The Springfield Armory

 

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Civil War Harper's Weekly, September 21, 1861

This original Harper's Weekly newspaper contains important news and illustrations of the Civil War. We have posted all this collection to help your research and study on the Civil War. These newspapers help you understand the war, by allowing you to watch it unfold as it happened.

(Scroll Down to see entire page, or Newspaper Thumbnails will take you to the page of interest.)

 

Army Forge

Army Forge

Rebellion

Ending the Rebellion

McClellan Sabath

McClellan Asks that Sabbath by Observed

Fremont in St. Louis

General Fremont in St. Louis

Fort Hatteras

Surrender of Fort Hatteras

Fort Clark

Fort Clark

Bockade of Charleston

The Blockade of Charleston

Potomac River

Potomac River Map

Des Moines, Iowa

Des Moines, Iowa

Making Muskets

Muskets

Armory

Springfield Armory

King Cotton

King Cotton

 

 

 

 

 

 

SEPTEMBER 21, 1861.]

HARPER'S WEEKLY.

607

ing across the park toward the cattle-sheds he had seen what appeared to him at first a pale light by the iron door of the mausoleum. On approaching nearer, this light changed into the distinct and visible form of his master, Sir Philip Derval, who was then abroad—supposed to be in the East—where he had resided for many years. The impression on the steward's mind was so strong that he called out, " Oh ! Sir Philip !" when, looking still more intently, he perceived that the face was that of a corpse. As he continued to gaze the apparition seemed gradually to recede, as if vanishing into the sepulchre itself. He knew no more ; he became unconscious. It was the excess of the poor woman's alarm, on hearing this strange tale, that had made her resolve to send for me instead of the parish apothecary. She fancied so astounding a cause for her husband's seizure could only be properly dealt with by some medical man reputed to have more than ordinary learning. And the steward himself objected to the apothecary in the immediate neighborhood as more likely to annoy him by gossip than a physician from a comparative distance.

I took care not to lose the confidence of the good wife by parading too quickly my disbelief in the phantom her husband declared that he had seen ; but as the story itself seemed at once to decide the nature of the fit to be epileptic, I began to tell her of similar delusions which, in my experience, had occurred to those subjected to epilepsy, and finally soothed her into the conviction that the apparition was clearly reducible to natural causes. Afterward I led her on to talk about Sir Philip Derval, less from any curiosity I felt in myself as to the absent proprietor than from my desire to re-familiarize her own mind to his image as a living man. The steward had been in the service of Sir Philip's father, and had known Sir Philip himself from a child. He was warmly attached to his master, whom the old woman described as a man of rare benevolence and great eccentricity, which last she imputed to his studious habits. He had succeeded to the title and estates as a minor. For the first few years after attaining his majority he had mixed mach in the world. When at Derval Court his house had been filled with gay companions, and the scene of lavish hospitality. But the estate was not in proportion to the grandeur of the mansion, still less to the expenditure of the owner. He had become greatly embarrassed, and some love disappointment (so it was rumored) occurring simultaneously with his pecuniary difficulties, he had suddenly changed his way of life, shut himself up from his old friends, lived in seclusion, taking to books and scientific pursuits, and, as the old woman said, vaguely but expressively, " to odd ways." He had gradually, by an economy that, toward himself, was penurious, but which did not preclude much judicious generosity to others, cleared off his debts, and, once more rich, he had suddenly quitted the country, and taken to a life of travel. He was now about forty-eight years old, and had been eighteen years abroad. He wrote frequently to his steward, giving him minute and thoughtful instructions as to the employment, comforts, and homes of the peasantry, but peremptorily ordering him to spend no money on the grounds and mansion, and stating, as a reason why the latter might be allowed to fall to decay, his intention to pull it down whenever he returned to England.

I staid some time longer than my engagements well warranted at my patient's house, not leaving till the sufferer, after a quiet sleep, had removed from his bed to his arm-chair, taken food, and seemed perfectly recovered from his attack.

