The book felt oddly cold. Jeff gave it little mind other than figuring no one other than the shop keeper had probably touched it in some years. As he walked up the stone path to the large porch in front of the old house the coffee shop occupied, Jeff casually noted the usual buzz of activity — mostly young students and college professor types — was oddly missing.
Instead the place was without life. Inside he ordered a medium coffee.
Upon receiving his drink, he stepped back outside. There he took a seat just off the porch at a worn picnic table under an old tall hackberry tree. Autumn leaves, most already turned brown, occasionally dropped on his table, his shoulders, and lap. Upon opening the old cracked leather binding, a chilly, light breeze picked up from out of the northeast, from the hill where the old mansion stood.
He selected a chapter of letters about the Battle of Nashville from the table of contents. He turned the pages impatiently, and was about to jump to correspondence from the twentieth century when he came across a copy of a letter that stopped him from going further. Among the old fashioned phrasing, two words caught his eye — and his breath. There underlined in soft pencil was the name, Sirus Hanover, the same name and focus of his memorialized account now awaiting publication!
Jeff put down his coffee and began to read the letter from the beginning. You know I have never lied to you and have always spoken the truth.
Yesterday I can say I did, but alas did not fire a shot. And today hope I never will, but one. Our Colonel elected to hold us back. He used the colored troops instead. He sent them up Peach Orchard Hill on the north-east side of the battle field. They put up a heroic fight, but few survived. Truth be told, they were nothing but cannon fodder to direct attention away from troop movements heading elsewhere.
The part of the battle I saw was a total slaughter. The Colonel sent wave after wave of frontal-assaults up the steep hill against a fortified, well armed and seasoned enemy, all when it was clear that reaching the top of the hill was impossible. We lost five color bearers. When one man fell, another bravely took the colors and marched on only to fall himself. It would not be an exaggeration to say a man could have walked to the top of the hill after the fighting was over and not step on solid ground, there were so many dead.
Our colored regiment started with around officers and men of which about died. To save face from losing so many men, and to make a point that they should keep quiet about the senseless orders, the Colonel personally chose a dozen men who had survived and hauled them back to the headquarters near the city.
He tried them as one, right down the hill from the mansion, and hung them all from a hackberry tree for desertion.
They all followed orders. None of them ran. Those coloreds that lived through that assault were just lucky, good soldiers. Papa, I may get prison for this, but as I write this today, from this day forward the name Sirus Hanover will mean nothing to me but pure evil.
I will speak his name no more. I will curse his memory and any man who speaks well of him. May his memory, and those who remember him well, rot in hell. Jeff sat there reading the words over and over again. The wind had blown down any that had any thoughts of remaining.
Of those that had fallen around him, several had fallen into his coffee. Picking his cell phone out of his backpack, he dialed his publisher. His cellular service was dead. Swearing, he tossed the phone back into his pack and stood to go back inside to locate and use a land line. Upon reaching the door, he found it closed.
Giving the door a push with his shoulder, he burst inside, breaking whatever seal held it shut. Her ghost has been seen at the murder site along with Carr who confessed and was hanged.
The information provided is correct to the best of our knowledge. Ohio State Park hiking trails are closed from dusk to dawn. Don't ghost hunt in the park after hours and please don't go off the trails. Parks, Cemeteries and other locations have specific hours of operation which may vary and change so we do not list them - many from dawn to dusk.
Just because they are listed here does not mean you can go there without permission, checking hours of operation or without checking for hazards first.
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