Intercepted letter 1863

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Intercepted letter 1863 - THE INTERCEPTED LETTER. A STOItY OP TUB DAYS...
THE INTERCEPTED LETTER. A STOItY OP TUB DAYS WAS NEAR 178. WHEN I. KB Ln Innocent .Illative Tlrnt Was Found to Contain luformatlon Very Acceptable to the Confederate. Wlio Would Have Made It Wnrin for Harrisburg If They Could Have fiotten Here. Wrlttea for tlie Telegraph. It was in Jane. 1363, when Lea's ragged army was making its way North to batten . on tha farmers of Pennsylvania that I was scot by the chief of the secret service to en deavor to ferret oat the mysterious manner in which news of the military operations in and about Harrisburg were so quickly trans mitted to the commander of the Confederate forces. It seemed, from the taiorement of the Confederates, that they knew all about the defenses of the Capitol of Pennsylva nia and were disposed to view them with contempt, but just how they got the informa' tion was what mystified ns. X had some knowledge of Harrisburg and vicinity, hav ing been born and raised in the Cumberland Valley, so that 1 haa no neea to sees mior - mution on that score. I went at once to the Cunitol and presented my letter of introduc tion to Governor Cartin, and he promised to nid ma all he could, even offering to detail flveral of his force in the Executive De partment as my assistants. I declined his offer, but asked for and got hivt was better a pass through our lines that would see me past the numerous lines of guards that were stationed at almost everv street corner, at tne oia ioot - Dnage frnasinrr the Susaaehann and along the Carlisle turnpike. I made my headquarters nt Wormlevsburtr. a smalltown on the Cum' berland side of the river, and at once set about mr work. For the first twenty - four hours I Aid nothincr. but took a walk about the for tification and up - the Carlisle road as far as Oyster's Point, noticing particularly mac me guards were very careiess, ana am ui in lu mr nass once in a dczen times that I nassed them. The next day I again went nnt tha Carlisle tiike and on my return topped at a house along the road to get a drink. As I talked with the rather sharp - featured female who loaned me a tin enp I saw a woman seated at a table in the front room writing a letter. She could not see me, as the vine trailing over the door was between us. Suddenly she looked up and addressing the woman with whom I was conversing, conversing, said : "Mattie, how many of those New York soldiers did you say came lait night ? Two regiments ?" The woman at the door give a quick start and stepped inside. I could hear them conversing conversing in a whisper, and when the woman next appeared her manner was flustered, and be did not look npon me very graciously when I handei back her cup. The ineident, however, set me to thinking, and the more I thought, the more was I convinced that there was something wrong. What did ehe mean by that question about the New York soldiers soldiers ? Why did she want to know their number ? I determined to watch the house. As I reached a point in the road where it carved I looked back and saw that the woman was watching roe. That satisfied me tha something was wrong. The next day, putting on a long linen duster and a straw hat of generous brim, and scuffing scuffing my trousers into my boot - legs, I felt disguised disguised sufficiently to again visit the neighborhood neighborhood of the two women, selecting an hour jast about dusk. As I neared the house I saw a woman go through the back yard and up tho Cumberland Valley railroad track. It was tho letter writer of the day before. I followed her, keoping to the road while she walked on the ties. Near Camp Hill she stopped at a cross road that ran over into York county, and sat down on the grass. I crept slowly along behind the fence, and, watching my opportunity, crossed the track when her head was turned, as she was looking down the lane. We were there perhaps perhaps fifteen minutes when I heard the sound of voices, and peering over the fence I saw her talking to a man. lie was a little bit of an undersized man with a peculiar whining voice, and ho seemed to be in distress. I heard him say : 'Now, Sallie, you'll git me into a muss, and I wouldn't have anything happen for the world." "Shut up," said the woman, "you always was white - livered. lou take this letter and give it to a man who will call for it early in the morning, and if you don't keep yonr mouth quiet we'll all get into trouble. Nobody's Nobody's going to find you out." It was getting interesting for me, the more to as the fellow said : "Well, I'll take it this time, but recollect, this is the last time. I'm not going to git trouble through you, and I won't come any more." "All right," Bftid the woman, "I won't need you any more. This is the last time. Come over on Sunday and I'll have something something for you. Good night," and she turned and walked down the track. The fellow stood there a minute and then started down