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Browsing named entities in a specific section of Thomas C. DeLeon, Four years in Rebel capitals: an inside view of life in the southern confederacy, from birth to death.. Search the whole document.

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l, with millions of pounds of cotton rotting in our warehouses-Confederate money, little by little, bought less and less of the necessaries of life. At first the change was very gradual. In the summer of 1861, persons coming to Richmond from Europe and the North spent their gold as freely as the Treasury notes. Then gold rose to five, ten, fifteen, and finally to forty per cent. premium. There it stuck for a time. But the issues increased in volume, the blockade grew more effective, and s watching every port and cove, to snap up the daring ventures between the island ports and the coast; with a powerful enemy thundering at every point of entrance to southern territory, still the fortunate man who had gold, or who could draw upon Europe, or the North, actually lived much cheaper than in any place beyond the lines! Singular as this statement may appear, it is actual fact. At this moment-before the depreciation of currency became such as to give it no value whatever-board at the
Petersburg, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 28
pork and butter in Richmond reached $35 per pound; when common cloth was $60 per yard, shoes $200 to $800 per pair, and a barrel of flour worth $1,400, it became a difficult problem to fill one's stomach at any outlay. And all this time the soldiers and Government employes were being paid on a gold basis. The private received eleven (afterward twenty-one) dollars per month-amounting at the end of 1863 to just fifty-five cents in coin! At the last payments, before the final actions at Petersburg, the pay of a private for one month was thirty-three cents! Nor were officers of the army and navy better paid. With their rank in the old service guaranteed them, they also received about the same pay, when gold and paper money were of equal value. Later Congress believed it would be a derogation from its dignity to practically reduce the value of its issues, as one member said, by raising officers' pay. Thus a lieutenant in the navy, probably of twenty years experience, and with a
Washington (United States) (search for this): chapter 28
ith a powerful enemy thundering at every point of entrance to southern territory, still the fortunate man who had gold, or who could draw upon Europe, or the North, actually lived much cheaper than in any place beyond the lines! Singular as this statement may appear, it is actual fact. At this moment-before the depreciation of currency became such as to give it no value whatever-board at the best hotels in Richmond was $20 per day-equivalent to $r in gold, while it was $3 in New York, or Washington; a suit of clothes could be had for $600 or $30 in gold, while in New York it cost from $60 to $80; the best whisky was $25 per gallon-$I. 25 in gold, while in the North it was more than double. Rapidly gold rose in the market, and in the absence of stocks became the only vehicle for financial gambling. From time to time, as a brilliant success would grace Confederate arms, the fall of Treasury credit would be checked. But it was only for the moment --and it went down steadily, rapi
Manhattan, Riley County, Kansas (Kansas, United States) (search for this): chapter 28
to gain. Few got badly hurt, getting more in equivalent of wines, cigars and jolly dinners than they gave. They looked upon the hell as a club-and as such used it freely, spending what they had and whistling over their losses. When they had money to spare they played; when they had no money to spare-or otherwise --they smoked their cigars, drank their toddies and met their friends in chaff and gossip, with no more idea that there was a moral or social wrong than if they had been at the Manhattan or the Pickwick of to-day. I do not pretend to defend the habit; but such it was, and such all the men who remember the Capital will recognize it. Of that other class, who went in for blood --some got badly hurt in reputation and in pocket. But the dead cause has buried its dead; and their errors — the result of an overstrained state of society and indubitably of a false money-system-hurt no one but themselves. And so, with the enemy thundering at the gates; with the echoed wh
nswer, egad, sir! 'twill go up like a rocket! Up, sir! egad! clean out of sight! I candidly answered that I could not see the end of the inflation. I do, Styles growled-Repudiation! Well, that's no end of a nobby thing! cried Will Wyatt, who was always bored about anything more serious than the last book, or charging a battery. Cheerful that, for a fellow's little pile to go up like a rocket, and he not even to get the stick. He can have the smoke, however, answered Styles md under the pinched and pallid features of starvation, tottered to me one day to beg work. It is life or death for me and four young children, she said. We have eaten nothing to-day; and all last week we lived on three pints of rice! Will Wyatt, who was near, made a generous offer of relief. Tears sprang into the woman's eyes as she answered, You mean kindness, major; but I have never asked charity yet. My husband is at the front; and I only ask a right — to be allowed to work for my c
