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Agriculture and the ConfederacyPolicy, Productivity, and Power in the Civil War South$
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R. Douglas Hurt

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469620008

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469620008.001.0001

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Eastern Hard Times

Eastern Hard Times

(p.191) Chapter Six Eastern Hard Times
Agriculture and the Confederacy

R. Douglas Hurt

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter focuses on the hard times experienced by farmers and planters in the Eastern Confederacy at the height of the Civil War. In the Eastern Confederacy farmers and planters greeted 1864 with a feeling of despondency. In this last full year of the war, Union forces pressed General Robert E. Lee's army hard and made incremental territorial gains at great cost to both sides. Attrition wore away at Confederate armies. Farmers and planters at this point confronted even greater difficulty supplying soldiers and civilians with food due to disrupted production, impressment of provisions, worthless currency, and conscription. Feared by all, the year would bring the collapse of Confederate agricultural power. The rest of this chapter discusses the food shortages that accompanied the beginning of 1864; Congress's renewal of the tax-in-kind and approval of more exemptions for small-scale farmers; government officials' call on farmers to plant as much corn and other food crops as possible; and the increase in agricultural prices.

Keywords:   farmers, planters, Eastern Confederacy, Civil War, impressment, currency, food shortage, Congress, food crops, agricultural prices

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