The Homefront and Sandusky

Sandusky early 20th century - Sandusky Collection
Sandusky Early 20th Century

During the war, life continued for those on the home front much the way it had been with only a few changes.  Prices changed and news of the war became important to the men, women, and children not fighting on the battlefield.  Adeline Hutter’s diary is an example of this.

During the Battle of Lynchburg in 1864, from June 17-18, Sandusky served as the Union headquarters. During this time, the house was occupied by the Hutter family.  Adeline Lawrence Hutter was a member of this family, only 17 in 1864.

Adeline Hutter's Journal, 1859-1864 PDF_Page_01
Ada Hutter’s wartime diary. Donated by her great-granddaughter Eveline J. Wood.

Known as Ada, her diary reveals how she felt during the war, and likely how many other young women in the South felt as well. Many of the entries show that the war did not occupy her thoughts entirely, but it certainly had its effect.  Some days she comments only on personal musings, other days her notes extend to life in Lynchburg and other prominent families in the area such as the Oteys, Langhornes, and Bells.  However, quite often she makes comments almost as if in passing about the war.  There is or is not any news, someone has died, they have heard from her brother Risque Hutter, or perhaps she conveys her hatred for the Yankees.  In one entry, she records a poem that had been widely published in the south calling for people to give up their church bells to be melted for the war effort.

Below are more images of Ada Hutter’s diary. Click on the images to read the transcription of the page.

Below are pages from Ada’s diary that contain the poem called “Melt the Bells” written in 1862 after General Beauregard issued a call in April to the people of the South for the donation of metals to meet the wartime emergency; specifically, bells for the casting of cannon. The poem ran in the Memphis Commercial Appeal later that month.  Click here to view the full transcription of Ada Hutter’s Diary