Browsing All Posts filed under »slavery«

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 […]

Shenandoah Valley African-Americans in the Civil War… a sampling

October 30, 2011 by

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You might recall a post from this past July, in which I briefly mentioned Shenandoah Valley African-Americans in the USCT. I haven’t had as much time to work with that project as I would like, but it’s one that is always on my mind. Perhaps, over winter, I’ll be able to wrap it up. Anyway, […]

Beyond John Brown… an enduring legacy not always so obvious, in the Shenandoah Valley

October 25, 2011 by

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It’s just over a week after the 152nd anniversary of Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry. While many will continue to consider the actions of Brown, the man… especially as to whether he should be judged a hero or terrorist… this excellent video, from West Virginia Public Broadcasting, reveals an enduring, positive legacy, in the wake of Brown’s actions at Harpers Ferry… and […]

Confederates, Southern Unionists, and… The Waltons?!

October 23, 2011 by

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To be clear… I’ve always been a fan of the Waltons… though I prefer the first three seasons over the rest. Not only was it based largely on the writings of a Virginian, but also focused on a fictional Virginia family under the shadow of the Blue Ridge (albeit, on the eastern side). I still […]

What historical period dominates the (interpretive) landscape, and which are sorely absent?

October 15, 2011 by

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As I drive nearly the entire stretch of the Shenandoah Valley (excepting the West Virginia counties of Berkeley and Jefferson), at least four days a week, I pass various sites of interests. Few, actually, are marked with any indication of their stories… though I’m aware of the stories for most of them. I suspect many […]

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 bought myself”… Henry Roy’s Civil War

July 19, 2011 by

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First, we have USCT soldiers from the Shenandoah Valley (and, yes, there are more stories to come about those men). Now, in yet another effort to add dimension to the Civil War in the Shenandoah Valley, I present Henry Roy… Roy was a resident of Warren County, Virginia, in the northeast central Shenandoah Valley. A […]

More on another view of the Shenandoah Valley’s Civil War

July 10, 2011 by

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So far, I have about 345 USCT soldiers claiming different counties in the Shenandoah Valley as their place of birth… and I’m not even half way through the index which I’ve been looking into.Ultimately, all total, there may be enough to equate to one infantry regiment, or at least a hefty sized battalion. In the […]

More on the Civil War and tangents

July 3, 2011 by

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Funny how things seem to work… Recently, I made yet another visit to Winchester National Cemetery (I seem to be doing that a lot these days), looking to take a photo of a headstone for a trooper from Cole’s Maryland Cavalry. He died of illness in a hospital in Martinsburg, and, like most Union soldiers […]

Upcoming works, now on the “front burners”…

June 8, 2011 by

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While I’ve got a number of projects that are ongoing, ranging from my work on the history of Cole’s Cavalry to history publications about my home county, I’m pleased to say that I’m also going to be busying myself with another project this summer. About a month ago, I signed-on to write five entries for […]

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 […]

Eastman Johnson’s “Union Soldiers Accepting a Drink”

May 25, 2011 by

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Just stumbled across this on the Web today, and found it so interesting that I just wanted to share. First, note who is providing the Union soldiers with a drink. Second, I wonder, is that the Blue Ridge in the background? Wonder if this is an image from Johnson’s experiences east of the Blue Ridge […]

Otho Nesbitt: Southern Unionist, but… wanted to free slaves? Eh, not so much…

May 21, 2011 by

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While the house you see is, in this photo, adorned for Christmas, imagine if you will… an American flag… two yards long, draped from the middle garret window. Can you envision it? In fact, in April 1861, Otho Nesbitt had hired a seamstress to make that flag for him… a statement to all those around […]

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 […]

“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 […]

A quest to know more about my Virginia ancestor who spoke out against secession

April 3, 2011 by

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As I mentioned yesterday, after posting a few items focused on anti-secession rhetoric in Virginia (during this time of the year, 150 years ago) this past week, I began thinking again about an ancestor of mine who also spoke out against secession at this same time. John Shuler (1815-1908) was a well-to-do farmer in Grove […]

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 […]

A reason why Virginians might fear an alignment with the “Northern Confederacy”

March 29, 2011 by

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From the Staunton Vindicator, March 29, 1861: Mr. Bennett, one of the financial officers of the State [Virginia], has already called for an increase of 20 cents in the one hundred dollars on the present rate of taxation. If the policy of the submissionists is adopted, and Virginia becomes a part of the Northern Confederacy, her […]

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 […]

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 […]

Newspapers that reveal something new to popular memory of the Civil War… perhaps…

February 6, 2011 by

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Once again (as can be seen in my post from Friday), I’ve been perusing the Valley of the Shadow site. My focus in that post on Friday was on the two papers in Staunton, Virginia, at this particular time (the first week of February), 150 years ago. One of those papers happened to support secession, […]

Virginia newspapers “doing harm” to sentiments of disunion

February 4, 2011 by

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As Ron Baumgarten pointed out in his post the other day over at “All Not So Quiet on the Potomac”, today marks the 150th anniversary of Virginians voting for delegates to the Virginia Convention of 1861. By the time of the vote, seven states from the deep South had seceded; Texas being the most recent, […]

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 […]

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 […]

On the notion that emancipation would eventually come in a free and independent Southern Confederacy

December 12, 2010 by

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With the title of this post in mind… this editorial comes from the Staunton Vindicator, December 14, 1860 (courtesy the Valley of the Shadow site). Now, I realize, as an editorial, it is, or may be, just one man’s opinion, but, there appear to be reflections of the attitudes of others. I’ve placed emphasis in […]

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