Civil War Louisiana (CWLA)

Civil War Louisiana (CWLA)
CWLA seeks to provide an online resource of any and all material of the Civil War relating to Louisiana with a special interest in the war in Acadiana in southwest Louisiana.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Jayhawking in St. Landry Parish

Following newspiece appeared in New Orleans in April 1864:


Jayhawking in St. Landry.

The following is from the Plaquemine (Iberville parish) Gazette and Sentinel, of the 11th inst.:

We had a conversation a few days since with a gentleman who resides near Opelousas. He had just arrived here, or at the Park, with a flatboat load of cotton. He gives a terrible picture of affairs in that parish, growing out of the outrages and depredations of the Jayhawkers. They are banded together, he says, in large numbers, mostly young men, the majority of whom have served in both armies, but having proved traitors to both, make outrage depredation upon the peaceful citizens their profession and their support. In self-defence the citizens are forced to unite for their protection and for the extermination of those lepers—one of the curses springing out of civil strife, and one of the terrible evidences of the demoralization resulting through it.

Several of these marauders were caught and shot a few days since, one of whom was a very young man, and met death in a fearful manner, through his cries and supplications; he had to be shot twice. A few days previous the jayhawkers were pounced upon in their camp, routed and dispersed, and several killed. Ten thousand pounds of good bacon, horses, arms, etc., were captured. Our informant was present and had several balls put into his horse. The jayhawkers show no mercy to their victims, but take all they have, even to leaving them naked. They robbed an old widow lady but a few days back, taking every thing she had, even to her clothing, leaving her in a semi-nude condition. She was rich, and the miscreants found out where her money and plate were only after the old lady had been tied to the tail of a horse and the animal had actually started off with her, when she divulged the place of its concealment. This diabolical act gave renewed indignation among the people, and active measures were taken to ferret out the villains. At length, on last Friday week, a young man was observed endeavoring to sell some article which a bystander recognized as having belonged to the old lady above mentioned. A party was soon collected together. The man confessed his guilt after he found it was useless to deny it; he divulged where the old lady's valuables were to be found; and a few minutes afterwards he was shot, and, by his request, in the back.

Our informant is known to gentlemen in this town, whom we should judge to be a man of reliability.

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Coppens' Zouave Battalion

Coppens' Zouave Battalion
Lt. Colonel George Coppens (seated) and brother, Captain Marie Alfred Coppens.Image sold at auction on Cowan Auctions, for $14,375