the road. I followed him and was on him before he could yell. lie was small, but, oh, how he did fight. I conld have broken him In half, but I did not want to hurt him. I choked him into submission, gagged him with my handkerchief and then yanked him along by the collar until I met a guard, and in a few moments the officer of the day was on the spot. The fellow was taken into a house near by and searched, and during the entire operation he cursed and raved. I have never before nor since heard a man wear so artistically. In his coat pocket, where he had thrust it carelessly, was the letter the woman gave him. It had no address, address, and purported to be a letter from a wife to her soldier husband in the Union army. It was well put together, and the punctuation and spelling were perfect. In the middle of the page was this paragraph: "Willie is always asking1 for papa, and today today wrote you a letter. To please the dear . llttlo fellow I told him I would send it to you. Here it Is." Then followed a strip of paper on which were scattered numerous marks, such as a mall child would make with a pen. This trip was pasted to tho letter, and was followed followed by more information about home work. It was a most innocent letter, find I felt like a fool after I had read it. I must have looked foolish, too, the more so as the officer of the guard laughed nt me and made a remark remark about something being fishy. I must confess I was non plused, and I was about to advise turning the fellow loose, whsn something told me not to. Turning to the officer, I told him to put the man under guard until morning, and I would call on him at that time. I took that letter back to Wormleysburg with mo, and I read it and re read it, and the more I read it the deeper grew the mystery. Something seemed to tell me that that strip containing the cbjld's letter was the key to the whole business. I had often heard of transparent letters and this might be one. I held it up to the light, but that revealed nothing. Where the strip was pasted I could not read through, and I dropped the letter into a bowl ef water to let It soak that I might remove the strip. As I slowly peeled one piece ot paper from the Other ray hair weat up. The child's letter was the koy. On the back of it was written th following note: "Two New York regiments atrived on Tuesday night, and are located in Fort Washington. Outside of the New York regiments and the raw militia from the interior interior of the State and the few companies rvvruiieti iu jupnui wuuiji tiinre are no troops worth mentioning. Fort Washington I. I 11. ! 1 1 X.. 11 . is uuub uu a Biuo uiii, nuu iu rear is a bluff eighty feet high caused by a cut for the railroad. But few large guns. The railroad bridge across the river has been sawed, bnt the foot - bridge is all right. The city can ao;iv ha shelled from the river bank. A small force could drive everything before it. " I couldn't sleep that night, and lost no time in hurrying to JUarrisbnrg ana laying mv iniormauon neiore uoveruor vurnu. Nothing was done that night, but the next morninz a guard was sent to take possession of the house in which the two women lived. The birds had flown. Somebody must have given them a hint, as the guards at the bridge said that two women bad crossed to Harrisburg early in the morning, just after day - break. The man on whom the letter was found was taken to Washington under ' guard and pieced in Old Capitol Prison, i nvr fnnnd out what became oi mm, al though I made inquiry. There were some stranea things done for prisoners in those days. But I stopped the source of informa tion for the rebels. t. m. j. CORONACH. He is gone on the mountain. He Is lost to the forest Like a summer - diie l fountain. When our need was tbe sorest. The fount reappearing. From the raindrops shall borrow. But to us comes no cheering, To Duncan, no morrow. The hand of the reaper - Takes the ears that are hoary. But ' he voice of the weeper Walls manhood In glory. The autumn winds rushing Waf c the leaves that are serest, But our flower was In flushing When blighting was nearest. Fleet foot on the correl. Sage counsel in cumber, Red hand lu the foray, How sound Is thy slumber ! Like the dew on the mountain, Like the foam ou the river, Like the bubble on the fountain, Thou art gone and forever. Sir Walter Scott. FITZSIMMONS WIN. Ho Knocks Out Deinp.ey In Thirteen If Ard Fought Konno. New Orleans, Jan. 14. The long. looked for battle between Jack Dempsey and Robert Fitzsimmons for the middle. eight championship of the world was fought here to - night and resulted in an easy victory for the Australian in thirteen rounds. From ths start Dempsey was over - matched and came near being settled in the third round, but he recovered qnickly and man aged to steer clear of defeat nntil the fatal round, when by a swinging blow on the jaw he was knocked out. How Dempsey Look To - day. New Obleans, Jan. 15. Jack Dempsey slept nnder the influence of opiates last night The bridge of his nose is broken and his ribs were ' so sore that the physician who accompanied him from the club administered a strong narcotic. This morning be looked badly brnised and swollen about the face and mouth, and a piece of skia the Biza of a man's hand, is scraped from the back of his neck. Kilrain nays Dempsey s nose was broken in the fourth round. Tha Oregon man was clearly outclassed from the start, bnt he stnek to it until nature would no longer exert herself. Fitzsimmons fought fair and even, but he is simply a heavy weight sweated out and trained down to requisite figure. Mnldoon says that with twenty pounds more of muscle Fitzsimmons could fight any man living, Sullivan not barred. As a result of the fight it is not unlikely that the question of height and reach will hereafter cut as important a figure in the making of matches as that of weight. AN AWPD1. EXPLOSION. Illuminating - Oam Canaee a Sad Lou of Life. London. Jan. 16. A terrible explosion of illuminating gas in the Liverpool road to day caused a house crowded with lodgers to catch fire. A panic among the residents fol lowed, dutine the course of which a woman and a boy lumped from the upper windows, thirty feet from the ground, into the street below. They were taken to a neighboring hospital in a dying condition. One child is known to have been burned to death during the conflagration which followed the ex plosion, and other children are reported to the police as missing. French Physicians Against Koch. PABIS, Jan. 16. The French physicians criticise Koch's report upon the ingredients of his lymph. They say that the report is incomplete and does not indicate the quantity quantity of a dose or substances composing the liquid. They add that the remedy is shrouded in mystery and hold that the necessity for caution is unabated. French critics also say that its efficiency has nqt been shown and that no patient treated, accoreing to the Koch system, in Franco has been cured. Further and long experience, they claim, are needed before a fiual opinion an be formed as to the merits of the lymph. Meanwhile the French physicians urge that the remedy be neither decried nor overpraised. overpraised. An Actor Avert a Panic. Chester, Jan. 16. Edwin Arden, the young actor who stars in "Raglan's Way," prevented a threatened panic at the opera house last night, by bravely grabbing in his hands and walking off the stage with it, some material which caught on fire in a "property" open grate in one of the scenes of his play. He then further calmed many excitable women in the audience by stepping to the footlights and stating there was not the slightest danger. He was loudly cheered for his presence of mind, but to - day he is carrying a pair of very swollen and painf al hands. A South American Insurrection. Buenos Ayres, Jan. 16. - A large rebel force is said to be assembled in theprovince of Entre Kios, and the citizens of that province are in a state of considerable alarm. Tele graph lines have been cut, and National troops in strong force have been sent to suppress suppress the revolutionary outbreak. The wild est rumors are circulated. Jiintre Kios is a province of the Argentine Republic, between the rivers Uruguay and Parana. It3 capital is Bajada de Santa Fe, having a population ot about 150,000. Archer's Sureties Mmt Pay. Baltimore, Md., Jan. 16. A dispatch to the Sun from Towson, Md., says that the jury in the Archer bond case has returned a verdict against the sureties for $60,000. Archer was State Treasurer and defaulted. He is now serving a sentence of five year In the State prison. The Westlnghouse Matter. Pittsburg, Jan. 16. There was no change in the situation of the affairs of Westinghouse this morning, No more suits have been enterad, and no important action is looked for until nrter the meeting of the creditors of the Electric company to - morrow afternoon. A Big Uallroad bit - Ike. Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Jan. 16. The strike of the agents and operators of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul road was inaugurated this morniDg. The office here was closed np. It is understood that all the offices on the main line are closed also. On the Kansas City division the strike is not oa, all trains running there as usual. How Ruaaln Disposes of lis Bank Bobbers. Moscow, Jan. 16. Four men were recently recently arrested io this city charged with being being implicated in f randi in connection with the Agriculture Bank by which the sum ot 4,000,000 roubles was stolen from a large number of small farmer depositors. All of the accused persons have been found guilty and sentenced to imprisonment in the mines of Siberia. 1

Clipped from Harrisburg Telegraph20 Jan 1891, Tue[First Edition]Page 1

Harrisburg Telegraph (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania)20 Jan 1891, Tue[First Edition]Page 1
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  • Intercepted letter 1863

    Emily911 – 23 Jan 2016

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