Civil War Celebrations
by Patricia B. Mitchell

Civil War Celebrations: Patricia B. Mitchell

Holidays and festivities during the war, in spite of the war. Published 1998. 15 recipes, 68 research notes, 37 pages. 5.5 x 8.5 inches. Soft cover, saddle-stitched. ISBN-10: 0-925117-88-9. ISBN-13: 978-0-925117-88-5.

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About the Book

The four years of the American Civil War were not four years of unmitigated misery and suffering. As David Holt, a Mississippi private, wrote,

“We did not give up the fun of living [just] because we had constantly to face the chance of dying.”

Civil War Celebrations, by Patricia B. Mitchell, explores the ways soldiers and civilians enjoyed themselves, particularly on special occasions. Reports from the time describe parties, weddings, camp diversions, etc. When available, food was (and is) usually part of good times, so much is said about eating, and fifteen recipes are included in the text.

Humor was one of the key ingredients employed by wartime people. Here is just one example, a cheerful quote from military man, Capt. George W. F. Harper:

“The boxes were recv'd this morning. I thank you all a heap for mine. My appetite was good enough to enjoy our rough fare and I hope it will not be spoiled by your ‘goodies.’ My messmates recv'd a number of color'd eggs with their wifes names &c. &c. on them. You probably forgot that it was Easter so will excuse you especially as I prefer to cook 'em myself & don't care much for the shells.”

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