The industry of the women of the South.
--A letter from Lincoln county, Tenn.
I witnessed many a scene in this rural district which the gay ladies of our fashionable cities may well ponder on, with the reflection of surprise of how little they know of the hardships which their sex are forced to under go to sustain and support their families while their husbands and brothers are absent fighting the battles of our country.
On the small farms throughout this section all is life, activity, and industry.
Many a woman who never before held a plow is now seen in the cornfield — many a young girl who would have blushed at the thought before of handling a plow line, now naturally and unconsciously cries "gee up" to Dobbin
, to the silvery tones of which the good brute readily responds, as if a pleasure to comply with so gentle a command.
Many a Rath, as of old, is seen to day, binding and gleaning in the wheat fields; but, alas!
is there to console or to comfort.
The picture of the rural solder's home is at this time but a picture of primitive life.
Throughout the country, at every farm — house and cottage, the regular sound of the loom, as the shuttle flies to and fro, with the whirl of the spinning wheel is heard, telling of home industry.
Cotton fabrics, of neat, pretty figures, the production of home manufactory, are now almost wholly worn in Tennessee
, instead of calicoes.
But it is a sad thought that while these exertions of thriving industry are being made for the support of the soldier's family, his little cottage home, of which he nightly dreams, is to be abandoned and left unprotected by the falling back of our troops, and subject to the pillage and plunder of the vandal infidels.
Such at least I fear will be the case in the counties of Bedford
, from which we have fallen back.