Destruction of Private Property

During the June 1863 invasion of Pennsylvania, Confederate Lieutenant General James Longstreet explained to English observer Lieutenant Colonel Arthur Freemantle that the army planned to live off the Northern land---and its citizens. But they would not kill or destroy wantonly. "He said to me," Freemantle remembered, "that although it might be fair, in just retaliation, to apply the torch, yet that doing so would demoralize the army and ruin its now excellent discipline." On the whole, the Confederates rarely resorted to violence against civilians for supplies. However, the Army of Northern Virginia demanded a huge tribute from most towns it passed. During their two-week raid of Pennsylvania, Rebels confiscated thousands of barrels of flour, 30,000 cattle, and 20,000 horses and mules. Hanover dry-goods merchant Josiah Gitt suffered from dual military pilfering. He owned a farm in York County along Westminster Road. By the time the main Confederate column passed on June 30, 1863, Gitt had lost three horses, three mules, 75 bushels of corn, and 20 bushels of oats. The next day he lost another horse, a saddle, and some farm gear---taken not by Confederates but the Union V Corps, marching along the same road.