Friday, September 27, 2013

Crotchet wristers

This one is for Deborah :)

Zion’s Herald and Wesleyan Journal, April 01, 1863
What can we do for the soldiers?

"You may like to know what was Hattie’s offering. Though only seven years old, she had learned to crotchet quickly and well, and now it was turned to a good account. Her mother, very kindly, gave her some woolen yarn, and a little help in making two pair of warm mittens and wristers. This was a great piece of work for Hattie, and all the little girl accomplished for some time after." 

"crotchet" as spelled in the article - crochet

Monday, September 16, 2013

1000 women wanted

Interesting way to get finished socks...putting down a deposit.

Cleveland mourning leader. (Cleveland OH) August 27, 1862 - Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. LOC

1000 WOMEN WANTED,--TO receive Yarn and knit into Soldiers Socks.
For each pound delivered, a pledge of 75 cents will be required, to be refunded when the Socks are returned, together with an additional amount of 75 cents for knitting the same.
107 Bank-St.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Knitting for the soldiers

I will be attending an event I GA next week. I thought it would be nice to gather together for one hour ladies who knit or crochet goods for the soldiers.

Staunton spectator, (Staunton, VA) Jan. 5, 1864 – Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. LOC
“An army correspondent, writing from Longsteet’s corps, says there are 3,000 barefoot men in that corps alone. From Johnston’s (late Bragg’s) army, comes a piteous appeal for blankets and clothing. Lee’s army is also in need of  blankets, and not a week ago a paper, reputed to be the Government organ, called upon the ladies to devote their energies to knitting socks for Lee’s soldiers. For some weeks past, the Young Men’s Christian Association has been furnishing cotton yarn to be knit into socks for these same soldiers. Woolen yarn was not to be had. Day by day, the clothes made for the soldiers exhibit less wool and more cotton.”
Macon Daily Telegraph, (Macon, GA), April 8, 1863
A Patriotic Lady.—Mrs. S. Young, of Putnam County, Ga., has knit and donated to the Soldiers 150 pairs of Socks—also, clothed two soldiers entire from the commencement of the war up to this time, and has made numerous other contributions from her own labor. How many such women would it take to clothe our entire army?  

Macon Daily Telegraph, (Macon, GA), January 09, 1864
Knit the Socks.—We are requested by Major Hayden to say that the wool for Cobb’s Kentucky battery is now all carded and spun into yarn, waiting at E.J.Johnston & Co’s for the nimble fingers of Macon’s fair ladies to knit it into socks for the sockless men of Cobb’s Kentucky Battery. Will they not take hold of this work of charity and patriotism?

Macon Daily Telegraph and Confederate, (Macon, GA), December 06, 1864
We are informed that a quantity of yarn has been left with Mr. Burke, at the Methodist Book Store for the purpose of being knit into socks for the use of the Tennessee soldiers. These men are separated from their families and therefore cannot be provided with clothing by their wives, mothers and sisters. The ladies of Macon are urgently solicited to call at Mr. Burke’s, get the yarn and knit into socks. If every lady in Macon will devote a few hours to this work they will alleviate a great deal of suffering among the gallant soldiers from Tennessee. The socks are much needed and we trust in a few days to chronicle that hundreds of pairs are in process of making. What lady will have the honor of finishing the first pair?  

The Daily Bulletin (Winchester, TN) September 30, 1862, & Edgefield advertiser, (Edgefield SC), Sept 17, 1862,  Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. LOC
Knitting for the Soldiers.—This is an important matter, and one which we hope will engage the early and earnest attention of all the women of the country who have it in their power to aid in providing for the wants of our brave soldiers. The season for cold weather is rapidly approaching, In a very few weeks our soldiers will require their supplies of winter clothing. Among the articles they will need, and which should be furnished them with as little delay as possible, are good, warm, comfortable socks. The pittance which the soldiers receive from the Government for clothing is not enough to supply them with outer clothing alone; and hence many are unable to pay for the under-clothing which their necessities compel them to have. Last year at this time, there were thousands of fair fingers busily employed in knitting for the soldiers, and, tanks to the untiring efforts of the noble-hearted women of the South, the defenders of the country were as comfortable clad during the last winter, as could have been expected. Next winter there will be more than double the number of soldiers in the field than there was last, and renewed and redoubled exertions will be necessary in order to prevent suffering in their ranks from the ?nt [long crease in the paper] of sufficient clothing. It is the duty of those who remain at home to provide for those in the field, and we feel assured that those who have fathers, husband, sons, brothers and friends in the army, will not fail to do all the love-patriotism and duty require.

