Friday, February 10, 2017

Diary of John Beauchamp Jones: February 10, 1863

No stirring news yet. The enemy's fleet is at Port Royal, S. C. Everywhere we are menaced with overwhelming odds. Upon God, and our own right arms, we must rely, and we do rely.

To-day, in cabinet council, it is believed it was decided to call out all conscripts under forty-five years of age. The President might have done it without consulting the cabinet.

Yesterday Mrs. Goddin, the owner or wife of the owner of the house I occupy, failing to get board in the country, and we having failed to get another house, took possession of one room of the little cottage. We have temporarily the rest: parlor, dining-room, and two chambers — one of them 8 by 11 — at the rate of $800 per annum. This is low, now; for ordinary dwellings, without furniture, rent for $1800. Mr. G. has an hereditary (I believe) infirmity of the mind, and is confined by his father in an asylum. Mrs. G. has four little children, the youngest only a few weeks old. She has a white nurse, who lost her only child (died of scarlet fever) six days ago; her husband being in the army. It is a sad spectacle.

To-day beef was selling in market at one dollar per pound. And yet one might walk for hours in vain, in quest of a beggar. Did such a people ever exist before?

SOURCE: John Beauchamp Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital, Volume 1, p. 257

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