Jacob Yoder's Diaries, entries of May 10-14, 1869

Yoder diary_May 1869_transcription_14_1165_041-044.pdf

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Jacob Yoder's Diaries, entries of May 10-14, 1869


African Americans, education, race relations


Jacob Eschbach Yoder (1838-1905), a Pennsylvania native, came to Lynchburg in 1866 to help educate freedpeople. He left after a few months, but returned in 1868 and continued to teach and serve as an administrator for the African American schools in Lynchburg until his death. Despite his idealistic intentions, he confided to his diary his deep ambivalence aobut his job, the abilities of his colleagues, and the prospects for African American education. Yoder kept a diary between 1866 and 1870, some of which has been published as The Fire of Liberty in Their Hearts, ed., Samuel L. Horst (1996). These entries are from a volume that remains unpublished.


Jacob Yoder


Jacob E. Yoder. Diaries, 1861-1870. Accession 27680, 51148. Personal papers collection. The Library of Virginia, Richmond, Va. 23219.


May 8-14, 1869




Out of the Box blog entry on Jacob Yoder.






14_1165_041, 14_1165_042, 14_1165_043, 14_1165_044, Yoder diary_May 1869_transcription_14_1165_041-044.pdf


Lynchburg, Virginia

Text Item Type Metadata


Monday May 10. 1869.

School was small so I got through with it early and went to see the memorial services in honor of the Confederate Dead. A cornerstone is laid there of a monument. White Flags are afloat in different parts of the cemetery with such mottoes:
“Resurgamus.” “Our deathless Dead.” “Our Gallant Heroes.” “The Path of duty is the path of Glory.” “Though Dead not Forgotten.” “Our Brave Confederates.” “We give them all that is left - out tears.” “All is lost save our honor.” “Sweetly sleep our Patriot Dead.” “They Died for their honor.” “Heroes of the Lost Cause.”
“Pro Patria,” in silver letters adorned with Green over one of the entrances in the form of an arch.
Flowers are spread profusely on the graves. Ivy flowers are used in abundance. In different squares stacks of earth are made. Flowers cover these. Crosses are erected in different places all covered with flowers. Also little white flags are posted with black crosses on them.
Few stones or boards mark who the silent sleepers are. I think there are some twelve thousand dead here.
The crowd was large I think a majority of the white inhabitants were out of Lynchburg.
The oration of the Day was delivered by Rev. Mr. Wagoner, a Methodist Minister.
He is a gifted speaker that is to please the multitude.
He lavished boundless praise upon the Confederate dead.
“They fought for the truth.” He classed them with all the holy martyrs from St Stephen down to this time. He fostered the dangerous prejudice of the People in regard to their foolish notions of Virginia’s superiority.
A scalawag is a devil in Paradise. To the honor of woman be it said there are no women scalawags. So if I know what a scalawag is he must be made one before he can go to heaven if the change must take in hell.
He said, “we are defeated, it is true. but the blow that killed us killed the goddess of liberty with. The Confederates died in the fight for liberty against power.[“] I new [never] heard human lips utter a more foolish falsehood.
He made no allusions to the colored people. I looked at the man. I often saw colored men prettier than he is. Yet for no other reason than their dark color he must be disfranchised.
If this money that is thus expended taken and expended for the living soldiers, their orphans or their wives these soldiers - at least the sensible ones among them would give them much more credit for their enterprise.
The whole performance is destined to be an injury to the state. Except it can living good in the way Mrs. Browning meant when she said “O, lord give us more madness?” It shows again afresh spirit of the people against those that follow the savior in his golden rules.
They want their independence because they love freedom. If this had been their motive the Confederacy would have succeeded.
I do not know what to think about matter. God I trust Thou wilt bring good out of evil. Not my will be done nor that of the people of Va but Thine be done.
Sought a boarding place. Had letters from Mrs. Armisted Corson and Mr. Mahon.
Worked a little at Reports.

Tuesday May 11 1869

Weather warm. Changed my Head Quarters to Bigby House. Drew $339.46 at Bank. Straightened up my accounts. Looked over my vouchers. Sent Mr. C. S. Schadd Books by express.
Made Blank Reports for schools. Had a letter from Maria. Had a letter from Linsey Hayden. Wrote Corson and Maria. I have done a thousand things to day. and used Tobacco with all night.

Thursday May 13. 1869.

Taught Miss Phelp’s class. She pretended being sick. I made up my mind to make an effort to stop school with this month. I believe our school does more harm than good. Made out report for the Bureau. Had a long conversation with Mr. Wm. Smith. Had to send after watch to Miss Phelps.
Rain and sunshine follow each other in rapid succession.
Had a letter from Miss Dean.

Friday May 14. 1869.

Made report for our association. Wrote Corson. Read Papers. Re’d Tobacco from Phila. by Express. Bought and sold Book. Taught Miss Phelp’s class again. She worried me again by not giving me my watch.
Hinted again to Brother Forman that I will try to close school at the end of this month.
Had a large bundle letters from New Glassgow School.
Had a letter from Corson and one from Varner.
Supper is too late at 8 O’clock.

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