In the summer of 1862, in the Bayou Manchac country near Baton Rouge, Louisiana, there was a modest little schoolhouse called the "Dove's Nest." To that school came two young girls to complete a course of study begun in Baton Rouge before the Federals captured that city. The country was visited quite often by bands of Confederates, "Jayhawkers," and Federals; the slaves on the vast sugar plantations were in a demoralized condition from being so near the enemy's lines; yet the girls braved all these dangers, and rode on horseback (both on the same horse) three miles through forest and field to attend school. They had no fear, for both could shoot a pistol, and always carried a loaded one, and a small Spanish dirk for self-protection. All the valuable horses on the plantation having been given to the Confederate army, only two were left for family use, an old one, not of much service, and a young beautiful bay, the individual property of one of the girls. This horse the girls rode to school. Naturally he had a shambling, uncomfortable gait, but the girls determined to teach him to pace, which they did by the use of a small steel spur. The days sped on, the year blushed into spring, bloomed into summer, and the girls grew accustomed to meeting bands of the "Blue and the Gray," sometimes riding along only fifty yards apart, yet totally ignorant of the fact. The girls narrowly missed being shot on one occasion, as some soldiers were firing down the road for practice, and the bullets whistled near their heads as they turned a curve in the lane. The booming of cannon could be heard from the Mississippi River; now and then a friend was killed in a roadside skirmish; loved ones were captured and imprisoned; but the little school was undisturbed outwardly, though thrilled with anxiety and patriotism for the beloved Southland.