C. G. Memminger (search for this): chapter 28
urrency had reached such expansion that its value was merely nominal for purposes of subsistence, when the devices of Mr. Memminger to lessen it began to be pressed in earnest. The people had now begun to see that the whole theory of the Treasurdorsed his destructive policy. Mr. Davis, the people said, was autocratic with his Cabinet, and would have displaced Mr. Memminger summarily, had he not favored that peculiar financial system. Mr. Davis, too, was known to have been hostile to the p the issues. Now, therefore, the inflation and utter inadequacy of the paper money was laid at his door, as well as Mr. Memminger's; and the people, feeling there was no safety for them, began to distrust the good faith of such reckless issue. A on, ever on to the darkness coming faster and faster down upon them — to declare that the cause of their trouble was Mr. Memminger; with the President behind him. But, though the people saw the mismanagement and felt its cause --though they suf
ot badly hurt, getting more in equivalent of wines, cigars and jolly dinners than they gave. They looked upon the hell as a club-and as such used it freely, spending what they had and whistling over their losses. When they had money to spare they played; when they had no money to spare-or otherwise --they smoked their cigars, drank their toddies and met their friends in chaff and gossip, with no more idea that there was a moral or social wrong than if they had been at the Manhattan or the Pickwick of to-day. I do not pretend to defend the habit; but such it was, and such all the men who remember the Capital will recognize it. Of that other class, who went in for blood --some got badly hurt in reputation and in pocket. But the dead cause has buried its dead; and their errors — the result of an overstrained state of society and indubitably of a false money-system-hurt no one but themselves. And so, with the enemy thundering at the gates; with the echoed whoo! of the great
ithout costing the central government one dollar; and in some instances — as of that spotless knight, true gentleman and pure patriot, Wade Hampton-raised by the energy, paid for by the generosity, and led to death itself by the valor of one man! Corporations came into this general feeling. Railroads put their rolling-stock and their power in the hands of the Government; agreeing, as early as the origin of the Montgomery government, to take their pay at half rates and in government bonds. Banks put their facilities and their circulation, manufacturers their machinery and foundries their material, at public disposition, for the bare cost of existence. Farmers and graziers cheerfully yielded all demanded of them! And how the women wrought-how soft hands that had never worked before plied the ceaseless needle through the tough fabrichow taper fingers packed the boxes for camp, full from self-denial at home-shall shine down all history as the brightest page in story of noble selfless
Johnny Reb (search for this): chapter 28
ce it that the human hyenas of speculation did prey upon the dying South; that they locked up her salt while the men in the trenches perished for it; that thrice they stored the flour the people felt was theirs, in such quantities and for so long, that before their maw for gain was glutted, serious riots of the starving called for the strong hand to interfere. And to the credit of Government and southern soldier, be it said-even in that dark hour, with craving stomach and sickening soul--Johnny Reb obeyed his orders and guarded the den of the hyena — from his own hungering children, perhaps! No weak words of mine may paint the baseness and infamy of the vultures of the market. Only a Dor6, with a picture like his Frozen Hell, or Ugolino-might give it faint ideal. And with the feeling how valueless was the money, came another epidemic — not so widespread, perhaps, as the speculation fever; but equally fatal to those who caught it — the rage for gambling! Impulsive by natu<
on that the alchemy of genius, or even of business tactmight have transmuted into gold, rotted useless; or worse, as a bait for the raider. The notes, that might have been a worthy pledge of governmental faith, bore no meaning now upon their face; and the soldier in the trench and the family at the desolate fireside-who might have been comfortably fed and clad — were gnawed with very hunger! And when the people murmured too loudly, a change was made in men, if not in policy. Even if Mr. Trenholm had the ability, he had no opportunity to prove it. The evil seed had been sown and the bitter fruit had grown apace. Confederate credit was dead! Even its own people had no more faith in the issues of their government; and they hesitated not-even while they groped on, ever on to the darkness coming faster and faster down upon them — to declare that the cause of their trouble was Mr. Memminger; with the President behind him. But, though the people saw the mismanagement and felt i
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