March 3, 1863: Sutler Brought Whiskey to Camp
Rain last night.
Pleasant day. Sutler brought 100 dozzen [sic] bottles whiskey to Camp, smuggled in name of our officers.
See the scanned diary page.
On March 3, 1863, Lincoln signed the Conscription Act, also known as the National Enrollment Act of 1863, into law. The law provided fresh manpower for the Union Army, but was controversial because it could conscript all male citizens and declared aliens who were between the ages of 20 and 45. Wealthy Americans could buy their way out of service by paying a $300 commutation fee or by hiring a substitute. Enforcement of the act sparked civil unrest, perhaps most famously in the New York Draft Riots of July 1863.
Sources: A Great Civil War by Russell Frank Weigley and March 13, 1863 edition of the Delaware State Journal and Statesman newspaper.