Riding homeward I mused on the difference that education makes, even pathologically, between man and man. Here was a brawny habitant of rural fields, leading the healthiest of lives, not conscious of the faculty we call imagination, stricken down almost to death's door by his fright at an optical illusion, explicable, if examined, by the same simple causes which had impressed me the night before with a moment's belief in a sound and a spectre—me, who, thanks to divine education, went so quietly to sleep a few minutes after, convinced that no phantom, the ghostliest that ear ever heard or eye ever saw, can be any thing else but a nervous phenomenon.

FAMISHING WOLVES.

I HAD been living for some months in a town on the Volgo, in the centre of European Russia, forty versts from Jaroslav, the government county town. To reach that town I must traverse a wild and uninhabited track, where there were only two small hamlets, at one of which the twenty-verst post-station was to be found, if not buried in snow. My team of three horses, commonly called in Russia "a troika," had been carefully selected from the various stabling establishments in the place : the cost for driver and horses to be three and a half roubles (or about half a guinea, the rouble of a hundred copecks being worth a half-penny or two more than three shillings), which was no great price for such a journey in such weather. Two wolves had been killed in our principal street within a week. One I had shot in my own court-yard the day before we started, and many reports were current of their hunger and unusual boldness. It was even said that a small village, about thirty versts distant, had been attacked by them in force. These facts and stories made me careful about requisite defenses. My six-barrel traveling companion was carefully loaded, and placed in my belt ready for use; a magnificent nine-inch bear-knife in a sheath, and a formidable black-thorn cudgel heavily weighted at the handle, belonged also to my armament. The brandy flask, bag of provisions, bottle of water, matches, cigars, and portmanteau

having been stowed away, I was about to step into the open sledge, when a Russian neighbor came up and asked leave to join in the journey to Jaroslav. My neighbor, though a gentleman for whom I had much respect, was the last man I should have chosen as a traveling companion in a narrow sledge, for he weighed over twenty stone, had great difficulty in breathing, and, when once he was seated, almost required horse-power to get him up again. He was a phlegmatic, lazy, good-natured, monosyllabic, cigaret-smoking monster who was not to be refused; so, his request granted, he rolled in on the right side and filled three parts of the sledge. My Russian house servants crossed themselves, whereby they meant, " God give you a safe journey !" The members of my own family cried, " Good-by, God bless you!" and the driver having gathered up the rope reins, I jumped in, and with a noo-noo to the cattle, off we went dead against a blinding drift.

Fat-sides having observed my weapons, grunted in his own Russian, of which he made the least possible use. " Pistolet. Wolves. Shoot. Good."

" Have you any weapons ?" I asked.

"No."

"Well, take this bear-knife."

" Good," he said again, and relapsed into his corner.

Daylight came struggling through the heavy morning clouds, and disclosed a cheerless waste of ridges and valleys of snow. The trees, which at wide intervals indicated the route, did not save us from often plunging into great pits of soft snow the moment our driver turned but a few feet from the track. This took place so frequently, and gave us so much trouble in digging ourselves out, that it was noon before we had made sixteen versts-hardly ten miles—having been six hours on the way.

At this point in our journey the driver sent the blood dancing through my veins by the alarming cry of " Volka! Volka !"—" Wolves ! Wolves!" I sprang from my seat, and, looking ahead, saw six great, gaunt, and no doubt hungry wolves, sitting exactly in our way, at the distance of about a hundred yards or less. Our horses had huddled themselves together, trembling in every limb, and refused to stir. We shouted and bawled, but the wolves also refused to stir. My fat friend, gathering a large handful of hay from the sledge bottom, rolled it into the form of a ball, and handed it to me, saying, " Match." I understood him at once. The driver managed, by awful lashing and noo-nooing, to get the horses on, until we came within a short distance of our enemies. By this time I had succeeded in setting fire to the ball of hay, and just as it began to blaze out well I threw it in among them. It worked like a charm. Instantly the wretches parted, three on each side, and skulked off slowly at right angles, their tails dragging as if they were beaten curs. On dashed our brave team—lash, lash—noo, noo.

