The Scalawags: Southern Dissenters in the Civil War and Reconstruction

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LSU Press, Sep 1, 2004 - History - 323 pages
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In The Scalawags, James Alex Baggett ambitiously uncovers the genesis of scalawag leaders throughout the former Confederacy. Using a collective biography approach, Baggett profiles 742 white southerners who supported Congressional Reconstruction and the Republican Party. He then compares and contrasts the scalawags with 666 redeemer-Democrats who opposed and eventually replaced them. Significantly, he analyzes this rich data by region -- the Upper South, the Southeast, and the Southwest -- as well as for the South as a whole.

Baggett follows the life of each scalawag before, during, and after the war, revealing real personalities and not mere statistics. Examining such features as birthplace, vocation, estate, slaveholding status, education, political antecedents and experience, stand on secession, war record, and postwar political activities, he finds striking uniformity among scalawags. This is the first Southwide study of the scalawags, its scope and astounding wealth in quantity and quality of sources make it the definitive work on the subject.

  

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Contents

Antebellum Origins
14
Opposing Secession
42
Resisting the Rebels
66
Wartime Reconstruction
95
Postwar Disillusionment
124
Only One Remedy
159
Not So Sweet a Victory
180
The Birth of a Party
207
Turning the Corner Both Ways
236
Summing Up the Scalawags
260
Tables on Status and Political Background
273
Bibliography
281
Index
309
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

James Alex Baggett, retired dean and professor of history of Union University in Tennessee, lives in Atlanta. He is the author of two previous books, A History of Jackson Clinic and So Great a Cloud of Witnesses: Union University, 1823--2000.

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