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Memphis Under the Stars and Stripes
Harper's Weekly, July 5, 1862
Our old subscribers in Memphis, Tennessee, who have so long been deprived of Harper’s Weekly by the insane rebellion of the secessionists, will probably not be sorry to find some illustrations of their city in our pages this week. We publish on page 417 an illustration of the Movement of Sugar and Cotton on the Levee, a sight which had not been seen at Memphis for many a day before; and on page 420 a view of the Jackson Monument, defaced by some rascally rebel; of the Stars and Stripes being hoisted over the Post-Office; and of Colonel Ellet’s Ram Flotilla.

"Hoisting the Stars and Stripes
over the Post-Office at Memphis, Tennessee,"
July 5, 1862, page 420


The Levee at Memphis, Tenn. - Hauling
Sugar and Cotton from their Hiding-Places
for Shipment North,"
July 5, 1862, page 417


"Jackson's Monument at Memphis, Tennessee,
Defaced by the Rebels,"
July 5, 1862, page 420


"Colonel Ellet's Ram Fleet on the Mississippi,"
July 5, 1862, page 420

Southern Produce Moving.

The rebels burned all the produce they could find. But a good deal escaped them, and is coming out of hiding-places. The Memphis Avalanche says:

Independent of the boats, armed and unarmed, of the Federal fleet, transports are going from and coming to our wharf in such a way as to awaken a dim memory of the good old times. The Perry started this evening heavily laden with sugar and cotton. An unusual degree of animation prevails about the levee, and the echoes of the mallet has again awakened the echo of the bluff. Heaven knows we need a revival of trade sadly.

The Herald correspondent writes:

Business in Memphis is falling into its old channels. The J. D. Perry, of the St. Louis and Memphis Steamboat Line, left last evening with a full freight of sugar, and a boat will start for Cairo to-day laden with a fine supply of cotton. Drays are already crowding the levee, and cotton and sugar are coming out of their places of concealment in unlooked-for abundance. A boat came in yesterday from St. Louis laden to the guards with supplies for the Memphis market.

The Tribune correspondent says:

More and more cotton and sugar is being discovered daily in and around Memphis, and I have seen numerous parties who boast of their adroitness in outwitting the minions of the Confederacy, showing the Southern staples as proofs of their cleverness. A number of flat-boats loaded with New Orleans sugar are now lying at the mouth of Wolf River, having been brought down the stream since the occupation of the city, and will be sold by the owners to the highest bidder. In various garrets and cellars cotton and sugar have developed themselves in considerable quantities, and still more will come to light during the coming fortnight.

The World correspondent says:

In three days we have had a dozen steamboats partially loaded with goods, groceries, clothing, etc. The goods have been landed ad stored, and the boats are loading up with cotton, sugar, and molasses for their return trip. For the present the purchases are, of course, limited to the bare wants of the consumers, for the reason that the currency is still unsettled.

The stocks of many articles have been exhausted. Drugs, tea, coffee, liquors, and articles of fine dress have attained unheard-of prices. Fire-arms and powder can not be had for money. The rule of the Southern authorities and the stringency of the blockade has so worked upon the people that for the most part they are glad to be admitted once more as partakers of our industry.

A telegram to the press, dated Memphis, June 17, via Cairo, June 18, says:

The shipments north up to-day have been—Cotton, 3000 bales; molasses, 5000 barrels, 3000 half barrels; sugar, 6000 barrels. There was much coming in yesterday.

A correspondent of the World tells the following story, which illustrates the atrocious oppression practiced by the cotton-burners, and the feeling of some of the planters. The scene occurred in Louisiana:

The cotton-burners came, they saw, they departed.

"I have come to burn your cotton, Sir."

"By what authority?"

"By the authority of General Beauregard."

"You will not burn my cotton."

"We will burn your cotton."

"Go about it then. But it is my opinion, gentlemen that you will not burn it."

"What do you propose to do? You don’t mean to say that you will show any opposition to our authority?"

"I simply meant to say that you will not burn my cotton. Bob, bring a coal of fire."

The fire is brought.

"Gentlemen, there is the fire, and yonder are one hundred bales of cotton. Proceed."

"Your conduct is very extraordinary, Sir. I should like to know what you mean."

"Well, Sir, I mean that if you attempt to burn that cotton I will scatter your brains so far and wide that no power in heaven or earth can bring them together again. Here, boys, that cotton is yours; defend it or starve."

"D—d strange conduct," mutters Mr. Officer, sullenly. "We’ll attend to your case, Sir. We are going down the river; we will give you a visit on our return."

"Do. Whenever you make up your mind to burn my cotton, by all means come and burn."

The cowed officer and his posse "fell back in good order." The valiant Louisianian saved his cotton. He has had no second visit from Beauregard’s cotton-burners.

I have yet to hear of an instance of voluntary submission to this cruel cotton "order" of Beauregard. In thousands of cases remonstrance, threats of men, and tears of women and children were of no avail.

The Jackson Monument.

The Herald correspondent says:

Walking into Jackson Park I approached the statue of Jackson, which occupies the centre of the green. It is in-closed by a circular iron fence, and ornamented by carefully trained shrubbery. The bust of the old hero of New Orleans is placed on the top of a plain shaft of marble, seven or eight feet in height. On the northern face of the shaft is the inscription?



The word "Federal" and the first two letters of "Union" have been chipped by some rampant rebel, presenting an appearance as if a small hammer had been several times struck across the obnoxious words. It was a very feeble attempt at defacement of the words that grated harshly on treason’s ear.

Colonel Ellet’s Rams:

These vessels, which proved so effective at the Battle of Memphis, are mostly old river boats, strengthened at the bow with heavy timber, and shielded with iron. They cost about $25,000 to $30,000, and can be kept afloat and in service for about $15,000 a month. Thus far they have proved more than a match for the most effective class of gun-boats, and will hereafter take a leading place in naval warfare.

Harper's Weekly, July 5, 1862


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