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CAPTURE, SACS and DESTRUCTION
^ * OF THE b
Oity o jr CtolxiJja.T3>lgt.
, Thus surwy is very piteous tm hear; and were
tho-case aa isolated one, it would probably
move compassion in every heart; but where the
miseries of lite and worse sort, of a whole
community of twenty thousand, ere massed,
as it w?;-t, together before the eyes, the sensi?
bilities become obtuse, and the* universal suf?
fering seems to destroy the sensibilities ia al).
We shall, not seek to multiply instances like
th? foregoing, which would be an ?udless'work
and to little profit ; and'the mind of the reader
can readily conceive them, when we kuow that
Sherman jji.nnisscd his mercenaries- with, a
gener-jl license to forage upon the people for
thirty-sis hours. He tells (.enerr.l,Hampton
that, cou!.1 he lind any civil authorities, and
could they provide, bini with forage and pro?
visions, he would bU?Ter no foraging upon the
peopjp. His logic and memory are equally*
deficient. Was there no Ma vor and Council in
Columbia? Ttiej- had formally surrendered the
city into his hands. They constituted the civil
authority; but he made no requisition upon
them for provisions for his troops. He did not
say to tnt.m, "Supply me with 20,000 rations
in so many hours. Had he done so, the ra?
tions wouid have been forthcoming. The citi?
zens would have been only too glad, by yield?
ing up one-half of their stores, to have savod
- the other half, aud^ to lui ve preserved their
dwellings from the pollution of the enemy's
lootstcpa and presence. ?Vay, did not thc >"*?
diccllcra of every howe-ire v iii say ?.U?'J hontu
~-seck at his hands a special Q uar of-mf?ef,
usually consisted ojLtwo nu n-and tsi re not ULK'U
? fed v?hoUy by cte families where theydodijcc
during ?he xctiolc time of their stay? Hete, by I
very &in.plc coviputulioit., we J?MI that tmp- thou
sand soldier* acre thus voluntarily provided +?II
rations; and a requisition for twenty thousaui
lien min ht easily and would probably tnlvi
! .cn provjded, had any such been made; fo,
?!"t supplies in the city were abundant of ever \
sort-lim population generally having laid"1:
laiiiOiV, and without stint or limit, anticipit
..ni' a periocj o? geueral scarcity from th
i i ... the enemy, tfui, even had the p?o
j i" :- .. tina' ?e io supply ihes? provisiaiisV
??vou . ij}>* Council failed tb r?spend to ibes
T-, . , i ?i?at whose doors should the blam
: . : - i. fmlure' would have been tb
dire >? t- . ?ce of General Sherman's ow
proc'i ' * . liad he nut ravaged and swep:
.?with i .. ~i? ... lire, ali the. tracts of countr
f; . .le.iple of Columbia depende
fuj" ' - .SJ Had he not, himself, eulo
; ir.ee.:.a : . spoliation, in the destruetiot
nc; . ; :' . /railways, but of every wagor
ci?*, vi!;?..;- - u ?il nie plantations throug
? i ; ?. passen-carrying off all th
' border of any value, and ruthlcssl
?ai a> '.ne ihrottta of the remainder? Jrle cut
i off the feet. nnA SXS2Z cf a pwpie, ana then
demands ' that they shall bring him food and
But even, this pretext, if -well grounded, can
avail him nothing. He was suffering j tom no
sort of necessity, lt was Hie boast of every officer
and soldier in his arv'iy, that he ha?fed fot upon
I the country through* which - ha had passed;
'everywhere fin di pg abundance, and Lad not
once felt thc necessity of lifting the cover from
IiifX owif. wagens, and feeding from his own
'accumulated store?. The vxcndacitg of the man
strangles his logic. But thc complaint of
Hampton, and of our people at large, is not
.that he fed his followers upon the country, but
that he destroyed what he did not need for
food, mid tore the bread from the. famishing
mouths of a hundred thousand ^woacn and'
? children-feeble infancy and dearepit aj-e; and
I Ulis, too, coupling with the robbery and ?ticen
j diarism^leeds of the foulest violcrrce, the laest
reckless debeachery. the meanest practices of
thief and outlaw. * But to our narrative.
