Missouri Bushwhacker Ambush

The Federal Major General rode easy in his saddle.

Though traversing the thick and dangerous forests of Missouri, the haunts of the Confederate Guerrillas and Bushwhackers, he sat at the head of a full Division of Federal troops.

As per regulations he had his advance guard of flankers out ahead of the main body of the troops, but he had no real concerns. "No damn Secesh was going to tangle with a full Federal Division", the General thought smugly to himself.

Suddenly the flankers and advance cavalry scouts came racing back, pulling their horses up in a cloud of dust. The General could see the anger and outrage on their faces and quickly asked the cavalry sergeant what the problem was.

“You better take a look yourself, Sir. It’s just around the next bend”, the sergeant gestured over his shoulder.

The General and his mounted commanders and scouts all spurred their mounts into a gallop and quickly rounded the bend in the road.

On a small grassy knoll at the side of the road brazenly stood a Missouri Bushwhacker. Unmistakable with his untrimmed locks and embroidered bushwhacker shirt.

As the General watched, the Rebel turned around dropped his trousers and bent over and patted his backside. He then stood up pulled up his trousers and made a rude gesture to the group of Federal soldiers.

The General was outraged. Turning to the cavalry scouts he said “I want you to teach that damn impertinent Rebel Scum some respect! Go and bring me back his hide, in one piece or more, I don’t care which!”

The scouts thundered towards the lone Bushwhacker, who eventually realizing his danger raced off into the surrounding forest behind the grassy knoll. A few moments passed and a single shot rang out. The General smiled to himself and thought, “That’s one Rebel that won’t cause us any more grief”.

However no sooner had that thought formed in the General’s mind than another shot rang out, then another and another, mingled with the sounds of yelling and fighting.

After a few moments silence. The General and his staff sat on their horses waiting. Still silence. They looked at each other and shrugged their shoulders and waited.

A few more moments passed and suddenly on the grassy knoll appeared that lone Missouri Bushwhacker going through the same insulting gestures again.

The General was livid with rage. “Never can trust the damned cavalry! Flankers charge down that road and take that damn Reb!”

The flankers took off running. The Bushwhacker once again disappeared into the forest and as previously after a few moments of silence the sound of yelling, fighting and shooting erupted.

Moments passed and sure enough, on that grassy knoll stood the Bushwhacker. If you ever want to see how red a Federal General can turn, now was the time to see it. The General called to his commanders, “Send one of our front Companies down that road and get me that Rebels head!”

In short order the lead company was formed and at the double quick time racing towards the load figure, who eventually disappeared into the forest followed by the Federal Company of soldiers.

The shooting, yelling and fighting was a little fiercer and longer this time, but eventually silence reigned again.

And yep . . . there was that lone Bushwhacker standing and making rude gestures again.

The General positively glowing red drew his sword and had to be physically restrained by his staff from charging towards the Bushwhacker. Calming slightly he then ordered that his whole first Battalion be formed and sent off to capture the Rebel.

With impressive military precession this was quickly done. The sound of battle raging for a while longer again and then silence . . . and you guessed it . . . that damn Rebel back on his knoll.

Past all reason or ability to think logically the General sent in his first Regiment.

More prolonged sounds of battle, followed by silence, followed by that lone Rebel on the knoll.

The General sent in his first Brigade. Sounds of raging battle, followed by silence. That lone figure appeared again.

Almost incapable of speech the General was about to yell to send in his whole damn Division, when everyone suddenly noticed a small blue clad figure painfully dragging itself along the dirt road from the direction of the battle.

It was a lone survivor of his first Brigade. Torn and bloody and close to death. He managed to drag himself the remaining distance to the General, who quickly dismounted his horse and cradled the dying trooper in his arms. He called for silence from everyone so he could hear the dying words of this solider.

The soldier stared into the General’s eyes and clutched the front of his tunic, trying to convey to him the urgency of what he had to say. When he had the General’s attention he managed to gasp out before he died . . .

“It’s a trap General! There’s two of them.”

--

PS:- Apologies to all you Blue Bellies.

  • Stonewall (SASA # 4866)

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