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The Project Gutenberg EBook of A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital, by John Beauchamp Jones This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.org Title: A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital Author: John Beauchamp Jones Release Date: January 26, 2010 [EBook #31087] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK REBEL WAR CLERK'S DIARY *** Produced by Suzanne Shell, Stephanie Eason, and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net. A REBEL WAR CLERK’S DIARY AT THE CONFEDERATE STATES CAPITAL. BY J. B. JONES, CLERK IN THE WAR DEPARTMENT OF THE CONFEDERATE STATES GOVERNMENT; AUTHOR OF “WILD WESTERN SCENES,” ETC. ETC. VOLS. I and II. PHILADELPHIA: J. B. LIPPINCOTT & CO. 1866. Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1866, by J. B. LIPPINCOTT & CO., In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the United States for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. PREFACE. This Diary was written with the knowledge of the President and the Secretary of War. I informed them of it by note. They did not deprecate criticism on their official conduct; for they allowed me still to execute the functions of a very important position in the Government until the end of its career. My discriminating friends will understand why I accepted the poor title of a clerkship, after having declined the Chargéship to Naples, tendered by Mr. Calhoun during the administration of President Polk. J. B. J. ONANCOCK, Accomac Co., Va., March, 1866. [Pg iii] [Pg iv] CONTENTS. VOLUME I. CHAPTER I. My flight from the North and escape into Virginia.—Revolutionary scene at Richmond.—The Union Convention passes the Ordinance of Secession.—Great excitement prevails in the South. CHAPTER II. Depart for Montgomery.—Interview with President Davis.—My position in the Government. —Government removed to Richmond.—My family. CHAPTER III. Troops pour into Richmond.—Beginning of hostilities.—Gen. Lee made a full general. —Major-Gen. Polk.—A battle expected at Manassas. CHAPTER IV. My family in North Carolina.—Volunteers daily rejected.—Gen. Winder appears upon the stage.—Toombs commissioned.—Hunter Secretary of State.—Duel prevented.—Col. B. Secretary for a few hours.—Gen. Garnett killed.—Battle of Manassas.—Great excitement.—Col. Bartow. CHAPTER V. My son Custis appointed clerk in the War Department.—N. Y Herald contains a pretty . correct army list of the C. S.—Appearance of the “Plug Uglies.”—President’s rupture with Beauregard.—President sick.—Alien enemies ordered away.—Brief interview with the President.—“Immediate.”—Large numbers of cavalry offering.—Great preparations in the North. CHAPTER VI. [Pg v] 13 30 47 57 69 Four hundred thousand troops to be raised.—Want of arms.—Yankees offer to sell them to us.—Walker resigns.—Benjamin succeeds.—Col. J. A. Washington killed.—Assigned, temporarily, to the head of the passport office. CHAPTER VII. An order for the publication of the names of alien enemies.—Some excitement.—Efforts to secure property.—G. A. Myers, lawyer, actively engaged.—Gen. Price gains a victory in Missouri.—Billy Wilson’s cut-throats cut to pieces at Fort Pickens.—A female spy arrives from Washington.—Great success at Leesburg or Ball’s Bluff. CHAPTER VIII. Quarrel between Gen. Beauregard and Mr. Benjamin.—Great naval preparations in the North.—The loss of Port Royal, S. C., takes some prestige.—The affair at Belmont does not compensate for it.—The enemy kills an old hare.—Missouri secedes. —Mason and Slidell captured.—French Consul and the actresses.—The lieutenant in disguise.—Eastern Shore of Virginia invaded.—Messrs. Breckinridge and Marshall in Richmond. CHAPTER IX. Gen. Lee ordered South.—Gen. Stuart ambuscaded at Drainsville.—W. H. B. Custis returns to the Eastern Shore.—Winder’s detectives.—Kentucky secedes.—Judge Perkins’s resolution.—Dibble goes North.—Waiting for Great Britain to do something. —Mr. Ely, the Yankee M. C. CHAPTER X. Seward gives up Mason and Slidell.—Great preparations of the enemy.