True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 119
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HOUSTON AND HOUSTONIANS 119
If he noticed the doctor and me standing there he said nothing,
but, drawing his sword, he took command of the battalion, which
the major had formed. For the benefit of the ladies he put the
boys through the manual of arms and then gave the order: "Fix
bayonets." His next order was "Charge bayonets," and then
"Forward, quick time, march." I saw what was coming and deserted
the doctor at once, getting away on one side. The doctor
thought that the colonel was bringing his battalion up closer,
so the boys could hear his speech, so he stood his ground with
his head thrown back and his nostrils distended. He was in his
glory. Some soldiers to talk to, a fine brass band playing and
thousands of pretty women to hear him talk. He held his hat
in his hand and the wind was scattering his long hair about in
the most charming manner.
In the meantime that solid wall of bayonets was sweeping
down on him. I was off on one side in a safe position where I
could watch him and see the expression on his face. When the
battalion reached a point about thirty feet away and continued
to advance, a troubled and surprised look came over his face.
The next moment he realized that there had been a blunder committed
and that he was in a tight place. People began to shout
to him to get away while he could. At last he realized the truth,
but it was too late to reach the end of the line and escape that
way. He realized that and did not try it. He slapped his hat
on his head and turning his back to the advancing troops bent
over and awaited them. There was a sudden break in the line,
the ranks parted on each side and the doctor emerged, tail foremost,
from the confused mass. The grandstand gave vent to a
mighty shout and the doctor straightened up and came over to
where I was rolling all over the ground, half dead-with laughter.
He was so angry he could scarcely talk.
wWhere is that
." said he, referring to the son
of his "old and highly esteemed friend." "Get up. I want you
to take my card to him. He must answer to me for this outrage.
He must have been drunker than I thought, for evidently James
knew nothing of why I was out there."
I had hard work to keep him from attacking the battalion
right there so as to get at the major, who was hopping along.
before the girls and entirely oblivious to the proximity of the
great volcano he had stirred up. Finally I got the doctor to wait
until he got to town, where he could draw up the challenge in
regular form, which I promised I would take to the major.
After another drink, the doctor's mood changed. "I find myself
in a nasty position," he said, "I can't make up my mind to kll
the son of my old friend and comrade-in-arms, for his father and
I served together in the Army of Northern Virginia. The boy
deserves killing, of course, fbr he has made a monkey of his
father's most intimate friend, but then he is only a thought
boy. I might execute James, but that would be Unt, or l
knew nothing of what he was doing. What do you advle"
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/119/: accessed August 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .