Saturday, August 20, 2011

August 20, 1861 (Tuesday) "Your Friend, Jefferson Davis"

Confederate White House Richmond

RICHMOND, VA., August 20, 1861.


GENERAL: Frequent complaints have been made to me of improper food for the well and a want of care for the sick. I most respectfully invite your attention to both these subjects, and hope that abuses may be promptly corrected. Is it not practicable to construct bake-ovens at or near Manassas, that good bread may be supplied to the troops? The main complaint is of bad bread and of inattention to the sick. I have repelled grumblers, but the clamor has increased in specifications until I have deemed it proper to obtain the facts from you. Captains and colonels, instead of correcting evils by personal attention, seem to have been the sources of no small part of the impressions received and circulated. I have for some time designed to organize a medical board to examine the appointees, and hope soon to do so.

Your friend,


Official Records, Series Series I., Vol. 5, Part 1, Page 798

Davis appears, by the records, to have made at least political gestures of good will to Johnston at the start of the war.  But the records also show here Davis was to be very involved in military affairs and not afraid to press his points home.  The condition of Confederate troops in relation to the commissary functions would be a problem throughout the war and only grow worse as time progressed.

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