Thursday, November 24, 2011


This entry is from Mary Chesnut's Civil War, edited by C. Vann Woodward. Mary Chesnut was married to James Chesnut, United States Senator from South Carolina, 1859-1861, and afterward an Aide to Jefferson Davis, and a Brigadier General in the Confederate Army.   The sentiments she describes in her diary entry for November 24 were probably shared by many.

November 24, 1861

Hymn at Church:

Save us Lord, or we perish
When through the torn sail the wild tempest is howling
When o'er the dark wave the dread lightning is gleaming*

I could have rested my head on that cushion and sobbed and shrieked like a new convert at a revival camp meeting.  But not an eyelash moved. So much for civilized self-control.

*Lines slightly misquoted from a hymn by Reginald Heber appearing in Hymns Written and Adapted to the Weekly Service of the Year (1827)
Mary Chesnut

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