Monday, August 11, 2014

Civil War salt works - 500 bushels a day - destroyed

Salt was important to preserve meat (like salt pork) in order to feed the soldiers.  Thus, the Union navy conducted raids on Confederate salt-works, as illustrated and described in Harper's Weekly, Nov. 15, 1862.

“Destruction of a salt manufactory on the coast of Florida by the crew of the US Bark Kingfisher…extensive salt-works at the town of St. Joseph, making from 100 to 150 bushels a day, and not yet completed. [500 if completed, below]
We sent a flag of truce, and politely informed them that they must stop, or we should destroy them.  They paid no attention to us, but continued their fire day and night. … in less than two hours the whole place was in flames, and the machinery broken up.
The whole coast of Florida is lined with these works of a smaller size. This one, when finished, would have been capable of making five hundred bushels a day, at $10 per bushel.”

For more information check out this post on the Navy and Marine blog The Navy’s Great Salt Raids

©2014 Patricia Bixler Reber

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