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In Their Own Words

November 08, 1864

Letter Expressed Loss Caused by Civil War

After having been forced to leave Cobb County, Julia Butler wrote Georgia governor Joseph E. Brown from Washington, Ga., about the terrible conditions back in Cobb County:

“I want to tell the sad story of the countless thousands that have been made to mourn by this horrid war. Powder Springs and the neighborhoods [of Cobb County] around it have suffered until longer suffering will be death. There is nothing left, positively nothing, for the people to live on. After the Yankee army passed us, we thought we had nothing. But the people picked up a good many broken down horses and in that way could go beyond the line of country through which the armies passed and with Confederate money could buy a little corn and wheat. But soon our scouts or so-called scouts began to come and every old mule and horse was taken that could travel at all. [It was] said to be an order from the General in command. And by the time a little late corn could be gathered and a little syrup could be made, by grinding the corn at night, and here came General hood’s army and the Yankees right after them! All the trials and insults had to be gone through with again. Winter is coming on, the supply of salt is out, clothing worn out, and the women who have husbands and sons in this army ought to have something done for them. They can’t get away, and it is enough to make men desert to pass by their homes and to pass on after seeing such want and distress, and to know no hand has been raised to help them.”

Source: Mills Lane (ed.), Georgia: History written by Those who lived It (Savannah: Beehive Press, 1995), p. 177.