Browsing All posts tagged under »slavery«

When do we fail our history? – a perspective on an event, from Long Branch

December 31, 2013 by

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This isn’t the way I planned on introducing my thoughts on Long Branch. I think the place is amazing, and under the new director, Nicholas Redding, has shown growth and incredible potential as a historic site… perhaps even reaching the status as the premier historic site of Clarke County, Virginia. As I’m only about fifteen […]

A former slave vouches for the Unionism of his former owner

July 9, 2012 by

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Seeing what I do in discussions among folks regarding Civil War era studies, there can be extreme views regarding slavery. Some lean hard in one direction, talking about how the cruelties of slavery were all fabrications, or very rare. Some lean hard in another direction and talk about the cruelties of slavery, and that, no matter the case, […]

On Southerners and secession (1860-61)… motivations…

January 11, 2012 by

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Please pardon my rather lengthy absences over the past few months. Between dealing with some health issues, having surgery… and somewhere in between… still working an average 90+ hours per two weeks… not to mention the average 12-15 hours of commuting per week… writing has fallen significantly on my list of priorities (sleep has ranked […]

149 years ago today, but, what about a snapshot of 150 years ago today? Life one year before THE battle.

September 17, 2011 by

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I encourage those who are able, to take advantage of all that is going on at Antietam National Battlefield, this weekend. Regretfully, I won’t be able to make it… though I most certainly plan on being there this time next year (and might even take a little time to hop across the Potomac next weekend, […]

I’m puzzled why Chris thinks I may be puzzled…

June 4, 2011 by

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In this post over at Civil War Voices, Chris Wehner wonders if I am puzzled by “the presence of contraband’s blacks offering substances to Union soldiers”. I recently commented over there about the whole contraband thing, and Chris made that a little more clear, but think I may need to offer a little more. Keep […]

From June 4, 1861, an Ohio paper opines… Virginia Playing the Fool (?)

June 4, 2011 by

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Courtesy of the Cleveland (Ohio) Herald, we have this small clip from June 4, 1861 (via Dickinson College’s House Divided blog). The title (of the original document) reads, “Virginia Playing the Foot”, but I feel that this was an error in printing, and that they (the Herald) meant “Virginia Playing the Fool”. Anyway, I find […]

Letcher, the politician in search of votes, distances himself from the Ruffner Pamphlet

May 14, 2011 by

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I figured that I would follow-up on my post from this morning, and briefly tackle the continued role that the Ruffner Pamphlet played, up through the governor’s race in Virginia, in 1859. During the Democratic nomination run-off for the governorship of Virginia, in 1859, John Letcher may have regretted his stand on the Ruffner Pamphlet […]

Another Southerner who wanted to free slaves… but…

May 14, 2011 by

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… his motivations weren’t centered on freeing slaves as an issue of morality. Dr. Henry Ruffner was well-educated (Washington College, and Princeton, where he received his D.D.), and headed several Presbyterian pastorates in Rockbridge County, Virginia (not to mention one near his family’s salt works in the Kanawha Valley). He was also a fairly active […]

Southerners who wanted to free the slaves

May 5, 2011 by

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Yes, there were white Southerners who wanted to free the slaves. But, something that comes to my mind when I’m considering this is, well, with all of the talk about “Black Confederates”, and fair and equal treatment by the Confederacy… do tell… of those who wore gray, or were the big dogs in the Confederate […]

Reverse the Circumstances

April 24, 2011 by

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I’m not much into alternative history, because there may be an infinite number of forks in the road, but this is entertaining… and a take on things, from April 1861… (it appeared in the April 23, 1861 edition of the Staunton Spectator). Reverse the Circumstances. If there were any reason left amongst the people of […]

“Submission is Ruin.”

April 10, 2011 by

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I’ll let a pro-secession paper in Virginia speak for itself… Nothing could be more preposterous, nothing more stupid, than the dogma that slavery is a curse to the country. On the contrary, the heaviest calamity that could befall any slave State on this continent, the greatest curse that an angry Providence could inflict upon the […]

John B. Baldwin on the threatened right(s?) of Virginians

March 31, 2011 by

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From the Virginia Convention, Thursday, March 21, 1861… we catch Mr. Baldwin in the middle of his presentation to the members of the Convention (as documented by someone present)… She [Augusta County] was identified with every interest of the Commonwealth; and if there were extremes of opinion or prejudice in one quarter or another, Augusta […]

Protect slavery or face “degredation and ruin.”