The Athens post (Athens, TN) August 30, 1861, Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. LOC 
The Vicksburg Whig says that nearly every lady, old and young, in Warren county is busily engaged knitting socks for  soldiers—and that the result of their labor will soon be collected together and sent on to the army. The worth example should be followed in every county, city and town throughout the South.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Knitted Garters

The Workwomans Guide, 1840 - pg 255
These are chiefly worn by females, and are merely narrow strips of knitting, of three quarters of a yard long, and a nail, more or less, wide.
They are made of worsted, cotton, or soft wool; the latter is most elastic and pleasant.
For garters, set on from twelve to twenty, or even thirty stitches, according to the fineness of the material.
Knit backwards and forwards till of the proper length, when fasten off. some persons prefer a loop at the end; for which purpose, when near the end, divide the stitches equally upon two pins, and knit each pin about ten ribs, after which connect them together by binding them in fastening off.
Garters are sometimes knit by putting the material, which is fine, twice around the pin at every stitch letting the pin be very thick.
Garters are some times ribbed, at others knit, in a succession of squares of different patterns.

The Elastic Rib.
This is very suitable for cuffs and garters, as it clings or contracts to the form.
The Ladies' Knitting and Netting Book, 1840
Pg 112
Two needles No. 14, and German lambs'-wool
Cast on 18 stitches. Knit in double knitting backwards and forwards until the garter is long enough. End with a point.
The Ladies' Work-table Book, 1844
Pg 128-9
Elastic Rib
This, as its name implies, is the proper stitch for garters, or any kind of article which is wanted to fit easily, yet firmly. You are to set on any number of loops you please, and knit one row plain; the next is pearled, the two next are plain; then one pearled, and so on alternately to the end.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Knitting for the Soldiers - Union poem

Fremont journal, (Fremont, Sandusky County OH) December 13, 1861 - Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. LOC

From the Cleveland Herald
Knitting for the Soldiers.

One eve I sat beside the grate, the time I well remember
The winds were moaning round the house, for it was bleak November,
And queer, quaint shadows, large and small, upon the walls were flitting:
And I sat by this fireside, for I was busy knitting.

And I was happy! Golden hours! Ah, fondly memory lingers,
I think of that soft, woolen yarn, fast slipping through my fingers,
A soldier’s sock, of fine grey yarn, my hands were quickly forming,
And round the house with dreary moan, the wintry winds were storming.

I thought, as fast my fingers flew, and formed the stout grey stitches,
Of our brave soldiers in the camps, on breastworks and in ditches:
Of sickness, hunger, fight and death, of TOES so cold and frozen,
(I do not think our ladies could a better task have chosen.)

I thought as on the needles flew, of where the socks were going;
Would they be on the battle-field, where the life-tide was flowing?
Or would the wearer, brave and young, dead on the field be lying;
When his brave comrades charged the foe, and sent them all a flying.

Perhaps a prisoner he’ll be, in a dungeon dark and lone,
Or, in a crowed hospital, he’ll breathe his last death moan,
Or, on a slow and weary march, o’er hill and stream he’ll go;
Or, on a level plain, he’ll stand, prepared to meet the foe.

The fire burned brightly, and I thought of these poor soldiers sitting
Around their fires, in camp at night, thankful for our knitting;
As I bent my head to seam, I thought how nice ‘twould be,
If I could know whose feet would wear, the socks t’were knit by me.

But then I thought, perhaps the foe may strip our noble slain,
And all the socks they take from them, we ne’er shall see again;
“Secesh” will have them! dreadful thought! my Union sprit rose,
I WILL NOT spend my precious time, in warming “secesh” toes.

And thus I sat, and knit, and thought, my sock kept growing longer,
And love for these poor soldier boys was meanwhile growing stronger;
God bless the many fingers that are busy in the land,
A working by their firesides, to clothe our soldier bands.
They’ve left their homes, and all that’s dear, this Union fair to save,
To keep for us our happy homes, or find themselves a grave;
And we, in peace and plenty now, are by our firesides sitting,
Can we not clothe their weary feet, with socks of OUR OWN knitting !

