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In Their Own Words

August 25, 1864

Diary Entry on Difficulty of Trading

William King of Cobb County wrote in his diary of the fear of one Union soldier staying with him as a guard, and of the difficulties of trading items.

“Last evening after supper [torn] guard left me to go [torn] for his Rations, & to return in 1/2 hour, but as he was not back at 9 o’clock I closed up & went to bed, feeling some anxiety about him, this morning he returned, saying as it was so late before he could get off, he concluded I would not care for his absence & remained in Camp. I told him my suspicion was, he was affraid the Gray Jackets would come here at night & take him prisoner; his friend who was with him said that was the true cause, as our House was out of the Lines, he thought he was exposed at Night, he does not want to go to Dixie, as his term of service will be out within 4 months. He went to town this morning & brought a Letter from Bro. Ralph urging me to make them a visit. I went to see old Mr. Hutchins this morning, he was better, & then went to the Picket Station to hear the News & see if the Country Wagons could succeed in bartering their little supplies for provisions, the soldiers were annoying them much, having nothing but money to buy with, while the country people only wanted provisions in exchange, & the soldiers were troubling them much, before I left them however, guards had been sent to protect them, & Dr. Miller’s Ambulance had come up to barter with them. I left them trading after having spent near an hour with them. …”

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