We .have adverted to the derpor black of
those, horrid outrages .which we?? perpetrated
within the households of the citizen, where,
unrestrained by the rebuking eyes of their own
comrades, and Unresisted by their interposition,
cupidity, malignity and lust, sought to glut their
8eyorel appetites. The cupidity generally tri?
umphed oxer the lust. The greed for gold and
silver swallowed ?p the more, animal passions,
and drunkenness superveued in season for the
safety of niau\\ We have Uta rd of soiii^ few
outrageSyor attempts at outrage, of the worst
sort, but the instances, in the ease of white
females, must, have been very few. There was,
perhaps, 4n wholesome dread, on the part'of Hie
-ruffians, of goading to desperation th* people
wiiom they, had despoiled cf" nil but hanoi
They could see, iu many watchful and guardiar
eyes, tlie lurking expression which threatened
?sharp vengeance should their trespasses pro
ceed to those extremes windi they yet unique?
tionably contemplated. The venerable Mr. ii
stood ready, with his couteau dc chasse, nindi
bare in his bosom, hovering around the persons
of his innocent daughters -Ur. (_>., on .beliold
mg some too familiar approach to ame of hi
daughters by one of the ruffians, bade bin
siand <>lf at the peril of his life;, saying that
while he submitted to bc robbed of property
he would sacrifice life, without reserve-hi
own and that ol thc assailant-before Iii:
child's .honor should be abused. Mr. James G
Gibbes with difficulty, pistol in hand, and orb
with the assistance of a Yankee officer, res
cued two young wemen from the clutches of a
many ruffians. Wc have been told of success
ful outrages of this . unmentionable-characte
being practiced upon women dwelling in th
suburbs. Many are understood to have takei
place in remote country settlements and tw<
cases arc described where young negresses if eu
brutal ly forced by the wretches and afterward
murdered-one of them being thrust, whsi
half dead, head clown, into a mud-puddle, and
there held until she was suffocated. But this
must suffice,. . The shocking detail should not .
now bo made, but that, we used, for the sake?o?
truth and humanity, to put on record, in the
fullest types and col urn ns, the horrid deeds of
these jnaraudersripon all that in ph re and pre
cious---all that is sweet and innocent-all that
is good, gentle, gracious, dear and ennobling- .
within the regards "of ' white and Christian
civilization. And yet, we should grossir err if, .
white showing the forbearance of the Yankees
m respect to our Wate^mtn, we should con?
vey to any innocent real er the uotiotf that they
exhibited a like forbearance in the case of the
black. The poor negroes were terribly victim
? ized by their brutal assailants, many of them,
I besides the instance mentioned, being left irt a
1 condition littl? short of death. Regiments, in
1 ?necessife relays, suhjected scores of these poor
women to the torture'of tiicif embraces, and
but we dare not farther pursue the eubject-it
is oue of such loathing and .horror. There aret :
soae horrors which the historian dare not pur?
sue-which ^ie painter dare not. delineate. .
Tiny both drop the cdrtain over crimes wttjch
humanity bleeds to contemplate,
Some incidents of gross brutality, which
show how well prepared Were these demons
for every crime, however monstrous, may be
A lad}-, undergoing the pains of labor, bad to
be borne out on a mattress into the open air, to
escape the fire, lt was in vain that her situa?
tion was described to the incendiaries, a's they
applied the torch within-and without the
houss?, after the}- had penetrated every cham
I ber and robbed them of all that was either
valuable or portable. The}- themselves be?
held the situation of th. sufferer, and laughed
to scorn the prayer for her safety.
.Another case was that ol' Mrs.-, a widow.
Hvr coipse, decked for thc grave, was sur?
rounded'.by watchful mourners, sisters and
daughters. Into ibis sacred presence'the ruf
tiahs made their way, plundering as they went,
makin: otfensi ve?-?imneuis, and 'exhibiting; no
sort of rirgard to the solemn preparations for
the grave which they beb-hi. or for. the be?
reaved sufferers, aileen I m their'sad offices of
Another lady, Mr-. .1-, walt*but recently
confined, lier condition" was very helpless,
j lier life hung upon a hair. The demons werft ,
apprised of ?ill*?tlie facM ht the case. They
burst into the chamber-took the rings from
the lady's fingers-plucked the watch from
beneath her pillow-shrieked offensive fcn
-gunge in her cars, and so overwhelmed her
with terror, that she sunk'under the treatment
-surviving their departure bbl a, day ?5?r;iwev
Language fails in all adequate speech, .when it
would preperly characterize the aatutfl .of
these demons or their diabolical performances.
In several cases, newly rnade?gra.ves Vera
opeped, the coffins takemout, broken open, in
search ol'Curica treasure, and the corpses left