact, Gassy; for
it is hard to realize that a great burly man like your-
self, as patriotic too, as you profess to be, can be sat-
isfied out of the army, at this time of our country's
"Do you call me a hearty man, General ? Ask my
mother; she will tell you what a time I had teething-"
"But you surely have got through teething, long
ago," said the General, laughing.
"You interrupted me, sir. I was going on to say
that from a teething baby I have enjoyed bad health;
but my whole soul is in the cause, and I am willing to
die for it, if needs be, -and, if the government would
only take my advice, they would soon finish up the
Why, what would you advise so efficacious?"
In the first place, I would say, Do not let the sol-
diers come home on furlough-"
"And, pray, why would you advise that?"
"Why, it does no good. They see their families in
want, and it makes them dissatisfied "
Families in want! and what are you scoundrels at
home good for, that you cannot keep the soldiers' fam-
ilies from starving ? You keep your carcasses out of
danger! If I were President, I would send you spec-
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 83
ulators to the front for a while, or billet a dozen of the
families of those who are there, upon you; for it is
such as you, that will bring about the ruin of our
cause, if ruin comes. You are Neros! fiddling, while
Rome is burning."
"Not much fiddling; money depreciates so, I have to
change my investments every week. I am buying real
estate now; do you know of any upon the market? "
"No, sir; I should be ashamed to inquire," said the
General, with a look of contempt upon his face.
"You are hard on us home-guards; but we will
take it from you, if you will only, when you go back,
raise the black flag, and carry the war into the North.
Lee is an old poke, and Stonewall Jackson believes
' what is to be will be;' and so don't put himself to
any trouble to hurry it up; and Davis ain't a mite
better; he would rather lose the cause than go con-
trary to West Point tactics. So red-tape will strangle
us after all, if you soldiers don't hurry up things."
"Do you not think, Gassy, that in depriving the
country of such superior military knowledge you are
doing wrong? You ought to be Secretary of War, sir."
"Business, General, business; there is no harder
task-master, and if you fellows get killed off, we will
have your families to provide for, I suppose."
"God forbid," said the General, fervently, "the
bare possibility of such a fate for my loved ones would
make me desert the cause, as dear as it is to my soul.
Don't hint such a terrible fate, Gassy."
"You are not very complimentary; but never mind,
84 FITZ-IIUGH ST. CLAIR.
all right as it is, you only hurry back, and don't come
home again until Washington is in ashes, the coal
mines of Pennsylvania fired, and Lincoln, the old
scoundrel, hung by the neck until he is dead, dead,
dead, and the devil take his soul."
"God forbid, or any other soul for whom the
Saviour died," replied the General, gravely.
Why don't you pitch in, Gassy," said a by-stander,
"and show the General how it ought to be done."
"I only wish I could; there would be no more
prisoners taken to eat up our provisions, I tell you.
But farewell, General; tell your wife if she needs
advice to send for me," said Gassy, as he walked away.
"Honor to him who truly feels, whatever that feeling be,
Whose acts are like his words, and both stamped with sincerity.
Defeat to him who strives to gain a nation's full accord,
False to his friends, false to his fate, false to his creed and Lord."
-**", ./ F'i 1^ a -
THE BATTLE OF MANASSAS.
A LL through the dark and gloomy winter after the
General's visit home, and return to the army,
amid desolations and sufferings, such as it seemed
incredible could exist in America, our people struggled.
Uncomplainingly they endured every privation, hoping
for the day that would bring peace and independence
to our distracted land. Sometimes we were exultant
with hope, then again upon the very verge of despair;
prayer-meetings were held daily, and from every family
altar went up the cry for peace." We knew we were
fighting the whole world, and at fearful odds, too, but
right and justice were on our side, and we believed God
would, in his own good time, interpose in our behalf.
Heartless extortioners, shirking military duty, urged
Lee "on to Washington," harangued the soldiers as
to the necessity of dying in the last ditch," while
they took from their families a whole month's wages
for a bushel of corn. The prices asked for provisions
almost amounted to a prohibition, and Mrs. St. Clair's
86 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
health was failing for want of nourishing food. They
seldom tasted meat; corn-hominy and sorghum-syrup,
with rye as a substitute for tea and coffee, was their
As in the time of William and Mary, money had
merely a nominal value-we could not purchase
provisions with it. A peck of corn, or a piece of
bacon, must be paid for with leather or yarn; and even
after the food was obtained and cooked, it was scarcely
palatable, for salt was not to be had at any price. Old
smoke-houses were torn down, and the dirt floors
boiled for the salt they contained. The sediment of
an old mackerel-barrel was regarded as a "treasure-
trove," to such straits were we reduced. Is it at all
surprising, that we could not give the Federal prison-
ers dessert every day? or is it not rather a miracle
that a starving people managed to feed their enemies
The Southern ladies, who, in almost all the North-
ern story-books, are represented as thriftlesss, lazy
do-nothings," proved the unjustness of these charges by
manufacturing, with their own hands, almost every-
thing used in their households-even to the shoes they
wore, and the lasts upon which they were made! Upon
hand-looms they wove the cloth for the family, and
no prettier hats have ever been imported than those
plaited by our ladies from our own Palmetto. One of
our young generals led to the altar a fair bride whose
entire trousseau was of home manufacture; for, although
the trained dress was silk of the finest texture, the
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 87
bride raised the worms, and spun and wove the silk
herself. History must say of the women of the South,
"They nobly bore their part,
But the proudest triumph that they won,
Was the victory of the heart."