" Hurrah !" I shouted, with a lightened heart; " we are safe this time, thank God !"

" Wait. Look back," said Fat-sides.

I did so, and I saw the wolves, who had joined each other again in the centre track, pausing, as if to deliberate. Our horses were going at their utmost speed, the driver standing up and using lash and voice with all his might to urge them on to the station, then only about a mile and a half ahead. Luckily the road or track, as far as we could see, was free from drift, and our hope was that we could gain the station before the wolves, should they pursue us. Looking back just as we turned a bend in the track, I saw the whole pack in swift pursuit.

I had often been told that wolves will not attack a party unless in a large pack. Six was no large pack, yet here they were, coming up to attack us ; there was now no doubt about that. Hunger through a long and severe winter must have made them daring. With the consciousness of an impending death-struggle, I prepared for the result. My thoughts went for one moment to my wife and children; for another, to the Great Disposer of events. Then, throwing off my sheep-skin coat, so as not to impede the free action of my arms and legs, I sprang on the front seat beside the driver, but with my back to the horses, and my face to the enemy. I said to the driver, " They are coming, brother ; drive fast, but steadily. I have six bullets in this pistol. Don't move from your seat, but drive right in the centre of the track." My fat companion sat still in his corner, and neither moved nor spoke ; but I saw the blade of my bear-knife gleaming in his hand.

The track had become worse, so that the horses could not maintain their pace. In a short time the wolves ran beside the sledge, the horses strained and shot on, keeping their distance, but in forcing our way through a drift, we came to a walking pace, and the first wolf on my side made a dash at the horse next him. The pistol was within a foot and a half of his head when I fired, and the ball went through his brain. I shouted my triumph in English ; my companion echoed it with a "Bravo !" The second wolf received my second fire in the leg, which must have shattered the bone, for he dropped behind instantly. "Bravo!" was again cried from the corner. But the same moment was the moment of our greatest peril. My pistol fell into the sledge, as, with a sudden jolt, our horses floundered up to their bellies in a deep drift ; then they came to a dead stop, and there was a wolf at each side of the sledge, attempting to get in.

My bludgeon still remained. With both hands I raised it high and brought it down with the desperate force of a man in mortal extremity upon the head of the wolf on my side. He tumbled over on his back, and the skull was afterward found to have been completely smashed. As I stooped to regain my pistol I was astonished to see my companion coolly thrust one of his arms into the wolf"s mouth, and as coolly, with the disengaged hand, drawing the knife, with a deep and sharp cut, across his throat. A peculiar cry among the horses arrested my attention. Looking round, I saw another wolf actually fastened on the off-horse by the

neck. The driver was between me and the wolf. He cried, " Give me the pistol !" I did so, and the poor horse was free. So also were we ; for the other wolf ran off, followed by the one with the broken leg. The wolf last shot was tumbling among the snow. The driver handed me the pistol to put right, and begged another shot at the brute. This finished the engagement.

I can not tell how I felt. I could scarcely realize our great deliverance. The driver secured the carcasses to the sledge, and when we reached the station I was completely exhausted from the reaction of the strong excitement. My friend of the twenty stone chuckled much at his own trick upon the wolf he had killed. Instead of putting his arm into the animal's open mouth, as I supposed, he had stuffed into it the loose sleeves of his great sheep-skin coat, thereby getting plenty of time to cut the monster's throat. His own arm was untouched. But the poor horse's neck and shoulder were much torn.

