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

by John Beauchamp Jones

            OCTOBER 22D.—Gen. Wheeler has taken 700 of the enemy’s cavalry in East Tennessee, 6 cannon, 50 wagons, commissary stores, etc. Per contra, the steamer Venus, with bacon, from Nassau, got aground trying to enter the port of Wilmington, and ship and cargo were lost. There is a rumor that Gen. Taylor, trans-Mississippi, has captured Gen. Banks, his staff, and sixteen regiments. This, I fear, is not well authenticated.

            A poor woman yesterday applied to a merchant in Carey Street to purchase a barrel of flour. The price he demanded was $70.

            “My God!” exclaimed she, “how can I pay such prices ? I have seven children what shall I do?”

            “I don’t know, madam,” said he, coolly, ” unless you eat your children.”

            Such is the power of cupidity—it transforms men into demons. And if this spirit prevails throughout the country, a just God will bring calamities upon the land, which will reach these cormorants, but which, it may be feared, will involve all classes in a common ruin.

            Beef, to-day, sold in market at $1.50 per pound. There is no bacon for sale, or corn-meal. But we shall not starve, if we have faith in a beneficent Providence. Our daughter Anne, teaching in Appomattox County, writes that she will send us a barrel of potatoes, some persimmons, etc. next Wednesday. And we had a good dinner to-day : a piece of fat shoulder Capt. Warner let me have at $1 per pound—it is selling for $2.50—and cabbage from my garden, which my neighbor’s cow overlooked when she broke through the gate last Sunday. Although we scarcely know what we shall have to-morrow, we are merry and patriotic to-day.

            Last night I went to hear Rev. Dr. Hobson, Reformed Baptist, or Campbellite, preach. He is certainly an orator (from Kentucky) and a man of great energy and fertility of mind. There is a revival in his congregation too, as well as among the Methodists, but he was very severe in his condemnation of the emotional or sensational practices of the latter. He said, what was never before known by me, that the word pardon is not in the New Testament, but remission was. His point against the Methodists was their fallacy of believing that conversion was sudden and miraculous, and accompanied by a happy feeling. Happy feeling, he said, would naturally follow a consciousness of remission of sins, but was no evidence of conversion, for it might be produced by other things. It was the efficacy of the Word, of the promise of God, which obliterated the sins of all who believed, repented, and were baptized. He had no spasmodic extravagances over his converts; but, simply taking them by the hand, asked if they believed, repented, and would be baptized. If the answers were in the affirmative, they resumed their seats, and were soon after immersed in a pool made for the purpose in the church.

            I pray sincerely that this general revival in the churches will soften the hearts of the extortioners, for this class is specifically denounced in the Scriptures. There is abundance in the land, but “man’s inhumanity to man makes countless thousands mourn.” I hope the extortioners may all go to heaven, first ceasing to be extortioners.

            The Legislature has broken up the gambling establishments, for the time being, and the furniture of their gorgeous saloons is being sold at auction. Some idea of the number of these establishments may be formed from an estimate (in the Examiner) of the cost of the entertainment prepared for visitors being not less than $10,000 daily. Their agents bought the best articles offered for sale in the markets, and never hesitated to pay the most exorbitant prices. I hope now the absence of such customers may have a good effect. But I fear the currency, so redundant, is past remedy.

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