The child wore it like a crown, and her mother kept it as a memorial “with precious associations” for years.
The season came and went “like a dream,” Kate Corbin wrote a friend. There were dinners, music and good company. And she and Sandie Pendleton eventually became engaged.
He had a “splendid, almost boyish, exuberance of spirits,” she wrote a friend, according to his biographer, W.G. Bean, and “is a sincere, professing Christian.”
A year later the war would claim him, too.
The advent of spring brought the coming of battle season.
In March, Jackson moved his headquarters from Moss Neck to be closer to his commander, Gen. Lee. He came to say goodbye to little Jane Corbin, who had been sick with scarlet fever.
Shortly after he left, the child suddenly died. Pendleton was still there.
“Never have I witnessed such a scene,” he wrote a sister. “It was truly appalling to witness the heartbroken anguish.” The child’s mother “seized me and began afresh her wild lamentations. . . . Death on the battlefield is not half so fearful as this.”
Fifty years later, as an old woman, the mother wrote of her daughter’s death as a portent for Jackson’s: “She seemed but the avant courier of the brilliant star so soon to set.”
On the rainy evening of Monday, May 4, a two-horse ambulance, escorted by cavalry, pulled up to a whitewashed cottage at Guinea Station, the railhead of the Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac Railroad.
Jackson and another wounded officer lay on mattresses inside the wagon, according to biographer Robertson’s account. McGuire sat beside the wagon driver. Jedediah Hotchkiss, the mapmaker, led the way. And Smith and Rev. Lacy rode inside with the general.
The cottage was the business office of Fairfield, a 1,200-acre plantation about 30 miles southeast of Chancellorsville, where Jackson hoped to spend a day or two before moving on to his home in Lexington.
He was carried inside on a litter and placed on a double bed in a first-floor room with a fireplace and a clock on the mantelpiece.
Jackson was tired but seemed to be doing better. He had told Lacy before they left that he was perfectly content with his amputation and believed God had ordained it for his own good.
During the trip he had chatted, and he had some bread and tea once he arrived. The next day he continued to do well. He slept but had no appetite.
Early Thursday, Lacy and Jackson’s servant, Jim Lewis, were awakened by Jackson’s groans. The general was nauseated and feverish and had a severe pain in his left side.
Lacy and Lewis wanted to summon the exhausted McGuire, who was sleeping in the next room. But Jackson wouldn’t let them. He called for a wet towel to be placed on his side. It did no good, and finally, around dawn he allowed McGuire to be awakened.
The doctor examined Jackson and realized that he had pneumonia.
There was little McGuire could do. Treatments for pneumonia in those days were primitive and largely futile. McGuire applied mustard plasters. He administered opiates, and by some accounts mercury and antimony. He even tried the ancient technique of cupping.
The disease rapidly ran its course. Jackson slipped in and out of delirium. His wife, Anna, was summoned and arrived with their infant daughter, Julia, later Thursday. He grew worse Friday and Saturday.
Lacy prayed with him. His wife sang him some hymns. His daughter was brought for him to see one last time.
That Sunday, May 10, Lacy held a service for him at army headquarters that was attended by 1,800 soldiers. Pendleton came to visit him and said the entire Confederate army was praying for him.
“Thank God, they are very kind,” Jackson said, adding “it is the Lord’s day. . . . I have always wanted to die on a Sunday.” Pendleton, who would later say he’d have given his life for Jackson, left the cottage and broke down on the porch.
By noon a silent crowd had gathered outside. Inside, Jackson was slipping away. “His mind began to fail and wander,” McGuire remembered. He began to shout orders as if in the heat of battle: “Pass the infantry to front rapidly!”
Then he quieted down, and as he died, said, “Let us cross over the river and rest under the shade of the trees.”