Frank B. Goodrich's The tribute book: a record of the munificence, self-sacrifice and patriotism of the American people during the war for the union… (1865) is a detailed accounting of the work of hundreds of civilian organizations and individuals that worked tirelessly to help and support the Union soldiers in the field. Ranging from huge, national organizations, like the Sanitary and Christian Commissions, to state and local efforts all across the country, and some overseas, even to Children's Fairs, selling their own craft creations and baked treats to raise money:
Children were mobilized for the effort in many ways.
Such as "Blackberries for the Soldiers":
"In August, 1864, the Sanitary Commission set all the children in the country to picking blackberries for the soldiers, their mothers and sisters to distill from them a refreshing cordial and tonic. In September, acknowledging that 'rivers of blackberry juice had flowed in upon them from all parts of the country, and that it would be impossible to think of a more grateful flood,' it made another call upon the boys and girls, asking for peaches, not canned, nor preserved, but simply dried. Peaches were never so plentiful, and could never be turned to better account. The peach had never borne a large part in the charities of mankind, and its history had had but slight connection with the practice of the healing art, but its opportunity had now come. Do not can the peaches, said the commission to the children, and waste no sugar upon them. Cut them carefully in halves, and take out the stones. Lay the halves upon clean boards or upon sheds and roofs sloping to the south. Dry them thoroughly in the sun, if possible; if not, put them in slightly heated ovens, or toast them gently upon the hearth, or before the stove. You cannot dry them too thoroughly, boys; and you cannot send too many, girls. If there are any left when the sick and the convalescent have had their fill, they will do no harm to the well men in the trenches and the field."
And, newspapers of the time contributed by printing easy recipes for
Don't forget to add "1 pint of good brandy: -- "for medicinal purposes."