money was loaned me while a prisoner of war, and I desire it paid.”
The arrangements were made through a rebel officer and done on the sly. We did not get the money, but an order on the rebel sutlers, who put up a tent inside and did a thriving business.
The bills of exchange were sent north-how, we never knew — and in nearly every instance paid by our friends, who believed they were repaying a friend for kindness to us. We were obliged to obtain the money to keep from starving, and our necessities were such that we would have given twice the amount charged, but it was a grand swindle nevertheless, and persons both north and south were engaged in it. I managed to get into the ring and gave a draft of fifty dollars, receiving three hundred dollars in Confederate money.
One not acquainted with the prices and value of the money would think that I was quite well off, but in two weeks it was all gone, and yet we were as prudent as possible.
We first purchased some coarse cloth, paying fifteen dollars per yard.
Then bought some cotton and made a quilt; we paid at the rate of a dollar and a half per pound for the thread to make it with.
Pork was seven dollars per pound, tea one hundred and twenty dollars per pound, shoes one hundred dollars per pair, lead pencils three dollars each, fools-cap paper two hundred and twenty-five dollars per ream, envelopes twenty-five cents each, other things in the same proportion; but the money put new life into the prisoners, and many a man came home who would have died without it.
I was always blessed with friends, and am indebted to many old comrades for favors.
Frank and I had slept (or tried to) on the ground, without shelter, for two weeks. One day Capt. Louis R. Fortescue
of the signal corps said, “Jack
, I ”