Come Out of Washington~March 1864~9th to 11th

Come Out of Washington~ William Tecumseh Sherman to his friend Ulysses S Grant

General William Tecumseh Sherman

General William Tecumseh Sherman

Sherman encourages Grant to get active in the field. Gideon Welles is suitably impressed with Grant. Plenty of fighting and hard times in the Confederacy. The Whitman brothers worry a bit about their mother. Disaster strikes Sheffield, England.

March 9– Wednesday– Staunton, Virginia– “Do try & get some one to do your work. Never mind the cost. I think I will be able to make smart money now & if loose all these we will still have plenty here. Do make yourself comfortable if possible. And if you can’t get along comfortable put some one in the house & come on out to me bring the family & such things as you can work out & come here I can fix you comfortable here. . . . . You must not allow yourself to be imposed upon or suffer exposure there, for the sake of our little property. let it go & you take care of your self & family. I have not yet heard from my resignation but expect to daily, & so soon as it is accepted I will write you and we will try & make some arrangements for our future course I assure you I am sorely tired of this life.” ~ Letter from Confederate officer John Nadenbousch to his wife Hester. [He is in the process of resigning his commission in the Confederate army and trying to set himself up in business. His wife is at their home in Berkeley County which has become part of the state of West Virginia.]

March 9– Wednesday– Athens, Georgia– “We are requested to give notice that the ladies of Athens will give entertainments at the Town Hall on Thursday and Friday evenings next, for the benefit of our soldiers. Tickets can be procured at the Book Store and the Jewelry stores of Mandeville & Bro. and Homer & Co. Doors open at 7 o’clock. The hall will doubtless be crowded.” ~ The Southern Banner.

March 9– Wednesday– dateline: London, England– “The two great German Powers have consented to pause in their career of conquest. After invading and taking possession of the Duchies, and just on the borders of Jutland, they are now reported to have listened to the suggestions of England, and to have consented to another Convention of the Great Powers, to be assembled again in London. Very few intelligent Germans have ever believed that Austria and Prussia were in earnest in this war. The popular impression has been that their extraordinary energy and activity were due quite as much to fear of the National party at home, as to hostility to Denmark. They were forced to a vigorous campaign, in order to retain the leadership of Germany and to keep down the Federalists.” ~ New York Times on the war of Austria and Germany versus Denmark.

General Grant

General Grant

March 10– Thursday– Washington, D. C.– General Grant receives a letter from his old friend, General William Tecumseh Sherman which Sherman wrote several days ago while in field. “You do yourself injustice and too much honor in assigning to us too large a share of the merits which have led to your high advancement. You are now Washington’s legitimate successor, and occupy a position of almost dangerous elevation; but if you can continue as heretofore to be yourself, simple, honest, and unpretending, you will enjoy through life the respect and love of friends, and the homage of millions of human beings who will award to you a large share for securing to them and their descendants a government of law and stability. I believe you are as brave, patriotic, and just, as the great prototype Washington; as unselfish, kind-hearted, and honest, as a man should be; but the chief characteristic in your nature is the simple faith in success you have always manifested. Now to the future. Do not stay in Washington. Come out west; take to yourself the whole Mississippi Valley; let us make it dead-sure, and I will tell you the Atlantic slope and Pacific shores will follow its destiny. For God’s sake and for your country’s sake, come out of Washington!”

March 10– Thursday– Washington, D. C.– President and Mrs Lincoln attend Grover’s Theatre for a performance of Richard III, the last night in a series of Shakespearean dramas featuring Edwin Booth.

March 10– Thursday– Richmond, Virginia– “Mrs. H. L. Know of Mobile Alabama, was brought to this city yesterday under arrest and committed to Castle Thunder as a spy.” ~ Richmond Whig.

March 10– Thursday– Cleveland, Tennessee– How I wish for independence, my spirits feel crushed. In vain I sight for peace and find none. My very soul is depressed and weighed down in the language of our psalmist did when he was oppressed by his enemies, in Psalms 8-9; ‘Deliver me from mine enemies, O my God, defend me from them that rise up against me.’ Judge ___and his lady here tonight. Such a trade of abuse I never heard as he pronounced against our beloved South. Mrs____ said she was truly sorry for the Confederate army. He said they were forced to fight at the point of a bayonet and spoke of them being urged on by a few fanatic demagogues. And denounced the Confederate lying newspaper in the bitterest of terms, how my heart ached for revenge. O, our father, if it is Thy will let us gain our independence. Truly I thought he would spare our feelings, but alas, he bridled not his tongue, neither spared he our feelings. I could only sit and offer up a feeble prayer to God for our deliverance. We are done with peace.” ~ Diary of Myra Adelaide Inman.

