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French were certainly not less, if we include seven thousand who were taken prisoners. They lost, moreover, twelve standards and eleven guns.
In the early hours of July 6, Charles had despatched an adjutant to Presburg with orders to the Archduke John to march at once and attack the enemy's rear. The accepted story is that the messenger found the bridges over the river March destroyed, and arrived six hours too late for his errand to be successful. There were many at the time who attributed criminal negligence to John, among them his own brother, the commander-in-chief. For a time, by means of court intrigue and persistent misrepresentation, the blame of procrastination was put, not on John, but on Charles, but eventually the former was found guilty and banished to Styria. Had the latter's plan succeeded, Napoleon would have had a different task, so difficult that the issue might well have been doubtful, if not disastrous. As it was, the victory was dearly bought, and the Austrians were not demoralized.
On the other hand, in the very hour of victory the French, who had halted to take breath, were thrown into a panic by the appearance of a few Austrian pickets from the Archduke John's army, now coming up, and thousands of the victorious soldiers fled in wild demoralization toward the Danube. John, whose appearance but a short time earlier would have turned his brother's defeat into victory, drew back his 13,000 men in good order to guard Hungary. As Napoleon himself had been in a dangerous condition of over-confidence before Aspern, so now his soldiery were clearly in the same plight. Selfconceit had made them unreliable. Berna
dotte's corps had displayed something very much like cowardice and mutiny at the last. The army still fought in the main like the perfect machine it was, but the individual men had lost their stern virtue. They believed that victory, plunder, and self-indulgence were the fair compensations of their toils. Ungirt and freed from the restraints of discipline, they gave signs that the petulance, timidity, and unruliness which had been manifested in Poland and Prussia were not diminished.
Their Emperor, if his vision had been unclouded, would have understood that endurance, suffering, and privations would make such men an untrustworthy dependence in the hour of need. How changed he was himself is clear from the fact that Bonaparte would never have rested until his foe was disorganized and overpowered, while Napoleon saw himself forced to treat with an opponent who, though beaten, was still undaunted and active. If he had been fighting for life, his position would have been morally strong; fighting as a world-conqueror, it was illogical; fighting as equal with equal to repel aggression, it was comprehensible. This last was the attitude into which he was forced by the campaign of Aspern, Essling, Wagram. Francis, whose power he had meant to crush, upon whom a few short weeks before he had heaped insult and abuse, had turned out a most dangerous foe. Technically conquered, it would not be well for the victor to try conclusions with him again in the still uncertain position of the Napoleonic power. Rather reap the field secured, the daunted conqueror reasoned, than risk devastation by grasping for more. This, and no other, is the explanation of that remarkable somersault in Napoleon's diplomacy which followed in the next few weeks. William M. Sloane.
(To be continued.)
MAS' CRAFFUD'S FREEDOM.
BY HARRY STILLWELL EDWARDS,
EE had surrendered, and a Federal general was in Macon with ten thousand cavalrymen. The Southern Confederacy had ceased to exist. Upon no one did these rapidly succeeding events fall with such crushing force and effect as upon that most estimable gentleman, Major Crawford Worthington, feudal lord of Woodhaven. To those who are acquainted with the major, personally or as a historical character, it is needless to state that, being at Woodhaven at the time to which this chapter relates, he, occupied the familiar and well-beloved seat upon his back porch. For a lifetime, it may be said, with the exception of his college days, his patriotic efforts to reach Mexico in time to assist at the reduction of the country in '46, a few terms of imprisonment in the Georgia legislature, and his more recent Virginia campaign, he had virtually lived upon that particular porch, overlooking as it did his vast estate.
But pleasant as were his surroundings, they brought little comfort to Major Worthington. For three weeks his spirit had been greatly oppressed. Although a close observer of public affairs, the collapse of the Confederacy had found him altogether unprepareda statement not easily accepted by those who do not know the hopeful Southern spirit. When Lee surrendered he was, it is true, appalled, but only momentarily. He felt that the South could not fail; success was certain, though how, when, or in what way, he did not know: he was no analyst. Many possibilities flitted across his mind: Johnston would retreat to the mountains, Davis would reach Texas and reorganize the trans-Mississippi department, or England would interfere. Cotton would still be king.
During three weeks, however, he had done a world of thinking. Never in his life had he thought so continuously-nay, so successfully-upon any subject, and the reaction had come.
