Anecdotes of General John Buford


The following was taken from the
New York Herald-Tribune

dated December 25, 1863

The late Maj-Gen. Buford, then whom probably no commander was so devotedly loved by those around him, was offered a Major-General's commission in the Rebel army when in Utah.  He crushed the communication in his hand, and declared that he would live and die under the flag of the Union.  A few hours before his death and while suffering from delirium, he roundly scolded his Negro servant; but recovering himself temporarily, he called the Negro to his bedside and said to him;  "Edward I hear I have been scolding you.  I did not know what I was saying.  You have been a faithful servant, Edward."  The poor Negro sat down and wept as though his heart was broken.  When Gen. Buford received his commission as Major General, he exclaimed, "Now, I wish that I could live."  His last intelligible words, uttered during an attack of delirium, were:  "Put guards on all the roads, and don't let the men run back to the rear."  This was an illustration of the ruling passion strong in death for no trait in Gen. Buford's character was more conspicuous than his dislike to see men skulking or hanging on the rear.