Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Diary of Lieutenant-Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes, Wednesday, May 7, 1862 – 6:30 p.m.

Giles Court-house, or Parisburg [Pearisburg], Camp Number 6. — Just reached here from Princeton after a fatiguing march of twenty-eight miles. Found the major very glad to see us. All anxious, hearing reports of [the] Forty-fifth reinforced by [the] Thirty-sixth or [the] Twenty-second with artillery, etc., etc. Now all safe if we are vigilant. The country after the road strikes New River is romantic, highly cultivated, and beautiful. Giles Court-house is [a] neat, pretty village with a most magnificent surrounding country both as regards scenery and cultivation. The people have all been Secesh, but are polite and intelligent. When Major Comly, Captain Gilmore, and Captain Drake entered town, the people were standing on the corners, idly gossiping — more numerous than the invaders. They did not at first seem to know who it was; then such a scampering, such a rushing into the streets of women, such weeping, scolding, begging, etc., etc.
Spent the night posting pickets and arranging against an attack so as to prevent a surprise. At midnight a citizen came in saying the enemy were preparing to attack us — the Forty-fifth and Twenty-second — when he was at their camp, twelve miles from here at Cloyd's Mountain. I doubled the pickets, dressed myself and kept about quietly all the rest of the night.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 254-5

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