Months had passed since the General had been home.
Fitz looked sad and anxious; his grandfather was
growing feeble, and his mother's subdued, beautiful,
patient face was never now lighted by a smile.
Little baby May, who, like the snowdrop, to which
the children compared her, had come into the world
amid the darkness and gloom of the times, and al-
ways gave a smile for the bitter tears with which her
pale, sad mother bedewed her cheeks, was now two
months old, and had never seen papa, although little
Clara insisted "the angel who brought her down from
heaven must have stopped by papa's camp and showed
him the baby, for how else in the world would he have
known they had a baby, and sent it 'papa's welcome
and a blessing,' before they had time to send him word,
' God had sent them a little sister' ?" Harry agreed
with her fully, and loved his baby sister better, because
she had seen papa last.
General St. Clair wrote: An engagement is daily
expected. That over, if spared, I shall come home."
Fitz counted to, and from the arrival of the cars,
and if they were delayed until midnight, he never left
the office without his mail.
It was the 3d of September; the second battle of
88 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
M.AI.--. had been fought; and the cars, now overdue,
would bring tidings of the result. The depdt was
crowded with anxious fathers and mothers, wives and
sisters, who stood prayerful and agonized, as if await-
ing an execution. Silence hung, like a fixed spell, on
every tongue; for from every homestead had gone a
loved one, and the cars, they knew, were coming
freighted with sorrow for some of them. "Hark the
long whistle." That means victory," said some,
scarcely above their breath; for they knew that,
"On the wings of Victory
Death's shafts were ever sped."
"A glorious victory !" said the conductor, as the
cars came into the dep6t; but he spoke in tones that
might have announced a defeat, they were so solemn.
Fitz stood speechless, for he could sing paans for
no victory until assured his father whose precious
life had been risked where
Bellowing batteries thundered,
And sulph'rous smoke rose high"-
had come safely through the deadly conflict.
When the train reached the dep6t, the conductor
handed the list of killed and wounded to the Rev. Dr.
Smith, with the request that he would read it aloud,
so as to relieve the anxiety of the waiting multitude as
speedily as possible."
Dr. Smith took it, and read: "The long-expected
battle has been fought, and won, -but at a terrible
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 89
cost to South Carolina, who mourns among the fallen
some of her bravest officers. The gallant General St.
Clair--" and he stopped, trembling with emotion,
and looked pityingly at Fitz, who stood transfixed,
wildly staring at him, with clasped hands and haggard
"Not killed, sir? Oh, my God! not killed?" he
-- fell, making a desperate charge, at the head
of his division, in the thickest of the fight," continued
Poor Fitz! The conductor, who knew the agony
in store for the son, whose beautiful devotion he had
so much admired, had walked round, and stood pre-
pared to minister to him when the blow fell. With
tears coursing down his own cheeks, he led the tearless,
haggard, shivering boy to a seat. Deep grief is always
passionless, and not one sigh, groan, or tear, told the
spectators that his heart was breaking.
Rev. Mr. Elliott, his mother's pastor, came and sat
by him, and, taking the cold hand in his own, ten-
derly talked of the dead; of his beautiful life; his
glorious death; the immortality of fame he had won;
but he spoke in deaf ears. If he was heard, there was
no intimation given of it, for Fitz's only consciousness
was, that he of whom they were speaking was dead!
Killed! Gone forever. When Mr. Elliott proposed
that they should go to his mother, he got up submis-
sively and accompanied him as though he was asleep.
When they came in sight of the house, he looked up
90 FITZ-HIUGH ST. CLAIR.
pitifully into Mr. Elliott's face and said, I am too ill.
I cannot meet my mother now. The tidings you are
taking will kill her; be merciful;" and leaving Mr.
