Over the Hillside Poem


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Civil War Harper's Weekly, November 19, 1864

Harper's Weekly was the most popular newspaper published during the Civil War. These newspapers were read by millions of people during the war. Today, these newspapers are available on this WEB site for you to read and increase your understanding of the war.

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Second Term

Abraham Lincoln Reelected

Slave Conscription

Slave Conscription

One Hundred and Forty Eighth Pennsylvania Regiment

Hatcher's Run

Hatcher's Run


Battle of Allatoona

Over the Hillside

Train Robbery

Train Robbery

Darbytown Road

Battle of Darbytown Road

War Department

War Department


Civil War Battery






[NOVEMBER 19, 1864.


(Previous Page) four guns were mounted in the fort. If the rebels had succeeded in taking the place, they would have been able, with the rations on hand, to have held it for several weeks. General SHERMAN witnessed the action front Kenesaw Mountain. Two days afterward he issued s congratulatory order, commending General CORSE for his gallant defense, which he considered an example illustrating both the necessity and possibility of defending fortified positions to the last.


FAREWELL ! In dimmer distance I watch your figures glide Across the sunny moorland

And brown hill-side.


Each momently uprising,

Large, dark, against the sky; Then, in the vacant moorland, Alone sit I.

Along the unknown country,

Where your lost footsteps pass, What beauty decks the heavens

And clothes the grass !

Over the mountain shoulder,

What glories may unfold ! Though I see but the mountain,

Blank, bare, and cold ;


And the white road, slow winding

To where, each after each,
You slipped away—ah, whither ?

I can not reach.

And if I call, what answers?

Only, 'twixt earth and sky, Like wail of parting spirit,

The curlew's cry.


Yet sunny is the moorland,

And soft the pleasant air ; And little flowers, like blessings,

Grow every where.


While over all the mountain Stands, sombre, calm, and still; Immutable and steadfast

As the One Will ;


Which, done on earth, in heaven, Eternally confessed

By men, and saints, and angels, Be ever blest!

Under Its infinite shadow,

Safer than light of ours, I'll sit me down a little

And gather flowers.


Then I will rise and follow,

Without one wish to stay, The path ye all have taken

The appointed way.


Tins remarkable case of circumstantial evidence, though generally known to the curious in such matter; who have searched into West Indian records, is as yet, we believe, entirely new to the American public. The details, however, might never have been laid before them had not the original papers been recently discovered in the Provost-marshal's office in Barbadoes, and copied and forwarded to the writer. Besides the intrinsic interest attaching to the story itself as a mere anecdote, there is the object of adding another instance to the list of executions carried out upon the evidence of circumstance alone, and of exhibiting some of the strong as well as the weak points which characterize this peculiar

form of judgment. Perhaps a close and careful comparison of numerous instances of circumstantial evidence might assist in moulding into something like a system the various and sometimes almost contradictory inferences deduced during trials of this character, and in bringing them under a legal form which might be applied when similar occasions required. At present it is well known that the law of circumstantial evidence is very uncertain, and the story before its is a most conspicuous in-stance.

In the year 1824, Michael Harvey Peter William Henry D'Egville, resident in the island of Barba-does, West Indies, dancing master, was brought up before the local June Sessions charged with having caused the death of his wife by administering to her poison in the form of arsenic.

The name of D'Egville has been always famous as the title of a family of dancing-masters and mistresses : there were some of the family, I believe, in Cheltenham when I was a boy, and I certainly was instructed in the art by a D'Egville, though whether the name was assumed as a recommendation or not I can not say. The unhappy man of whom I write had, though a Frenchman, migrated to Barbadoes with the view of teaching dancing, and was, it is reported, very successful. After a some-what long residence in the island, he married a lady -whose family name was LIewellyn, though whether maid or widow at the time of her union with D'Egyille is not shown. The Frenchman was net a man of good character : he was addicted to debauched society and to drink. In many of his tipsy fits he was wont to strike and ill-use his wife, though he never seemed to cherish the least ill-feeling toward her. He was not therefore malicious, though he was quarrelsome in his cups. Still, his ill-usage of Mrs. D'Egville was so continuous and excessive that the long-suffering wife determined upon a separation. This was effected without any scene of violence or

