CHAPTER LXXI

Running the Blockade

1.  Now wars increased and multiplied greatly, so that there was no day passed that there was not a skirmish or a battle.

2.  And many were the fights by the sea and upon the rivers, for great vessels of war were upon the deep and upon the rivers of water.

3.  Strong fortresses were builded upon the shores of the rivers, and mighty engines of war were placed thereon, even great cannon.

4.  So that no boat could pass up or down, lest they should be demolished and sunken, for the noise of the cannon was like unto thunder-bolt.

5.  Now there were strong fortifications upon the Father of Waters, even round about the city of Vicksburg, and there were great cannon placed thereon.

6.  And there was a boat, the name whereof was the Queen of the West, and Colonel Ellet was the commander of it.

7.  Now the crew of the Queen of the West were brave and no fearful, and the commander said, Let us sail by the batteries that are upon the shore, even by the strong forts of Vicksburg.

8.  And it was done according as Ellet had spoken, but after this, was the vessel taken by the Rebels.

9.  And there was another gunboat, the name of which was the Indianola, and the name of the commander was Brown.

10.  And it came to pass, that a certain Admiral, who is called Porter, said unto Brown, Thou also mayst pass the batteries of Vicksburg, even as did Ellet the Colonel.

11.  Now Brown did as Porter had commanded, and as the Indianola went past, lo! eighteen guns were fired upon her from the batteries of the Rebels, but no harm came unto her.

12.  But it came to pass that the Indianola were captured, and fell into the power of the Rebels.

13.  Now Porter had seen that while the vessels of the North were sailing by the batteries of Vicksburg, that five of the great guns of the enemy exploded in firing.

14.  Therefore Porter said, I will make a boat in the likeness and the image of a Monitor.

15.  And the foundation thereof shall be an old coal barge, and for smoke stacks she will have pork barrels piled one upon another, and for quarter boats two old canoes.

16.  And her furnaces shall be of mud, and shall send forth black smoke and not steam.

17.  And peradventure when I shall have made this vessel and pushed it into the stream, and it shall float by the batteries, they will fire also upon it. and burst other guns.

18.  Now Porter did even as he had thought in his heart, and behold when the boat which he had made floated away,

19.  The batteries of Vicksburg opened with a mighty din, so that the earth trembled, and the shot fell thick as the leaves in the Autumn.

20.  But the false Monitor escaped unharmed, and sailed on and came high unto the place where the Indianola was.

21.  Now when the Rebels who had taken the Indianola saw the boat coming, they were sore afraid, and cried out, Lo, a turreted monster cometh.

22.  And they said, let us destroy the Indianola that she be not recaptured, and let us sail away with all haste, for full surely will destruction come upon us.

23.  For a truth there is no escape from a turreted monster, and in swift flight alone is there a shadow of safety.

24.  So they destroyed the Indianola by powder and by fire, and escaped away out of the reach of the turreted monster.

CHAPTER LXXII

Bread Riots

1.  Now there was great destitution in the land of Dixie, for many of the fields were laid waste, and  merchantmen brought no supplies from afar for fear of the ships that Abraham had sent upon the sea.

2.  And there arose a famine in the land, and the famine was grievous unto the people, so that they clamored for bread,

3.  Saying unto the Rulers and the rich men, give us to eat or we perish, both we and our little ones.

4.  And they arose in many cities, and cried out mightily, saying, we will have whereof to eat.

5.  Now Richmond was a proud city, and full of sin, even like unto Babylon of old, or like unto the cities of the plain.

6.  For, in that city, Jefferson had his throne, and his wicked ministers dwelt there.

7.  And some said, surely, Richmond is the main gates of Hell, and the black entrance thereof; but others said, nay, of a truth, Charleston is the main gate, but Richmond is the trap-door that leadeth unto darkness, and unto the place of brimstone.

8.  And the famine prevailed in Richmond, and the poor arose, crying for bread, saying, give unto us meat this day, or we perish.

9.  And about three hundred women gathered themselves together in the streets, and seized bread, and meat, and flour, and whatsoever was good for food, or for clothing.

10.  Now, when the stores were fast closed, and the windows barred, and the doors bolted with strong bolts,

11.  The women seized axes, and hatchets, and broke the doors, and burst the bars asunder, and entered in the houses, and did eat, and gave unto their little ones.

12.  Then came forth the City Guard, with fixed bayonets, and threatened the women, and said, if ye go not to your homes, ye shall surely die.

13.  And they laughed at the Guard, and answered, saying, hunger cuts more keenly than a knife, and starvation is sharper than a bayonet.

14.  Then arose the Governor of the tribe of Virginia, even Governor Letcher, who was a mighty man. and had not tasted hunger.

15.  And he reviled those that were hungry, saying, it is a shame unto you, and a disgrace unto the city.  Go ye, therefore, unto your houses, and what matter is it if ye be hungry.  What a hunger? Hunger hurteth not me.  Ye are fools, and sinful, that ye complain of this thing.

