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HOW JOHN MORGAN GOT 300 HORSES.
JOHN MORGAN, during his celebrated raid through Indiana, took occasion to visit a little town, hard by, with 350 of his guerrillas, while the main body was marching on.
Dashing suddenly into the little “burgh," he found about 300 home-guards, each having a good horse tied to the fences; the men standing about in groups, awaiting orders from their aged captain, who appeared to be on the shady side of sixty.
The hoosier boys looked at the men with astonishment, while the captain went up to one of the party and said:
“Whose company is this?"
“What? Kentucky boys? We're glad to see you, boys. Where's Wolford ?"
There he sits,” said a ragged, rough Reb., pointing to Morgan, who was sitting sideways on his horse.
The captain walked up to Wolford (as he and all thought), and saluted him :
“ Captain, how are you?"
“ Bully; how are you? What are you going to do with all these men and horses ?” said Morgan, looking about.
“Well, you see that the d--d horse-thieving John Morgan is in this part of the country, with a passel of cut-throats and thieves; and between you and I, if he comes up this way, Captain, we'll give him the best we've got in the shop.”
"He's hard to catch; we've been after him for fourteen days, and can't see him at all,” said Morgan, goodhumoredly.
“Ef our hosses would stand fire, we'd be all right.” “Won't they stand ?”
“No, Captain Wolford, 'spose while you're restin' here, you and your company put your saddles on our hosses, and go through a little evolution or two, by way of a lesson to our boys? I'm told you're a hoss on the drill."
And the only man Morgan is afraid of, Wolford (as it were), alighted, and ordered his “ boys” to dismount, as he wanted to show the hoosier boys how to give Morgan å warm reception, should he chance to pay them a visit.
This delighted the hoosier boys, so that they went to work, and assisted the men to tie their old, weary, wornout bones to the fences, and place their saddles upon the backs of their fresh horses, which was soon done, and the men were in their saddles, drawn up in line, and ready for the word.
The boys were highly elated at the idea of having their “pet horses" trained for them by Wolford and his men, and more so, to think that they would stand fire, ever afterward.
The old Captain advanced, and walking up to Wolford (as he thought), said, “ Captain, are you all right now ?” Wolford rode up one side of the column, and down the other, when he moved to the front, took off his hat, paused, and said, “Now, Captain, I'm ready. If you and your gallant men wish to witness an evolution, which you, perhaps, have never seen, form a line on each side of the road, and watch us closely, as we pass.” The captain did as he was directed. A lot of ladies were present on the occasion, and all was silent as a maiden's sigh.
“ Are you ready?”
“Forward !" shouted Morgan, as the whole column rushed through the crowd, with lightning speed, amid the shouts and huzzas of all present--some leading a horse or two, as they went, leaving their frail tenements of horseflesh tied to the fences, to be provided for by the citizens.
It soon became whispered about, that it was John Morgan and his gang; and there was not a man in the town who would“ own up” that he was gulled out of his horse. The company disbanded that night, though the captain, at last advices, still held the horses as prisoners of war, awaiting an exchange.
CAPTAIN ANDERSON'S RAID.
EARLY in January, 1864, Captain J. M. Anderson, of the 30th Ohio Infantry, who had been detailed as general recruiting officer for colored troops in Louisiana, applied to Major-General McPherson, of the 17th Army Corps, at Vicksburg, for a company of men to make an excursion into the Tensas country, in Louisiana, for negro recruits.
Aware of the difficulties and dangers of the undertaking, the General declined giving him the force desired, being fearful of their being captured: whereupon the Captain, nothing daunted, procured six negro recruits in Vicksburg, armed them with muskets, and accompanied by W. P. Crockett, (son of the old hero, David Crockett,) as guide, and three Northern gentlemen, set out for Waterproof, Louisiana, ninety miles down the river.
With this small, but indomitable party, with but six muskets and two pistols for their entire armament, he landed at Waterproof, by night, and as a side operation, captured a Rebel Lieutenant, a Surgeon, and two privates, who were attempting to cross the river into Mississippi.
The captives confessed that they were of the party that had lately fired into the Steamer Welcome, at that place. They were consequently kept under a guard of two men, and delivered to the proper authority, as prisoners of war, on the Captain's return.
Immediately impressing, from the nearest plantation, a sufficient number of mules to mount his party, the Captain pushed on into the country, for Tensas River, thirty-five miles distant. A short distance out he discovered, and gave chase to, three Rebel officers, but without success, as the speed of their horses soon distanced his mules.
Continuing on, he gave notice to the negroes on his route, that he should cross the Tensas River the coming night, for a train of mules and contrabands, and return on the following morning, at which time he notified them to be ready mounted, and return with him.
Riding his mules to the extent of their speed, and changing them three times on the journey, he reached the Tensas River, at Kirk's Ferry, crossed on flat boats, and went five miles beyond, to the plantation of Captain King, who was absent in the Confederate army.
. Without delay, he divested the place of all the ablebodied negroes, mules, horses, and wagons, and with those who flocked to him, on the way, safely recrossed the river at sunset, and visited the plantation of Colonel Hall, friend and confederate of General Harrison, whose 400 cavalry were encamped within four miles. From Colonel Hall, he took his pistols, shot-gun-all his ablebodied negro men, with mules and horses sufficient to mount them.
As was afterward learned, a courier got information from the negroes of his intended movements, escaped across the river, and informed the Rebels that the Yankees would recross the Tensas, by daylight in the morning, at the upper crossing. Whereupon, a force of thirty cavalry was sent thither, and lay in ambush till the following morning, to intercept the Captain and
Meanwhile the raiders had pushed on, capturing mules, horses, pistols, shot-guns, and negroes, and by a forced march, reached Waterproof, at daylight the next morning, (about thirty hours from the time he had left there,) with a train of over a hundred horses and mules, many wagons, and three hundred and fifty negroes. Here he encamped, and gathered forage, and provisions
for the party
About eight o'clock, three negroes arrived on horseback, announcing that the Rebel cavalry were only five miles in their rear, cautiously advancing, for fear of finding a gunboat; but none was at hand for the Captain's protection. He accordingly sent messengers immediately down the river road, to seek one, and send it