Fighting Upon His Own Hook
From an unsourced newspaper clipping, found in a scrapbook compiled by English phrenologist George Burgess (1829-1905):
FIGHTING UPON HIS OWN HOOK. – A Kentuckian, who disdained the restraints of a soldier’s life, with his name on the muster-roll, preferred “going it alone,” fighting upon his own hook. While the battle was raging fiercest, and the shot flying thick as hail, carrying death wherever they fell, Kentuck might have been stationed under a tall maple, loading and firing his rifle, as perfectly unconcerned as though he was “picking deer.” Every time he brought his rifle to his shoulder one of the enemy bit the dust. A general officer, supposing he had become separated from his company, rode up to bring him behind the redoubts, as he was in a position which exposed his person to the fire of the enemy. “Hallo, my man! What regiment do you belong to?” said the general. “Regiment!” answered Kentuck. “Hold ‘em, yonder’s another of ‘em.” And bringing his shooting-iron to his shoulder, he ran his eye along the barrel – a flash followed, and another of the enemy came tumbling to the ground. “Whose company do you belong to?” again inquired the general. “Company be banged!” was the reply of Kentuck, as he busied himself re-loading. “See that ar fellow with the gold fixins on his coat and hoss. Jist watch me perforate him.” The general gazed in the direction indicated by the rifle, and observed an officer riding up and down the advancing columns of the foe. Kentuck pulled the trigger, and another officer followed his companions that Kentuck had laid low in the death that day. “Hurrah for Kentuck!” shouted the free fighter, as his victim came toppling from his horse; then turning to the general, he continued, “I’m fighting on my own hook, stranger,” and leisurely proceeded to reload.