Monday, October 22, 2012


The Southern people were relying on young Confederate
soldiers like this one, holding a Colt revolving rifle, one
of the most advanced small arms of that time, for defend-
ing them agains the massive Northern army then assebling
to subjugate them. (Liljenquiat Family Collection, Library'
of Congress)
The Richmond Daily Dispatcvh
October 22, 1862
           The very first day of the late session we appealed to [the Confederate] Congress, in the strongest forms we were capable of employing, to pass all the laws necessary to give conscription full effect as soon as possible. Instead of doing so they wasted six weeks in discussing the conscription bill, which, after all, was passed under the spur of the previous question. --The members seemed to be seized with the same lethargy that benumbed their faculties after Manassas. They thought that because our troops had driven the enemy from Richmond [and] there was to be no more fighting. In this delusion they were encouraged by the President, who told them that no immediate increase of the army was necessary.--The infatuation that dictated such an annunciation was amazing. The Yankees had not only determined on, but had already begun to levy a new force of six hundred thousand men. That force, we declared, would be raised in a very short time, and we were not wrong. It is already in great part; drilling as rapidly as it can and by the time the cold weather sets in it will be upon us. We shall have another "on to Richmond," and that is a very short time. The advance of McClellan indicates thus much. But an advance in that direction will not be all. Sigel's levies, if we are to credit the Yankee accounts, are to bear down upon us from Washington by the line of the Orange and Alexandria railroad. They are to accomplish the two-fold task of taking Richmond and cutting off General Lee. That great military oracle the New York Times, has already laid down the programme. Nothing is easier, it thinks, than to march straight into Richmond, and if permitted to be done, undoubtedly nothing would be easier. The Herald in its peculiar style, calls upon us to lay down our arms and submit to the Yankees.
           Where there is much smoke there is sure to be some fire. Through the mist of all this vaporing we can perceive a steady purpose to push us to the uttermost. An invasion is designed to which that we have yet seen of invasion is mere child's play. We speak it — not for the purpose of creating unnecessary alarm — but warn our people of what they have to expect, and to prepare them for the occasion. We know not what preparations may have been made to meet and repel the foe; but we know that the authorities are well aware of his intentions. We hope, therefore, that everything has been done which the occasion requires.
           The people of the Confederates States will meet this new invasion as they met that which preceded it — with the promptness and gallantry becoming men who have no superior in those qualities, and with that firmness which nerves the soul to dare the utmost that an enemy can inflict. We have no belief that we can be finally beaten here upon our own soil, fighting for our altars and our firesides — But we must dismiss all illusions, agreeable as they may be, and learn to look at the grim reality. It is war in its most gloomy aspect that we are called upon to endure.
New publications for soldiers.
           "We have just issued 5,000 copies of the "Life of Capt. Vicars." 2,000 copies of a "Thanksgiving Sermon" by Rev. Dr. Atkinson, Presbyterian Pastor in N. C. We have recently published also, ten tracts on important subjects, by good men of different denominations. These are to be followed by a "Life of General Havelock," and two Tracts by Rev. D Shaver, of the Religious Herald. Within seventeen months over twelve millions of pages have been printed and circulated in the Southern army by this [publisher]. Much remains to be done, and thus we appeal to all — chaplains, pastors, soldiers — to aid in the work of distribution — The Railroad and Express companies have kindly offered to transport gratuitously all packages we may send from the Bible and Tract Depository while we propose to supply, without cost, all who desire our publications.

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