Following the American Civil War Sesquicentennial with day by day writings of the time, currently 1863.

by John Beauchamp Jones

            AUGUST 6TH.—A dispatch from Gen. Lee shows that he is still falling back (this side the Rapidan), but gradually concentrating his forces. There may be another battle speedily—and if our army does not gain a great victory, there will be great disappointment.

            There are some gun-boats in the James as high up as Aiken’s Landing. Two torpedoes, badly ignited, failed to injure either of them.

            Capt. Kay, of Mobile, in conjunction with several other parties, has a scheme for the destruction of the enemy in the MississippiValley. What it is, I know not—but I know large sums of money are asked for.

            After all, it appears that twenty-two transports of Grant’s troops have descended the Mississippi River—Mobile, no doubt, being their destination.

            It is now believed that only a portion of Grant’s army has been ordered here; also that Rosecrans’s army will operate with Meade; the object being to besiege Richmond. Well, we shall, in that event, have Johnston and Bragg—altogether 200,000 men around the city, which ought to suffice for its safety. A grand battle may take place this fall, in which half a million of men may be engaged. That ought to be followed by a decisive result. Let it come!

            The speculators have put up the price of flour to $50 per barrel. To the honor of Messrs. Warwick, they are selling it at their mills for $35—not permitting any family to have more than one barrel. This looks, however, like an approaching siege.

            My good friend Dr. Powell, almost every week, brings my family cucumbers, or corn, or butter, or something edible from his farm. He is one in ten thousand! His son has been in sixteen battles—and yet the government refuses him a lieutenancy, because he is not quite twenty-one years of age. He is manly, well educated, brave, and every way qualified.

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