Friday, July 18, 2014

7.18.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        18, Editorial anxieties in Memphis about food supply and clothing for Tennessee's soldiers
We desire to call the attention of planters to the importance of an early subscription in flour and corn-meal for the use of our army. The Confederate Government purchased in May last an immense quantity of flour, and stored it as this place, but the supply is now nearly exhausted. Unless the planters of West Tennessee, North Alabama, and Mississippi, come forward and subscribe flour and meal, taking Confederate bonds in payment, our brave boys in the field will soon be without bread. Let each planter indicate to the Commissary Department at this place, by mail or through his commission merchant, what quantity he is willing to sell to the Government for their bonds, and let them send it forward immediately. There are five mills in operation here capable of grinding _____ [sic] bushels daily, to which the planters can send their bushels daily, to which the planters can send their wheat and have it ground and barreled, ready for transportation. The near approach of the autumnal season, and the almost certainty of the continuance of the war, suggest not only the propriety but the necessity of supplying our troops in the field with warm clothing and warm covering. It will not probably be within the power of the Government to do this, and much necessarily depends upon individual effort. On this subject the following suggestions of the West Tennessee Whig are the most feasible and practicable we have seen:-
The supply of blankets in store is exhausted, and the possibility of supply from the North is cut off by the rigid non-intercourse of the war, while the blockading of our seaports cuts us off from all hopes of a reasonable supply by importation. How, then, it may be asked, are the wants of our soldiers to be supplies: It can only be done by every family giving up a portion of the blankets they have for family use, to the soldiers, and supplying the deficiency thus created by making "comforts" out of cotton for their own use. These comforts do well enough for persons in comfortable houses at home when they are not exposed to the weather, and our people are expected to make use of them, and send their blankets to the soldiers. There is no time to be lost in doing it either. Before many are aware of it, the cool nights of early autumn will be upon them, and what they do for the comfort of the soldiers, they must do quickly.
Memphis Appeal, July 18, 1861.[1]

        18, Re-establishment of the Federal presence in Murfreesboro, the account of Kate Carney
I sometimes find myself writing before breakfast. No prospect of a fight. The day is clear & beautiful. Ma & Cousin Ann went up town this morning. Most everyone is very much frightened. Aunt Nancy Avent & Cousin Tabitha Morgan sent a good many of their things out here, expecting the town to be burned. The Yankees came in town just before dinner & stopped all traveling, even on the streets. Ma started the servant twice, but they didn't succeed in getting Pa's dinner to him. Ephe came out & said they were searching everybody's house for brooms & guns. Can't imagine what they want with brooms. They are concentrating their troops around the square, and as they are very wet (having rained quite hard), probably they want to exercise to keep from taking cold, or may be to keep us from cleaning up our boys any more. We saw about 12 or 14 coming, & I thought they were going to search our house too, so placed my little Southern flag in my bosom, for I had made it hoping to wave it at our dear boys as they would pass by. I hid Helen's flag also in the same place, a box of powder, & a number of union envelopes that I had as trophies. Marched up as if the place belonged to them, rung the bell with quite an air. Said they came to get horses & wagons. Ma said they should not have hers, that she would see Gen. Nelson about it. The officer said very impertinently come on boy's, we will go and see what she has got, & take them. Bettie & I heard them from our window [and] rushed downstairs into the yard, & went to where the horses were & gave them a piece of my mind. Rebuked them for running at Shiloh, Richmond, Bull's Run, &c., &c. he put on quite a bold air first but cooled down considerable before I got through. Bettie then came forward and gave them another cutting speech. Some of the privates enjoyed the way we treated the officer. One told me to ask him about running at Pittsburgh Landing. I really believe that although they were all in Yankee blue, some of them were good Southern men. One said he wished all my brothers might get home safely. That he never intended to kill our boys, if he could help it. They seem to have quite a contempt for that egotistical officer they had with them. They finally said, if we would lend the cart and one horse they would pledge their word it should be brought back. To our surprise it came back in an hour's time, all right. Ma had the buggy gotten up and went after Pa, as they would not let him come out home. They had several citizens arrested. Everybody advised her not to attempt going up in town but she did, saw one of the Officers and got Pa a permit to return home. Old Bill Spence, Ashburn, & Ned Jordan came in with the army. The citizens may expect a gay time now, as they are grand scoundrels. I wish I had known where old Ashburn was hid, I should have told on him. The Reeves, I understand, have been up since 5 o'clock, cheering the Yankees on. They ought to be run out of town after falling as low as they have. Mrs. Anderson & her sister Kate have not yet left town. Mrs. Lain was over here a few moments this evening.
Kate Carney Diary.

