Baptists and the American Civil War: September 17, 1864

floridaToday aboard the USS Lizzie Davis Union Brigadier General Alexander Asboth begins transporting some 700 men and horses across Florida’s Pensacola Bay to Navy Cove, the beginnings of a two week long raid in Florida that is designed to inflict great military and economic harm upon portions of Florida controlled by the Confederacy.

By the end of the month, Confederate Florida is effectively subdued in yet another blow to the fortunes of the Confederacy.

Meanwhile, Mary Beckley Bristow, a member of the Sardis Baptist Church in Union, Kentucky and a Confederate supporter, journals her anxieties and hopes this day.

Five months have elapsed since I have written any. How many things have transpired in those months! Many terrible battles have been fought, thousands of our fellow creatures have been launched into eternity, and yet the fanatics are unsatisfied, are still for war. And I have lost all hope, have no faith in man, whose breath is in his nostril. But know assuredly that the Omnipotent God can scatter our enemies with one breath. One wave of his almighty arm will discomfit them, and they will be carried away. . . .

Bristow is not the only Baptist in the Confederacy who yet holds out hope that a seemingly slumbering God will awake and, before all is lost, avenge his Southern nation.

Sources: Dale Cox, “Civil War Florida” (link); Bristow Diary, September 17, 1864 (link)