Elliott to go into the house alone, he walked into the
woods near by and threw himself upon his face on the
ground, trying to submit with every heart-string burst-
ing. He had said truly, "he was ill;" heart and
head alike ached. He longed for death, and prayed
that it might come to his release. He was so crushed
and helpless that, when he tried to pray, no words
would come, only "Lord Jesus, have mercy." At last
a numbness and insensibility mercifully crept over
him. He thought he was d ;i.i, which, to him, now
meant only going to his father. Closing his eyes, his
tortured nerves languished, and he was alike insensible
to sorrow or joy until late in the evening. With con-
sciousness returned the dreary sense of his terrible
sorrow and loneliness. How lonely he felt. "Was
everybody gone, mother?" Ah, where was his
mother? He had, in his own great grief, forgotten
hers. He must go to her at once.
When he entered her chamber, he looked like a
flower over which a fierce storm had passed. Every
one in the room wept as they saw the marks of his suf-
fering. Walking up to the bed, he knelt, and taking
the cold, white hand in his own, he said,." Only live,
mother, for our sakes. We will try and help you bear
it." All through that dreadful night, although his
mother did not recognize him, no entreaties could get
him from her side.
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 91
"We watched her breathing through the night,
iHer breathing soft and low,
As in her breast the wave of life
Kept heaving to and fro.
So silently we seemed to speak,
So slowly moved about,
As though we had lent her half our powers
To eke her being out."
Entirely delirious, her ravings were of "home, her
own beautiful island home," with her husband ever at
her side; then again, wildly, she would be inter-
posing to keep from him some threatened danger; and
once, p] I1 11) exhausted, she sank back upon her pil-
low, clasped her hands, and with tears streaming from
her eyes, prayed.
"Speak low to me, my Saviour-low and sweet,
From out the hallelujahs, sweet and low,
Lest I should fear and fall, and miss Thee so,
Who art not missed by any that entreat."
In the morning the doctor proposed bringing her
baby to her, in the hope that the sight of it would
rouse her to consciousness. Some one, to still the
child's cries, during the night had administered pare-
goric carelessly, and there was a staip upon her little
apron, which, as soon as Mrs. St. Clair saw, she
pointed at in horror, exclaiming, Blood! blood!
O God! her father's blood!" and fell into a swoon
so deep and protracted, we thought she had left us
During her intervals of sanity, she would say, "I
92 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
must not die with mother's work to do, doctor; my
children have no one in the world but me; you must
not let me die; I cannot leave them in this harsh, cold
world. Oh, it would be sweet to die; but I promised
my husband to live for his children;" and this was
the feeling that triumphed even over death, and made
that poor, stricken mother turn and take up life's heavy
burden, when she so longed
"To rest her aching heart beneath the soil,
And slumber in her dreamless bed, free from all toil."
A "mother's love;" what is there like it in all this
wide world? It can keep even death at bay, and say
to sorrow, poverty, and want, "for my children's sake"
I will not shrink from you, but will meet you, though
I have to do it alone. And how alone, that timid,
shrinking mother felt none but her God knew. She
had been so sustained and sheltered by the strong
right arm of him upon whom she had leaned, but
who now lay
"beneath the sod
On pillow dark and gory,
As brave a man as ever trod
A battle-field of glory."
And she was alone, terribly alone, in this unpitying
In General St. Clair, his father lost his only child,
the prop and stay of his old age. In poverty, and
weakness extreme, he was left, and it was a touching
sight to see the tall, elegant old gentleman, with bowed
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 93
head, and hands behind him, slowly walking the piazza,
while his long, silvery hair, combed back from his
high, intellectual forehead, curled to his shoulders.
"There is something moves one strangely
In old ruins gray with years,
Yet there's something far more tender
In an old face wet with tears."
He was chastened, but resigned. No murmur ever
escaped him, and if he was sometimes heard to ask,
"How long, O God, how long?" he oftener said, "He
doeth all things well." I expected to lean on his
strong arm, but God has ordained it otherwise, and I
must totter to the grave alone; yet, thank God, He
has promised never to forsake me; His rod and His
staff they comfort me. I will join my brave sons
where no enemy can part us. Until then I will trust
my Heavenly Father, for, after all, maybe
'the kind dark angel, has only
Drawn them within the secret shadow of his cloud,
To hide them from the fearful fate now hurrying up.'"
THE DEATH OF OLD MR. ST. CLAIR.
FITZ did not return to college after the death of
his father, for he had the whole care of providing
for the family, and comfortless himself, had to become
the comforter of all the rest.
He sought, and obtained, a situation in a store, where
he received "a small salary and was boarded."
When he went to the table of his employer, who
was the richest man in the town, and kept the best
table, the thought of the little home group sitting
down to corn-bread and sorghum, prevented his eating
a mouthful. How could he eat the meat that would
give his poor, feeble mother strength to nourish her
little teething babe? and the dear old grandfather now
met him day by day with a failing step, which told
that he needed strengthening food. No, he could not
eat the food they were perishing for, so he 1. _.,:i to
" have his meals sent to the store," and as he was a
great favorite, the request was complied with.
