"One day last week the steamer New York took 450 women and children from Washington to the realms of Secessia. They all had, or claimed to have, friends or relatives in Jeff Davis’s kingdom, and were sent South at Government expense. Among the number were several young women whose departure from the Federal capital will lighten the duties of the provost-marshal. The Washington Star says:
"Had their baggage passed without inspection they would have added much also to the necessities of the Southerners in dry goods, shoes, medicines, and many other articles and goods much required at the present time in Jeff Davis’s domains. Eight officers were engaged all last night in examining the baggage that had been sent down. In many of the trunks were found dress goods of various kinds and textures, pins, needles, thread, etc., which articles were, of course, excluded.
"In one very large trunk a sufficient quantity of dry goods was found to fully stock a country store. Some of the trunks had ten, fifteen, and as high as twenty-five. pairs of shoes. No passenger, however, was allowed to take more than two pairs. One lady, when asked why she desired to take so many, replied that she generally wore out two pair per month! All this morning the wharf and the neighborhood of Sixth Street was crowded with ladies and gentlemen, who resorted there to witness the departure and for the purpose of saying farewell to friends.
"Judging from the expressions we heard in the crowd secesh sympathizers predominated. A gentleman asked an old lady who was going off whether she was pleased at her departure. She replied, “Yes, thank God! it is a great pleasure to get to a Government conducted by gentlemen, and not by Yankee boors.” A crowd immediately gathered around, and then commenced expressions of contempt from fair lips for the United States Government generally, and the President and Cabinet in particular. One young lady remarked to a friend as she bade her good-by, “Be sure and write quickly; you know how to get the letter through.” Another lady remarked that she hoped to return ere long, but with the victorious Confederate army."
(Published January 24, 1863, in Harper’s Weekly.)