recrimination between the parties; and while the dissolute husband pursued at uncertain interval his profession of danncing-master, the relieved wife lived at some distance, out of his and harem's way as was supposed. It is to be particularly notice( that, though separated from each other, no ill-feeling was to be discerned between Mr. and Mrs. D'Egville; on the contrary, the wife was in the habit of sending to her depraved partner little attentions in the form of dainties, such as she knew he was attached to, as for instance, fruit, soup, rare fish, etc. etc. D'Egville recognized these attentions, and (occasionally) returned them, though the fluctuation of his gains at times prohibited an equivalent interchange of gifts. Now D'Egville was aware that his wife had not only signified her intention of leaving to him a sum of money at her death, but had actually executed the instrument by which he was to be entitled at her demise to a bequest of £500 old Barbadoes currency, i. e., about £330 sterling.

It was proved that D'Egville had bought arsenic some few days previously at a druggist's shop, and being asked if it was required for rats, said, " Yes: and I shouldn't care much if f they were two-legged ones!" Observe, that to be in the possession of arsenic was nothing of itself, for there generally was a supply in every house in the island for the ex-termination of rats and wood-ants; indeed, I can vouch for the fact of my grandfather keeping a very large quantity in the medicine chest for periodical poisonings of wood-ants which infested one of the mills on his estates, so that no stress can be laid on the mere purchase of the arsenic.

Mrs. D'Egville was particularly fond of toasted cheese, and at times of the year cheese was a very scarce article in the island. However, things had been prosperous with the Frenchman of late ; for he purchased a piece, had it prepared, end sent it to his wife by the hands of a little mulatto boy, with these instructions: "Tell her to eat it herself, and not to give any of it to Miss Llewellyn." This was Mrs. D'Egville's sister, who lived in the same house with her.

Mrs. D'Egville was found dead in her bed next morning; Miss Llewellyn was dead also, and two or three of the negro servants were ill, though they ultimately recovered.

An inquest was immediately held, and Dr. Cutting tested the contents of the stomachs of the de-ceased, the rejected matter from the negroes who were suffering at the time, and the remainder of the cheese which was left in the dish. In all was arsenic found.

D'Egville was arrested, and brought up at the June Sessions in 1824. It was the interim between the death of the late Attorney-General Beckles and the appointment of his successor, and Mr. Coulthurst (acting attorney-general) prosecuted. Mr. Hinds defended the prisoner, resting his defense on the fact that a link in the chain of evidence was wanting. This meant of course the evidence of the little mulatto boy who had carried the cheese to Mrs. D'Egville, for negro evidence could not be received in court at that time.

The jury, after long consultation, came into court and said that it was impossible that they could ever agree, nine of their number being for an acquittal and three for a verdict of " Guilty ;" so they were discharged, and the prisoner remanded to the next sessions. Meantime, Samuel Hinds was appointed Attorney-General. When the sessions arrived (December, 1824), Mr. Hinds declined to prosecute, on the ground of having formerly defended the prisoner, so the prosecution devolved upon Mr. Solicitor-General Griffith. The jury were empanneled, the evidence and all other proceedings carried on from the last sessions were read over to them, and after a short deliberation they brought in a verdict of " Guilty"

Extract from the minute-book of the Court of Grand Sessions held December 17, 1824:

Michael Harvey Peter William Henry D'Egville was then brought up and set to the bar to receive judgment; when, upon being asked if he had any thing to say why sentence of death should not be pawed upon him, he de-livered in a paper writing, signed by himself and Mr. Moore, as his counsel, protesting, alleging, and pleading that he, the said D'Egville, was put on his trial at a former sessions for the same offense, and, therefore, prayed that judgment might be arrested and stayed against him. Mr. Attorney-General Hinds objected to the same, on the ground that the former trial was not complete, inasmuch as no verdict was rendered, and inasmuch as the prisoner had on the present trial pleaded "not guilty," and put himself upon the country, he was by that plea barred from any other. The opinion of the court being taken, the said paper writing was rejected, but the court declared them-selves ready to hear any thing, by way of reasons in arrest, which the prisoner or his counsel might think proper to offer; when Mr. Moore moved that the judgment in the cause of the "King v. M. H. P. W. H. D'Egville" be arrested, on the following reasons, namely: because it appears by the proceedings of the last Court of Grand Sessions, holden for the body of this island, in the month of June last, in the Town Hall, in Bridgetown, in the said Island of Barbadoes, that the said M. H. P. W. H. D'Egville was arraigned on an indictment preferred against him by our Sovereign Lord the King for the murder by poison of his wife Susanna D'Egville, whereto he pleaded "not guilty," and that a jury of twelve men was empaneled, sworn, and charged to try, and he, the said M. H. P. W. H. D'Egville, was actually put on his trial on the said indictment for the said offense, and whereto he, by his counsel, entered upon, disclosed, and made his defense; and further, because that the said jury, is sworn, empaneled, and charged to try him, the said M. H. P. W. H. D'Egville, afterward actually retired and went out to the petit jury-room, and remained several hours deliberating on their verdict ; and further, because the offense whereof he hath been tried at the present sessions, and the offense for which he was put on trial, as before mentioned, at the Second Court of Grand Sessions, in the month of June last, are one and the same offense, and not divers, which said reasons being taken into the serious consideration of the court, were rejected, and sentence of death was accordingly pronounced.

This extract shows the procedure of the court (which was acting upon the condemnatory evidence alone) to have been crippled by the absence of the one link in the evidence exculpatory, viz.: the testimony of the mulatto boy who had been intrusted with the cheese. The common precaution of inquiry into the conduct and motives of the person through whose hands the poisoned cheese had last passed was thus cast aside, and this being not received, the poor dancing-master returned to prison without a hope.

Here is a copy of his death warrant :

GEORGE THE FOURTH, by the Grace of God, of the United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, etc.

To our Provost-Marshal of our said Island of Barbadoes
or his lawful deputy, greeting:

WHEREAS Michael Harvey Peter William Henry D'Egville, late of the parish of St. Michael, in the island afore said, yeoman, now detained in your custody in our jail of our said island, was, at a Court of Grand Sessions of Oyer and Terminer, General Jail Delivery, and General Sessions of the Peace, held for the body of our said island, and begun on Tuesday, the fourteenth day of December, one thousand eight hundred and twenty-four, and so continued and held by special adjournment de die in diem, on the fourteenth, fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth days of the said month, at the Town Hall, in the parish of St. Michael, it our island aforesaid, indicted and arraigned for the man der of Susanna D'Egville, and thereupon was tried, convicted, and in due form of law attainted, and now stand, adjudged unto death, of which judgment execution re-mains to be done. We therefore command, and by these presents firmly enjoin you, that in and upon Monday the fourteenth day of this instant February, between the hours of nine and twelve in the forenoon of the same day, you carry the said M. H. P. W. H. D'Egville to the place of execution within the jail-yard, in the town of St. Michael, in our island aforesaid, and there cause him the said M. H. P. W. H, D'Egville to be hanged by the neck until he be dead, and that this you fail not to do upon peril thereon to ensue.

Witness.--His Excellency Sir Henry Warde, K.C.B., etc., his Majesty's Captain-General and Governor, Commander-in-Chief, etc., of this island, etc., at Government House, this seventh day of February, in the sixth year of our reign.

(Signed)   HENRY WARDS.

This warrant was duly carried into effect.

