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The North and South Magazine issue, Volume 10, No 2., has a very interesting map showing how the roots of disunion look geographically in the United States in 1860.  It compares the lower, middle and upper South.

What happened on this day during the Civil War - April 16th?

  1. April 16, 1862 - Confederate Congress, following numerous Western Theater losses in the past three months, issues the first-ever conscription act in American military history. This would be just the first of three Confederate conscription acts.
  2. April 16, 1862 – Lincoln signs a bill outlawing slavery in the District of Columbia.
  3. April 16, 1863 – Grant turns his attention again towards Vicksburg by sending gunboats and transports to the region. He will eventually capture the city in a couple months. The city was deemed impregnable by the citizens, hailing it as the “Gibraltar of the West”.
  4. April 16, 1864 – An official report from the ward department lists 146,634 prisoners of war.

For a complete timeline of the American Civil War, click here.

What happened on this day during the Civil War – April 13th?

  1. Saturday, April 13, 1861 – Maj Robert Anderson surrenders Fort Sumter to the Confederates in the opening salvo of the American Civil War.
  2. Sunday, April 13, 1862 - Gen David Hunter declares his region (vicinity of Ft. Pulaski, GA) free of slavery. Issues his own unapproved emancipation of slaves.
  3. Monday, April 13, 1863 – Federals assault Fort Bisland, LA; on Bayou Teche.
  4. Wednesday, April 13, 1864 - CSA Nathan Bedford Forrest’s cavalry skirmish in Columbus, KY.
  5. Thursday, April 13, 1865 – Raleigh falls to Sherman.

For a complete timeline of the American Civil War, click here.

What happened on this day during the Civil War – April 10th?

  1. Slavery was abolished in Washington, D.C. – April 10, 1862
  2. Fort Pulaski, Georgia, which guarded the Savannah River, fell to the Union after a constant bombardment from artillery. – April 10, 1862
  3. Confederate cavalry attack in Franklin, Tennessee. – April 10, 1863
  4. The only U.S. female surgeon – Mary Edwards Walker – is captured by Confederates south of the Tennessee-Georgia border. – April 10, 1864.
  5. General Robert E. Lee issues General Orders #9, a farewell to his beloved Army of Northern Virginia. – April 10, 1865.
  6. The Union celebrates the end of the war. A crowd gathers at the Whitehouse and Lincoln has the bland play Dixie. – April 10, 1865.

For a complete timeline of the American Civil War, click here.

The bloody conflict between brothers, is closed, and “we come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.” The South had $2,000,000,000 invested in Slaves. It was very natural thatthey should desire to protect, and not lose this amount of property. Their action in this effort, resulted in War. There was no desire to dissolve the Union, but to protect this property. The issue was made and it is decided.

- Letter from an Alabama Planter (Sterling Cockrill), to President Andrew Johnson, September 18, 1865

Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Civil War Quotations, page 51.

digital file from b&w film neg.

[Port Royal Island, S.C. African Americans preparing cotton for the gin on Smith's plantation].

O’Sullivan, Timothy H., 1840-1882, photographer.

The Library of Congress

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“In all this I can see but the doom of slavery. The North do not want, nor will they want, to interfere with the institution. But they will refuse for all time to give it protection unless the South shall return soon to their allegiance.”
– April 19, 1861, in a letter to his father-in-law, Frederick Dent.

“My inclination is to whip the rebellion into submission, preserving all Constitutional rights. If it cannot be whipped any other way than through a war against slavery, let it come to to that legitimately. If it is necessary that slavery should fall that the Republic may continue its existence, let slavery go.”
– November 27, 1861, in a letter to his father.

“I never was an abolitionist, not even what could be called anti-slavery, but I try to judge fairly and honestly and it became patent in my mind early in the rebellion that the North and South could never live at peace with each other except as one nation, and that without slavery. As anxious as I am to see peace established, I would not therefore be willing to see any settlement until the question is forever settled.”
– August 30, 1863, in a letter to Elihu Washburne.

“As soon as slavery fired upon the flag, it was felt, we all felt, even those who did not object to slaves, that slavery must be destroyed. We felt that it was a stain to the Union that men should be bought and sold like cattle… there had to be an end to slavery.”
– In a conversation with Bismarck, 1878.

“The cause of the great War of the Rebellion against the United States will have to be attributed to slavery. For some years before the war began it was a trite saying among some politicians that “A state half slave and half free cannot exist.” All must become slave or all free, or the state will go down. I took no part myself in any such view of the case at the time, but since the war is over, reviewing the whole question, I have come to the conclusion that the saying is quite true.”
– U.S. Grant, in his Memoirs, 1885.

From Ulysses S. Grant Home Page

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Ulysses S. Grant

Ulysses S. Grant

1850 – Largest plantations (by slaves) in Beaufort region.