The change came that night as he sat under
the silver light of the moon. The manhood in him, so long unsummoned, so long concealed beneath that careless, easy-going, half-humorous, half-irritable quixotism, stirred under a new impulse. What it was he did not know, but he felt himself emerging from the depths, and a load lifting from his life. Light began to stream in upon him. The failure of the Confederacy not only seemed at that moment to be natural, but the only possible result. He did not realize it, but the same emancipation from exploded theory and sentimental fictions was going on from Maryland to Texas. Old gentlemen in white-oak rockers were drifting back into the Union from verandas all over the South. Wendell Phillips could no longer dare say, even in the extravagance of eloquence, that the North thought and the South dreamed. The South, which all along had thought through its politicians, was now thinking for itself.
Thus when the sound of a negro jubilee floated up from the distance it did not disturb him. He knew what was going on: a negro preacher with a smattering of political knowledge and an extensive command of disjointed but high-sounding phrases was haranguing the newly liberated slaves. He was telling them that freedom had come-that they had been «led up out of Egypt,» that they had «come out of the wilderness,» that their chains had been stricken from them, and that the Government had promised every one of them «forty acres and a mule.» They were free to select a mule each, and to mark off their land. Hence the jubilee of song and the cries of exultation; for was he not talking to children? But the older men sat with their hands against their heads, and thought. The clamor came mostly from the women and the rising generation.
As the tumult increased, the happy smile on the major's face changed slightly. It became sardonic. Isam, who was hurrying up the steps to the porch, saw it; for at that moment above a full pipe the major held a lighted match, and Isam knew the expression meant mischief. He was suffered to get inside the back door; then the usual impatient call reached him:
<<< Here! Where are you going?»
<< Des goin' ter wind up de dinin'-room clock an' fetch some water for Miss Helen, sah.>> "What's going on out yonder? » Isam smiled.
«Sorter preachin'-like, Mas' Craffud. Unc' Toby Johnson es er-preachin' on freedom.»> « Which side is he preaching on? » Isam's eyes opened a little wider. He thought a moment, and then his black face lighted up:
«He 's preachin' on de inside, Mas' Craffud.»>
The major checked a very natural exclamation when he recognized the innocent tones of the negro's conciliating voice.
«Did he tell them I am free too?» Isam laughed silently.
«La, no, sah! Dey know you allus be'n free.>>
«Oh, they do, do they? Well, I don't; but I am free now.»
<< What you mean, Mas' Craffud?»
<< Free from the care of you lazy rascals. I've been pulling against it, and putting up money against it; but now I'm free at last, and I reckon I'll say, Thank God! before the year is out. Every man on this place must look out for himself and family hereafter; I don't want one of them. I am going to enjoy emancipation myself until I can look round.»>
"How dey goin' ter git somep'n' ter eat?» Isam's look was now an anxious one. The major chuckled secretly when he heard << dey » instead of «we.»
«That is their affair, sir. Now you can get a job almost anywhere, for plow hands will be
"Who-me? No, sah; no, sah! I'm goin' ter stay right hyah, Mas' Craffud. Somebody got ter fetch water an' wood, an' wait on de table, an' run roun' for folks, des same as 'fo' freedom. Ain' no use ter talk ter me 'bout plowin'.>>
"Who's going to pay you? I would n't give a dollar a month for four of you.»>
«Hit 'u'd be er dollar more 'n I be'n er-gettin', an' I ain' ask no man ter raise de wages.» And with a laugh that only half disguised his genuine anxiety, Isam disappeared.
The turmoil and disorder continued to increase from day to day. The preachers and the women began to foment trouble. The problem was becoming a serious one, for crops were in a critical condition, and no contract existed between the freedmen and their late owner. Major Worthington thought out a remedy at last, and one morning he turned
his back upon Woodhaven, rode into Milledgeville, and boarded the Macon train. He was dressed in the uniform that he had first donned in 1861.
THE Federal general had found a residence suited to his taste, overlooking the beautiful city of Macon nestling in the Ocmulgee valley
-one of the Roman or semi-Grecian dwellings that seem to be climbing the slopes in search of the breeze. He had lunched, and was enjoying his cigar upon the broad portico, and doubtless his reflections were pleasant. The truce between Grant and Lee had been declared while he was approaching Macon with the prospect of an ugly fight on his hands. The Confederates had official information of the truce, but he had none, so he simply came in and took possession of the city, with its vast depots and supplies, without losing a man or firing a gun.
His enjoyment of the beautiful prospect framed by the massive white columns of his headquarters was suddenly interrupted by the advent of a majestic figure clad in a gorgeous uniform the like of which he had never beheld. It might have been an admiral's or a Spanish ambassador's; a marshal of France would not have despised it. As the figure approached by way of the circular drive, in the rays of the noonday sun, and with the deepgreen magnolias for a background, the uniform came out in a blaze of glory.
