Kate Stone’s Civil War: He would do anything

Stone’s entries refer to Lt. Holmes more often, and for good reason. Holmes would eventually become her husband.

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From 2012 to 2015, Stillness of Heart will share interesting excerpts from the extraordinary diary of Kate Stone, who chronicled her Louisiana family’s turbulent experiences throughout the Civil War era.

Learn more about Stone’s amazing life in 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865 and beyond. Click on each year to read more about her experiences. You can read the entire journal online here.

(Photo edited by Bob Rowen)

Stone’s entries refer to Lt. Holmes more often, and for good reason. Holmes would eventually become her husband.

April 16, 1865

Tyler, Texas

All walked to church and were well repaid by an excellent sermon from Mr. Moore. … The tableaux with all their pleasant chat and laughter are a thing of the past. The gay rehearsals and frequent meetings are over, and we cleared about $900. The weather was wretched both evenings and of course kept many away, but we feel repaid for the trouble. The tableaux went off beautifully, not a hitch. Lt. Holmes — the Prince Charming as Mollie Moore and I dubbed him — was invaluable. He would do anything or adopt any suggestion we made. He was in attendance on Mollie and me all the time.

Dr. Weir came up to say good-bye as he is off for good. … He was much pleased with Mollie Moore, whom he met for the first time.

I tell Miss Mollie she always gets ahead of me when she tries the “poetry dodge” on our mutual friends. She is a charming girl. It is such a pleasure to have a friend to chatter nonsense to who enjoys it as much as I and does her full share. …

Kate Stone’s Civil War: Full of life and fun

The party that bonded the Stones to the Tyler community was a success. But Stone herself enjoys an even greater success: a new beau, Lt. Holmes.

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From 2012 to 2015, Stillness of Heart will share interesting excerpts from the extraordinary diary of Kate Stone, who chronicled her Louisiana family’s turbulent experiences throughout the Civil War era.

Learn more about Stone’s amazing life in 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865 and beyond. Click on each year to read more about her experiences. You can read the entire journal online here.

(Photo edited by Bob Rowen)

The party that bonded the Stones to the Tyler community was a success. But Stone herself enjoys an even greater success: a new beau, Lt. Holmes.

March 9, 1865

Tyler, Texas

The tableaux passed off as a grand success and made quite a nice sum of money. It is quiet now. Most of our soldier friends have left, one new acquaintance remaining, Lt. Holmes, a Louisianian. He took part in the entertainment and we saw him frequently. Before he came, Lt. Dupre told us he was so “fast ” that he would not bring him to the house, but he came with someone, and as far as we can tell is behaving all right. He seems full of life and fun. …

Mamma received today her application for My Brother’s transfer. It was disapproved, and so that ends our last hope of seeing him until this cruel war is over. We hear all the troops on this side are to be ordered across the river to reinforce the Army of [Northern] Virginia. When we hear from Jimmy again, their command may be marching over. It is a dark hour for us now. Only bad news, but the darkest hour is just before the dawning.

Miss Mollie Moore, “the Texas song bird,” has been very kind, lending us books, among others new novels. … They promise to be quite interesting. I am hoarse from reading aloud so long tonight. Mamma was tired and lying down. It has been too cold today to do anything but hover over the fire and read. …

Kate Stone’s Civil War: My escorts were disgusted

More food and supplies finally make it to Tyler, and Stone enjoys a crowded concert, if only to drown out the anguish of recent months.

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From 2012 to 2015, Stillness of Heart will share interesting excerpts from the extraordinary diary of Kate Stone, who chronicled her Louisiana family’s turbulent experiences throughout the Civil War era.

Learn more about Stone’s amazing life in 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865 and beyond. Click on each year to read more about her experiences. You can read the entire journal online here.

(Photo edited by Bob Rowen)

More food and supplies finally make it to Tyler, and Stone enjoys a crowded concert, if only to drown out the anguish of recent months.

Note her details on how the slaves make candles from Texas cactus.

Feb. 15, 1865

Tyler, Texas

Our garrison is reinforced and heavily provisioned. Warren reached here tonight after a six-day trip from the prairie with the long looked-for load of comestibles, and never could they have come in better time. The last flour had just been made up into biscuit in Capt. Birchett’s honor, and meat, sugar, candles, and everything else was waxing low. By the way, the servants make such pretty candles now. The candles look almost like wax. They boil a species of cactus in the tallow, and the candles are partly transparent and brittle and give an excellent clear light. Warren says the roads are nearly impassable. Mamma, when he left the carriage, was bogged down a few miles beyond Quitman, but Warren is satisfied that she will reach here today or tomorrow.

