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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 12

The Waste of War

The Waste of War.

Says the Daily News, published in Charleston, S. C., the birthplace and nursery of the rebellion, "of $15,000,000 in bank stock, all is lost. Of $5,000,000 bills in circulation, the market value is not more than twenty per cent. Of three insurance companies neither can continue business. Of $20,000,000 in railroads, no dividends can be expected. Of 5,000 houses in Charleston, 1,500 have been burned, and others almost irreparably damaged. Of estates of decedents and minors, and of property in litigation, four-fifths are represented by Confederate securities, and are therefore valueless.

Of our many merchants, lately of large capital and unblemished credit, few have assets to pay the small debts against them at the beginning of the war. Of the many large and valuable estates in Beaufort District and the adjacent islands, all have been abandoned, and many have been sold for taxes. Of the large cotton estates, still further from the seaboard, many have been desolated. Of the cotton on hand at the beginning and raised during the war (amounting in value to at least $20,000,000), the larger portion has been taken or destroyed. Of the stock, horses, hogs, cattle, farming implements, utensils and furniture, and silver ware, all but an inconsiderable amount have been consumed, destroyed, or taken.

Of the money in the hands of our citizens at the commencement of the war, or accruing from the sale of property, from the practice of professions, or the payment of debts, all has been invested in securities, of which nine-tenths have no possible value. Of the debts uncollected, few are expected to be paid. Of the funds of churches, colleges, charitable institutions and societies, all, or nearly all, have been sunk. Of the lands of the State, not held by the Government, little has any market value. Into this frightful gulf of ruin has also been swept the value of four hundred thousand slaves, estimated a few years since at $200,000,000. Thus of the $400,000,000 worth of property in this State in 1860, but little more than $50,000,000 now remains."