        18, Rules governing the acceptance of juveniles as Confederate conscript substitutes
Minors.- there may be enlisted, with consent of parents or guardians.
If they have been enlisted without such consent, their parents may proceed on application, with permission duly authorized by oath, to the Adjutant and Inspector General at Richmond.
If they are in service with such consent, as substitutes, the substitution is good until the minor arrives at the age of eighteen. He thus becomes liable in his own person, and the liability at the principal services. All such substitutions were good previous to September 8th, 1862-not since.
Minors by a recent law, are eligible to hold any commission or exaction that an officer required by law to be bonded.
2. Substitutes-An eligible substitute must be without the limits of conscript age, a citizen, and of good moral character. He can only be received at a conscript camp of instruction, or in a company with the consent of the company and regimental commanders.
The acceptance of a substitute is conditional. If, by any existing of subsequent law; the class [to which he belongs?] becomes subsequently liable to service, the liability of the principal revives.
Paid agents often do not scruple to furnish, on the signature of the ignorant or reckless officers, substitution papers that are not valid. The public is warned against all such.
Knoxville Daily Southern Chronicle, July 18, 1863.
        18, Confederate Provost Marshals in East Tennessee ordered to cease violations of citizens' liberties
Headquarters, Department East Tenn.
Knoxville, July 18, 1863
1. The Major General Commanding finds it necessary to call the attention of Provost Marshal, and all other officers, to the following points:
1st. Every citizen must be secured against arrest by the Military authorities, except when there is evident reason to believe that he has been guilty of a violation of law.
2nd. The custom, which it too frequent, of making arrests without proper evidence must be discontinued. The careful investigation of a number of cases show that there are number of instances where the officers making the arrest have not proceeded with due caution. The Major General Commanding will not entertain charges based merely upon suspicion of disloyalty to the Government.-It is to be presumed that every citizen who pursues his ordinary avocation, and does nothing which tends to disturb the public peace, is a law-abiding citizen, and as such is entitled to the protection of the government.
3d. Every officer making an arrest will forward with the prisoner specific charges, which shall set forth the cause of the arrest, and the facts of which the party shall have been guilty, together with the testimony which will establish the charges, and will be necessary to the investigations of the case.
4th. Every officer who directs an arrest will be held accountable that it is not made without probable cause.
5th. While every law abiding person must be protected in the enjoyment of his civil rights, there are other classes of persons against whom all the severities of the law will be visited. 1. That class of persons, the outlaws of society, and real enemies of the human race, usually denominated "Bushwhackers." They are in arms against the authority of any law or society. All such persons must be pursued and no quarter shown to any as long as they; offer resistance-but no unarmed man must be shot down. 2. That class of persons who hold secret communication of any kind with the enemies of our country, or who by open advocacy of their government in opposition to the Confederate Government, show their adherence to the government with which we are at War, must be regarded in the light of enemies in our midst and are liable to arrest by the military authorities or any specific offences with which they may be charged.
By command of
Knoxville Daily Southern Chronicle, July 24, 1863.