After consuming an enormous quantity of tea, and part of our provisions, we left the station, and, without meeting more adventures, except several diggings-out. arrived at Jaroslav at eight o'clock, having accomplished about thirty miles in thirteen hours. Next morning we found ourselves popular characters in the town. The driver's tongue had not been idle. My revolver underwent many an examination. The government or local reward for a dead wolf is three roubles, which we claimed and received for three. So the wolves, instead of killing us, paid our traveling expenses. The fourth animal I caused to be skinned for preservation, as a remembrance of the greatest peril I was ever in.

THE SPRINGFIELD ARMORY.

WE devote page 605 to a series of illustrations of the UNITED STATES ARMORY AT SPRINGFIELD, the largest establishment of the kind in the United States, and one of the largest in the world. It is now a scene of unusual activity and interest.

The weapons chiefly made at this armory are rifled muskets and bayonets. The army rifle, which is known as the Springfield pattern, is now used by the bulk of our volunteers, many regiments having been supplied from the armory since the war began. It is very similar in its principles and construction to the long Enfield rifle, which is considered the best piece in existence by British riflemen. We can not, of course, undertake, in the limits of this article, to give any description of the various processes by which the Springfield rifle is made. It consists of forty-seven separate pieces, all put together with the aid of screws and springs ; in the manufacture of these forty-seven pieces no less than 396 separate operations are performed by different workmen. The welding, boring, smoothing, rifling, stocking, proving, etc., will all be best understood from the illustrations. Each operation is conducted by experienced men, under the general direction of the commanding officer ; the system of individual responsibility is so thoroughly carried out that every workman accounts to the Government for the value of each piece of work which may prove to be defective through his carelessness or unskillfulness. Thus, one out of every sixty gun-barrels is said to burst when proved. The bursted barrel is instantly examined, the cause of the accident detected by the nature of the rent, and the cost of the barrel charged to the man who had charge of that part of the work.

The manufacture of bayonets is also very active at Springfield. Bayonets, as is known, are now "milled," not ground, and their manufacture is thus rendered less destructive to the workmen. After they are made, they are tested like the muskets—weights are hung from their point, and it is sprung by the inspector with its point on the floor. If it is too highly tempered it will break ; if not sufficiently tempered it will bend. In either case the workman must account for its value.

So many rifles and bayonets are now being turned out of the Springfield Armory, that if our armies lost theirs in every battle they could be replaced in a very short time. The new Arsenal at Springfield was built to contain 500,000 muskets or rifles. It was well stocked when the traitor Floyd became Secretary of War ; he depleted it to fill the arsenals at the South which have been robbed by the rebels.

INTERIOR OF A SOLDIER'S
TENT.

WE are indebted to Mr. W. A. Andrews, of Philadelphia, for the sketch of THE INTERIOR OF A TENT, which we reproduce on page 599. The original sketch was made by Mr. G. W. Andrews, of the Cameron Cavalry, now stationed near Washington, and represents the tent jointly occupied by him and a comrade. It looks comfortable enough.

CAPTURE OF REBEL SCHOONER

"ARTHUR MIDDLETON."

ON Wednesday, August 20, the United States sloop Vandalia, one of the blockading fleet off Charleston, while on a cruise about sixty miles at sea, after a sharp race of some five hours, succeeded in capturing the rebel schooner Arthur Middleton, of 110 tons burden, loaded with a cargo of 500 barrels of turpentine, and having on board a crew of eight men. Their names are Charles Barkley, Captain, a native of Charleston; Richard Russel, Irish—says he was a passenger; Stephen Bennet, Mate, Frenchman ; William Sims, English, Cook: Benj. Hogan, Irish; William Williams, English; Andrew Stanboe, Denmark; and Joseph Clifton, Canadian—sailors. Previous to being captured they threw overboard about 40 barrels, the deck load, of turpentine, and also some valuable papers, as was learned front a letter found in possession of the Captain, addressed to him by Philip Porcer,

once a Lieutenant in the United States Navy, but now connected with the rebel government. The letter stated that, in the event of being captured, the papers accompanying it must be destroyed, as they might tend to implicate him as a privateer. The papers were doubtless blanks of letters of marque, to be used and disposed of after they had arrived in England, and realized on their cargo. When first discovered the saucy little craft ran up the British flag, but after seeing it was impossible to escape pulled it down and set the secession bunting. Our illustration on page 599 represents the little craft as she lay off Charleston in company with the Roanoke and Vandalia-the crew, prisoners on board the first-named vessel, awaiting transport to be sent North. The vessel and cargo are valued at $10,000. She cleared from Charleston, and ran the blockade at night.

