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

by John Beauchamp Jones

            SEPTEMBER 6TH.—Northern papers received yesterday evening contain a letter from Mr. Lincoln to the Illinois Convention of Republicans, in which I am told (I have not seen it yet) he says if the Southern people will first lay down their arms, he will then listen to what they may have to say. Evidently he has been reading of the submission of Jack Cade’s followers, who were required to signify their submission with ropes about their necks.

            This morning I saw dispatches from Atlanta, Ga., stating that in one of the northern counties the deserters and tories had defeated the Home Guard which attempted to arrest them. In Tennessee, North Carolina, Mississippi, and Georgia, we have accounts of much and growing defection, and the embodying of large numbers of deserters. Indeed, all our armies seem to be melting away by desertion faster than they are enlarged by conscription.. They will return when there is fighting to do.

            A letter from Col. Lay, dated North Carolina, to the Chief of the Bureau of Conscription, recommends the promotion of a lieutenant to a captaincy. The colonel is great in operations of this nature; and Col. Preston is sufficiently good natured to recommend the recommendation to the Secretary of War, who, good easy man, will not inquire into his age, etc.

            Gold is worth from 1000 to 1500 per cent. premium; and yet one who has gold can buy supplies of anything, by first converting it into Confederate notes at low prices. For instance, coal at $30 is really bought for $3 per load. A fine horse at $1000 for $100. Bacon, at $2 per pound is only 20 cents; boots at 100 is only $10, and so on.

            Thank Heaven! the little furniture, etc. we now have is our own —costing less to buy it than the rent we paid for that belonging to others up to the beginning of the month. A history of the household goods we possess would, no doubt, if it could be written, be interesting to haberdashers. I think we have articles belonging in their time to twenty families.

            The following list of prices is cut from yesterday’s paper:

            Produce, provisions, etc.—Apples, $30 to $35 per barrel; bacon is firm at $2 to $2.10 for hoground. Butter is advancing; we quote at $2.50 to $3 by the package. Cheese has advanced, and now sells at $1.50 to $2 per pound; corn, $8 to $9 per bushel; corn-meal, $9 per bushel, in better supply. Flour, at the Gallego Mills, new superfine, uninspected, is sold at $25 per barrel; at commission houses and in second hands, the price of new superfine is from $35 to $40; onions, $40 to $50 per barrel ; Irish potatoes, $5 to $6 per bushel, according to quality; oats firm at $6 per bushel. Wheat—the supply coming in is quite limited. The millers refuse to compete with the government, and are consequently paying $5 per bushel. It is intimated, however, that outside parties are buying on speculation at $6 to $6.50, taking the risk of impressment. Lard, $1.70 to $1.75 per pound; eggs, $1.25 to $1.50 per dozen ; seeds, timothy, $8 to $10; clover, $40 to $45 per bushel.

            Groceries.—Sugars: the market is active; we hear of sales of prime brown at $2 to $2.15; coffee, $4.25 to $4.75 per pound; molasses, $15 per gallon; rice, 25 cents per pound; salt, 45 cents per pound; soap, 50 cents to 80 cents, as to quality; candles, $2.75 to $3 per pound.

            Liquors.—We quote corn whisky at $20 to $25 per gallon; rye whisky, $38 to $40, according to quality; apple brandy, $25 to $30 ; rum, $28 per gallon.”

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