Lincoln's Loyalists: Union Soldiers from the Confederacy

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UPNE, 1992 - History - 253 pages
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With this path-breaking book, Richard Nelson Current closes a major gap in our understanding of the important role of white southerners who fought for the Union during the Civil War. The ranks of the Union forces swelled by more than 100,000 of these men known to their friends as "loyalists" and to their enemies as "tories". They substantially strengthened the Union, weakened the Confederacy, and affected the outcome of the Civil War. Despite the assertions of southern governors that Lincoln would get no troops from the South to preserve the Union, every Confederate state except South Carolina provided at least a battalion of white troops for the Union Army. The role of black soldiers (including those from the South) continues to receive deserved attention. Curiously, little heed has been paid to the white southern supporters of the Union cause, and nothing has been published about the group as a whole. Relying almost entirely on primary sources, Current here opens the long-overdue investigation of these many Americans who, at great risk to themselves and their families, made a significant contribution to the Union's war effort. Current meticulously explores the history of the loyalists in each Confederate state during the war. Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia provided over 70 percent of the loyalist troops, but 10,000 from Arkansas, 7,000 from Louisiana, and thousands from North Carolina, Texas, and Alabama volunteered as well. The author weaves the separate state stories into an intriguing and detailed tapestry. The loyalists served in a variety of capacities--some performing mundane tasks, some fighting with valor. Whatever his individual role, each southerner joining the Unionconstituted a double loss to the Confederacy: a subtraction from its own ranks and an addition to the Union's. Undoubtedly, this played an important role in the Confederate defeat.
  

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Contents

Tennessee Troops
29
Carolina and Arkansas Recruits
61
Enlistees from Other States
89
Galvanized Yankees
111
What Manner of Men
133
Fighting by Southern Federals
159
The Unknown Soldiers
195
Copyright

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About the author (1992)

Born in Colorado City, Colorado, on October 5, 1912, Richard Nelson Current received his B.A. from Oberlin College and went on to earn an M.S. at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a Ph.D. in history (1939) at the University of Wisconsin. Current taught at a number of institutions, including Rutgers University, Lawrence College, Mills College, the University of Illinois, and the University of Wisconsin before becoming Distinguished Professor of American History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (1966--1983). He also taught in Japan, India, the Netherlands, Australia, Chile, and Germany. He was Harmsworth Professor at Oxford University. Current wrote about historical subjects ranging from the invention of the typewriter to American diplomacy. In 2000, he won the Lincoln Prize for lifetime achievement in the area of best non-fiction historical work pertaining to the American Civil War . Current died on October 26, 2012 at age 100. He is buried in Greensboro, NC.

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