Friday, June 28, 2013
A letter from a Confederate soldier, dated Williamsport, Md., the 17th inst., gives the following account of the crossing into Maryland:
We tarried in Martinsburg only long enough to gather our spoils, and from thence came to this place, arriving here night before last. … Of all the sights I have ever seen, none can compare with this little town. On crossing the Potomac, and entering the place, I was at the very head of the column. Not a soul, save a few boys and scattering Confederate cavalry, graced the scene. All the stores and every house was closed; and every window, and even curtain, was down, as if the sight of a rebel could not be tolerated. On advancing further into the town, a few faces (woman’s curiosity) occasionally protruded from a window, and groups of men could be seen gathered on the street corners.
At one corner about a half dozen young girls were collected, who waved their handkerchiefs quite bravely and cheered us. This we have named Secession corner. … yesterday Gen. Rodes opened all of the stores, and made the proprietors sell to soldiers for Confederate money. Of course articles of every description were immediately advanced — coffee, for instance, at fifty cents per pound, and every other article in like proportion; but no greater extortion was allowed. In the evening, all the men and officers, save the staff officers, were ordered out of town, and the Government impressed everything it wanted, paying in Confederate money, and if that was refused paying none at all.
Via Richmond Times-Dispatch…
Photo: Only known photo of the Army of Northern Virginia (Frederick Maryland 1862)