Friday, October 17, 2014

10.18.2014 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        18, Price inflation in Jackson environs, one result of secession

Times are if anything tighter [sic] the North seems more determined to subjugate the South….One must live in such times to fully appreciate the conditions of everything. Revolutions are terrible things. Every day approached nearer a state of DESPERATION [sic]. Surrounded, nothing permitted to go in or go out, everything is becoming scarce & enormously high. Bacon 25 cts per pound, Coffee 50 cts, Axes $2.75, cotton and woolen cards usually worth 50 cts not $1.75, and things generally in proportion. When there will be a change & what that change will be no mortal can see….

Robert H. Cartmell Diary.

        18, "VAMPIRES AGAIN."

The fact that our articles, denouncing the intolerable avarice and extortion of adventurous tradesmen have created a considerable fluttering among some of this class, induces us to continue rather than abate our warfare upon them. We hinted a few days since that the vile system of forestalling the market, in the purchase of army supplies, would probably defeat itself in the course of time by inviting the healthy interference of Government in the matter. The "army worms," who are eating into the very vitals of the South by subsisting upon speculation and monopoly, can be influenced in no other possible manner. They are mere vampires that maintain life only by phlebotomizing the Confederacy, and need some other corrective for their unnatural voracity than mere ordinary appliances. Patriotism and honesty constitute no part of their moral system-they care little who conquers in this war, so they [sic] can reap profit from its necessities, while at the same time they pusillanimously shun its burdens and skulk its battles.

The State Legislature, as recommended by Governor HARRIS [sic], should not leave their seat at the capitol before paying their respects to these quasi-traitors to the cause of liberty. We, of course, allude particularly to those scoundrels who have bought up such necessaries of life, as are needed by our soldiers and keep them hoarded under lock and key in cellars and garrets, refusing to sell until they can realize at least six or eight hundred per cent profit on the amount originally invested. These libels on humanity have not risked their capital by running blockades and embargoes, thus justifying additional compensation, but have simply purchased stocks and stores in our own markets. They have their tools and agents prowling about in every little country town and village, buying every article of necessity that they can possibly lay hand on, from a barrel of pork down to a paper of plus [pius?]; and, as we hear, are so conscienceless in many instances as to represent themselves as the commissioned agents of the Government.

We can see only one or two proper and feasible modes of remedying this evil. The more effectual one, perhaps, will be the plan suggested by us some days since. If State legislation is deemed unequal to the end, the salutary coup de main [sic] lately practiced by Gov. [Thomas O.] Moore in New Orleans, with a slight mitigation of its rigor, may do better. Government can take possession of the hoarded stores of these huckstering harpies, allowing them a reasonable profit on their investments, and a proper remuneration for the trouble and labor of having so long carried the keys of their locked up warehouses. Necessity alone can justify this move, and none can tell how soon its mandates may present themselves for enforcement. The principle, carrying with it the highest considerations of public good-we may say of national benefit-is parallel to that, which justifies the forced sale of land for the construction of a street or road of a public character. In the latter case, the property is valued; and a sufficient consideration given to the owner for its sacrifice-a legitimate and recognized practice, known to every tyro in jurisprudence.

The principle involved is simply that individual interests must be subordinated to the public benefit. A government, struggling amid difficulties for its very existence against a powerful and unscrupulous adversary can undoubtedly take this step. Without eliciting the slightest demurer from the great mass of its citizens. None will oppose it, when it becomes necessary, beside the extortioners themselves who may become victims to the policy or that doubtful class of brethren whose patriotism, like the shadow upon a sundial, vanished with the appearance of the slightest cloud. The same reasons, in fact, that would dictate a rigorous policy toward political traitors, will apply with equal force to these mercantile conspirators, who are little better than the armed mercenaries of the enemy, who seek to crush out our liberties with instruments differing only in kind. The one only uses bayonets and bullet, honestly avowing himself a foe the other craft and capital, with base hypocrisy, pretending to be a friend. Equal culpability rests upon the shoulders of each, for we can make not substantial difference between adversaries foreign and domestic.

The amount of provisions, pork, flour, salt, etc., in the South is amply sufficient to last until another year, if we will but exhibit a degree of economy, and the only thing on earth besides extravagance that can make prices tremendous is monopoly. The laws of supply and demand, which usually regulate the matter, are silent amid arms, and the provision market in the Confederacy. Like the cotton market in London, is gradually getting under the influence of an unnecessary panic.

It is at all times desirable to conform even to the technicalities of the law in the administration of government, but we again advise the vampires that the period may not be far distant when the same necessity which recently compelled the martial interdiction of cotton shipments to large cities, may extend to circle of its persuasive influence over some of their own outrageous transactions.

Memphis Appeal, October 18, 1861.

        18, Enmity between Tennessee and Georgia troops in the Army of Tennessee

No circumstantial reports filed.

Excerpt from the Report of Colonel Smith D. Atkins relative to enmity between Tennessee and Georgia troops in the Army of Tennessee

HDQRS. NINETY-SECOND ILLINOIS VOLUNTEERS, Harrison's Landing, Tenn., October 18, 1863-8 p. m.

Col. C. GODDARD, Assistant Adjutant Gen., Dept. of the Cumberland:

COL.: Mrs. Vinson, wife of the clerk of the circuit court of this county [Hamilton], whose husband has long been on this side of the river, came across this evening. She brings no positive information, but I gather the following:

* * * *

The rebel soldiers state that a great deal of bad feeling exists between the Tennessee and Georgia troops, and some of the Tennessee troops declare it is useless to fight another battle, only a waste of life, &c.

* * * *

This talk among rebel soldiers may amount to but little, but this is all Mrs. Vinson can give.

Most respectfully,

SMITH D. ATKINS, Col. Ninety-second Illinois Volunteers.

OR, Ser. 1, Vol. 30, pt. IV, 465.

        18,1863 -  Forrest's cavalry violate the Sabbath in Cleveland

….Forrest's men left this morn for Loudon. The brass band played "Dixie" and "On to the Field of Glory" as if it was [sic] not Sunday-how can we gain our independence when our soldiers regard not the Sabbath...? [sic]

Diary of Myra Adelaide Inman, p. 213.

        18, "Soldier Gal."

Sarah, alias John Williams, a private in the 2d Kentucky cavalry, was sent to the to the Post prison, to be held until further orders. This gay "soldier gal" has served for three years, and her sex never discovered, (so report saith,) until the present time. She is a veteran and deserves promotion.

Nashville Dispatch, October 18, 1864.


James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214

(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456

(615)-532-1549  FAX


No comments: