Category Archives: Southern Society

bored of war

150 years ago today Richmond’s Dispatch was full of Northern accounts of the the fall of Fort Fisher. The editors spun the resultant closing of the port of Wilmington as economically advantageous: The fall of Fort Fisher, and the subsequent … Continue reading

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Big Data

The average Union soldier had more girth than the average Rebel? Recently I read about the importance of statistics and statisticians to the British government during World War II. Here’s some evidence that during the American Civil War a Northern … Continue reading

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hero warship

150 years ago this month the French-built CSS Stonewall took to the seas. It’s goal was to make its way to the New World to attack the Yankee navy and Yankee commerce. 150 years ago this week a Southern newspaper … Continue reading

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new year’s lottery

A Richmond editorial maintained that the South would always enjoy a “superabundance of bread and meat.” Apparently that superabundance wasn’t always making it to the front. From the Richmond Daily Dispatch January 6, 1865: The soldiers’ New-year’s dinner. Camp first … Continue reading

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ways out

01/06/2015: I made a big mistake. The articles from the Dispatch I reprinted below were actually from the January 5, 1864 issue. I’m a year late with this news. I’m sorry. “It will be difficult to get the world to … Continue reading

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namesakes

A Richmond newspaper can’t believe that free blacks would name their sons after Abraham Lincoln. It would make a lot more sense to name the children after the biblical Abraham. Unlike the “Washington Abraham” the biblical patriarch was a gentleman, … Continue reading

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nutshell happiness

The Richmond Dispatch still observed the Christian Sabbath back in 1864, so its January 2nd issue looked back on 1864 and ahead to 1865. The defiance seems muted in this Monday morning editorial as the writer could not even wish … Continue reading

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‘vacant chair’ Christmas

From the Richmond Daily Dispatch December 24, 1864: Saturday morning….December 24, 1864. Christmas. Christmas has come again, and though shorn of some of its old accessories of feasts and frolics, it is Christmas still in all that constitutes its essential … Continue reading

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“Yankee exploding ball”

From the Richmond Daily Dispatch December 15, 1864: Accident from fire-arms. –Yesterday afternoon, a little free negro boy, named Lewis Harris, was seriously injured in one of his hands by the explosion of a Yankee exploding ball, in the Second … Continue reading

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leaden sky ledger

As a Richmond paper tallied the military balance sheet for 1864, the conclusion was inescapable – the South had had a great year. From a Seneca County, New York newspaper in 1864: The Military Account Current Between North and South … Continue reading

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