Thomas had only to wait until his own preparations were completed and then, on the same day in December on which Sherman was entering Savannah, Thomas, so to speak, "took possession" of Hood's army. After the fight at Nashville, there were left of the Confederate invaders only a few scattered divisions.
"Acts of cruelty, without number, fell under my observation while I lived in Georgia. I will mention but one. A slave of a Mr. Pinkney, on his way with a wagon to Savannah, 'camped' for the night by the road side. That night, the nearest hen-roost was robbed. On his return, the hen-roost was again visited, and the fowl counted one less in the morning.
"It is true also, is it not," continued Beauregard, "that General Grant has gone or is going tonight to Savannah to meet General Buell, and confer with him about a speedy advance upon our army at Corinth?" Dick clenched his teeth harder than ever, and a spasm passed over his face.
This being accomplished, both armies moved from their ground on the evening of the 18th of October . The Americans, recrossing the Savannah at Zubly's Ferry, again encamped in South Carolina, and the French re-embarked. D'Estaing himself sailed with a part of his fleet for France; the rest proceeded to the West Indies.
Both congregations, however, remembered their early leader as one "clear in the grand doctrines of the Gospel, truly pious, and the instrument of doing more good among the poor slaves than all the learned doctors in America." While Bryan was working in Savannah, in Richmond, Va., rose Lott Cary, a man of massive and erect frame and of great personality.
The Americans, recrossing the Savannah at Zubly's Ferry, again encamped in South Carolina, and the French re-embarked. Although the issue of this enterprise was the source of severe chagrin and mortification, the prudence of General Lincoln suppressed every appearance of dissatisfaction, and the armies separated with manifestations of reciprocal esteem.
It is stated by Major-General Gillmore, in his "Siege of Charleston," as one of the three points in his preliminary strategy, that an expedition was sent up the Edisto River to destroy a bridge on the Charleston and Savannah Railway. As one of the early raids of the colored troops, this expedition may deserve narration, though it was, in a strategic point of view, a disappointment.
We exchanged addresses, and promised faithfully to write to each other and tell how we found everything at home. So the afternoon and night passed. We were too excited to sleep, and passed the hours watching the scenery, recalling the objects we had passed on the way to Blackshear, and guessing how near we were to Savannah.
McLaw's division was falling back before us, and we occasionally picked up a few of his men as prisoners, who insisted that we would meet with strong opposition at Savannah. On the 8th, as I rode along, I found the column turned out of the main road, marching through the fields.
This ended the 'true coast. The 'false coast' began close to the little settlement known as Ashankru. It shows a fine quartz-reef, striking north fourteen degrees east. The formation was shown by the normal savannah and jungle-strips. About noon we were ferried over the eastern arm of the Ebumesu, known as the Pápá. I have noted scanty belief in the bar of the Ebumesu proper, the western feature.