The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 67, July 1963 - April, 1964 Page: 146
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
farmers, whose homesteads had been ransacked by roving guerrilla
bands neither Union nor Confederate. But he had no such sym-
pathy for Arkansas prisoners and their "desperate character" or
for Texas Rangers who were "ugly looking devils." What he
wrote about the ensuing battle at Prairie Grove, Arkansas, on
December 7, 1862, is moving and at times horrifying: "I write
this upon the spot which may be my grave and while dead are
lieing around me"-"hundreds of men weltering in their own
blood-pools of human gore meeting your sight as you pass along."
His account does suffer from the lack of objectivity one has come
to expect in Civil War diaries and memoirs, in that all Federals
were ipso facto courageous and loyal while all Rebels were
cowards if not barbarians. Still, when recording facts, McIntyre
was honest and accurate. And the incidents he wrote about,
supported by abundant editorial notes, are true as well. He told
of one incident after Prairie Grove that this reviewer will have a
hard time forgetting-a Southern "woman with two little children
wandering over the field of dead scrutinizing every face of the
butternuts who had fallen. There was the mein and dignity in
her action that created a kind of interest in my breast to follow
her. .... On on she passed with a firm step and tearless eye while
ghastly unnatural corpse met her gaze at each step and her skirts
brushed over gaping bloody wounds. ... " Suddenly, she saw her
man, "face upturned," eyes wide and dull, and ran with "a wild
unearthly Shriek" to "encircle her arms around the form of her
husband." When she stood up at last, her "eye seemed to sweep
the entire place of the dead and the living" and her "voice rang
out clear as clarion notes over the entire length of Prairie Grove
and hundreds of Union soldiers stopped in their various per-
suits on the field to hear the Exclamation-'The death of
thousands of your number cannot revenge my wrongs or bring
my brothers 8c husband back.' " And McIntyre, with tears in his
eyes, recalling her taking her children off the field, into the
woods and out of sight, wrote long and sadly about "a once happy
people insane at supposed wrongs."
He wrote about ludicrous incidents, too, and about things that
were beautiful: the heavy pine forests glistening from spring
rains, the lazy, quietness of the Mississippi River, and the Stars
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 67, July 1963 - April, 1964, periodical, 1964; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101197/m1/168/: accessed May 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.