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Posted By: on: 10/09/2000 10:49:49 EDT
Subject: Hardtack,Salt Horse and Coffee

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From Chapter IX Page 224 " The Life of Billy Yank" The Common Soldier of The Union. By Mr.Bell Irvin Wiley

1951/1971/1997 Louisiana State University Press

At the time this verse was published and throughout the war, except for the period before August 3, 1861, and June 20, 1864, the daily allowance for each Union soldier was:
Twelve ounces of pork or bacon,or,one pound and four ounces of salt or fresh beef; one pound and six ounces of salt bread or flour, or,one pound of hard bread, or, one pound and four ounces of corn meal; and to every one hundred rations, fifteen pounds of beans or peas, and ten pounds of rice or hominy; ten pounds of green coffee or,eight pounds of roasted (or roasted and ground) coffee,or,one pound and eight ounces of tea; fifteen pounds of sugar; four quarts of vinegar;...three pounds and twelve ounces of salt; four ounces of pepper; thirty pounds of potatoes, when practicable, and one quart of molasses.

In relative terms this was a generous allowance. It was about one fifth more than that of the British Army,almost twice that of the French, and compared even more favorably with that of the Prussians,Austrians and Russians. It was also more liberal than the official diet of Confederates. The Southerners,after hopefully adopting the old army ration early in the conflict,were forced to repeatedly to cut it, while the Federals in August 1861 effected a substantial increase. Surgeon General Hammond was on firm ground when he boasted after this augmentation that the men in blue had the most abundant food allowance of any soldiers in the world.. .......Researched and Written by Mr.Bell Irvin Wiley


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