1861: “I Am Half-Mad With Vexation And Despair”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their Words

London 30 Nov. 1861

My dear Boy

If I thought the state of things bad last week you may imagine what I think of them now. In fact I consider that we are dished, and that our position is hopeless. If the Administration ordered the capture of those men, I am satisfied that our present authorities are very unsuitable persons to conduct a war like this or to remain in the direction of our affairs. It is our ruin. Do not deceive yourself about the position of England. We might have preserved our dignity in many ways without going to war with her, and our party in the Cabinet was always strong enough to maintain peace here and keep down the anti-blockaders…. Continue reading

1861: “Extremely Ornamental”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their WordsNovember 1861

Hanging Pincushion and Needle-book

Godey's MagazineThis little article is extremely ornamental when completed, and possesses the advantage of being also useful. A little case, like a book-cover, is cut out in cardboard; a similar shaped piece of velvet or silk, a little larger, is also required, on which is worked the sprig given in the illustration. This may be done in white beads, or embroidered in colored silks, or worked in gold thread. This is then stretched over the cardboard, brought over the edge, and gummed [glued] down. Continue reading

1861: “We Shall Depend On Ourselves”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their Words

Richmond, November 18, 1861

…Feeling that such views must be taken by the neutral nations of the earth, I have caused the evidence to be collected which proves completely the utter inefficiency of the proclaimed blockade of our coast, and shall direct it to be laid before such governments as shall afford us the means of being heard. But, although we should be benefited by the enforcement for the successful prosecution of the war.

As long as hostilities continue the Confederate States will exhibit a steadily increasing capacity to furnish their troops with food, clothing, and arms. If they should be forced to forego many of the luxuries and some of the comforts of life, they will at least have the consolation of knowing that they are thus daily becoming more and more independent of the rest of the world. If in this process labor in the Confederate States should be gradually diverted from those great Southern staples which have given life to so much of the commerce of mankind into other channels, so as to make them rival producers instead of profitable customers, they will not be the only or even the chief losers by this change in the direction of their industry. Continue reading

1861: “The Victory Was Most Complete”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their WordsCairo, November 8th, 1861

Dear Father,

It is late at night and I want to get a letter into the Mail for you before it closes. As I have just finished a very hasty letter to Julia that contains about what I would write, and having something els [else] to do myself, I will have my clerk copy it on to this.

Day before yesterday, I left here with about 3,000 men in five steamers, convoyed by two Gun Boats, and proceeded down the river, to within twelve miles of Columbus. The next morning the Boats were dropped down just out of range of the enemies [enemy’s] Batteries, and the troops debarked – Continue reading

1861: “You Are The First Brigade”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their WordsNovember 8, 1861

“Officers and men of the First Brigade, I am not here to make a speech but simply to say farewell. I first met you at Harper’s Ferry in the commencement of the war, and I cannot take leave of you without giving expression to my admiration of your conduct from that day to this, whether on the march, in the bivouac, the tented field, or on the bloody plains of Manassas, where you gained the well-deserved reputation of having decided the fate of the battle. Continue reading

1861: “Behaved As Well As If On The Parade Ground”

Gazette665 Blog Series 1861: In Their WordsOctober 22, 1861

…Our company made the last charge. The general was killed, shot by 5 balls; nobody knew who was the senior in command & Col. Lee ordered a retreat. But we were determined to have one more shot. So Frank ordered a charge & we rushed along, followed by all our men without an exception, & by Lieut. Hallowell with 20 men, making about 60 in all. So we charged across the field about half way, when we saw the enemy in full sight. They had just come out of the wood & had halted at our advance. There they were in their dirty gray clothes, their banner waving, cavalry on the flank. For a moment there was a pause. And then, simultaneously, we fired & there came a murderous discharge from the full rebel force. Of course we retreated, but not a man went ¬†faster than a walk. Continue reading