The general rose and stood, as his visitor, sacrificing something of dignity and imposing aspect to the demands of environment, scaled the short flight of steps by aid of the handrail.
"I desire, sir,» said Major Worthington between his breaths, «to see General He saluted as he spoke; for while the gentleman addressed was very simply uniformed, he was evidently a man of rank, though just how high in position the major could not determine without his glasses, and glasses were an artistic impossibility to the regalia he wore. << I am General sir,» was the reply as the salute was returned. Instantly the major lifted his hat and bowed profoundly.
«Sir," he said, impulsively extending his chapeau, "your most obedient. I am Crawford Worthington, late major in the service of the Confederate States of America. With old soldiers like yourself and me, general, the war is ended. I have the honor, sir, to offer you my hand.»>
The smile which was beginning to show itself upon the face of the man in blue instantly disappeared. He stepped forward,
took the hand of his gray-headed visitor, and shook it cordially.
«It is indeed, major. I am glad to meet you. Will you go inside, or be seated here?» « Here, by all means, sir. There is nothing so pleasant in this world to me, sir, as the sunlight, the blue skies, and the breezes of the South. We Southerners, sir, think it an insult to nature when a man born here needlessly turns his back on these.>>
<< And well you may, major; well you may. How delightful they all are!» Then quickly, «You were in the Confederate army; may I ask where you saw service, major? »
«At Manassas chiefly, sir. After that I was assigned to staff duty, and finally my State claimed me for civil service. It was hard to leave the front, but I am a State's rights man; I felt in honor bound to respond. My company, sir, the Worthington Guards,->
«The Worthington Guards! Gentlemen of the Worthington Guards > ?>>
«Yes, sir; they were gentlemen by birth, inheritance, education, and instinct, sir. Many a one of them sleeps his last sleep to-day in the valleys of Virginia.» The major lifted his hat reverently as hespoke, and bowed his head a momentinsilence. The face of his host grew grave. << I have heard of the Worthington Guards, major, he said presently; «the expression (gentlemen of the Worthington Guards was a familiar one in our army. I should be glad to hear more of your company. How did it happen that so small a command became so famous? How did the phrase originate?»
«Phrase? You surprise me, sir. The Worthington Guards were a company organized by myself among the best families of my county and my personal associates. They were mostly younger than myself, and did me the honor to bear my name and select me as their commander, I having had some experience in Mexico. They were all gentlemen, sir; all gentlemen to the manner born. None other could have secured admission. Nearly all of them came attended by body-servants and with large wardrobes. It took a train to move them, with servants and baggage; and not a man of them, up to Manassas, ever appeared in public except in the dress and style of a gentleman. Well, sir, as you may imagine, these gentlemen cared nothing for drill and the details of camp service. They went out to fight, sir, and, begad! they did. But they were not men to be ordered about by a social equal, sir. I would not have presumed to give orders to such a gathering of gentlemen, especially when they stood ready to grant any request I might make, and at any cost.
<< Well, sir, our methods were strange to the brigade to which, over my protest, we were assigned. I thought, and still think, that we would have been of infinitely more service as a separate organization; but superior officers appealed to my patriotism, sir, and after consultation with my friends, seeing my delicate position, they yielded with fine courtesy.
"On the day of our first review the difficulty I had foreseen arose; a dapper little fellow strode out in front of the brigade, and gave command, Carry arms! He was a total stranger to my company, sir; indeed, as I afterward learned, he had never been introduced to a single member, and his family name was totally unknown to any of us. Well, sir, the brigade executed the order fairly well; but the Worthington Guards remained motionless, and looked with surprise to me. Appreciating the situation, I walked out in front of them, and, guessing that the command had been authorized, I said, (Gentlemen of the Worthington Guards, General Beauregard requests that you will bring your pieces to the position of carry. Not a man of them refused, sir! General Beauregard afterward said that he was much impressed with their gentlemanly compliance, and appreciated the compliment very highly. He also complimented me upon my saving him an awkward situation. He did us the honor never afterward to refer to my friends otherwise than by their proper title, and they became greatly devoted to him.
