A book about a Christian Man.
A book about a Confederate.
A book about a Hero.
A book about an Artilleryman.
A book about a Man who died nobly at the age of 24.
In other words, most of the deeds of bravery that JEB Stuart's chief of Horse Artillery, John Pelham did, happened when he was my age...give or take a year. He was something else when it came to his gun know-how...and as I have a "thing" for artillery (ah, the roar of a cannon thrills me...though I'd be scared stiff if I had to charge one!), I found his escapades to be jaw-dropping and eye-wideningly interesting.
Stonewall Jackson thought so much of him that he said this: "With a Pelham on each flank, I think I could whip the world."
I wrote a review over here...if you're interested.
But I thought I would share a poem found in the back of H. Rondel Rumburg's book, John Pelham of Alabama: The Gallant Chief of J.E.B. Stuart's Horse Artillery.
Pelham Still Fights His Gun!
Into the hurtling storm of shell.
Into the gaping mouth of hell,
Pelham, the dauntless, lashed--
Out from the meager line of gray,
Out to the bloody fringe of fray,
Where thousand thunders crashed.
Lashes to straining horses plied,
Cheers of defiance as they ride
Under the eyes of Lee
Out of the day and into the night,
Clouded in smoke they ride to fight--
Glorious sight to see!
Out of that bedlam Freedom speaks;
Hear it in Pelham's Parrot's* shrieks,
Pelham, 'tis bravely done!
In the concentring deadly hail,
Daring to die but not to fail
Pelham still fights his gun!
What is that sound? 'Tis not a cheer--
There, yet again--list! Comrades hear!
Hark, 'tis the hymn of France!**
Rising the lofty swells,
Over the din of countless hells
Freedom defiance chants!
Never was witnessed braver deed,
Bringing of praise its richest meed,
Making a deathless name--
"Courage sublime in one so young!"
Words from the heart of Lee he wrung,
Crown of immortal fame!
~~A. Sidney Morton;
written about Pelham at the battle of Fredricksburg
** This refers to Pelham's "Napoleon Detachment"; mainly French and Italian born men from Mobile and New Orleans. They were known for singing Marseillaise--even under heavy fire.
I really enjoyed this book if you can't tell. Now...on to the next one! :)