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48 Southern Historical Society Papers.

latter meant to discuss. The Confederate general was averse to dealing with political topics. General Sherman is said to have simi- larly declined an offer of a Governor of Georgia to initiate negotia- tions for the restoration of peace. ED. Sun.]

[From the New Orleans Picayune, November 15, 1903.]


Written by Lieutenant-General Richard Taylor, a Short Time Before His Death.


To write an impartial and unprejudiced account of exciting con- temporary events has always been a difficult task. More especially is this true of civil strife, which, like family jars, evokes a peculiar flavor of bitterness.

But slight sketches of minor incidents, by actors and eye-wit- nesses, may prove of service to the future writer, who undertakes the more ambitious and severe duty of historian.

The following memoir pour servir has this object.

In the summer of 1864, after the close of the Red river campaign, I was ordered to cross the Mississippi and report my arrival on the east bank by telegraph to Richmond.

All the fortified forts on the river were held by the Federals, and the intermediate portions of the stream closely guarded by gunboats to impede and, if possible, prevent passage. This delayed the transmission of the order above mentioned until August, when I crossed at a point just above the mouth of the Red river.

On a dark night, in a small canoe, with horses swimming along- side, I got over without attracting the attention of a gunboat an- chored a short distance below.

Woodville, Wilkinson county, Miss., was the nearest place in tel- egraphic communication with Richmond. Here, in reply to a dis- patch to Richmond, I was directed to assume command of the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, etc., with headquarters at