- A Lost Heroine of the Confederacy: The Diaries and Letters of Belle Edmondson
(edited by William and Loretta Gilbraith)
Belle Edmondson (Isabella Buchanan Edmondson) was born in Pontotoc, Mississippi, in 1840. She was living on a farm in Tennessee with her family during the Civil War. Her two oldest brothers served in the war and Edmondson took advantage of the position of her family’s farm to learn information which she passed on to the Confederate army. She also smuggled supplies and money to the army.
When an arrest warrant was issued for her in April of 1864 for smuggling supplies and letters through the line, she moved to Clay County, Mississippi to avoid arrest.
From January to November of 1864, Edmondson wrote in a diary about her activities, notes on troop movements, skirmishes, and more. Through visits from soldiers at the house, the antics of her favorite dog Beulah, the disagreements between her and her sister Laura, the nights spent sewing in the parlor, to the late morning breakfasts in her room, Edmondson’s accounts give detailed insight into the daily life of women during the war.
Her diary and letters have been published as A Lost Heroine of the Confederacy: The Diaries and Letters of Belle Edmondson, which was edited by William and Loretta Gilbraith.
She died in 1873 at the age of 33 and shortly after announcing her engagement to a Colonel H. (Henderson ?), who perhaps was a Yankee.
- Belle Edmondson: Civil War Spy and Smuggler
- Diary of Belle Edmondson: January to November 1864 can be read in entirety online here.
- A Lost Heroine of the Confederacy. University of Mississippi Press