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Belle Boyd in Camp and Prison

BelleBoyd, Drew GilpinFaust

Publication Year: 1998

First published in 1865, Belle Boyd’s memoir of her experiences as a Confederate spy has stood the test of time and interest. Belle first gained notoriety when she killed a Union soldier in her home in 1861. During the Federal occupations of the Shenandoah Valley, she mingled with the servicemen and, using her feminine wiles, obtained useful information for the Rebel cause. In this new edition, Kennedy-Nolle and Faust consider the domestic side of the Civil War and also assess the value of Boyd's memoir for social and literary historians in its challenge to our understanding the most divisive years in American history.

Published by: Louisiana State University Press

Frontispiece, Title Page, Copyright

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pp. v-x

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pp. xi-xiv

BELLE BOYD'S ACCOUN T OF her Civil War experiences has never received the attention it deserves. Most historians have dismissed the memoir as so filled with invention and embellishment as to stand closer to fiction...

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pp. 1-54

PERFORMING HER DRAMATIC monologue "Perils of a Spy," Belle Boyd looked half-dressed. In photographs taken during the i88os, she wears a costume that is part gown, with its petticoat hem and full train, and part uniform...

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pp. 55-68

" WlLL YOU TAKE MY LIFE ? " This was the somewhat startling question put to me by Mrs. Hardinge— better known as Belle Boyd—on my recent introduction to her in Jermyn Street. "Madam," said I, "a sprite like you, who has so often run the gauntlet by sea and land, who has had so many hair-...

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pp. 69-72

MY ENGLISH READERS , WHO love their own hearths and homes so dearly, will pardon an exile if she commences the narrative of her adventures with a brief reminiscence of her far-distant birthplace— Loved to the last, whatever...

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pp. 73-79

THE GAYETIES OF WAS KING - ton, to which I alluded in my first chapter, were soon eclipsed by the clouds that gathered in the political horizon. The contest for the Presidentship was over, and the men of the South could no longer hide it from themselves, that the issue...

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pp. 80-84

THE GAYETIES OF WAS KING - ton, to which I alluded in my first chapter, were soon eclipsed by the clouds that gathered in the political horizon. The contest for the Presidentship was over, and the men of the South could no longer hide it from themselves, that the issue

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pp. 85-91

THROUGHOUT THE NORTH the utmost confidence was felt that the subjugation of the rebels would be rapid and complete. "Ninety days!" "On, on to Richmond!" was the cry; but the shout was changed to a wail, on Manassas plains, where the first great battle of the war was...

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pp. 92-102

WITH THE FIRST GENIAL DAYS of spring, the Federal troops broke up their winter-quarters, and advanced again upon the devastated village of Martinsburg, which had been held during the winter by the Confederates...

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pp. 103-111

AMONG THE FEDERAL S WHO then occupied Front Royal was one Mr. Clark, a reporter to the New York Herald, and, although an Irishman, by no means a gentleman. He was domiciled at head-quarters, which were established, as I have before mentioned, at my aunt's residence; and...

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pp. 112-115

T H E N O R T H E R N J O U R N A L S vied with one another in publishing the most extravagant and improbable accounts of my exploits, as they were pleased to term them, on the battle-field of the 23d May. One ascribed to "Belle Boyd" the honor of having...

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pp. 116-124

IT WAS ON A LOVELY WEDNESDAY evening that our firm and valued friend Lieutenant Preston, my Cousin Alice, and myself were standing on the balcony, watching the last rays of the setting sun as it sank behind the western hills. Our conversation turned upon the divided...

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pp. 125-134

ABOUT H ALF - PAST THREE THE following morning I was suddenly aroused from my comfortless slumbers by the beating of the long roll, and by the reports of several muskets fired in quick succession. Officers half dressed sprang to arms, rushed to their horses, and rode off to the...

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pp. 135-142

The first night in a convent forms the subject of a melancholy, but beautiful picture. My first night in a prison must be painted in dark colors, unrelieved by the radiance that plays upon the features of the sleeping devotee, who has of...

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pp. 143-151

AT EARLY DAWN , THE JuANITA cast off from her moorings, and late in the evening of the same day we dropped anchor at the mouth of the Potomac, where we passed that night. Next day, about 4 A.M., we proceeded on...

