Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Stories and Tales >> ''Bald-Head Bill Bauldy,'' And How He Went Through the Flurriday Campaign! >> Page 474

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Short Stories | U of South Carolina P | 1974
Transcription 474BALD-HEAD BILL BAULDY
Columbia, and stowed 'em, convenient away in my skairt-pockets.
Then I was ready for Flurriday, and all blazes!
"And twas mighty soon that the Colonel hed us in marching order;
and, almost afore I know'd whar I was, I was down in Flurriday, and
hunting up the Ingins. And in the s'arch, which was mighty like
hunting for a needle in a haystack, we was in the saddle from morn-
ing to night, and sometimes from night to morning; now pushing
over the hot sand hills, and now hafe wading, hafe swimming over
the lakes, and lagoons; and then agin in great thicks, whar you
couldn't see twenty feet before you! Well, we got into some skrim-
mages on the Withlachooche and other swampy rivers; but all I seed
of the Siminoles was in the hearing of their bullets out of the swamp.
Then we'd charge the swamp, and Lawd ! they waur no whar!
"Twas in the second skrimmage on the Withlacoochie that my
mar', on a suddent, went dead, sprawling right onder me, with
a Siminole bullet through her head! I was pitched off, thinking,
all the time, twas in my own head that the bullet lodged! I own
up ; I waur mighty skear'd that time! But that tuk me out of the
troop ! I hed no money to git another horse, and thar waur none
to spar' in the rigiment. I had to go into the infant-ry. But I got
an adssessment of the vally of my mar', and a sartipcate from the
Quarter Master, for a hundred and fifty dollars, that government
was to pay me; but, though I sent in my bill and the order to govern-
ment, by our ripresentative, I never got a copper of money, and
haint got it to this day. Our rip (representative) said thar was no
use to try, onless I was willing to give a hundred out of the hundred
and fifty to sartin high ossifers of government, who always expected
two thirds of all the money of the sodgers, to get the rest for 'em.
I told him, I'd see all the dd rogues of Congress in Hell's
blazes before I'd give 'em a copper!—And he then tells me a long
story of a poor widow woman, one Amy Dardan, who had been
trying to get the money from government, for her mar', ever sence
the old war of the Revolution; and he said that the very intrust
on that mar's money, 'cording to the adssessment, would be enough
to buy up the whole state of Delawar', or Rhode Island; so, as
government would hev to pay so much, they detarmined to pay
nothing at all; and so the poor woman never got the hide of her
mar' or a copper of her money! A'ter hearing that, I gin it up, and
hed no more use for Congress or Washington government !