Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Stories and Tales >> ''Bald-Head Bill Bauldy,'' And How He Went Through the Flurriday Campaign! >> Page 475

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Page 475

Short Stories | U of South Carolina P | 1974
Transcription BALD-HEAD BILL BAULDY475

"Well, a'ter the loss of my mar', I had to go into the infantry, as I
tell'd you; and then we hed a few more skrimmages. I own up, I
warn't fond of fighting any how; and this gitting shot at, when you
couldn't see your inimy, always brought on me an attack of the
`misery,' in my innards!
"So, you see, one of the ossifers said, seeing as how I couldn't
keep up with the rigiment when we was on double quick, guine
into a skrimmage,
" `This fellow Bill Bauldy is not good on a march, and he's no
'count in a fight. What shill we do with him?'
"Another one, that hed a quicker sense of a fellow's vartues, he
" `He looks as ef he mout be a first rate cook! Hev' you ever done
any cooking, Bauldy?'
"Well, felows, you all knows my vartues as a cook by this time,
so I spoke up bold, and said,
" `I'm fust rate at that business. I kin cook any thing from a frog
to an alligator terrapin; from a pairch to a blue cat; from a chicken
to a turkey gobbler; from a pea to a cabbage! I'm fust rate as a
" `We'll try you, my good fellow,' said the Kurnel; `and ef you
only does hafe so well as Rafe Parkinson, you'll do!'
"Now, you see, Rafe Parkinson was a good cook enough nothing
to name in the same day with me but he never could git his belly
full of fighting; and soon as he haird an alarum, any thing of a
skrimmage guine on, the dern'd fool would drop his gridiron, ketch
up his musket, and run, fast as he could drive, whar he haird the
firing; and one day he got a bullet through his body, thet stopt his
cooking and fighting the same day together. Twas jest a'ter that, that
the oss'fers put me in his place; so I gin up my musket, mighty glad
to git shet of it, and took to the gridiron, the sasspan and the spiggot.
"Twant easy work, I tell you, for all the ossfer's mess waur power-
ful hairty feeders, and thar waur nothing that they could lay hands
on that warnt grist to their mill. They ate plentiful: and thar was a
mighty fine supply of all things in the pervision wagons ! We hed
the finest hams, and the best haird-tack; and beef a plenty, and cured
fish ; and leetle fish in boxes, called `sartins' and a hundred nice
things besides, to say nothing of any quantity of good Monongahely!
Them chaps fed well off the government, though I could'nt git a