        19, Federals burn much of Fairmont[2] as reprisal for native support for guerrillas; excerpt from a Confederate woman's diary
* * * *
....20 Yankees rode up on the 19th of July and picketed their horses all around our piazza. She [Bettie] was lying on the ottoman, but got up and sat in the door and we entered into conversation with them about the horses-one of them dressed in Confederate uniform, looked sulky, but offered to sell me his horse for 75 dollars-they were packing waggons [sic] they said to take Tilfords [a neighbor] whiskey off-our dinner came on and Bettie invited one of them (a small fellow that talked to us about his mother) to come in and take some dinner. He came in and I told him if he had a particular friend to bring him in-I had enough dinner for more of them-He brought in a Soldier named Emmerson of Wisconsin-they dined and thanked me-in a short time all mounted-but first dismissed the 5 waggons [sic] that were on the squared at their command. Wilson [,] the one dressed in grey clothes rode up and told me I was reported at headquarters by one of my neighbors and one of my negroes [sic] as harboring guerillas [sic]-of course I denied it-told him I never saw one in my life that I knew. He remarked you know the penalty is burning your house-they then made off to Tilford's still house. I felt uneasy and began to move out my clothes, but Bettie and Mrs. Jones laughed at, and discouraged me. I had my wearing clothes taken out of the house, & gave some valuables to a neighbor to keep for me. We passed the evening, had an early supper-and had just finished eating and walked in the piazza when Bettie said [:"]Mama [,] look on the hill at the Yankees coming[!"] they galloped by and one cried out ["]You had better be taking things out[!"]-they broke down the store broke up the shelves-turned over the counter-I rushed into the street-went to the officer, begged and implored he would [sic] spare the house, it belonged to a poor man, to go on the hull and burn...[burn my own houses] [sic]-No[,] the demon would not stay his hand-I rushed back and commenced taking things. I saw dear Bettie-told her to go and take care of herself and then rushed off to save what I could-just then Emmerson-the Yankee soldier stepped in behind me, and said, ["]I eat [sic] with you today Madam, and I have come to help you, and he did help me faithfully and long as we could stay in the building-others came in and helped a little and stole a great deal. My negroes [sic] were saving their own things until the fire was too far advanced-when Wilson, the wretch, came in with the torch I met and asked him not [to] set the house on fire until I had some of my things, he replied ["]I am in a hurry and won't wait more than 5 minutes["]-I held a candle to be lighted (it was dark)[.] We both blew at it, with our heads in 4 inches of each other, he then walked to the mantel piece, tore up the screen, set it against the mantle, took Bettie's music, stuck it on and set fire to it-the mantle soon caught; Eliza told me a Yankee had told her he would shoot her if she went upstairs after anything-I told her to send Hardin to me, took up a bucket of water and dashed it on the mantle and put out the blaze, rushed up stairs and saved a bed and mattress and threw many things out of the window, but just as I entered the door to go up a Yankee rode rapidly to the street and shot at me as I entered the opposite side. I heard it but it made so little impression on me that I leaped on up the stairs-and the coward galloped back fearing, I suppose that he had shot me, and [was] afraid of being identified. Well this is a faint outline of the work of that night-Women were praying to the demons, children crying, men looked appalled. They threatened to burn the whole town-but finally were satisfied with burning one block of buildings. All this time I thought Bettie was at Mr. Jones-and after the whole blocked was wrapped in one sheet of flames, I went over to Mr. Jones and looked for Bettie-she was not there-someone said she was at Dr. Robertson's. I could not send [anyone] to Pickets were thrown out and they threatened to shoot everyone that passed. I rested content tho [sic] that she was safe. The next morning I went over to my garden where all my beds and clothes were thrown, there were 2 Yankees around and one was dirty and had his sleeves rolled up. I did not speak, but passed him in silence-After breakfast Mrs. Jones came out and with her my poor frail child looking [at] the picture of despair. ["]O, Mamma [sic] ["] she said[,] ["]we are in Hell-O, no, my child, we are on the beautiful earth, but there are demons that surround us [!"]-I labored all day. My neighbors were very kind-assisted me to take care of the remnant of my things-As soon as I could enquire I found that Bettie had taken up an arm full of clothes, two carpet bags-a fine painting and put her hat on and started [illegible] from the burning building-she made her way to R. Jones over 5 fences-would get up and fall of, of each [sic] fence-fell 3 times in the cotton field and was taken with Diarreah [sic]. [sic] She had a vial of Paregoric [sic] which she drank-at length with the assistance of a blind little negro she got to Mr. J. [sic] yard fence and when taken in had to be rubbed to restore animation-She was never very well again-Mr. Johns took her home with him-I went over most every night, and how her affectionate heart mourned over my situation-but God sustained me thro' [sic] it all.
Journal of Bettie Ridley Blackmore[3]

[1] As cited in Rebellion Record, Vol. 3, p. 31. Given such shortages this early in the war,  it is difficult to know how the Confederate army managed to fight for as long as it did.
[2] There is no mention of this action in the OR or Dyer's Battle Index for Tennessee.
[3] Journal of Bettie Ridley Blackmore, pp. 74-75. This selection was written by Rebeccah [sic] C. Ridley, mother of Bettie Ridley Blackmore who was during this incident ill, and would in the future die of tuberculosis.

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456
(615)-532-1549  FAX

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