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"FAMINE AT FAYETTEVILLE," Hillsborough Recorder, March 22, 1865


"FAMINE AT FAYETTEVILLE," Hillsborough Recorder, March 22, 1865


The letter was published in the Hillsborough Recorder, which was owned and operated by one-time Whig supporter Dennis Heartt, who mentored peace movement leader and North Carolina Standard editor, William Holden. The Recorder published the letter on March 22, a week after it was written. The letter came from a prominent citizen of Fayetteville, and was sent to his father, in Orange County. The letter overstated some facts, such as many homes being burned, but demonstrated how much different Union soldiers and newspapers viewed their actions, compared to Confederate citizens. The writer of letter wrote of how mass amounts of food had been taken and how some individuals were on the brink of starvation. While Union officials saw the taking of food as a military necessity, the local citizens took it more personal, as citizens were struggling for basic necessities to survive.


Hillsborough Recorder


"FAMINE AT FAYETTEVILLE," Hillsborough Recorder, March 22, 1865, State Library of North Carolina, Raleigh, North Carolina.




Tim Justice




Hillsborough, North Carolina
Orange County, North Carolina

Original Format

Newspaper Article


For the Hillsborough Recorder.


We give an extract from a letter written by a well-known gentleman in Fayetteville to his father in Chapel Hill, of the date of the 14th instant:

“We are in great distress. The Yankees arrived on Sunday morning, and have nearly destroyed both town and country. There will not be left more than fight head of four footed bests in the county, and not enough provisions o last ten days. Many, very many families have not a mouthful to eat. We have meal and meat to last us two weeks, by taking two meals a day. Our house and many others burned, and everything destroyed. Even the negroes have been robbed and abused. As to valuables, nothing is safe in their track.

“Do spread the news of our destitution and urge the people to bring us something to eat. If relief does not come soon many must starve to death.

“All the factories, the arsenal and the entire square of which the Bank of North Carolina stood, have been burned. Every store and house in town and country have been robbed. The last of the Yankees will leave tomorrow I hope."


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Hillsborough Recorder, "FAMINE AT FAYETTEVILLE," Hillsborough Recorder, March 22, 1865, Civil War Era NC, accessed May 21, 2024,