On May 24, 1864, after Winfield Scott Hancock’s II Corps had crossed the North Anna River and then avoided a Confederate trap, Hancock’s men threw up lines of works to protect themselves. One of the lines near the front “took under its protection the house of a divine who must be a person of ‘culture and means,'” wrote John Haley of the 17th Maine.
By the time Haley arrived on the property, Fox had left his home deserted. “He and his family had found that his duty lay in another direction, and at the first gunshot had left precipitately,” Haley noted.
Inspecting the property gave Haley and his compatriots a decidedly negative view of Fox:
This man of God has not been slow in securing a share of the world’s goods. He probably has more business capacity than faith. His effects were all there in the house, and we could pick out such as suited our needs. I fell in love with a choice bit of china plate, and a union was effected in a few seconds without benefit of clergy. It is keeping with our mission to destroy this kind of theology as quickly as possible. A theology that sanctions slavery savors too strongly of Satan to be tolerated. The religion of Jesus Christ has nothing in common with the auction block or the lash. Two-hundred years of slavery have not elevated the nigger or his master. The only advancement has been in the way of unnatural selection; the line of demarcation between white and black is not as positive as true virtue demands, but it dimmed by a kind of neutral tint that cannot but be regarded with suspicion.
from John Haley, The Rebel Yell & The Yankee Hurrah: The Civil War Journal of a Maine Volunteer, (Camden, ME: Down East Books, 1985), 163.