Some years afterward, when D'Egville's name was forgotten, a negro man who had been a slave in the possession of Mrs. D'Egville, and who was, by her father's will, to receive his manumission, confessed that he had received the cheese from the mulatto boy and had put in the arsenic, as he was aware that his freedom was to follow upon his mistress's death. The link wanting (as the learned I counsel observed), namely, what had passed between the time the cheese was put out of D'Egville's hands and its delivery into those of his wife, was now supplied. The negro's name was Christian, and he went, as was usual, by the family name of Llewellyn. All this he confessed upon his death-bed, to the great discomfiture of those who had condemned the wretched dancing-master, and to the shame of the system of refusing any evidence, though from negro lips, in a trial where life and death depended upon evidence alone.


"THE piano-forte," says the American Baptist, .' extensively as it is used, is not so well adapted to all the purposes of sacred and secular music as an-other instrument which is now justly claiming a large share of public attention, and which has al-ready been extensively introduced into schools, churches, and families, and received the indorsement of the chief organists, musicians, and artists of America—we mean MASON & HAMLIN'S Cabinet Organ."


A Hint to our Lady Readers.

We advise all our lady friends in want of Fine FURS to examine the extensive assortment to be seen at BURKE' S, No. 210 Broadway, Southeast corner of Fulton Street. He IMPORTS and MANUFACTURES his own stock, which enables him to undersell his competitors.


And to receive a WATCH FREE, by selling our great NOVELTY and NATIONAL PRIZE PACKETS, containing fine stationery and one chance in the great sale of $650,000 of Watches, Jewelry, &c. These Packet retail for 30 cents, and agents and dealers remitting us $17, we will send 100 Packets and a fine Silver Watch, thus giving the best chance to make money ever offered, as these Packets sell rapidly, the stationery alone being worth more than the price asked. Also,

SPLENDID STEEL ENGRAVINGS and Photograph Pictures. $10 invested will yield nearly $50. Circulars, with full particulars, mailed free. G. S. HASKINS & CO., 36 Beekman Street, New York.

Gold, $8—Silver, $1 50. 1st. 2d, 3d, 4th. 5th, 6th, 9th, 10th, 11th,12th,14th, 18th, 20th, 23d ARMY CORPS, showing each Division. By the single one 100 or 1 000. Send fur Circular. Address   DROWNE & MOORE,

Manufacturing Jewelers, 20S Broadway, N. Y.


Are the most popular series of cheap publications ever introduced to the American public. While giving them the highest literary excellence, the publishers have jealously excluded every thing that could offend the most scrupuleous morality. The whole series should be in every library. The following are the names: No. 1. The Hunters; 2. The Trapper's Retreat; 3. The Patriot Highwayman; 4. The Hunted Unionist; 5. TheTrack of Fire; 6. The Man-Eaters ; 7. Charlotte Temple ; 8. The Death Face; 9. The Indian-Slayer; 10. The Tiger of the Ocean ; 11. The Hunter's Triumph ; 12. The Ocean Rovers; 13. The Tory Out-witted ; 14. Zeke Sternum, the Lion-hearted Scout; 15. The Scourge of the Seas; 16. The Captive Maiden; 17. Long-Legged Joe; or, The Demon of the Woods; 1S. The Wild Scout of the Mountains; 19. The Forest Lodge; 20. The Rollicking Rangers; 21. Rattlesnake Dick ; or, the 1 lower of the Wigwam ; 22. Ricketty Tom, the Rover; 23. The Imps of the Prairie ; or, The Slasher of the Cave; 24. The Robber's Terror.

For sale by all News Agents, and sent post-paid on receipt of price, 10 cents each. GEORGE MUNRO & CO., No. 137 William Street, New York.

BARD & BROTHER'S (Established 1845)


PEN AND PENCIL CASES. Also Manufacturer of BARD & WILSON'S PATENT ANGULAR NIB GOLD PENS. JAS. D. BARD, Ag't, No. 22 Maiden Lane, N. Y. Gold Pens Repaired or Exchanged.

