Tuesday, March 19, 2013

3/19/2013 Tennessee Civil War Notes = TCWN

19, Wealth and tax brackets in Confederate Memphis


The City Taxpayers and Their Wealth.


The tax ledger in the controller's office shows that assessments for the present corporate year, have been made as follows:


717 taxpayers of from $1000 to $3000; 341 of from $3000 to $5000; 334 of from $5000 to $10,000; 141 of from $10,000 to $15,000; 93 of from $15,000 to $20,000; 56 of from $25,000 to $30,000; 19 of from $30,000 to $35,000; 27 of from $35,000 to $40,000; 16 of from $40,000 to $45,000; 12 of from $45,000 to $50,000.


Taxpayers of $50,000 and upward, each are as follows: [list of 60 names with amounts follows]


From the same source we learn that $1,389,000 of the above is assessed upon property held and owned by married and single ladies (the names of the latter class, we understand, cannot be ascertained by batchelors [sic] without a fee) and that the sum of $54,000 is assessed upon property held and owned by free persons of color, eighteen in number.


For the above very entertaining statement we are indebted to the city controller, W. O. Lefland, Esq. It affords a proof of the accuracy and clearness of the city accounts as kept in his office.


Memphis Daily Appeal, March 19, 1861.




19, "Let Andrew Johnson beware. He may find a Corday in every woman he meets; he may expect at every corner, in every crowd, the ball that is to send him to his Maker's presence, unshrived of his odious crimes." A call for resistance to the pending Union occupation


Another Appeal to the People of Tennessee.


Editors Appeal:; Gen. Beauregard appeals to the planters for their bells, to be cast into cannon. If our country needs the metal, should not our churches give their bells to this sacred cause? True worshipers need no sounding brass to call them to the house of God. In times like these the human heart naturally flows out in prayer; every thought is a prayer—prayer for our imperiled country, imperiled friends. These bells have long served in well-doing. Thousands of straying feet have they called into the paths of peace, up to religion's altar. There is now a stern duty to perform—sterner, but no less sacred. Mold these bells into cannon and let their roar sound the death-knell of tyranny. Let their thunderous music make the song Tennesseans most delight in. Memphis may fall into the hands of the Vandals, and if Memphis falls, her men, her metal must fall back and fight on for freedom. At this time the South can ill afford to have either her men or her metal fastened up within Yankee pickets.


The Yankees are astonished at southern hopefulness. One of their reporters, writing from Clarksville, says: "Strange as it may seem to those who, flushed with recent success, are predicting the war will end in a month, these people seem to believe in the ultimate success of their cause."; And why should we not believe in our ultimate success?; Because within the last two months we have met several severe defeats?; How little you seem to know—we will not say of southern nature—but of human nature, Mr. Reporter. Our defeats have only made us in more deadly earnest. We are just getting properly stirred up. The fall of fifty Fort Donelsons will not find us conquered. You may pour in your Yankee hordes until our race is extinct, but not conquered. You may slay the eight millions of men, now arrayed against you, but there are as many boys growing up to whom their mothers will teach an eternal hatred of the murderers of their fathers, the invaders of their homes, the polluters of their country's soil. In time these boys will be men, and the sons of southern mothers are not born for bondage. The day of reckoning will come.


It is probable that the enemy may get possession of the Mississippi river, of the cities on her banks, of the cities on the Atlantic coast, and yet the fight will be but begun. Even in that case, our condition would not be so bad as other nations have fallen into, yet have struggled up from victoriously. I have already mentioned the case of Prussia, with only five millions of inhabitants, fighting for seven years against allied Europe. In the annals of the world there is not a parallel to so unequal a contest—five millions of people at war with one hundred millions, yet triumphant in the end!


After the dreadful battle of Pavia, which left ten thousand Frenchmen dead on the field, Francis I himself made prisoner, dispatched a letter to his mother, Louise, the regent, containing only these words:; "Madam, all is lost except our honor."


The honor of a nation is its soul, its spirit. Until our honor be lost, there will always be power to retrieve disasters. The honor of the South is untarnished.


When Francis I, the brave, chivalrous king of France, sent that memorable letter to his mother, the kingdom was in a fearful condition. Robertson says:; "France, without a sovereign, without money in her treasury, without an army, without generals to command, encompassed on all sides by a victorious and active enemy, seemed to be on the very brink of destruction. But the great abilities of Louise, the regent, saved the kingdom. Instead of giving herself up to lamentations, as were natural to a woman so remarkable for her maternal tenderness, she discovered all the foresight, and exerted all the activity of a consummate politician."


In the history of the world there are many such examples; and yet, in the face of history, our foolish foes persist in believing the South is conquered because we have lost two half-manned forts.


"Whom the gods destroy, they first make mad."


We will not positively assert that the gods intend to destroy the Yankee race, but are positive they have lost all common sense. Witness this extract from a Yankee reporter to a northern paper:


"Gen. Smith has made a very favorably impression upon them (the Clarksville people); The gray-headed old veteran looks a soldier. Whatever latent Union feeling there may be in the place he will draw it out. His treatment of a pompous rebel the other day was characteristic. The man called on him to ask a special favor. "Who are you, sir," asked the general?; "I am a Southerner, sir, and not ashamed to say, a Secessionist."; "Get out of my room, you scoundrel!; I don't talk to traitors!; Get out of my room!"


