April 2, 1863Food shortages incite hundreds of angry women to riot in Richmond, Virginia and demand that the Confederate government release emergency supplies.
The Southern Bread Riots were events of civil unrest in the Confederacy on April 2, 1863. The riots were triggered mainly by foraging armies, both Union and Confederate, who ravaged crops and devoured draft animals. The staggering inflation created by the Confederate government was also a primary cause. The drought of 1862 created a poor harvest that did not yield enough in a time when food was already scarce. From 1861 to 1863, the price of wheat tripled and butter and milk prices quadrupled. Salt, which at the time was the only practical meat preservative, was very expensive (if available at all) as a result of the Union blockade and the capture of Avery Island by the Union.