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In Their Own Words

August 23, 1864

Diary Entry on Slaves Correcting Union Soldiers

William King of Cobb County wrote in his diary of some Union soldiers mistrusting him, but being set straight by one of his slaves.

“…I went this morning to see my old neighbor Mr. Hutchins, who lives in Wm. Russell’s House, he has been sick for over a week, having a family of 6 children, mostly little ones, to provide for by his day labor for Gov’t, having had nothing left him by the Robbers while in the country. I think he has been made sick by over hard work on the R.R. I found there quite an intelligent & interesting soldier–Ives–a brother in Law of Gen’l Bates, he is a native of N.Y. but removed to Ill. many years ago. Tabby’s child is better & she went back to Mr. Shepard’s yesterday. Mam Maria has a bad cold & sick, she has complained much all the summer, & has lost much in weight. I tell her that anxiety & plain living do not agree with her. She is very anxious for me to leave here, her kind feelings controling her, she does not think as well of the Federal soldiers as I do; she says there are too many bad men among them, & she fears I may innocently get into some difficulty–one of them told her the other day that one of the Tel. post near the House had been cut down some night lately, & people believed I did it, it alarmed the old Lady much, she told him I would never do such a thing, and that I never went out of the House at night. …”

Source: Diary of William King; Cobb County, Georgia, 1864