Every particle of meat, and everything else at all
FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 95
dainty, was laid aside and carried home. He ate
scarcely enough to keep him alive, and that only of
the plainest fare.
Mrs. Duncan must be a very generous provider,
Fitz, or else you bring home all she sends," said his
mother to him, one day, as he walked in, and laid his
basket upon the table, saying, as usual, "Here is part
of my dinner, mamma."
"Do I look as if I were starving?" he asked.
Mrs. St. Clair looked at him, and saw what she had
not before observed, that his cheeks were sunken and
hollow, and she had in the look unmistakable evidence
that Fitz was indeed starving himself, to feed his
family. That decided her course. A friend in Co-
lumbia had been urging her "to rent her home, move
down, and take a situation in the Treasury Depart-
ment." She was delighted at the prospect of being
able to relieve Fitz of part of the burden of their sup-
port; but he had objected to any such arrangement,
insisting that he was able to take care of them. Mrs.
St. Clair became convinced that it was her duty to go
to Columbia, and began to make preparations to leave
immediately. Fitz went down to reconnoitre, and the
reconnaissance was so satisfactory that he came back de-
lighted, having obtained a good situation for himself,
and the assurance that the employment offered his
mother was not fatiguing, and quite remunerative.
Upon his return, his mother informed him that
while he was away "Mr. Gassy had called and advised
her to 'sell her house, and invest the money in bonds'!"
96 FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR.
"What is in the wind now, I wonder?" said Fitz.
"If that sharper is investing in real estate, you may
be sure it will be safe to keep it. The hawk! I wish
he would keep away from our dove-cote, for it would
be just like him to take advantage of us. Don't tol-
erate him, mamma."
"He did not come to buy, my son, only to advise,
and he did so in the kindest and most interested man-
ner. Do you know your prejudice against Mr. Gassy
is terribly bitter, and really unaccountable to me. But
here he comes."
"Only dropped in, in a neighborly way: had n't
heard of Fitz's arrival: thought maybe Mrs. St.
Clair might be needing some advice, which his great
financial ability made him eminently capable of giving.
As Fitz was at home, would n't stay."
Of course he would not, for he knew Fitz under-
stood him thoroughly, and he shrank from his clear,
truthful eye like a whipped spaniel, although it was
only a boy's eye that looked him through.
Mrs. St. Clair rented her house most advantageously
to a farmer, who agreed to pay the rent in provisions,
which at that time money could not buy, and began
packing for the move.
It was Sabbath, and the last one they would spend
in that town. The children attended preaching with
their grandfather, and the dear old man had enjoyed
the services. In the evening he conducted family
worship, read with great solemnity the ninetieth psalm,
and joined in singing that beautiful hymn,
FITZ-IIUGII ST. CLAIR. 97
"Oh, Thou who hearest the mourner's prayer,
How dark this world would be,
If, when deceived and injured here,
We could not fly to Thee."
After the hymn he prayed earnestly and fervently
for peace, and that the cry of the widows and orphans,
all over the land, might reach high heaven, and the
dreadful bloodshed be stopped. He kissed them all
good-night, appearing quite as well as usual, and
In the morning, when they met at breakfast, grandpa
did not come. Fitz went to inquire if he was sick,
and found him dead! Alone in the night, apparently
without a struggle, he had met and conquered the
King of Terrors, and now lay sweetly asleep in Jesus.
"Two hands upon the breast-
Labor was done;
Two pale feet, crossed in rest-
The race was won;
Two eyes in Death's sleep shut,
And all tears cease;
Two lips, where grief is mute -
Anger at peace."
He had gone to join those whom he had loved and
mourned, in the land of peace for which he sighed;
"We looked upon his cold, dead face,
We felt 'twas wrong to weep;
For we had known his suffering,
And knew how sweet his sleep."
SITZ preceded the family to Columbia a few
weeks, in order to prepare for their reception.
To his great sorrow, when his mother came, she in-
formed him that "she had sold their house to Mr.
mother, dear mother, how could you fall into
the trap of that wily speculator? Surely I deserved
your confidence; you have made a terrible mistake,
and we will have to suffer for it. I really thought
you gave me credit for common sense."
"My son, you are hasty in your judgment; listen
to the facts, and do not let prejudice make you un-
reasonable. Mr. Gassy had money sent him from
Richmond to invest, and really meant to do us all a
service by purchasing our house; he argued, as we
were going from the up-country, probably never to
return, the property would be let go to decay, for
no one ever takes care of a hired house, so my best
plan would be to sell in S- and purchase in