Union song about knitting for the soldiers

The Smoky Hill and Republican Union (Junction City, KS) August 8, 1863 - Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers, LOC

A young lady in New York State sends us the following new version of “John Brown,” which is quite popular in that region. The words are pretty, and the sentiment the best we have seen adapted to this popular piece of music:

To the Ladies of the Blue Stocking Club.
By Charles Puffer.

Where the starry banners of the Union army stand,
Over hill and valley, and along the Dixie strand,
Soft appeals are coming to the ladies of the land,
For the brave, brave Volunteers.
Glory, glory, Hallelujah, &c.

Valley Forge remember, and the ashes laid below,
Tell the brave old legion of the foot prints in the snow,
Then merrily click the needles, as the echoes come and go,
For the brave, brave Volunteers.

Loving eyes are dewy as they ripple o’er with tears;
Gentle hearts are thrilling with a thousand shadowy fears;
Fairy hands are knitting for the brave Volunteers;

Tenderly we’re dreaming of the long, long ago,
The lady of her lover, and the lassie of her beau.
But every one is dreaming of the faces that we know,
In the brave, brave Volunteers.

Far away in Dixie land, when the soldiers fall,
Many a grateful tongue upon your names will call,
Breathing a farewell, and a blessing for you all,
From the brave, brave Volunteers.

Then from the Atlantic to the wide Pacific shore,
Ladies, with your loving fingers knitting evermore,
Labor for the army, as your mothers did of yore,
For the brave, brave Volunteers.

Women at War

I'm currently reading Women At War: A record of their patriotic contributions, heroism, toils and sacrifice during the Civil War by L.P. Brocket, M.D. (reprint)

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Union Knitting Army.

I'm finding some interesting stories about knitting socks for the army/soldiers.

Cleveland mourning leader (Cleveland OH) October 19, 1861 - Chronicling Historic American Newspapers LOC

Union Knitting Army.

                The ladies of the O.S. Presbyterian Church, at Pleasant Ridge, Hamilton Co., have formed themselves into what we hope may be the advance guard of a grand Knitting Army. They have pledged themselves, each and every one, to knit four pairs of woolen yarn socks, or stockings, by the first of January, 1862—two pairs by the first of November, and the remaining two by the first of January, 1862.

                Appealing to their sisters elsewhere, they say: “Let each lady pledge herself to knit four pairs by the time specified, and thereby manifest the interest and sympathy we feel for the gallant defenders of our homes and firesides, by enlisting for the war in the Union Knitting Army.”

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

More on Patriotic Socks

Daily Ohio statesman, (Columbus, OH) April 05, 1862 - Chronicling Historic American Newspapers LOC

Gifts of Yankee Lasses.
            Our brave western boys have won the hearts of the Yankee girls as well as victories over the rebels, and the St. Louis Democrat thus speaks of the cheering gifts “for the braves;”
            We have in our office, a contribution to the Sanitary Commission’s relief stores, which is a curiosity worth inspecting. It was sent here with other articles by ladies of Massachusetts, though from what precise Yankee town or village of the Bay State, we do not know. First, a pair of soft wool hose, in top of each of which is knit the flag of the Union, with its thirteen stripes, and blue field and the stars, and the flag extending down nearly to the ankle. Attached to the hose is a slip inscribed thus:

            “When hearts are true and fingers warm
            Who can resist our Yankee Boys?
            Not any base and rebel swain,
            That Freedom’s noble work destroys
            When women knit and Yankees fight,
            Who doubts the triumph of the right!”

            The other, a flannel shirt, eagle gray, of fine soft, but substantial fabric, on the body of which is wrought with the needle, the following stanzas:
            Soldier brave, will it brighten the day,
            And shorten the march on the weary way,
            To know that at home, the loving and true,
            Are knitting, and hoping and praying for you?

            Soft are their voices, when speaking your name,
            Proud are their glories when hearing your fame,
            And the gladdest hour in their lives will be
            When they greet you after the victory.

            The workmanship is neat, but the address’ “For the bravest,” might be, if such a thing could occasion contention among men who are not only brave but generous, a source of strife for the title of it, like the mythologic apple of  discord.

Starving The South

While on a vacation to visit our son and grand-dogs ...I read Starving The South: How The North Won The Civil War, By Andrew F. Smith and enjoyed it very much, it was an aspect of the war I had not considered.