In none of the Southern States did the women — and in this class is included many who, in years, were girls only — enter into the work of physical alleviation and moral inspiration with more zest or unwavering loyalty than those of South Carolina.
The act of secession was still in its early infancy when the Women’s Relief Associations, Hospital Associations, sewing circles, and scores of other organizations were organized throughout the State, and as the war advanced and demands from the battlefields from stricken soldiers poured in upon them, in the midst of their tears they were stimulated to greater and greater labors of love.
It should not be forgotten that no “Sanitary” or “Christian Commission,” heavily endowed by leading capitalists and supplied with government funds, brought nourishing food and medicine to the wounded or fever-stricken Confederate. Not in South Carolina alone, but south of the Potomac it was the mission of woman to attempt and in hundreds of thousands of cases to successfully perform this self-imposed and unprecedented task.
During the last of the war when South Carolina had scarcely an able-bodied man in civil life, it was the women who upheld the morale of the soldiers in the field long after many of the stronger sex knew, in their hearts, that the Southern cause was lost.
Source: History of South Carolina – Volume II, by Yates Snowden, LL. D.
Explore the map above in detail at Colton’s South Carolina.