Women And The Civil War- Daring Confederate Women Hid Supplies In Their Hoop Skirts
The climate of war that framed the journey of Elizabeth White, Kate and Betsie Ball, and Annie Hempstone into Union territory to obtain supplies was one of increasing desperation for the Confederacy.
In July 1864, four women risked charges of treason to smuggle supplies for Confederate soldiers across the Potomac River. Their story begins on the Maryland-Virginia border in northern Loudoun County, a place of divided loyalties and fierce fighting, and serves to challenge conventional notions regarding nineteenth century women as weak and apolitical.
The three friends had embarked on the daring mission north into Maryland to retrieve supplies for “our dear Maryland boys in grey.” Annie Hempstone later wrote of their adventure as a “little trip across the Potomac,” which belied the true perils of their journey.
Mrs. Elizabeth White was the wife of Col. Elijah White who commanded “Whites Battalian”, CSA. Miss Bettie Ball and her sister, Miss Kate E. Ball, along with Miss Annie M. Hempstone were young girls from Loudoun County. All of these ladies had a strong love for the Confederacy and a devout hatred of the U. S. Government. All had near relatives in the Confederate Army. Click to continue reading the story…….