Following the adoption of a Confederate conscription law to enroll Black men into their army in March 1865, there were reports of several stampedes by enslaved families in various places to avoid service. The New York Herald reported on one such stampede in southern Mississippi in mid-April 1865, writing: "It is said that the attempt on the part of the rebels to carry out the law of their Congress requiring the negro to fight for the enslavement of his race has caused a widespread and general stampede in the southern part of Mississippi, especially in Pike, Amite and Wilkinson counties. One planter recently lost one hundred head of his 'peculiar' property, and many others have lost from ten to fifty, and in numerous cases the runaways have carried off carriages, horses, mules, harnesses and household effects belonging to their masters. And still the exodus continues."
Saturday, April 1, 1865
Escape Numbers Comment
100 from single plantation; 10 to 50 from multiple others