In recognition of the Civil War Sesquicentennial, "Civil War-Era Memories" features excerpts from The Memphis Daily Appeal of 150 years ago. The Appeal is publishing from Grenada, Miss.
Aug. 13, 1862
There is no doubt but that the Federal force at Memphis has been reduced to between 4,000 and 5,000 men, by the moving of reinforcements to other points. It is known that several thousand were sent to Curtis some weeks ago; and we also learn that a large division was sent up the river to Cairo. The Federals who now occupy the city do so uneasily, and their fears might be increased by a little daring and energy on our part.
(From the Mobile Register) On the 21st the brigade left Lebanon, taking the road toward Nashville ... Seven miles from town they came upon the enemy's pickets, when a chase ensued, our men running the Yankees to within five miles of Nashville, when they were overtaken and captured. Gen. Forrest and Col. Lawton stopped at the Hermitage and were most cordially received by Mrs. Andrew Jackson, Jr., ... the arrival of Gen. Forrest increased the enthusiasm and delight of the party, the ladies evincing the wildest joy and patriotism, and a "good time" prevailed generally. (The Hermitage was still in Confederate territory at this time, although the city of Nashville was under Union control.)
Aug. 16, 1862
We are pleased to learn that St. Agnes Academy, the popular Memphis institution, will commence its fall term in a few days. Its reputation is such, throughout the South, that no word of praise is necessary, and in these troublous times no more peaceful educational retreat, or one where the morals of the inmates are more carefully watched, can be found in the Confederacy than St. Agnes.
Aug. 18, 1862
The Memphis Bulletin states that the 10th annual report of the public schools has been made. It states that the number of schools at the beginning of the last scholastic year was 21; at the end they had sunk to 15. During the year, 938 boys and 853 girls were admitted. The average daily attendance on the first month of the year was 851; on the last, 499. The expenses of the year were $20,038.
Aug. 19, 1862
The status of the Negro in Memphis has been defined by General Sherman, who has ordered that all Negroes who apply for work shall be employed as laborers on the fortifications and draw rations, clothing and one pound of tobacco per month, but no wages will be allowed until the courts determine whether the Negro is slave or free.