—Gen. Jackson betrayed.—Mr. Memminger’s blunders.—Exaggerated reports of our troops in Kentucky and Tennessee. CHAPTER XI. Fall of Fort Henry.—Of Fort Donelson.—Lugubrious Inauguration of the President in the Permanent Government.—Loss of Roanoke Island. CHAPTER XII. Nashville evacuated.—Martial law.—Passports.—Com. Buchanan’s naval engagement. —Gen. Winder’s blunders.—Mr. Benjamin Secretary of State.—Lee commander-inchief.—Mr. G. W. Randolph Secretary of War. CHAPTER XIII. Gen. Beauregard succeeds Gen. Sydney Johnston.—Dibble, the traitor.—Enemy at Fredericksburg.—They say we will be subdued by the 15th of June.—Lee rapidly concentrating at Richmond.—Webster, the spy, hung. CHAPTER XIV. Disloyalists entrapped.—Norfolk abandoned.—Merrimac blown up.—Army falling back. —Mrs. Davis leaves Richmond.—Preparing to burn the tobacco.—Secretary of War trembles for Richmond.—Richmond to be defended.—The tobacco.—Winking and blinking.—Johnston’s great battle.—Wounded himself.—The wounded.—The hospitals. CHAPTER XV. Huger fails again.—A wounded boy.—The killed and wounded.—Lee assumes command. —Lee prepares to attack McClellan.—Beauregard watches the gold.—Our generals scattered.—Hasty letter from Gen. Lee.—Opening of grand battle.—First day, 26th June.—Second, etc.—Lee’s consummate skill.—Every day for a week it rages. —Streets crowded with Blue Jackets.—McClellan retires. CHAPTER XVI. Terrific fighting.—Anxiety to visit the battle-field.—Lee prepares for other battles.—Hope for the Union extinct.—Gen. Lee brings forward conscripts.—Gen. Cobb appointed to arrange exchange of prisoners.—Mr. Ould as agent.—Pope, the braggart, comes upon the stage.—Meets a braggart’s fate.—The war transferred to Northern Virginia. 77 82 [Pg vi] 89 96 103 108 112 118 122 131 [Pg vii] 140 CHAPTER XVII. Vicksburg shelled.—Lee looks toward Washington.—Much manœuvring in Orange County. —A brigade of the enemy annihilated.—McClellan flies to Washington.—Cretans. —Lee has a mighty army.—Missouri risings.—Pope’s coat and papers captured. —Cut up at Manassas.—Clothing captured of the enemy. CHAPTER XVIII. Lee announces a victory.—Crosses the Potomac.—Battle of Sharpsburg.—McClellan pauses at the Potomac.—Lee moves mysteriously.—The campaign a doubtful one in its material results.—Horrible scene near Washington.—Conscription enlarged. —Heavy loss at Sharpsburg.—10,000 in the hospitals here. CHAPTER XIX. McClellan has crossed the Potomac.—Another battle anticipated.—I am assured here that Lee had but 40,000 men engaged at Sharpsburg.—He has more now, as he is defending Virginia.—Radicals of the North want McClellan removed.—Our President has never taken the field.—Lee makes demonstrations against McClellan.—A Jew store robbed last night.—We have 40,000 prisoners excess over the enemy.— My family arrived from Raleigh.—My wife’s substitute for coffee.—Foul passports.—My friend Brooks dines and wines with members of Congress.—The Herald and Tribune tempt us to return to the Union.—Lee writes, no immediate advance of McClellan. —Still a rumor of Bragg’s victory in Kentucky.—Enemy getting large reinforcements. —Diabolical order of Governor Baylor.—Secretary’s estimate of conscripts and all others, 500,000.—Bragg retreating from Kentucky.—Bickering between Bragg and Beauregard.—Lee wants Confederate notes made a legal tender.—There will be no second Washington. CHAPTER XX. Gen. Lee in Richmond: beard white.—First proposition to trade cotton to the enemy. —Secretary in favor of it.—All the letters come through my hands again.—Lee falling back.—5000 negroes at work on the fortifications.—Active operations looked for. —Beauregard advises non-combatants to leave the city.—Semmes’s operations. —Making a nation.—Salt works lost in Virginia.—-Barefooted soldiers.— Intrigues of Butler in New Orleans.—Northern army advancing everywhere.—Breach between the President and Secretary of War.—President’s servant arrested for robbing the Treasury.—Gen. J. E. Johnston in town.—Secretary has resigned.—Hon. J. A. Seddon appointed
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