Kentucky Cavaliers in Dixie: The Reminiscences of a Confederate Cavalryman

By Geo. Dallas Mosgrove | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER XXXII.
MORGAN BETRAYED--THE WOMAN--GENERAL GILLEM'S MARCH.

THE woman who had betrayed General Morgan was the daughter-in-law of his friend and hostess, Mrs. Williams. The general was unaware of the fact that the young woman was unfriendly to the South. Pretending to be friendly, she had ample time and opportunity to ascertain our strength, the location of the troops and the fatal fact of the unpicketed Newport Road. She was certainly a remarkable woman, decisive, prompt and courageous. Quickly comprehending the situation, she resolved to betray her mother's guest, the handsome Confederate chieftain, whose gentlemanly instincts and chivalrous regard for all women precluded any thought of treachery on the part of the "fair Greek bringing gifts."

Accounts are conflicting as to the time when she left the house. Some say that she left the supper table quietly and without remark, while others think she remained within the house until after the general had retired for the night. She must, however, have left early in the evening, as she is known to have reached Gillem's headquarters about 10 o'clock. She evidently had the assistance of emissaries. The town being hostile to the Confederacy, doubtless some bushwhacker informed her of the unguarded Newport Road. There were women in the town, wives of Federal partisan officers and bushwhackers, who had achieved unenviable fame as spies; among them the Amazonian mail carrier, Mrs. David Fry, who had been previously restricted to the limits of Greenville by special order issued by Colonel Giltner. It is therefore plain that the betrayer of General Morgan could command the services of willing male and female coadjutors in her treacherous scheme. Some of the Federal soldiers said that two women went to Gillem's headquarters. That may possibly be true, and it is more than probable that the Williams woman was accompanied by a male companion, during a part, at least, of her nocturnal pilgrimage through excessive dark

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