July 7, 1861
Interesting Letter from Mississippi
Miss., July 4
Editors: I left Mobile on Monday’s train and came up to this
delightful retreat “afar from the busy haunts of men.”
At Meridian we took on
the Hinds county Light Guards, Capt. Elliott, en route for Corinth
and Virginia. They consist of about ninety men, and belong,
I think, to Col. Bonham’s Regiment, enlisted for the war. Capt. Wm. Foote’s company of cavalry from Macon, Miss., are waiting
for a large number of cars to transport them to Richmond.
Will this supply of Mississippi
soldiers never give out? This county
(Itawamba) has four companies in the field, and a Regiment already formed in
addition. Tishomingo has six companies
in the field, and a regiment ready for service!
On Monday, it rained along the whole line of Railroad up
as far as this point. Never saw such crops. “Nobody hurt.” Lincoln
told the truth without intending it.
You would never imagine that these were hard times of
war. There seems to be no complaint of
hard times or anything of the kind.
Abundance smiles everywhere.
By the way, Messrs. Editors, the people all along the
Railroad are alarmed about the unprotected style of our seaport city. “Why are you so supine,” said a high church
functionary to me. “What have you been
doing all this time that Abe Lincoln’s gunboats have possession of the Sound
and do as they list. Have you no
batteries at Mobile
to protect the city?” To this bonfire of
interrogatories I could only say, we have cannon and muskets and two or three
thousand men ready for service.
They say there is a large home force up here ready to
march at a moment’s warning to the relief of Mobile or the coast. We Mobilians must awake from our supineness
and go to work as we have resolved to do.
till the last foe expires,
for our altars and our fires,
for the green graves of our sires,
and our native land.”
[Transcribed by Sharon Strout]