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A handwritten newspaper by Confederates in a prison camp: the "Stonewall Register"...
Item # 650399
April 20, 1865
STONEWALL REGISTER, Fort Delaware, Delaware, April 20, 1865 An exceptionally rare handwritten P.O.W. newspaper penned by a Confederate prisoner detained at Fort Delaware in Pea Patch Island, Delaware. A previous citing notes it is one of only four known examples of the title, others currently held at the New York Historical Society, Georgia Historical Society (the vol. 1#1 issue dated April 1), and the South Carolina Historical Society. My efforts were not able to determine the date of the issues in the other 3 institutions. It is possible this is the only vol. 1 #2 in existence & also likely the only issue of any date in private hands.
The masthead features an illustrated bust of Stonewall Jackson, flanked by Confederate flags.
The paper appears to be either one of two papers produced at the camp or the same paper that underwent a title change. The earliest edition of the "Stonewall Times" is at the Georgia Historical Society and was circulated on April 1, 1865. A newspaper titled "Prison Times" may well be the "Stonewall Times" renamed for its April 8 issue, likely a competitor to the "Stonewall Register" as the Register offered here and in the Georgia Historical Society are in the same hand, while the "Prison Times" in the N.Y. Historical Society appears to be in a different hand.
Featured stories in the paper include commentary on Sherman's march through North Carolina, General Lee’s surrender, mourning over the assassination of Lincoln, and the author’s dislike of Johnson, Some excerpts include: "...The evacuation of that entire state & the seeming hopelessness of that cause which is so near & dear to every heart within the confines of this, our prison world. These events, sad overpowering..." and also: "...The status of prisoners has also been most lamentably altered by the dark, terrible & despicable assassination of the President of the United States. The enemies of the South will seek to place the ordinance of this cowardly crime at the door of that brave people who for four years have fought & resisted the greatly superior numbers which Northern money has been able to collect...against the noble ranks which sought to protect Southern liberty." Also: "The present President of the United States enters upon his office breathing hatred to us and to our cause..." with much more.
Like a traditional paper, it also includes commentary on the “market.” Instead of stocks and bonds, it measures the price of important commodities--tobacco and bread.
An exceedingly rare and fascinating newspaper. Four pages, measures 7 3/4 by 12 inches. There has been professional restoration to the paper to remove old tape stains and repair some loss at the very top. Very professionally done making for a very attractive newspaper.