Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Diary of John Beauchamp Jones: November 14, 1862

An order has gone forth to-day from the Secretary of War, that no more flour or wheat shall leave the States. This order was given some time ago — then relaxed, and now reissued. How soon will he revoke it again?

Never before did such little men rule such a great people. Our rulers are like children or drunken men riding docile horses, that absolutely keep the riders from falling off by swaying to the right and left, and preserving an equilibrinm. There is no rule for anything, and no stability in any policy.

To-day more propositions from Frenchmen (in New Orleans) have been received. Butler is preparing to do a great business — and no objection to the illicit traffic is filed by the Secretaries of State or Treasury.

Yesterday one of the President's servants was arrested for stealing Treasury notes. The Treasury Department is just under the Executive Department; and this negro (slave) has been used by the President to take important papers to the departments. The amount abstracted was $5000 —unsigned — but some one, perhaps the negro, for he is educated, forged the Register's and Treasurer's names.

I saw Gen. J. E. Johnston standing idle in the street to-day.

SOURCE: John Beauchamp Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital, Volume 1, p. 189

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