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Columbia phoenix. (Columbia, S.C.) 1865-1865, March 21, 1865, Image 2

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84027004/1865-03-21/ed-1/seq-2/

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, -which he had won. At all events, no one'
doubted that, with adequate snpplies of men
and materiel, Johnston would most effectually"
arrest tue fariner progress of the in vadera,
. Application*? of tho most rifgent entreaty
were addressed by our del? ga^es and leading
men in Congres lo the "resicjent, urging triete
o fi ec-ts. But.-with that dogged and obstinate
wii! which our President seems to regeid rs a
virtue, l.e declined to restore the commander
whom he had already so greatly wronged, am.,
in re*peet to reinforcements; these were too
tardily furnished, and^in tooAsnujll number, to
avail nmch ii: offering the requisite resistance
to the foe. Tiie reiniprcementi did not make
their appearance in due season tar a-concentra- I
tim: ol' ?mr t rength at any one point, and our
opposition to ?hermaji, ever/where, consists
of liftle niore than a series of small skirmishes,
.without result on either side. 2so' pass was
t held villi any tenacity; no battle fought; the
enemy were allowed to travel one hundred apd
fifty miles of our State, through a region of
sw ?-rup orri thicket, in no portion of which
co:: id if field be found adequate to the display
o." ten thousand men, ar.d where, under gootf
partisan leaders, the invaders might have been
cut* in separate bodies, their supplies
stopped their march constantly embarrassed,
by hard fighting, and where, a. bloody 'oil ex-^
a-t. d at every defiie, they must have found a
Thermopylae al every rive miles of their march
We had no partisan fighting, os in the dii\'s of
o!d< V"o hud a eyatenu which insisted upon
artillery as paramount-ir.r-is ed upon arbitrary
line- for defence, chosen wit!.out any regard to
the topography of the country, "tye will
tnak.; a stand," s.vd our etiieft, "at this river
eros- ng or that; then fall basai; to the next
liv?, and r.o on to the last." Although, in a
thousand places of dense swamp, narrow d??
fi!^, ind almost impenetrable thicket, between
these rivera, it would have been easy to ii m.
spots wiiere three hundred njen, ruder ciJtnpe
tent commanders, who knew the country'
might most effeefJhally.have baffled three thou?
sand. At this very moment, wuile-we write,
we doubt if the scattered members of our army
have yet been able to rendezvous together for
the arrest of Sherman's progress to the coast or
through M or th Carel i na. But to return.
IV.
0 The march of the enemy into nur State was*
characterized^ by 6uch seene6 of brutality, li?
cense, plunder and general conflagration, as
Very roon showed that the threat?of the North
* ern press, and of their soldiery, wece?ot 16 be
regard d as mere brutum fulmen. -Day by day
brought to the people of Comrribia tidings of
l ever ntrocbies eom|aiticd, anfl a wider and
J. >re txtesded progress. Daily ?lid long trains
?.. .ii ii.v-s line thc roads, wish wives and
children, :.nd horses and stock aad cattld, seek
ing refuge from the wolfish fury Which pursued.
, Long lines of wagons covered the highways.
.Half naked people" cowered from the winter
ncder bush tents in the thicketiL, under the
1 f
.of houses, under the railroad sheds, and
in old cars left them along the route. All these
repeated the same story of brutal outrage and
great suffering, violence, poverty and naked?
ness.- Habitation after habitation, village a '.ur
village-one sending up its signal flames to the
other, presag'ng for it the same fate-lighted
the winter and midnight sky with crimson
ibrror* All houses which had been loft vacant
were iirst robbed and then destroyed; and
where HM families still . ventured to-remain,
they woe, in most instancy so tortured by
insult, violence, robbery and all manner of
^brutality, that flight became necessary, and the
I buming of tlie dwelling soon followed the
I fV'jht of the owner. ?\o language can, describe
the sufferings of these fugitives, or the demo?
nic honors hy winch they were pursued; nor
can any catalogue furnish :-.:i adequate detail of
the wide-spread destruction of homes and pro?
perty. Granaries *.v.:re emptied, and where
the gr^'n was not, carried ?;iT, it was strewn to
waste under the feet of their cavalry, or corr
digued to the fire which consumed thedwelling.
The n ;;ro were robbed equally with the
whites ofbfccd and cloth iagj The roads were
covered with butchered cattle, hogs, mules r.nd
the costliest furniture. Nothing was.pcrmit ed
lo escape. Valuable cabinets, rich pianos, were
not only hew J to pieces, but bottles of ink,
turpentine, oil, whatever could efface or de?