CHAPTER LXXIII

Vance's Appeal

1.  Now there was great want in the land of North Carolina, insomuch that the people feared starvation.

2.  And the Governor of the people of that land, who dwelt in the Capital City, even in the City of Raleigh, sent forth a message to the planters of the land,

3.  Saying, lo! provisions fail so that there is little to eat, and none to spare, for many have consumed our substance, but there is none to replenish.

4.  Without bread the soldier hath neither strength nor courage, and how shall our armies subsist unless we send them provisions.

5.  The sword and the spear are a defense against the Yankees, but against the famine who can contend?

6.  Plant ye, therefore, and sow, that in due time ye may gather an abundant harvest, that starvation come not upon us, and our armies disband, because of fierce hunger.

7.  But plant ye no cotton, and no tobacco, for these things are not to be eaten.

8.  Let no man sow that he may reap great gain unto himself, but that he may save the land from destruction.

9.  And let the magistrates see that no one useth the grain for distilling, but let it be made into bread for the starving.

10.  And let none take food by violence, for he who breaketh the law gaineth not bread, but much sorrow.

11.  And finally, oh Planters, I advise that ye gather yourselves together in council and determine what is best, that ye may act wisely.

12.  Now when the Governor had written this appeal he sent it forth to the tillers of the fields, and to all the people.

13.  And the people mourned, saying, how sad is our case, and how greatly have sorrows increased in our midst.

14.  Verily, the hand of God is against us, and surely the sins of our Rulers rise up in judgment against us.

15.  O, that we were as in the days of our prosperity, that we might rest neath the protecting wings of the union.

16.  For now we go forth with sorrow in the morning, and at night we return to our dwellings with weeping.

17.  And the remembrance of the days that are gone cometh upon us, and we sigh for the day of peace, and the day wherein we shall be joined to the Northland, and when the North and the South shall be one people.

CHAPTER LXXIV

Fort Sumter Bombarded

1.  Now when many war vessels had been made ready and clad in iron, and armed with mighty cannon and manned by the bravest of the sons of the North.

2.  Behold Dupont goeth forth by the coasts of the South, and leadeth a squadron against the strong fortresses that are over against Charleston.

3.  And these are the names of the vessels that were equipped for the fight, and that Dupont led under the battlements of the strong forts.

4.  The Weehawken and the Passiac and the Montaud and the Patapsco and the Ironsides and the Catskill and the Nantucket and the Nahant and the Keokuk.

5.  Now all these vessels were of great size and strength, and were clad in ribs of iron, and floated upon the sea like unto huge leviathans.

6.  When they came up the harbor, and nigh unto Sumter and near unto the many strong forts and batteries of the Rebels, a furious battle began.

7.  Mightily fell the hot storm of battle upon the valiant vessels of iron.

8.  One hundred and three score were the cannon balls that fell in one minute, and the balls that were shot by the Rebels were in all three thousand five hundred.

9.  And the weight of the balls was some on hundred, and some two hundred, and some three hundred and some four hundred pounds.

10.  Now the gunners that were upon the boats were strong men, and naked to the waist and grimed with powder.

11.  And they did load the guns with many pounds of powder, and did fire from the port holes of the iron clad boats, and their balls fell upon Sumter like thunderbolts upon a mountain.

12.  Now went the Keokuk forth from the rest of the fleet and sailed near unto Sumter, and immediately the guns of the rebels were turned upon her.

13.  And tons of iron rattled upon her, and ninety times was she struck, and nineteen rants were made in her armor of iron.

14.  And not until then did the Keokuk withdraw herself from the battle, and as she sailed slowly away she shouted a farewell of fury from the black mouth of her cannon.

15.  And the Keokuk sunk in the midst of the sea, and behold all the vessels departed, for they were not able to batter down the strong fortresses of Charleston.

CHAPTER LXXV

Union Meetings

1.  In those days there were evil spirits abroad in the earth, who took to themselves the forms of men,

2.  But because of their likeness unto serpents, they were called Copperheads, and they were a great evil in the land.

3.  They were otherwise called Butternuts, and some called the Anti-war-men.

4.  Now when the soldiers, who were in the field heard of these Copperheads, and of their sedition, they were wroth,

5.  And sent word unto the faithful who remained at home, that they should rebuke the Copperheads, and if the Copperheads ceased not to hiss they should count them as outcasts and as traitors.

6.  So the faithful of the North called great meetings in the chief cities, and wise men arose in the midst of the multitudes, and rebuked the Copperheads.

7.  And spake well of the soldiers and of the Captains, and of the deeds of the Sanhedrim,

8.  And acknowledged Abraham as the Ruler of the land, and entreated the people to cherish the Union and to love the flag of the Nation.

9.  And great multitudes leagued themselves together, and aware unto one another that they would sustain the laws of the Nation, and stand by the army.

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