This Day in Georgia Civil War History
July 01, 1861
Georgian Suggested Southerners Trade Silver for Confederate Bonds
The Richmond Times Dispatch printed a letter from a Georgian asking that Southerners trade in their silver to the Confederate government in exchange for Confederate bonds.
Savannah, Ga., June 26. Fellow-Citizens of the Confederate States: In every paper we see appeals made for financial aid from our Government, now in the time of its greatest strait. That to the cotton planters is being answered nobly, but can hardly be available at once. In almost every house there is what could be converted immediately into money to meet the wants of our country - I mean its silver. Is there one that can, under these circumstances, withhold aught that he or she can give? Would not the voice of the innocent blood spilt in Missouri, the outraged and desolated homes of Virginia and Maryland, forever cry to Heaven against us? I do not propose that the silver be a gift, but a loan to the Government, (because many that would wish to could not afford that,) and that each one receive its full value in Confederate bonds; and I think if the Secretary of the Treasury would appoint agents and call upon the people, he would find them ready to give to their utmost. A great sacrifice we know it will be, for with all household silver is attached a thousand recollections and heart-stirring memories, which, to its possessor, enhances its value beyond price; but if, for your ancestor’s sake, you hesitate, remember you are but following their example in laying it on the altar of your country, (the greater the sacrifice, the more noble and blessed the gift;) if for your children, think it is to purchase for them the best of earthly blessings, Freedom. For we know that our all is on this issue, and that, if this Confederate Government goes down, we all go down, and that property and even life, outside of its success, is nothing. There is yet one other motive which I would place before you. Every home and every heart has sent forth some dear and precious one to battle, and, if needs be, to die for our righteous cause. Fellow-countrymen, it is for these gallant spirits that our Government calls upon us to arm, to clothe and to feed them, and to find them necessaries in times of sickness. Will you refuse? No; I cannot believe it. Let those who are wealthy and can give otherwise of their abundance, still make the sacrifice for the moral influence it may have. Let those of moderate means not hold back from false shame, but thankfully give what they can, and let the poor in giving his small offering remember Him who marks not the amount, but the spirit. A Georgian.