A son of the Emerald Isle, but not himself green, was taken up (for he was at the time down) near a rebel encampment, not far from Manassas Junction. In a word, Pat was taking a quiet nap in the shade, and was roused from his slumber by a scouting party. He wore no special uniform of either army, but looked more like a spy than an alligator, and on this was arrested.
“Who are you?” “What is your name?” and “Where are you from?” were the first questions put to him by the armed party.
Pat rubbed his eyes, scratched his head, and answered:
“Be me faith, gentlemen, them is ugly questions to answer, anyhow; an’ before I answer any o’ them, I’d be afther axin’ ye, by yer lave, the same thing.”
“Well,” said the leader, “we are of Scott’s army, and belong to Washington.”
“All right,” said Pat; “I know’d ye was gintlemen, for I am that same. Long life to General Scott.”
“Aha!” replied the scout, “now you rascal, you are our prisoner,” and seized him by the shoulder.
“How is that,” inquired Pat; “are we not friends?”
“No,” was the answer. “We belong to General Beauregard’s army.”
“Then ye tould me a lie, me boys; and thinkin’ it might be so, I tould you another. And now tell me the truth, and I’ll tell the truth, too.”
“Well, we belong to the State of South Carolina.”
“So do I,” promptly responded Pat, “and to all the other States uv the country, too; and there, I’m thinkin’, I bate the whole uv ye. Do ye think I would come all the way from Ireland to belong to one State, when I had a right to belong to the whole uv ’em?”
This logic was rather a stumper; but they took him up, as before said, and carried him for further examination.