Saturday, May 24, 2014

Sample Saturday - May 24, 2014

Welcome back to Sample Saturday. In this sample from Gone for a Soldier, the Owen Family Saga novel that will be released later this summer, Ben hears an emotional goodbye from his old brigade commander, who is leaving to command troops in the Shenandoah Valley.

On November 4th, General Jackson addressed the 1st Brigade, and Ben stood on a hill with the rest of the soldiers, trying to keep his emotions in check. "Old Jack," who now held the name "Stonewall" Jackson, was headed for the Shenandoah Valley to take command there, but the Brigade that also bore that nickname would hold the hard-won line before Washington.

The general said he was not making a speech, but was there to bid them farewell. After making more speech than Ben had ever heard from him, the general stood in his stirrups and exclaimed, "In the Army of the Shenandoah you were the First Brigade, in the Army of the Potomac you were the First Brigade, in the Second Corps of this army you are the First Brigade."

Ben swallowed down the lump in his throat as the general went on.

"You are the First Brigade in the affections of your general, and I hope by your future deeds and bearing you will be handed down to posterity as the First Brigade in this, our second war of independence. Farewell!"

The hush extended for a moment only, then the men around him raised cheer after cheer. Ben joined in until his throat felt raw. General Jackson briefly waved farewell and rode away at a gallop.

The man next to Ben groaned. "I wish I was a-goin' with him," he said. "I'd cotton to seein' my Sara right about now."


Thank you for visiting. Please come back next Saturday for another sample. Thank you!

Bestselling author Marsha Ward wrote the novella, Faith and the Foremen, in the Timeless Romance Anthology Old West Collection. She is the author of an acclaimed novel series featuring the Owen family. Her last published book, Spinster's Folly, won the 2013 USA Best Book Award for Western Fiction. A former journalist, Ward has published over 900 articles, columns, poems and short stories. She is the founder of American Night Writers Association aka ANWA.


  1. Did that really happen? Is that a real speech?

    1. Yes, that was the end of a real speech. Is it any wonder the Stonewall Brigade would do virtually anything for the man?


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