Capt. Birchett, after keeping me at home all day and depriving me of the pleasure of a ride with Dr. Weir, came up to tea and soon after bade us adieu for Shreveport and does not expect to be back for some weeks. We will miss him as he has been very sociable. Jolly Col. Hill and his demure, prim little wife called this morning and later Mrs. Benton and Mrs. St. Clair. No news except Mrs. Alexander, who lately lost her husband, will leave in a few days for San Antonio. And Johnny and I are eager to rent that house by the time Mamma arrives. Such a nice two-story affair with a pretty flower yard and in a nice part of town.

Dr. Weir spent yesterday afternoon here playing chess, and after tea I went with him and Capt. Birchett to a concert. Such a crowd. Not another person could have been crammed in and so many soldiers, but they were quiet and behaved well. The gentlemen all had to stand and my escorts were disgusted.

Niche boutique’s grand opening

We’re excited to launch our men’s collection at Niche boutique’s grand opening party this Thursday at San Antonio’s Historic Pearl. It begins at 5:30 p.m.

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My wife and I are excited to launch our men’s collection alongside already amazing women’s collections at Niche boutique’s grand opening party at San Antonio’s Historic Pearl. The party is this Thursday and begins at 5:30 p.m.

I’m so proud of her.

Kate Stone’s Civil War: Callous to suffering and death

Stone feels adrift throughout an era where the past is too painful to remember and the future is too horrific to imagine.

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From 2012 to 2015, Stillness of Heart will share interesting excerpts from the extraordinary diary of Kate Stone, who chronicled her Louisiana family’s turbulent experiences throughout the Civil War era.

Learn more about Stone’s amazing life in 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865 and beyond. Click on each year to read more about her experiences. You can read the entire journal online here.

(Photo edited by Bob Rowen)

Hidden beneath her upper-class sneering at a Texas barbecue, Stone grimly illustrates the wartime reality of senseless death and the emotional and psychological numbing required to endure it from one day to the next. She feels adrift throughout an era where the past is too painful to remember and the future is too horrific to imagine.

June 26, 1864

Tyler, Texas

This has been a busy week, clouded by the thought of Jimmy’s departure. We are finishing off his clothes and renovating ours, for we will go with him as far as Monroe [La.]. …

We have had our own trials patching up our clothes. We had no idea we were so near being ragamuffins until we took an exhaustive survey of our underclothes. Oh, for bolts and bolts and more bolts of white domestic. If Mamma’s trip proves successful, we will be able to better our condition as regards habiliments. Mamma is having quite a store of Texas goodies made up … to solace the inner man while on the road. …

Friday there was a grand Masonic celebration that we, in common with all the town and county, turned out to see. Mr. Michele took possession of our party and Sally Grissman and established us in the most pleasant and also most conspicuous seats and then devoted himself to our entertainment. Lt. Alexander and Dr. McGregor took possession of a nearby window, and we all had a merry morning but did not profit by the speeches. A large crowd and barbecue dinner that Mr. Michele insisted was not clean enough for us to eat. “Why,” said he, “should we dine with plebians?” I hope no native heard him. We went out, as Mamma said, “to see the animals feed.” Then we (the select few) returned home to dinner …

That night there was a party given at the hotel by Col. Anderson. He is in command, I think, of the Ordnance Department here and is an old army officer. His wife is charming. Emily and I went, to our surprise, and spent a charming evening. It was a most mixed and odd-looking crowd. Neither Emily nor I possessed a party dress, but we did not bring discredit on the swamp and looked well enough.

I did not think two months ago I would ever dance or care to talk nonsense again. But one grows callous to suffering and death. We can live only in the present, only from day to day. We cannot bear to think of the past and so dread the future. The refugees remind me of the description of the life of the nobility of France lived during the days of the French Revolution thrusting all the cares and tragedies of life aside and drinking deep of life’s joys while it lasted. This was our debut in Tyler society, and without self-flattery I may say we were quite a success.

I took a buggy ride yesterday with Dr. McGregor, who has a fine span of horses, and we just flew up and down (especially down) the hills. Enjoyed it highly, though I did think we would capsize on every hill we rushed down. On our return all the boys met us at the gate and could scarcely contain themselves at such a splendid opportunity for teasing, but the dread of future punishment at my hands kept them fairly in bounds. …

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