PREFACE: This story was written in the summer of 1863. It was meant for the Americans of that day. It has since been introduced as a reading book in schools, and it is largely used in celebrations, especially on the patriotic anniversaries. It came into existence about the time when General Grant was entering Vicksburg, which he had been besieging for many months; and when nearly one hundred thousand men in the Northern army fought with nearly the same number in the Southern Army at Gettysburg.... Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900's and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.