1. Henry Middleton (d. 1846) had 686 slaves working on a rice plantation in Beaufort-Prince William, but he was ranked 7th overall in SC in 1850.

2. Joseph Blake (d. 1865) had 610 slaves on a rice plantation in Beaufort-Prince William, ranking number eight in all of SC for 1850.

3. Nathaniel Heyward (d. 1851) had 286 slaves on a rice plantation; Beaufort-Prince William. He ranked number one for total slaves in SC for 1850 too.

The Top Ten cash crops in 1850 in South Carolina were:

1. Rice (seven of top ten)

2. Cotton (two)

3. Sugar (1)


Middleton Place, July 2006.

1860 – Largest plantations (by slaves) in Beaufort region.

1. Joseph Blake (d 1865) had two plantations; one in Prince William and one in St. Peter; He had 545 rice slaves in the former and 74 in the later. He was the the largest in South Carolina overall.

2. John I. Middleton (heir to Henry’s estate; d. 1877) had two plantations by then too.  He had 520 rice slaves in Prince-William. He was the 2nd largest planter in South Carolina overall.

3.  William H. Heyward (d. 1889, was heir to his father Nathaniel) had 386 rice slaves in Prince William; and another 136 in St. Peter.  He was the 4th largest planter in all of South Carolina.

Source: Masters of the Big House, Kauffman.

Columbia, Tenn.
Nov. 23rd 1864

Dear Sister,

Since I commenced the letter on the other page circumstances prevented my finishing it. We started immediately from Franklin & when we got here I was sent away & in the mean time the cars which had my things on were sent back before they were unloaded. A man was with the whole of the luggage & he just returned to us the other day. So I concluded to write on the same sheet nevertheless. Nearly all I care about writing at present is that I am perfectly well and doing well for a soldier. Cold weather has commenced. Day before yesterday we had a little spotting of snow just enough to be seen on the ground, when it cleared off the ground froze hard so that now we consider ourselves embarked in the winter campaign. Yet winters with the exception of a few days are not so very disagreeable and soon you know almost before we are aware of it spring will come & its heels another summer which will let us out of the service even if the war is not as I hope it will be ended. How I wish a few of the northern democrats or Copperheads for there is very little difference between them were in the place of some of these Rebs so that they could try the effect of our bullets. George writes that his house is burned down. He takes it hard! P Shah! I could whistle over such misfortunes as that. Haven’t I seen thousands of such buildings burned in the South. Black smoking ruins where the house once stood. Every fence burned down, every particle of corn potatoes etc. destroyed & every part of the farm rendered so barren that even a rat would not be secure from starvation. I like to see it done here for the South has sown the wind & they should reap the whirlwind. The worst men that God ever suffered to live are in my mind the Aristocrats of the south. And side by side with them are their sympathizers in the North. Have your heard from Thomas lately. According to my understanding his time will be out in ten or fifteen days. He enlisted on the first of December & I the following August. I have nine months & a few days yet. We have been notified several times since we have been here to look out for Hood & [Nathan Bedford] Forrest. They have not paid us a visit yet & I hope will not attempt to at present. We don’t care about fighting them but can & will if they come this way. Our regt. is in excellent condition though small & we hope may be able to go out without losing many more men. Excuse this letter which was hastily written & though in two parts, may perhaps be as good as any I could write were I to commence anew. Remember me to all the friends. Write the news as soon as possible.

Your Brother

A.M.Weston

Nov 27th We have had quite a battle here I am well & unhurt

Asa M. Weston, a member of the 50th Ohio. Weston was a sergeant in Company K.

The following letter were written by Asa M. Weston, a member of the 50th Ohio. Weston was a sergeant in Company K.

Franklin, Tenn.
Nov 12th 1864

Dear Sister,

It has been a long time since we have had any thing like regular mail communication and consequently I have not attempted to write to you. I am now on the cars some thirty miles from Nashville. We have stopped to wait for another & then we go on to Pulaski. [John Bell] Hood’s old army is up here some where & part of Shermans army is here to watch him while Sherman himself with the main force is advancing from Atlanta to Savannah or Charleston. He will destroy the entire railroads of the Confederacy and then they will be reduced to still greater straits than before. Old Abe is elected & if Jeff Davis wishes to try his hand for four years longer let him do so. The Southern Confederacy will by that time be effectually destroyed while the North will be flourishing as the rose. If southern traitors wish desolation and destruction of their entire country Abolition of Slavery included let them have it.

Asa M. Weston, a member of the 50th Ohio. Weston was a sergeant in Company K.

“I know there is a God, and that He hates injustice and slavery. I see the storm coming, and I know that His hand is in it. If He has a place and work for me, and I think He has, I believe I’m ready. I am nothing, but Truth is everything.”

Abraham Lincoln, during his first presidential campaign

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