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The Pittiful Home Front
Shortages of the War


Shortages of the War
Women's Roles
Children's roles
Riots of the North and South
The Burning of Atlanta

North and South

 Here you will learn about the food, and medical shortages of the Civil War. You will learn what it was like for both the North and the South and what they used to substitute their usual abundance of supplies.

Here is a part of a regiment ,of the Civil War, posing for a picture.

      Money was a problem during the Civil War for both the North and the South, but the shortages that resulted, mostly effected the South. Though the South held 30% of the nations wealth most of the Southern states were in debt, so, by May 1861, the South was paying a $100 per barrel of flour, $2 for every pound of beef and $50 for each pair of boots just for there troops. But why did the South pay so much for their food when the North didn't? Well, on April 19th, 1861 President Lincoln issued a Proclamation of Blockade against all of the Southern ports. This made it very hard to import any food to the South without being caught.
Because of this proclamation the South suffered greatly.
"I will not move my army without onions! I have been up to see the Congress and they do not seem to be able to do anything except eat peanuts and chew tobacco, while my army is starving..." Stated General Ulysses S. Grant in 1864.
Sugar, salt, wheat, flour, coffee and tea had to be substituted with parched wheat, rye, corn, peanuts, acorns, sweet potatoes, persimmons, okra, and even watermelon seeds because of the blockade.
Things got so bad at one point that the civilians of Richmond, Virginia rebelled.
 It was on the spring morning of April 2nd,1863 that the great Richmound bread riot took place. 
An onlooker of the scene recalls a young girl with "delicate features and large sunken eyes" sitting in front of the Confederate Capitol along with many others. An older woman asked her if there was some sort of celebration and the girl smiled and replied "There is. We celebrate our right to live. We are starving. As soon as enough of us get together we are going to the bakeries and each of us will take a loaf of bread.That is little enough for the Government to give us after it has taken all of our men."(

This is one of the ships used for the blockade of the Southern ports.

But the North suffered too. Except they didn't suffer food shortages as much as they suffered medical shortages.

At the time the North was dealing with many types of sicknesses. Many that they didn't know how to handle or that they didn't want to. We're talking full on dysentry, diarrhea, typhoid and malaria. These were the easyest to handle out of all the sickness too. Why? Because they usually didn't kill you. I mention the diseases over the aputation, blood and guts of the war, because during the four years of war disease took the lives of 20% of the Confederate soldiers and 10% of the Union soldiers. Just to put that in perspective for you..... A Civil War soldier was 10 times more likely to die from a disease and 8 times more likely to die from a wound or amputation than an American soldier in World War 1. 
And, the U.S. army only had 113 surgeons at the time of the Civil War,24 of them resigned before the war was even half way through,and four years later they went from 113 doctors serving the U.S. to 15,000!!! 
Because of the shortage of doctors nurses became a key part of the Civil War's medical aid. In the North they had a total of 9,600 woman aid the troops during the war.

This is what a civil war hospital looked like.

Click on one of the links below to learn more about specific topics.

>Learn more about the blockade against the southern ports<<<

>>>For easy class notes on the Civil War or anything else!<<<

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>>>>Medical Information HERE!!!<<<

Click here to learn more about the economic enflation.