ADVERTISEMENTS.

A 25 Cent Sewing Machine!

And 5 other curious inventions. Agents wanted every where. Descriptive Circulars sent free. Address SHAW & CLARK, Biddeford, Maine.

Friends of Soldiers ! Send by Harnden's Express (the oldest Express), 74 Broadway, as they charge only half rates.

WHEN FAMILIES send for Lea & Perrin's Worcestershire Sauce," observe if it is the genuine.   JOHN DUNCAN & SONS, Union Square and 14th Street, Sole Agents.

GOLD! GOLD!—How to learn the Art of ventriloquism in an hour, sent by mail, for 3 cents. Address   J. F. JAGGERS, Calhoun, Illinois.

HOWARD ASSOCIATION, Philadelphia-

For the Relief of the Sick and Distressed, afflicted with Virulent and Chronic Diseases. Medical Advice given Gratis by the Acting Surgeon. Valuable Reports on the NEW REMEDIES employed in time Dispensary, sent free of charge. Address Dr. J. SKILLIN HOUGHTON, Howard Association, Philadelphia, Pa.

BACK NUMBERS of HARPER'S WEEKLY and MAGAZINE always for sale, by

A. WINCH, 320 Chestnut Sheet, Philadelphia, Pa.

TO NERVOUS SUFFERERS OF BOTH

SEXES.—A Retired Gentleman, having been restored to health in a few days, after many years of Great Nervous Suffering, is willing to assist others by sending (free), on receipt of a post-paid, directed Envelope, a copy of the prescription used. Address JOHN M. DAGNALL, 186 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, N. Y.

BACK NUMBERS of HARPER'S MAGAZINE and WEEKLY constantly on hand. Also a full Stock of Harper & Brothers' Publications. Orders from the Trade promptly filled at Publisher' prices.   

A. WILLIAMS & CO.,

100 Washington Street, Boston, Mass.

"A STRANGE STORY,"
By Sir Edward Bulwer Lytton.
HARPER'S WEEKLY.
Single Copies Six Cents.

Notwithstanding the great amount of space devoted to Illustrations of the War, Harper's Weekly commenced in No. 241, dated August 10th, A NEW AND THRILLING SERIAL TALE, by Sir EDWARD BULWER LYTTON, entitled,

"A STRANGE STORY,"

Volumes I., II., III., and IV. of HARPER'S WEEKLY, handsomely bound in Cloth extra, Price $3.50 each, are now ready.

Muslin Covers are furnished to those who with their Numbers bound, at Fifty Cents each. TWENTY-FIVE PER CENT. DISCOUNT allowed to Bookbinders and the Trade. * * *To postmasters and agents getting up a Club of Ten Subscribers, a Copy will be sent gratis. Subscriptions may commence with any Number. Specimen Numbers gratuitously supplied.

Clergymen and Teachers supplied at the lowest CLUB RATES.

TERMS.

One Copy for One Year . . . . $2.50

Two Copies for One Year . . . . 4.00 Harper's Weekly and Harper's Magazine, one year, $4.00. HARPER'S WEEKLY will be sent gratuitously for one month—as a specimen—to any one who applies for it. Specimen Numbers of the MAGAZINE will also be sent gratuitously.

HARPER & BROTHERS, PUBLISHERS,

FRANKLIN SQUARE, NEW YORK.

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