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Newspaper Page Text
BLUE AND GRAY
By Walter Joseph Delaney.
When William Boyce settled at
Creston, a quiet little Missouri town,
he found himself aggrieved and em
bittered to an extent that soured in
him all the milk of human kindness.
He had been a Confederate captain
during the Civil War. He was still a
"I Saved This for You
ptaunch, loyal son of the Southland.
Long since, however, he had buried
all the did dead issues. At the town
. where he had last lived for over twen
ty years, on Decoration day he had
marched side by side with his old bat
tle foes in amity. But now
A meddlesome busybody within a
week after his arrival in the new town
had repeated some idle gossip. It was I
to the effect that Morton Ball, an old
Union v soldier, had been overheard
saying: "Captain of the Fifteenth
Tennessee, eh? I have a friend who
knew them like a book." Then the
scandal monger missed part of a sen
tence, but caught its final words: "We
gave it to them at 'Mission Ford."
Now Mission Ford was a sore spot
with Captain Boyce, and his friends
never mentioned the name. At Mis
sion Ford the Union boys had, indeed,
"given it" to their adversaries. Never
had there been a worse rout, with a
capture of one-half a regiment at the
end of it.
"Gave it to us at Mission Ford, did'
they?" repeated the fiery Southerner
wrathfully. "I'll ever forget that
mean taunt. We gave it to them quite
as rough on many an occasion. This
Ball fellow is in poor business, rak
ing up a dead and buried business like
that. I shall cut him dead on -all oc
casions." Bluff, .whole-hearted Morton Ball
marveled at being coldly, almost in
sultingly repelled when he attempted
to be neighborly to the new arrival in
town. Boyce declined to join the Blue
and Gray club. He would not even
attend the church where the Balls
went. His wife acquired his offense
and tabooed Mrs. Ball in her social
Then there came up a discussion in
the local newspaper over some pro
posed improvement which Ball warm
ly favored. Naturally Captain Boyce
opposed it and the bitterness grew.
On Decoration day Boyce and his
family visited the local cemetery
apart from the marchers. A Confed
erate general was buried there. and
they did due homage tp his memory.
Captain Boyce took with him his
most dearly prized momento the
torn, shot-riddled flag of tfie intrepid
Fifteenth Tennessee. He loyally min
gled with it the folks of the national
stars and stripes, but all his talk of
the day was of the heroic deeds of his
dead war comrade.
That faded, tattered Confederate.
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