March 29, 2011 by

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Looking back 150 years ago, from the Shenandoah Valley… this comes from the Staunton Vindicator, March 29, 1861… The question is not “Union”. That is irretrievably, hopelessly broken up. No compromise of right–no palliation of wrong, or denunciation of its resistance, can restore its fallen columns. Nor can past glory reconcile to a future of degradation. The only […]

Tracing President Lincoln’s Thoughts on Slavery

March 29, 2011 by

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I meant to post this last month, but just now getting around to it. Eric Foner on Lincoln and slavery… to include abolition, emancipation, colonization, & etc. Very worthwhile stuff when considering some of the discussions within the blogosphere in the last few months. From NPR… http://www.npr.org/v2/?i=133372512&m=133783285&t=audio *Especially interesting when we consider those who try […]

“Will Secession Preserve Slavery?”

March 27, 2011 by

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I’m in a western Maryland frame of mind. So… …the following comes from the Herald and Torch (Hagerstown, Md.), March 13, 1861: Will Secession Preserve Slavery? The Baltimore Sun, which is the exponent of the extreme sentiments of the Southern rights men of Maryland, as they call themselves, says that “secession and union with the […]

In search of… the grave of a slaveholder, killed by his slaves

March 12, 2011 by

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Just a quick note this morning, before I head out. Among the things I have on the calendar for today is a visit to a cemetery. This isn’t just an ordinary cemetery, but one in which rests a slaveholder who was killed (February 14, 1842) by two of his slaves (“Captain” and “Martin”). I visited […]

Lincoln on compensated border state emancipation, coupled with colonization

February 27, 2011 by

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Considering relatively recent discussion in the blogosphere (and mentions elsewhere, on the Web) regarding compensated emancipation and colonization of freed blacks, I thought I’d offer some thoughts of my own, but based on something that I found over a year ago. While I haven’t conducted that much research on the topic, I believe an article […]

Were some Union soldiers fighting to preserve slavery?(!)

February 19, 2011 by

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Yes, you read that correctly. Give me a little time, and I’ll set the stage… As many who follow this blog know, one of my favorite areas of study is western Maryland… most especially, the Clear Spring and Conococheague Districts in Washington County. Likewise, I spend a good deal of time researching the men from […]

Recent reenactments and the media

January 23, 2011 by

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We’ve seen a couple reenactments lately, and they haven’t been reenactments of battles. The slave auction reenactment, I think, was high impact. It continues to make an impression on YouTube, but honestly, there are a couple of videos available, and the best is one (=>see a post from a few days ago, in which I […]

On Georgia’s secession, 150 years ago yesterday…

January 20, 2011 by

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As the anniversary of each state’s vote to secede goes by, I see a tweet or two announcing the fact, but little discussion about the same. Occasionally, a newspaper article or editorial appears in a state newspaper’s online edition. Pretty much, it seems at times as if the states seceded… and that was it. They […]

Yes, Page County, you once had slaves…

January 16, 2011 by

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While the audience of this blog is typically from well beyond the boundaries of my home county (and, I’m happy to say, even beyond the confines of this continent), I frequently look back to that place, as I have spent a considerable number of years writing about its history. No doubt, it’s fascinating to me […]

“All we ask is to be left alone”

January 15, 2011 by

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I’m picking-up from where I left off in my last post… Regarding some of those who opposed secession, and continued to do so… it didn’t necessarily mean that they were ready to go to war against their neighbors and friends, in defense of their position. Instead, many preferred to be left alone. They simply didn’t […]

Maryland, my Maryland, wherefore art thou, my Maryland?

January 9, 2011 by

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Earlier this week, I posted a quick comment on my Facebook page about Maryland’s War of 1812 license plates. It’s everywhere, it’s everywhere! Yet, Maryland’s silence about the Sesquicentennial is excruciatingly painful. No blogs, no tweets, nothing… I’m not saying that the War of 1812 is unimportant… because it IS important. What bothers me is […]

One site, multiple angles for interpretation

December 19, 2010 by

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One of my favorite historic sites in Page County, Virginia is Catherine’s Furnace. Because of efforts made in the early 2000s, the site has one Virginia Civil War Trails marker. I was fortunate to be involved in deciding that the site merited a marker, and I also wrote the text and provided images for the […]