Monday, July 10, 2017

Diary of John Beauchamp Jones: June 2, 1863

We have a dispatch from Mississippi, stating that on Thursday last Grant demanded the surrender of Vicksburg in three days. He was answered that fifteen minutes were not asked; that the men were ready to die — but would never surrender. This was followed by another assault, in which the enemy lost great numbers, and were repulsed — as they have been in every subsequent attempt to take the town.

A letter from our agent in London says H. O. Brewer, of Mobile, advanced £10,000 in March last, to buy a steamer for the use of the Confederate States.

Gen. Whiting writes from Wilmington, that a captured mail furnishes the intelligence that the enemy have thirty-one regiments at Newbern, and he apprehends they will cut the railroad at Goldsborough, as we have but two small brigades to resist them. Then they may march against Wilmington, where he has not now sufficient forces to man his batteries. The general says he is quite sure that individual blockade-runners inform the enemy of our defenseless points, and inflict incalculable injury. He desires the Secretary to lay his letter before the President.

A circular from the Bureau of Conscription to the commandants of conscripts says, the Assistant Secretary of War (Judge Campbell) suggests that overseers and managers on farms be disturbed as little as possible just at this time, for the benefit of the crops. But what good will the crops do, if we be subjugated in the mean time? I thought every man was needed, just at this time, on the field of battle.

The President rides out (on horse) every afternoon, and sits as straight as an English king could do four centuries ago.

SOURCE: John Beauchamp Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital, Volume 1, p. 338-9

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