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In Their Own Words

May 10, 1865

Journal Entry on Singing to Returning Confederate Soldiers

After the surrender of General Johnston’s army in North Carolina on Apr. 26, even more Confederate soldiers passed through Washington, Georgia on their way home. Eliza Frances Andrews recorded her feelings about them, showing one way for easing the pain of defeat:

“Johnston’s army is now in full sweep. The town is thronged with them from morn till night, and from night till morning. They camp in our grove by whole companies, but never do any mischief. I love to look out of my windows in the night and see their camp fires burning among the trees and their figures moving dimly in and out among the shadows, like protecting spirits. I love to lie awake and hear the sound of their voices talking and laughing over their hard experiences. Metta and I often go out to the gate after supper and sing the old rebel songs that we know will please them.”

Source: Eliza Frances Andrews, The War-Time Journal of a Georgia Girl, 1864-1865 (New York: D. Appleton and Co., 1908), pp. 239-240.