Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Diary of 1st Sergeant John L. Ransom: May 26, 1864

For the last three days I have had nearly enough to eat such as it is. My washing business gives me extra food. Have taken in a partner, and the firm now is Battese, Ransom & Co. Think of taking in more partners, making Battese president, appointing vice presidents, secretaries, &c. We charge a ration of bread for admittance. Sand makes a very good soap. If we could get hold of a razor and open a barber shop in connection, our fortunes would be made. We are prolonging Lewis' life by trading for luxuries to give him. Occasionally a little real meat soup, with a piece of onion in it, etc. Am saving up capital to buy a pair of shears I know of. Molasses given us to-day, from two to four spoonfuls apiece, which is indeed a treat. Anything sweet or sour, or in the vegetable line, is the making of us. We have taken to mixing a little meal with water, putting in a little molasses and setting it in the sun to sour. Great trouble in the lack of vessels in which to keep it, and then too, after getting a dish partly well soured, some poor prisoner will deliberately walk up and before we can see him drink it all up. Men are fairly crazy for such things.

SOURCE: John L. Ransom, Andersonville Diary, p. 61

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