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pp. 152-158

ELATED BY THEIR CONTINUED successes, the Confederates, under General Lee, marched on into Pennsylvania. A panic seized the people of the North; for they knew of the depredations that they had been committing in the South, and of course could not expect much mercy from...

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pp. 159-166

ONE EVENING , ABOUT NINE o'clock, while seated at my window, I was singing "Take me back to my own sunny South," when quite a crowd of people collected on the opposite side of the street, listening. After I...

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pp. 167-173

ON THE FIRST DAY OF DECEM - ber, early in the morning, I started for Fortress Monroe, under the charge of Captain Mix and an orderly-sergeant. It was my poor father's intention to have accompanied me as far as Baltimore, and beyond, if he could get the necessary permission. Just before...

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pp. 174-177

WHEN I CAME DOWN TO BREAK - fast on the following day, my many acquaintances and friends in the hotel were astonished to see me, for few had expected that I should be released, and none that I should so soon arrive at Richmond. The morning papers announced my return in...

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pp. 178-182

ON THE 8TH OF MAY I BADE farewell to many friends in Wilmington, and stepped on board the Greyhound. It was, as may well be imagined, an anxious moment. I knew that the venture was a desperate one; but I felt sustained by the greatness of my cause; for I had borne a part...

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pp. 183-185

BEFORE THE ACKNOWLEDG - ment of our surrender had been made, a keg containing some twenty or thirty thousand dollars, equivalent in value to about six thousand pounds sterling, had been brought up on...

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pp. 186-189

SCARCELY HAD THE DISCOMFITTED Yankee betaken himself, to my intense satisfaction, to the deck, when I noticed a young officer who had just come over the side. He crossed the deck by the wheel, and....

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pp. 190-197

BOATS WERE CONTINUAL LY passing to and fro between the "Prize," as she was designated, and the Connecticut, with orders and counter-orders, until the proximity of the vessels grew wearisome. I was relieved to hear that we were about to start, and my pleasure did not diminish when,...

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pp. 198-203

WHEN WE NEARED BOSTON , I saw the grim walls of Fort Warren; and a shudder passed over me as I inwardly wondered if that would be my home. All my bright dreams of "merrie England," of "bonnie Scotland," and of...

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pp. 204-209

UPON ARRIVINGAT MON - treal, I proceeded to the "St. Lawrence Hall." Captain "Henry" and his wife had proposed that I should join them at Niagara; but, not having heard from them for some time, I waited till I could ascertain their exact whereabouts. In Montreal I met many Southern...

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pp. 210-223

LAST NOVEMBER IT BECAME necessary for me to quit the tranquil shores of England, and make, much to my disgust, a trip across the Atlantic, rendered doubly disagreeable to me by the fact that I was parting for...

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pp. 224-234

5TH DECEMBER—HAVING PROcured some paper from the sutler, I wrote to Mr. Stanton, with a simple statement of my case. This document I forwarded to Judge Turner, who attends to all the cases of the prisoners held here. That gentleman, after..

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pp. 235-244

ON THE 3O TH DAY OF DECEM - ber, as I was busily engaged in writing, Mr. Wilson, the superintendent, called me down into the office to see my father and mother, who had come on from New York to visit me. Previous to their coming to the Old Carroll they had gone to Secretary Stanton to procure the necessary pass. That...

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pp. 245-253

ABOUT THE MIDDLE OF JANU - ary I saw one of the most piteous spectacles, I think, that I ever had the misfortune to witness. Four men, old and decrepid, one of them tottering on the entrance to the valley of shadows, men whose gray beards and venerable aspects ought to have commanded...

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pp. 254-259

I HAVE ALREADY SPOKEN OF poor Miss McDonough. She was taken prisoner last summer, upon the charge of having murdered a Federal officer. At the time of this alleged murder, Miss McDonough was nowhere in the vicinity, and it was only in hopes that her brother would be advised...

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pp. 260-263

ON THE 3D OF FEBRUARY, WHILST seated with Major R. and Adjutant C , talking of our anticipated exchange, the sergeant of the barracks came into the division and inquired for me. I immediately descended from...

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pp. 264-268

MY M EMOIRS WERE WRITTEN , and a portion of them already in the hands of the publishers, when the startling news came which has thrilled all Europe and filled her inhabitants with horror—the assassination of Abraham...


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pp. 269-274

E-ISBN-13: 9780807152577
Print-ISBN-13: 9780807122143

Page Count: 288
Publication Year: 1998