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The Illustrated London News, vol. 45, no. 1291, p. 582.

December 10, 1864


...Blackwood's valuable series of papers on the Public Schools' Report is concluded with as much ability as it was commenced. We should be glad to see it reprinted. Both "Cornelius O'Dowd" and "Tony Butler" somehow fail to amuse this month, and the number would be dull, but for the American experiences of a cavalry officer, lately returned from a year's excursion in Secessia. He does not seem, indeed, to be endowed with any more ample portion of intellectual brilliancy than is strictly proper in a heavy dragoon; his description of the great Confederate overthrow at Gettysburg is tame indeed after Colonel Freemantle's; and, though he seems to have been on intimate terms with the Secessionist leaders, he seems unable to relate a single anecdote or convey the most unimportant trait of character. His simplicity is perfectly astounding, and however trustworthy his account of what passed under his eyes may be, it is clear that his inferences from it are not worth a Federal greenback or even a Confederate one. Still, the nature of his subject will secure him eager readers, who will be only too thankful for any information, however meagre and prejudiced. Though devoid of graphic power, he sometimes indicates the possession of humour, as where he observes, "When people here mean to speak of a native of Holland they call him an 'Amsterdam Dutchman,' but when they speak of one of German race generally they leave out the Amster." There is also a good story of a wounded Confederate soldier, who, finding he would have to lose his leg, immediately proceeded to barter the useless boot....

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