This Distracted and Anarchical People: New Answers for Old Questions about the Civil War-Era North

Overview

While most of the fighting took place in the South, the Civil War profoundly affected the North. As farm boys became soldiers and marched off to battle, social, economic, and political changes transformed northern society. In the generations following the conflict, historians tried to understand and explain the North's Civil War experience. Many historical explanations became taken for granted, such as that the Union Army was ideologically Republican, northern Democrats were disloyal, and German Americans were ...

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Overview

While most of the fighting took place in the South, the Civil War profoundly affected the North. As farm boys became soldiers and marched off to battle, social, economic, and political changes transformed northern society. In the generations following the conflict, historians tried to understand and explain the North's Civil War experience. Many historical explanations became taken for granted, such as that the Union Army was ideologically Republican, northern Democrats were disloyal, and German Americans were lousy soldiers. Now in this eye-opening collection of eleven stimulating essays, new and important information is unearthed that solidly challenges the old historical arguments.

The essays in This Distracted and Anarchical People range widely throughout the history of the Civil War North, using new methods and sources to reexamine old theories and discover new aspects of the nation's greatest conflict. Many of these issues are just as important today as they were a century and a half ago. What were the extent and limits of wartime dissent in the North? How could a president most effectively present himself to the public? Can the savagery of war ever be tamed? How did African Americans create and maintain their families?

This Distracted and Anarchical People highlights the newest scholarship on a diverse array of topics, bringing fresh insight to bear on some of the most important topics in history today—such as the democratic press in the antebellum North, peace movements, the Union Army and the elections of 1864, Liberia and the U.S. Civil War, and African American veterans and marriage practices after Emancipation.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823245697
  • Publisher: Fordham University Press
  • Publication date: 1/2/2013
  • Series: North's Civil War (FUP) Series
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 1,392,360
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Andrew L. Slap is Associate Professor of History at East Tennessee State University. He is the author of The Doom of Reconstruction: The Liberal Republicans in the Civil War Era (Fordham).

Michael Thomas Smith is Assistant Professor of History at McNeese State University in Louisiana. He is the author of The Enemy Within: Fears of Corruption in the Civil War North.

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Table of Contents

Foreword Michael F. Holt xi

Acknowledgments xv

Introduction: New Answers for Old Questions about the Civil War-Era North Andrew L. Slap Michael Thomas Smith 1

"A Press That Speaks Its Opinions Frankly and Openly and Fearlessly": The Contentious Relationship between the Democratic Press and the Party in the Antebellum North Matthew Isham 11

Abraham Lincoln, Manhood, and Nineteenth-Century American Political Culture Michael Thomas Smith 29

Damnable Treason or Party Organs? Democratic Secret Societies in Pennsylvania Robert M. Sandow 42

Copperheads in Connecticut: A Peace Movement That Imperiled the Union Matthew Warshauer 60

"All Manner of Schemes and Rascalities": The Politics of Promotion in the Union Army Timothy J. Orr 81

"For My Part I Dont Care Who Is Elected President": The Union Army and the Elections of 1864 Jonathan W. White 104

New Perspectives in Civil War Ethnic History and Their Implications for Twenty-First-Century Scholarship Christian B. Keller 123

The Black Flag and Confederate Soldiers: Total War from the Bottom Up? Michael J. Bennett 142

Liberia and the U.S. Civil War Karen Fisher Younger 159

"No Regular Marriage": African American Veterans and Marriage Practices after Emancipation Andrew L. Slap 171

"She Is a Member of the 23rd": Lucy Nichols and the Community of the Civil War Regiment Barbara A. Gannon 184

Afterword: On Mark Neely: An Appreciation Harold Holzer 201

Notes 207

List of Contributors 265

Index 269

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