March 10– Thursday– Mayfield, Kentucky; Charles Town, West Virginia; White County, Tennessee; Clinton, Kentucky; Kabletown, West Virginia– Raids and skirmishes. Also, Federal troops are moving and scouting around Batesville, Arkansas, and a large Federal force leaves Vicksburg, Mississippi for operations on the Red River in Louisiana.

March 10– Thursday– Munich, Germany– King Maximilian II of Bavaria dies at age 52. He has reigned since March, 1848.

Maximilian II of Bavaria

Maximilian II of Bavaria

March 11– Friday– Brooklyn, New York– “The enclosed $5 is contributed for the wounded men by Moses Lane. I am at a stand to know whether to beg pardon for not writing you before or to scold you for not writing to me. I have been away for nearly three weeks, down in Connecticut making surveys for an ‘Iron Co’ and only returned last Monday night. Since then I have been very much engaged in getting my work up so that I have not, lately, really had an opportunity to write you. . . Mother is not well. I think she has the worst cold that I ever knew of. I wish she could be made to think that she must not wash scrub and clean house. I had quite a time with her this morning about it after exhausting every excuse she said she ‘could not afford to hire it done.’ She is foolishly worrying herself about George– thinking that he does not want her to use so much of his money She says that when he went away he did not say as usual ‘Mammy don’t want for anything.’ If he didn’t God knows he meant it. To me his whole life and actions home seemed to say so. But Mother seems to feel quite bad about it. Several days after he first went away she was either crying or planning how to take ‘boarders’ and make her own living. Poor Mother, how foolish her dear old heart gets sometimes.” ~ Letter from Jeff Whitman to his brother Walt.

Louisa Whitman

Louisa Whitman

March 11– Friday– Washington, D.C.– “A pleasant meeting of the Cabinet, and about the time we had concluded General Grant was announced. He had just returned from a visit to the Army of the Potomac, and appeared to better advantage than when I first saw him, but he is without presence. After a very brief interview, he remarked to the President that he should leave this p.m. for Nashville, to return in about two weeks, and should be glad to see the Secretary of War . . . before he left. There was in his deportment little of the dignity and bearing of the soldier but more of an air of business than his first appearance indicated, but he showed latent power.” ~ Diary of Gideon Welles.

March 11– Friday– Orange County, Virginia– “Furloughing is still a going on. There is two ahead of mine yet so I am still in hopes of getting one before long, we can have the pleasure of talking in place of writing it. It would give me so much more comfort. I have not heard anything about giving up in Virginia. It may be so, but I don’t believe that they are going to do it, for I think if they give up Virginia this cruel war will be over soon.” ~ Letter from Confederate soldier Jesse Rolston to his wife Mary.

March 11– Friday– Dooly County, Georgia– “Having despaired of seeing you soon, I will no longer delay writing. If you are disappointed in your expectations, I shall be very sorry. You will not be the only one sadly disappointed I assure you. I would like much to see you. This morning I attended the burial of Parson Aldridge. He died the 9th after a lingering illness of three weeks. His demise is much lamented by this vicinity. He was buried with Masonic honors, over at the church. I think there were nearly three hundred people present. Within the last month, death has visited many families in this neighborhood. Dr. Cross has been very sick for a length of time, and now, as he is recovering, the news has come that his son Andrew (who has been a prisoner for eight months in Ohio) is dead. It really seems that he cannot survive this affliction. You doubtless recollect him, he was quite a possessing young man when he left; but death is no respecter of persons. Therefore how important it is for us all to prepare for it, while we are in the enjoyment of good health and surrounded with many, many blessings, how apt we are to forget the God that bless assured how unthankful we are. Consequently sickness & death, are sent upon us to remind us that this earthly home is not our abiding place, but that we should seek a place in heaven.” ~ Letter from Maggie Cone to her sweetheart Alva Spencer.

March 11– Friday– Milledgeville, Georgia– The Honorable Linton Stephens “yesterday introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives, declaring that peace be officially offered to the enemy after every Confederate victory, on the principles of 1776, leaving to each doubtful State the right to decide her association by a fair Convention of the people thereof.”

March 11– Friday– Sumner County, Tennessee– “Yesterday was the day of elections and as only the union men were allowed to vote nobody knows how it turned out nor do they care. Sallie Montgomery rode out this evening, the pickets would not let her pass, so she slipped them as many do. I suppose they are scared again. Perhaps that scamp John Morgan is about. I only hope he is, for we have not seen a rebel for more than a year and our day must come soon.” ~ Diary of Alice Williamson.

remains of the broken Dale Dyke Dam

remains of the broken Dale Dyke Dam

March 11– Friday– Sheffield, England– This evening the new Dale Dyke Dam collapses, sending millions of gallons of water rushing down stream. The dead number 238. Over 700 animals are lost, 130 buildings destroyed, 15 bridges swept away and another 6 bridges are damaged.

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