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Civil War and Reconstruction
Civil War Soldiers' Stories
An Incident, Anything But Amusing

Mrs. Ernestine Weiss Faudie was born in Germany but immigrated with her family to Fredericksburg, Texas, in 1853. In her interview with a WPA Federal Writer's Project staff person, she recalled several things about soldiers during the Civil War. What does she say about the hardships and neediness of both soldiers and civilians during the war?

View the entire interview with Mrs. Ernestine Faudie from American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1940. Use your browser's Back Button to return to this point.


" . . . My father had two brothers to come with him from Germany and were in the Confederate army. Their names were August and Fritz Weiss. They were sent back home from the war on a furlough but had to return and August was captured by the Yankees and taken prisioner and made to walk all the way to the prison. He was later exchanged and came home. The other brother Fritz, came home after the war was over and took tubercolosis and died from this which he contracted in the army.

"When any of the soldiers on either side came thro our place they took anything they could find, the rebels felt that they had a right to it for they were fighting for us. They took our horses and killed our hogs and cows to eat, and took our corn. When the blockade was on and we could not get coffee we made it out of sweet potatoes. We cut them up and dried them and boiled them and drank this for coffee.

"There was a grist mill close by our place and they ground the meal real fine and crushed it and called it flour; anyway we made our light bread out of this ground and crushed corn. We cooked over a fire place with a big dutch oven. We spun and wove the cotton thread to make our clothes. And speaking of the soldiers I remember an incident that is amusing now but at the time, to the neighbor it was anything but amusing. When a group of soldiers passed this neighbors, she tied a hog to the bed post so they would not see it, but they stopped for a drink of water and heard the hog grunting and so came into the room and took the hog and barbecued it, out in the year and ate it before the neighbor's very eyes."
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View the entire interview with Mrs. Ernestine Faudie from American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1940. Use your browser's Back Button to return to this point.