"They proved their devotion on the battlefield of Manassas, a few days later. Everything was giving way on the left-hot work that, general! hot work! Bee was down, Barton was down, I was almost down, and the Georgia troops, overwhelmed by superior numbers and frightful losses, were disorganized and in confusion. It was at the time when General Beauregard, with our State flag in hand, was endeavoring to reform the line, and I was searching for him, that he said to me, Captain, request the gentlemen of the Worthington Guards to rally on their colors.) Sir, that was my proudest moment. I pointed out what remained of my company, then standing firm a hundred yards in advance, and replied, General, I have already taken the liberty to request the Worthington Guards, in your name, to remain out yonder and stop the Federal advance. If you will permit me, I will rally the colors on the Guards. And I carried the flag to them. Beauregard never forgot that; he was a gentleman himself, and a gallant man-a trifle hasty, sir, a trifle hasty. When the fight was over he came in
person to call upon the Guards. He found a dozen or so only. It was a sad day for me, general, a sad day, sir. They did not know how to refuse any request from me, and I sometimes think I made a mistake, a serious mistake.>>
« Battles have been lost, major, for want of a few such mistakes. I think your action was perfectly justifiable.>>
«Sir, your most obedient. I no longer doubt it.» The major lifted his chapeau.
<< And was that the last of the Worthington Guards?»
«Practically so. The company could not be recruited congenially; the members sought friends in other organizations. Only nine of eighty-nine ever returned home. But I weary you, sir.»
«On the contrary, I am greatly interested.» «Sir, your most obedient.» Again the gallant major lifted his chapeau.
And then, falling into conversation on the war in general, they soon reached that state of good-fellowship which makes the asking of favors as easy as the granting. It was then revealed that the major desired a detail of two soldiers to go to his neighborhood and restore order, offering his personal guarantee that they should be protected. His idea was that the presence of two representatives of the United States army would have a happy effect upon the negroes, to whom a blue uniform was an object of reverence.
«I think, sir,» the major concluded, «a couple of Dutchmen will do. They won't talk too much to the hands, and they say, sir, you have them pretty fresh.>>
«So I have, major; and you shall have as many as you wish.» He wrote two orders and handed them to his guest.
«One of them," he said, «will secure you the detail; the other will protect your Confederate decorations. You are the only man in Macon to-day who wears them.»>
"What!» exclaimed the major, astounded. "Is it possible? General, your most obedient. I shall continue to wear them, sir, as a compliment to you.»
«Don't mention it, major; and take good care of my Dutchmen.»>
«Sir, it is a pleasure to meet a gentleman, even though birth has made him an enemy in war. Had you been born in this section, sir, naturally you would have been of the Worthington Guards. It is my highest compliment, sir.»>
The general smiled, took the arm of his guest, and gently led him within.
«Had I been born in this section I should not have been guilty of this long delay.» He
was filling two glasses as he spoke, and, handing one to the major, he said, lifting the other gracefully, «The gentlemen of the Worthington Guards-the health of the living and the memory of the dead!»
The old major choked slightly over his drink, and turned away his face. His voice was scarcely audible as he took his new friend's hand and said brokenly: «Sir, your—most obedient.»
WHEN Major Crawford Worthington landed at Woodhaven with his two German soldiers his gray eyes sparkled and twinkled merrily. One, named Sprintz, was six feet in height, with a carriage that would have won him a place in an emperor's body-guard. His companion, Sneifleheimer, was short of stature, but made up for his deficient height by a breadth that was appalling and an officiousness that would have been unbearable if it had not been comical. The giant, on the other hand, was stolid, and never spoke except after deep reflection, his distinguishing characteristic being a disposition to agree with the preceding speaker that brought him a reputation for amiability.
The major's manner in his contact with these gentlemen was Chesterfieldian. He addressed each as «captain,» and was as deferential as human wisdom could direct. All the day during their journey they had been suspiciously shy of him, in truth not entirely satisfied as to his sincerity; but when established in a comfortable two-room house in the yard at Woodhaven and served with a box of fragrant cigars and a bottle or two of old Monongahela, and when Helen, the major's niece, had inquired solicitously after their health, they surrendered at discretion. Never did broiled chicken, hot rolls, and strong coffee go home to more appreciative appetites. The major, contemplating his plan, felt that the seeds of success had been well sown, and was happy.
But seeds of trouble had also been sown. For one morning Captain Sneifleheimer, in the vanity of his grand title, having jostled Isam and received a dash of boiling coffee upon his neck, seized that astonished native by the collar and shook him into a panic. All that Isam could understand of the assorted language launched at him was « verdammte neegur,» which he was not slow in translating into its English equivalent. From that moment Isam was at war with Sneifleheimer. He could not do enough for the giant Sprintz,