Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Stories and Tales >> ''Bald-Head Bill Bauldy,'' And How He Went Through the Flurriday Campaign! >> Page 514

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Page 514

Short Stories | U of South Carolina P | 1974
Transcription 514BALD-HEAD BILL BAULDY

"Then the adwokit, who was no other than Captain Firebrand,
he read, and as I haird them charges, I felt the rope growing round
my neck, and the bullets going through my bowels!
"What do you think they charged upon me?
"Well, twas a mighty long catlog!
"First, they charged me with desartion from the company. Then
they charged me with cowardice; skulking onder an alarum of the
inimy; hanging back in an advance; stealing cigars and liquor; beat-
ing the scullion boy cruelly, that he mightn't tell on me; and, Lawd
knows how many things besides; among 'em, would you b'lieve it,
they charged that I did the smuggling at St. Augustine, and kivered
up the transactions of Capt. Chubb, of the schooner Sukey Gunja,
gitting the ten boxes out of the hundred for my pay; smuggling
the boxes, onder hides, in the baggage wagons, and selling cigars and
Jamaica, all smuggled, out to the onder offs'ers and soldiers; besides,
drinking 'em and smoking 'em myself; and, last of all, they charged
me with stealing my own cigars and liquor, and gitting drunk upon
the liquor every a'ternoon and night! The very things the dd
raskals had done themselves!
"I seed what some of it meant. The ,government hed smelt the
rat, and got wind of that smuggling business; and they wanted to
put the porkypine saddle upon my back! The dd cunning wipers!
"Then they called up the rascal scullion boy to prove the pacifica-
tions, and he swore to a thousand lies! He swore that, when he
cotched me drinking the liquor, and carrying off the cigars, I licked
him to make him keep a shet mouth; and he told how he followed
me, time a'ter time, every a'ternoon, to the edge of the `thick',
where I drunk and smoked by my one self. That I always carried a
full bottle; that I never brought it back full or empty; that, if I
come in at night, I never come in quite sober; but sometimes, when
I was overdrunk, that I slept in the `thick' all night! But thar was
no eend to it!
"They had other witnesses that swore about the smuggling, a
most etarnal pack of lies! And then they brought up the file of
soldiers that hed found me sleeping onder the tree; and they said
they hed found me, deep, dead drunk asleep ; that they hed to kick
and punch, and pull, and haul me about, to make me open my eyes;
and that, when they got me up, I could hairdly walk, and staggered
about like a blind man; that I hed'nt quite slept -off the drunk!