J. H. Winslow Co.






Worth $500,000,

To be sold for ONE DOLLAR each, without regard to value, and not to be paid for until you known what 'you are to get. Send 25 cents for a Certificate, which will inform you what you can have for $1, and at the same time get our Circular containing full list and particulars ; also terms to Agents, which we want in every Regiment and Town in the Country. J. H. WINSLOW & CO., 208 Broadway, New York.


Winter Cloaks.
An endless variety of every kind of

At Prices reduced to Gold Standard.

GEO. BRODIE, 300 Canal St., N. Y.,
Leader of Fashions.


or, Purified by Suffering, is now ready in the

New York Weekly.

'. HOW TO MAKE MONEY." Take an agency for

our popular book, How to Write, Talk, Behave, and Do Business, $2 25. Send stamp for particulars to Messrs. FOWLER & WELLS, 389 Broadway, New York.


At Baltimore, Washington, and all places occupied by .Union troops, should be sent by HARNDEN'S EXPRESS, No. 65 Broadway. Sutlers charged low rates.

Will three a full' set of Whiskers or Mustache to grow
thick and beautiful in five weeks.

Testimonials of Thousands.

I send my Golden O'Dor by mail, sealed and post-paid, for $1. Address   DR. C. BRIGGS,

Drawer 6308,   Chicago, Ill.

Howard's "Improved"


Soldier's Money-Belt. Every Soldier can have one sent to him by return mail, free of postage, by enclosing $2 50 or $3 00, according to the quality desired. Large discount to dealers. Address

HOWARD BELT CO., 436 Broadway,, New York.


Enameled Chamber Furniture.
The best assortment of ENAMELED FURNITURE, in
all colors and styles, Walnut and Chestnut, Plain and Ornamental, in Suites, Wholesale and Retail. Also, Mattresses and Palliasses. WARREN WARD, 277 Canal St.
Chapped Hands, Face, Lips, Sunburn, etc.


If used according to the directions, will keep the hands soft in the coldest weather. Price 25 cents. Sold by druggists. Sent by (nail on receipt of 30 cents.

HEGEMAN & CO., New York.

The Brazilian Hair Curler. One application warranted to curl the most straight and stubborn hair into wavy ringlets or heavy massive curls. Sent, post-paid, on receipt of $1 00. Address


WHISKERS OR MUSTACHES ?—My Onguent will force them to grow heavily in six weeks (upon the smoothest face) without stain or injury to the skin. Price $1—sent by mail, post free, to any address, on receipt of an or-der.   It. G. GRAHAM, No. 109 Nassau Street, N. Y.

IMMENSE SALE OF WATCHES & JEWELRY. Manufacturer's stock of WATCHES, LOCKETS, CHAINS, RINGS, PINS, GOLD PENS AND CASES, and a full assortment of Fine Jewelry, to be sold by distribution for the next sixty days. Certificates of all the various articles are put in envelopes, sealed and mixed, and sent without regard to choice One certificate, telling you what you can have, will be sent for 25 cents, five for $1, eleven for $2, thirty for $5. If the goods do net give perfect satisfaction, you can return them, and get the money. We also manufacture Corps Badges (pure silver) for every Corps and Division in the Army. Also Engineer, Pontonier, Navy, Cavalry, Masonic, Club, and Badges of all kinds. I will send a sample Badge (pure silver coin) for either department of the Army, with your Name, Reg't, and Co. handsomely engraved thereon, on the receipt of $1, together with our wholesale Illustrated Circular. Agents wanted every where, to whom great inducements are offered.   S. M. WARD & CO.,

208 Broadway, N. Y. ATTENTION!

100 Photographs of handsome Ladies for 50 cents; 100 Photographs of Generals for 50 cents. Too cheap. Send all orders to   C. BRIGGS,

Drawer No. 6308, Chicago, Ill.


Seamless Saddle-Cloths, shaped to the back of the horse. Tested and adopted by the United States Government. An excellent article. Sent free, by mail or express, on receipt of price, Seven Dollars.






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