by John Beauchamp Jones
MARCH 18TH.—Bright and warmer, but windy.
Letters received at the department to-day, from Georgia, show than only one-eighth of the capacity of the railroads have been used for the subsistence of the army. The rogues among the multitude of quartermasters have made fortunes themselves, and almost ruined the country. It appears that there is abundance of grain and meat in the country, if it were only equally distributed among the consumers. It is to be hoped the rogues will now be excluded from the railroads.
The belief prevails that Gen. Lee’s army is in motion. It may be a feint, to prevent reinforcements from being sent to Grant.
My daughter’s cat is staggering to-day, for want of animal food. Sometimes I fancy I stagger myself. We do not average two ounces of meat daily; and some do not get any for several days together. Meal is $50 per bushel. I saw adamantine candles sell at auction to-day (box) at $10 per pound; tallow, $6.50. Bacon brought $7.75 per pound by the 100 pounds.
My good friend Dr. Powell and his family were absent from the farm near the city during the late raid. The enemy carried off several of his finest horses and mules, and consumed much of his supplies of food, etc., but utterly failed to induce any of his negroes to leave the place—and he has many. One of the female servants, when the enemy approached, ran into the house and secured all the silver, concealing it in her own house, and keeping it safely for her mistress.