Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 19.djvu/335

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Last Days of the Southern Confederacy. 329

Mr. Seddon also preferred a country residence, and removed to Goochland county. In 1857 he sold his city premises to Mr. Lewis D. Crenshaw for twenty-five thousand dollars, and in June, 1861, Mr. Crenshaw sold them to the city of Richmond for thirty-five thousand dollars.

VIRGINIUS.

Richmond, February 23, 1891.

[From the New York Herald, March 13, 1891.]

LAST DAYS OF THE SOUTHERN CONFEDERACY.

SCENES IN THE STREETS OF RICHMOND FABULOUS PRICES

IN CURRENCY.

The Fabulous Prices of Everything No Fiction Going to North Caro- lina After a Young Lady.

I chanced to be in Richmond just three weeks previous to the surrender. Business had made me a frequent visitor to the me- tropolis of the Confederacy during the war, and I could always tell quite accurately how the war was going by the countenance and de- meanor of its inhabitants, which to me were a more certain criterion than the daily papers. Whenever victory perched upon the Con- federate banner, the faces of its inhabitants would beam with joy; each one would move with an elastic step and renewed animation. But should it be otherwise, then sadness and gloom were depicted upon each countenance, even to the school children, who would trudge along with depressed looks.

As soon, therefore, as I stepped from the train on the occasion re- ferred to, I knew that something was wrong ; there seemed a death- like stillness to pervade the city ; every one wore a haggard, scared look, as if apprehensive of some great impending calamity. I dared not ask a question, nor had I need to do so, as I felt too surely that the end was near. My first visit was to my banker, one who dealt largely in Confederate securities, and knew too well the ups and downs of the Confederate cause by the fluctuations of its paper. As soon as he could give me a private moment he said in a sad, low tone :

" If you have any paper money put it into specie at once."