stroy, upon.which they ?ould convenien^lv lay
hands, was employed : < defile and ?uh?. Iiorses
were ridden in lo the houses. Sick people were
.forced from their beda, to permit the search
after hidden treasures. In pursuit of these, the
most diabolic ingenuity was exercised, and tho
cunning of the Yankee, in robbing, proved fir
superior to that of thc negro for concealment.
Th? beautif:il homesteads.of the palish coun?
try, with th:ir wonderful ?repica) gar?en?, wert
i uined; ancient dwellings of black cypress, one
hundred years old, which had been reared by
Che fathers of th? republic-men whose ?Btr.e;
Were famous in Revolutionary history-wer?
given to the torch-as recklessly as were tile rudest
hovels; the ancient furniture was hewn tu pieces;
the cost?y collections of China w?re-erushed
wantonly underfoot; choice picture." find works
of art, from Europe; s*>!ect and numerous libra-'
ries, objects of peace wholly; were all destroyed.
The summer retreats, simple cuttiiges of slight
and unpretending structure, were equally de?
voted to the flam.;-"; aiv , whore the dwellings
were not destroyed-and they were only spared
while the inhabitants resolutely remained in
them-rthe7 were robbed of all their portable^
contenta, and what the pluuder?r could not
bear away, was ruthlessly hewn to pieces. Thc
inhabitants, black no les? than white, were lett
to starve, compelled to feed only upon the gal?
bage to bc fou?d in the abandoned camps of
the enemy. The corn ecraped up. from the
spots where the horses fed, has been the only
means "of life left to "thousands but lately in
affluence. It was the avowed policy of the
enemy to reach our" armies through thc sriTer
V
ines of their\rcmon and chrldre:-<i? starve out,
the families of those gallant, soldiers wh8in
they had failed to subdue in battle, f
A od iLus plundering, ?estrby?n?, birling,
they made their way t.hrcngh u portion'of
Beaufort into Barnwell District, where they
pursued the same g?tue. The v??jn-*os ?>f Uu
ford's ?Bridge, cf Barnwell, Blackville, Gra?
ham's, Bamberg, Midway, were more or less
destroyed; che wretched inhabitants overv
where left homeless and without iood.j The
horses rind mules, all cattle and bogs, whenever
lit for service or for food, were stolon, and all
thc rest shot. Every implement, of the workman
or the farmer, tools, plows, Iroes; gins, looms,
Wagons, vehicles, wasmr.de to fe^d thc flnmea.
..?From Barnwell to Orangeburg ar.d Lexing?
ton was tho next, progress, marked everywhere
by 'the Faroe sweeping destruction. Both of
these court towns were buried-the former
partially, the latter wholly. Both -were tho?
roughly plundered of all valuables which could
be canted away.
- s V. j '
Tidings of these atrocities duly reael?ed the
people ol' CohiPibin, rir.d might have prepared
[them for the treatment they were desiined to
ret-, ive. -Daiiy sect-ssioi.s of lugitives flying
before thc enemy, bringing with them their
valuables and provi?io?s, ?uade ample report
of.thfl horrid progress of theru?iauly despoi'er-.
liundreds of fair ?lies had seasonably left long
befors, in anticipation of the danger. Columbia
wr.? nri.ura'ly hold to bc one of the most se?
care places of refuge. It w'ae never doubted*
that this capitol city, which contained so many
ot' the mai)U,acturcs of the Confederate Go?
vernment, the treasury, Ac, would be defended
with ail the concentrated vigor of which the.
Confederacy was capable, especially, toe, as
upon the several railroads conuected with the
city, the army of L?>e and the Safety of Rich?
mond '.vere absolutely dependent. 4'ouug wo?
men ol family were sent in large, numbers to
a city, where numbers see/neito premise a de?
cres of sicurij^v not to be hopld for in any ob?
scuro rural abode. Tbe city was accordingly
doubled in population, and here also was to be
found an accumulation of v.ealth, iu plate,
jewels, pictures, Looks," manufactures of art
and virtu, not to Le estimated-not, perha is,
to be paralleled in any other town cf the Con;
federr.cy. In many instances, the accumula?
tions were those of a hundred Jpars-of suc?
cessive generations-in the hamda^of the oldest
families of the South. A large proportion of
the wealth of Charleston had been stored in
the capital city, and ths owners of these trea?
sures, in many instances, were unable to effect
any farther remove. ?f apprehensive^^ the J
danger, they could only fold their hantt? andr"
hoping against hope, pray for escape* frcm a
pen'L to which they could oppose no farther
vigilance or effort. *
Still, the lurking belief with most persons,
who apprehended the approaeh of the enemy,
encouraged the faith that, as the city was

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