We look in vain to find the irony in this statement, but no!; the reporter is in cool, dead earnest. In the same passage that tells us, 'if there is any latent Union feeling Gen. Smith will be sure to draw it out," he gives us a sample of the general's low bred bullying of a southern gentleman for the honest utterance of his sentiments. If this is the way Gen. Smith proposes to "draw out Union feeling," we confidently predict he will not, in a hundred years, get enough to fill a pint bottle.

Andrew Johnson has accepted the position of military governor of Tennessee. The Yankees think there is a peculiar fitness in this appointment. So think we. We prefer they send us Andrew Johnson to any man in the world, unless it be Emerson Etheridge. There is but little difference between them. Let us be content with Andy and return dutiful thanks to Abraham for all such favors. Our purpose in mentioning this matter, is to hereby extend to that military governor an invitation from us, the women of Memphis, to visit our city. From our hearts we hope he may come, and when he comes, when Tennessee soil is dishonored by the tread of that dastard traitor, let him beware. In her darkest days of oppression France had her Charlotte Corday, [1] and when the dark days fall on Tennessee, her men may be beyond her borders fighting in the ranks of freemen, but her women will be left. Let Andrew Johnson beware. He may find a Corday in every woman he meets; he may expect at every corner, in every crowd, the ball that is to send him to his Maker's presence, unshrived of his odious crimes.


The Wife of a Soldier.


Memphis Daily Appeal, March 19, 1862.




19, Confederate reconnaissance and skirmish near Readyville


HDQRS., Murfreesborough Pike, March 20 [Friday], 1863.


Lieut. Gen. LEONIDAS POLK, Cmdg. Corps:


GEN.: On Wednesday [18th] I received numerous reports from reliable persons who came from the enemy's lines, to the effect that the enemy were moving troops from Murfreesborough to Nashville; also that they were sending trains loaded with troops from Nashville to Gallatin; also that they had for some time been sending stores of all kinds north from Nashville, and also that the general impression prevailed that the enemy were falling back, at least as far as the Cumberland, and were to garrison more strongly various points in Kentucky. At the same time I received official reports from Gen. Martin that the same opinion prevailed in his front.


On first hearing these reports, I directed Gen. Morgan to prepare to move his command, and gave him orders to cross Stone's River and attack their flank. I also ordered Gen.'s Wharton and Martin to attack their pickets, and develop any change they might be making. These arrangements occupied nearly all Wednesday [18th] night.


At daylight Thursday [19th] morning I started to reconnoiter the front in person. A portion of Col. [Baxter] Smith's regiment drove in the enemy's pickets at Readyville. I got a fine view of their camps, and could count distinctly some two hundred tents. No doubt many more were there, as they seemed to extend in a wood near Stone's River. I could not see any fires, men, wagons, or horses. I therefore notified Lieut.-Col. [P. F.] Anderson, commanding Smith's regiment, and directed him to press in the pickets again, and report the result. When I hear from him, I will report again. I then rode along our line to Bradyville, and from thence, between our line and that of the enemy, to Fosterville, at which place I arrived at 4 o'clock this morning. After resting about three hours, I went to the front with Gen. Martin, whose brigade had driven in the pickets yesterday, and found the enemy strongly posted.


We have out scouts this morning, and if I find any change, I will press out with the entire force at my disposal.


Some prisoners taken near Bradyville state that they were at the depot at Murfreesborough day before yesterday, and they thought but few troops were moving toward Nashville, but they thought some troops were moving toward Triune or Franklin.

Very respectfully, general, your obedient servant,




OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. II, pp. 717-718.


FOSTERVILLE, March 20, 1863.


Maj. JACK, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.:


We drove in pickets and made a reconnaissance of the enemy's camps at Readyville yesterday at 12 m. I could count about two hundred tents standing. No positive indications in this immediate front of a retrograde movement on the part of the enemy.




OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. II, p. 716.




19, "To Be Confiscated." Federal seizure of property of alien enemies in Clarksville


The Clarksville Gazette of the 19th inst. says: "The military authorities here gave notice, several days ago, to the occupants of the following named house to vacate the same, preparatory to their being confiscated as the property of alien enemies, and appropriated to military occupancy: Residence of James E. Bailey, Franklin street, occupied by Mrs. Howard; residence of Geo. B. Fleece, Franklin Street, occupied by Mrs. King; residence of residence of D. N. Kennedy, corner of Madison and Second Streets, occupied by Mrs. Kennedy."


Nashville Dispatch, March 22, 1864.






It will be remembered that the Government has for some time past occupied the Church of the Holy Trinity, South Nashville, as a powder magazine. On Thursday or Friday of last week, we are informed, the powder was removed, and the guard taken from the building but no notice given the vestry that the church property had been relinquished by the Ordnance Department. On Saturday morning, Mr. Campbell, who reside near by, saw the front door open and closed it, and informed one of the vestrymen of the circumstance. Supposing that if the military had determined to return the church to its owners, the proper officer would send the keys, no further notice was taken of it, except to fasten the doors, until Wednesday morning, when Mr. Campbell discovered that the door had been broken open, and a brief inspection convinced him that some malicious wretch or wretches had been committing the most wanton outrages in the building. The beautiful and valuable organ was entirely destroyed-broken to pieces, the pipes taken out and broken to pieces over the backs of the pews, and the case and everything connected with it utterly demolished. The Sunday School library, also, was destroyed – the case broken and the books torn or carried away. The furniture met the same fate, and the church left a complete wreck.


Nashville Dispatch, March 19, 1864.




[1] French Revolutionary heroine who was guillotined for the assassination of Jean Paul Marat in 1793.


James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214

(615)-532-1550  x115

(615)-532-1549  FAX


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