N.C. spared ‘wanton’ destruction by Sherman’s troops

“The ferocity with which Union foragers collected provisions in South Carolina diminished once they crossed into North Carolina. ‘The army burned everything it came near in the State of South Carolina,’ Maj. James Connolly wrote to his wife. ‘The men “had it in” for the State and they took it out in their own way…. Since entering North Carolina the wanton destruction has stopped.’

“If the ‘wanton destruction’ ended, the regular form of it did not. Charles Jackson Paine wrote to his father from Raleigh in April, ‘We take of course everything eatable from the inhabitants…. The country is cleaned out behind us — & it will be hard work for the people to live till fall.'”

— From “War Upon the Land: Military Strategy and the Transformation of Southern Landscapes During the American Civil War” by Lisa M. Brady (2012)

 

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