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Diary of Edmund Ruffin: Toward Independence: October, 1856-April, 1861
     

Diary of Edmund Ruffin: Toward Independence: October, 1856-April, 1861

by Edmund Ruffin
 

Edmund Ruffin was one of the most significant figures in the Old South. A gentleman planter, writer, and political commentator, he made his greatest contribution as an agricultural reformer, but it was as a militant defender of slavery and champion of the southern cause that he gained his greatest fame

.In his voluminous diary, Ruffin has left an invaluable

Overview

Edmund Ruffin was one of the most significant figures in the Old South. A gentleman planter, writer, and political commentator, he made his greatest contribution as an agricultural reformer, but it was as a militant defender of slavery and champion of the southern cause that he gained his greatest fame

.In his voluminous diary, Ruffin has left an invaluable primary account of the crucial years from 1856 to 1865. This volume, the first of a projected two-volume edition, covers the period from Ruffin's retirement from his Virginia plantation to the aftermath of the bombardment of Fort Sumter in April of 1861.

Through the eyes of this outspoken secessionist, the reader views the chain of events which drove the nation steadily and inexorably toward disunion and civil war. An intelligent and astute commentator, Ruffin was personally acquainted with most of the prominent southern political leaders of the day, and his restless nature impelled him to be present at the most important events of the period.

Ruffin attended several secession conventions, and as a member of the Palmetto Guard he was accorded the honor of firing the first shot on Fort Sumter. The diary contains vivid eyewitness accounts of the hanging of John Brown on December 2, 1859, and the activities and changing moods in Charleston during the hectic months of March and April of 1861. Ruffins' detailed description of the two-day bombardment of Sumter is unexcelled.

The Diary of Edmund Ruffin is of supreme importance as a chronicle of political attitudes, moods, and motives in the South during the most critical period in its history. The journal also contains a wealth of information on travel conditions in the Old South, the reading habits and social customs of the planter aristocracy, and various aspects of the plantation-slave system.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807109489
Publisher:
Louisiana State University Press
Publication date:
05/01/1972
Series:
Library of Southern Civilization
Pages:
664
Product dimensions:
6.12(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Meet the Author

William Kauffman Scarborough, Professor of History at the University of Southern Mississippi, is the author of The Overseer: Plantation Management in the Old South, and a frequent contributor to historical journals.

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