- The Washington Times - Saturday, April 26, 2003

Frank Stringfellow’s reputation reached the upper echelons of the Confederacy. After J.E.B. Stuart’s death in 1864 at Yellow Tavern, Stringfellow reported directly to Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis. Davis personally ordered Stringfellow into the Federal capital in March 1865 to determine the climate for peace negotiations.

Many years after the war, Davis requested information for his memoirs, and Stringfellow sent a report of his final mission. While gathering intelligence, the infatuated spy had risked his life to court his Alexandria fiancee, Emma Green, at gatherings in Washington. He wrote, “She has since rewarded me by giving me her hand, and five children have heard from her how hard it is to say no to a soldier who will come through such dangers to do his courting.”

Stringfellow recalled for the former Confederate president how he had escaped Union agents in Washington and then had assumed the identity of a dentist traveling through eastern Maryland, but Union soldiers had arrested him and found an incriminating letter that he believed would lead to his swift execution. However, he had escaped from prison by leaping over the sleeping guard in his stocking feet, racing into nearby woods and hiding inside a hollow log.

Twenty-one days later, he had arrived in Virginia and learned of Lee’s surrender.

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